A few short weeks ago, you read our first ever review of a press car. I was on location in Europe while Josh got the pleasure of driving and reviewing the Mazda CX-5. So this was my very first press car as Editor-in-Chief of RFD. And I backed into a God damn wall. More on that in the video, but first some notes about this Kia crossover. The Sorento adheres to the Goldilocks principle, not too big, not too small, just right. It’s larger than compact SUVs like the Honda CR-V or Toyota RAV-4. But, it’s smaller than what is typically considered “midsize”. This means that it’s easy to drive, easy to park…sort of, but retains a ton of space inside. Which makes sense, since it’s a platform mate with Kia’s minivan, the Sedona. If you haven’t closely followed the path of the Sorento here in the States, here’s a brief history.
The Sorento showed up on our shores in 2003, a body on frame SUV with optional 4WD, wasn’t actually that bad off-road. Kia sold 40,787 of them that first year and did well in the mid 2000s, cresting 50K sold in both 2004 and 2006. Sales languished towards the end of the first generation, however when the next iteration came out in 2010 it was a hit, with Kia selling over 100,000 of them. The second generation, a unibody car-based crossover, has done well since then but there was a new one for 2015. So is the latest generation any good? Let’s find out.
Trim: SXL AWD
Trans: 6-Speed Auto
Engine: 240-hp 2.0 Liter, Turbocharged Inline 4
Drive: All-Wheel Drive
Exterior: Titanium Silver
Interior: Merlot Nappa Leather
Destination Fee: $895
Packages & Options
ALL WHEEL DRIVE $1800
TECHNOLOGY PACKAGE $2,500
- High-Intensity Discharge (HID), Projector Beam Headlights with Auto-Leveling
- Surround View Monitor (SVM)
- Advanced Smart Cruise Control (ASCC)
- Lane Departure Warning System (LDWS)
- Forward Collision Warning System
- Electronic Parking Brake
Total MSRP: $45,095
The decision to buy a Kia really comes down to one thing, are you cool with the badge? If you are, it’s a hell of a deal, the test car we had sported tech only found on high end luxury names. So I think Hyundai and Kia are at a bit of a crossroads. As you may have read last year on RFD, personally I think they need to create a luxury brand. If you are brand conscious, the news that these Korean automakers are building awesome cars won’t matter. So unless you rebadge your Kia as something else, you need to be cool with the fact that not everyone will “get it”. Which is too bad, because as you (hopefully) saw in the video, they made a hell of an SUV. So go give them a shot, you won’t be disappointed.