HomeautoKia’s Sorento becoming first choice for shoppers
June 12, 2012
Kia’s Sorento becoming first choice for shoppers
Kia’s Sorento is building a reputation as a great alternative to better-known crossovers from its bigger competitors.
The company is also proving that better-known isn’t always better.
The Sorento does everything about right. Ride comfort is good, Handling, good. Driving dynamics? Surprisingly good. Maybe because it’s between small and midsize. It’s bigger than a Toyota RAV4 and Honda’s CRV. It’s also a tad less expensive than both.
The Sorento is a smartly-sized crossover that can easily hold five people in great comfort and seven in relative comfort, depending on the size of those last two people. The third row is best for children but adults shouldn’t complain too much. It’s interior is nicely done, thanks to a great makeover last year. The front seats are ventilated and stain resistant if you get the cloth.
The biggest intro on the 2012 is the direct injection four-cylinder engine. At 191 horses, it’s far better than the base and it gets better gas mileage. You can average 32 mpg on the highway but still have better passing power and less noise when you hit the gas.
On the highway the Sorento is quite and feels quick. The six-speed transmission is nearly flawless and the ride is comfortable without being cushy. Some may find it too firm but I think it’s a nice balance. It also feels well planted in curves. There’s a touch of body roll, but not more than you’d expect in a crossover.
The Sorento does not disappoint in town, either. Twenty-two miles per gallon isn’t hybrid territory but it’s far better than larger crossovers and the tweener size lets you park in regular spaces.
The Sorento EX also feels rock solid. The doors shut with a thunk. The switches and knobs feel upscale and the interior has caught up its Japanese competitors. Even the entertainment system has some thump.
My test car started at $25,950 but had lots of goodies, many of which were included in a package. The engine, panoramic sunroof, leather interior, navigation and backup camera were nice touches. Throw that in with standard equipment such as traction control, ABS, air, satellite radio (Sirius), Bluetooth, iPod connectivity and six-speed transmission and the Sorento EX was nearly loaded. It was also nearly $30,000.