Kia Sorento

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Kia Sorento
Kia Sorento (UM) diesel 2199cc registered March 2017.jpg
ManufacturerKia Motors
Body and chassis
Body style5-door SUV
PredecessorKia Borrego (North America)

The Kia Sorento is a mid-size crossover SUV (compact SUV until 2009) produced since 2002 by South Korean manufacturer Kia Motors.

First generation (2002–2009)[edit]


First generation (BL)
Kia Sorento CRDI XE 2005 - Flickr - mick - Lumix.jpg
Also calledNaza Sorento (Malaysia)
Pyeonghwa Ppeokkuggi 2405 (North Korea)
  • 2002–2009
  • 2007–2009 (Russia)
  • 2008–present (China)
  • 5-speed manual (2002–2007)
  • 4-speed automatic (2002–2005)
  • 5-speed automatic (2005–2009)
Wheelbase2,710 mm (106.7 in)
4,570 mm (179.9 in)
4,590 mm (180.7 in)
Width1,865 mm (73.4 in)
1,885 mm (74.2 in)
Height1,731 mm (68.1 in)
1,810 mm (71.3 in)

Debuted in February 2002, the first generation Sorento was a traditional truck-based body-on-frame SUV. All American Sorentos also came with dual front airbags and dual side-curtain airbags in the front and rear. An optional four-wheel drive system with low range received praise for adding to the vehicle's off-road ability.

It had two transmission options, a 5-speed manual or 4/5-speed automatic (pre-2005 models have a 4-speed automatic, whilst 2005 Sorentos came with a 5-speed tip-tronic style automatic). First generation Sorentos are equipped with a Hyundai-manufactured 3.5L 24-valve DOHC V6 engine producing 192 hp (143 kW) at 5500 rpm, and 217 lb⋅ft (294 N⋅m) of torque at 3,000 rpm. Common features of the first generation Sorento were 4-wheel disc brakes (standard on all models), optional anti-lock braking system (ABS), and a 21.1-gallon (79.9 litres) fuel tank.

Pre-facelift Kia Sorento 2.5 CRDi (Europe)

There were two trim levels available for the Sorento: either the base LX or the up-level EX. Both models included an AM/FM stereo with a single-disc CD player and an eight-speaker audio system, dual front airbags and front and rear side-impact SRS airbags (side-impact front and rear SRS airbags for North American-market models ONLY), cloth seating surfaces, a power-adjustable front driver's seat, air conditioning, power door locks and windows, tinted windows, aluminum-alloy wheels, keyless entry, wood interior trim accents, a split-folding second-row rear bench seat, and monotone exterior paint as standard equipment. Features such as satellite radio (on later models), leather-trimmed seating surfaces, heated front seats, a ten-speaker premium audio system, cassette and CD players, an in-dash CD changer, power front bucket seats, seventeen-inch (17") aluminum-alloy wheels, a power sunroof, two-tone exterior paint, and a security system were available regardless of trim level choice.


2007–2008 Kia Sorento LX (US)

The 2007 Sorento received upgrades, such as the transition from the 3.5L Sigma to the 3.3L with 235 hp (175 kW) and 226 lb⋅ft (306 N⋅m), and the 3.8L Lambda, with 263 hp (196 kW) and 257 lb⋅ft (348 N⋅m) and increased tow capacity from 3,500 lb (1,588 kg)[1] to 5,000 lb (2,268 kg).[clarification needed] Projector beam head lamps were added, along with new tail lamps. The 5-speed manual transmission was no longer available; the 5-speed Sportmatic tip-tronic automatic transmission was made standard for all vehicles. The EX trim had full-time AWD and 4x4 Low modes; The LX had a part-time system with 2WD High (rear wheel drive), 4WD High (not for dry pavement[2]) and 4WD Low modes. The 2007 Kia Sorento earned a five-star crash safety rating, the highest rating possible, for all seating positions in frontal and side impact crash tests conducted by the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA).[3] [4] The tail lights and front end were upgraded, but the two-box design stayed.


2009 Kia Sorento EX (Australia)

The Kia Sorento received another grille facelift, and went on sale in August 2008 in Canada. The facelifted 2009 model did not begin American sales until April 2009.


The 2003 Sorento received Poor to Average ratings from the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety (IIHS).[5] The 2007 facelifted version had improved safety ratings for moderate overlap front crashes and head restraints & seats, but retained its Poor side impact rating.[6]

Test Rating
Overall: 1/5 stars (2003)
4/5 stars (2007)
Moderate overlap front: Acceptable (2003)
Good (2007)
Side: Poor
Head restraints & seats: Poor (2003)
Good (2007)

Second generation (2010–2015)[edit]

Second generation (XM)
2011 Kia Sorento SX -- 09-22-2011.jpg
Also calledKia Sorento R (South Korea & China)
  • 2009–2014
  • 2013–2017 (Russia)
Model years2010–2015
DesignerPeter Schreyer
Body and chassis
Wheelbase2,700 mm (106.3 in)
Length4,660–4,684 mm (183.5–184.4 in)
Width1,885 mm (74.2 in)
Height1,710 mm (67.3 in)

A redesigned Sorento (codename XMA) was launched in South Korea in April 2009 as a 2010 model. The second generation was Kia's first model to be manufactured in the United States, in Kia's new US$1 billion West Point, Georgia, factory (which also builds the sister vehicle to the Sorento, the Hyundai Santa Fe). The second generation used Kia's corporate Tiger Nose grille, and was the first Kia vehicle to offer Kia UVO.[8][9] The vice president of marketing for Kia Motors America said that Kia initially considered changing the name due to the radical change in the Sorento's body style.[10]

The second-generation Sorento introduced Kia's new design language, and introduced new features and technology that would later become available on other Kia models.

The four-cylinder model returned to the lineup for North American models after being absent between 2007 and 2010. The engine was transverse, and the suspension all-independent. The change in body construction as well as the loss of a low-ratio transfer case made the Sorento 475 pounds less than the old one model for model, to gain in performance and economy.

The second generation Sorento was originally available in 4 models, the Base, LX, EX and top of the line SX models. The SX is only available with the 3.5L 276 hp (206 kW) V6. The Base and LX both come standard with the 2.4L straight-4 175 hp (130 kW) and EX has the GDI version of the same engine which is rated 191 hp. The V6 is available as an upgrade for both the LX and EX. The SX Limited model became available in 2012.

The Sorento received a mid-cycle refresh for the 2014 model year, unveiled in 2012 at the Los Angeles International Auto Show, and went on sale in first quarter of 2013.[11] Major changes included a revised instrument panel, front and rear end with new tail lights modeled after the Optima, as well as several other mechanical and interior changes.

For 2015, the six-speed manual transmission option, previously only available on the Base and LX models, was discontinued, leaving the six-speed automatic transmission as the only transmission option for the Sorento.

Trim Levels[edit]

The interior of a second-generation Sorento

The Kia Sorento was available in several different trim levels during its production run between 2011 and 2015, and each offered its own level of standard and optional equipment:

Base: The Base was the least expensive model of the Sorento. It offered the following standard features: a 2.4L Theta II Inline Four-Cylinder (I4) gasoline engine, a six-speed manual transmission, cloth seating surfaces, an AM-FM stereo with SiriusXM Satellite Radio, a single-disc CD/MP3 player, Bluetooth for hands-free phone and wireless stereo audio streaming, iPod/USB and auxiliary inputs, manually-adjustable dual front bucket seats, five-passenger seating, seventeen-inch (17") aluminum-alloy wheels, keyless entry, and power windows and door locks. There were no additional options for this trim level, and this trim level was available exclusively with Front Wheel Drive.

LX: The LX was the "value-oriented" model of the Sorento. It added the following standard features to the Base: a six-speed automatic transmission (standard for 2015 models ONLY) and tinted windows. Additional features for this trim level included the Kia UVO touch-screen infotainment system with 4.3-inch color touch-screen display, a power-adjustable front driver's bucket seat, seven-passenger seating, a 3.3L Lambda II V6 gasoline engines, heated front seats and steering wheel, and a rear-view backup camera system. This trim level was available with either Front Wheel Drive or All Wheel Drive.

EX: The EX was the luxury model of the Sorento. It added the following standard features to the LX: a six-speed automatic transmission, the Kia UVO touch-screen infotainment system with 4.3-inch color touch-screen display, eighteen-inch (18") aluminum-alloy wheels, leather-trimmed seating surfaces, dual power-adjustable front bucket seats, security system, and heated front seats and steering wheel. Additional options on this trim level included a 3.3L Lambda II V6 gasoline engine, heated second-row seats, a power sunroof, third-row seating, a rear-view backup camera system, a GPS navigation system, an Infinity premium amplified audio system with subwoofer, and keyless access with push-button start. This trim level was available with either Front Wheel Drive or All Wheel Drive.

SX: The SX was the top-of-the-line model of the Sorento. It added the following standard features to the EX: eighteen-inch (18") polished aluminum-alloy wheels, perforated leather-trimmed seating surfaces, third-row seating, a 3.3L Lambda II V6 gasoline engine, a GPS navigation system, an Infinity premium amplified audio system with subwoofer, keyless access with push-button start, a power sunroof, and a rear-view backup camera system. There were few options available on this trim level, except for the buyer's choice of either Front Wheel Drive or All Wheel Drive.

SX Limited: The SX Limited model became available in 2013, adding more luxury features to the SX, such as: memory seating, remote start, unique perforated leather-trimmed seating surfaces, unique polished aluminum-alloy wheels, exterior color-keyed lower body accents, a 3.5L Lambda II V6 gasoline engine, and unique exterior and interior color options. This trim level was only available with All Wheel Drive.


The 2011 Sorento received a "Top Safety Pick" rating from the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety (IIHS).[12]

Test Rating
Overall: 5/5 stars
Moderate overlap front: Good
Side: Good
Roof strength: Good
Head restraints & seats: Good


The 2011 Sorento was awarded the maximum five-star safety rating from the crash safety experts, European New Car Assessment Programme (Euro NCAP) and Australasian New Car Assessment Program (ANCAP).[13] The XM Sorento awarded 'Top Safety Pick' from Insurance Institute for Highway Safety (IIHS) in the United States.[14]

The second generation Sorento was awarded New Zealand Autocar magazine SUV of the Year, "great looker, does absolutely everything as it should. Engine is world class".[15] The Kia Sorento EX V6 model earned an “Excellent” overall score by American magazine Consumer Reports’ July 2010 issue.[16]


As part of 2014 Sorento market launch in the US, a campaign titled "It has an answer for everything" was unveiled during Super Bowl XLVII. "Space Babies" (directed by Jake Scott) commercial was premiered in the fourth quarter, featuring the existence of a faraway planet known as "Babylandia" and follows infant boys, girls, dogs, pandas and more on their journey to Earth to join their new families. After taking it all in, the curious child begins to offer an alternative theory passed on by a friend but his quick-thinking father calls upon UVO's voice-activated jukebox feature to hurriedly change the subject and survive another day in the adventures of parenthood. "Tight Space" (directed by Peter Darley Miller and Colin Jeffery) showed two of the CUV's available features – power-folding mirrors and power liftgate – help a determined father make the slimmest parking garage space manageable while his skeptical wife and children look on.[17][18]


Pre-facelift styling

Post-facelift styling

Third generation (2016–present)[edit]

Third generation (UM)
2017 Kia Sorento KX-4 4X4 Automatic 2,2 Front.jpg
Also calledKia Sorento Prime (Russia)[19]
Kia Sorento L (China) Kia Sorento KX-4
Model years
  • 2015–present
  • 2016–present (North America)
Body and chassis
Wheelbase2,780 mm (109.4 in)
Length2016-2018: 4,760 mm (187.4 in)
2019: 4,800 mm (189.0 in)
Width1,890 mm (74.4 in)
Height1,685 mm (66.3 in)

Kia Motors revealed the third generation Sorento in South Korea on August 28, 2014. The vehicle later made its European debut at the 2014 Paris Motor Show. The third generation Sorento shares a platform with the 2015 Kia Carnival, and is available in either 5-seater or 7-seater, depending on configuration. It is 95mm longer than the previous generation, but lower for better handling. Kia claims a rigidity strengthening of 14% on its high tensile steel and the Sorento scored good evaluation in small overlap crash test by IIHS. In the U.S., the Sorento continues to be produced at the West Point, Georgia, assembly plant.

Available engines are a 290 horsepower 3.3L Lambda II V6 , the existing 190 horsepower 2.4L GDi I4 that will make the same output as the outgoing engine, and the new 240 horsepower 2.0 turbo I4. A 2.2L CRDi diesel engine with variable geometry turbocharger (VGT) is also available.

The third generation Sorento comes equipped with a six-speed manual transmission or six-speed automatic transmission. Drivetrains are front-wheel drive or all-wheel drive.


Kia Sorento KX-4

In the United States, the 2016 Kia Sorento is offered in five models and four models within the United Kingdom. KX-1 base model, KX-2, KX-3 and KX4 with the GT-Line from late 2018 onwards replacing the KX-4.

The L is a new model, and base model, for 2016. It offers a 2.4L GDi I4 engine that makes 190 HP with a six-speed automatic transmission, and is only available with front-wheel-drive. Standard features include an A/M-F/M radio with single-disc CD player and six speakers, and input jacks for an auxiliary audio device, as well as an iPod or other USB device, and can be controlled from the Sorento's radio, and Sirius XM Satellite Radio is also standard, as is Bluetooth and A2DP stereo audio streaming. Also included are alloy wheels, cloth seating surfaces, and keyless entry.

The LX was previously the base model, and is now an upgrade from the base model for 2016. It builds off of the L model, and also offers a 3.3L Lambda V6 engine that makes 290 HP, and is available with front-wheel-drive or all-wheel-drive. A Popular Package is offered that adds a touchscreen Kia Uvo radio, heated front seats, a sunroof, and front fog lamps.

The EX is the midlevel model, and offers a standard 2.0L turbocharged I4 engine that makes 240 HP (the V6 engine is also available). The UVO radio comes standard, and there are leather seats as standard equipment. Third-row seating is also available. Alloy wheels with black-finished inserts are standard equipment, as are fog lamps and heated seats. An EX Premium Package adds such features as an Infinity sound system, navigation system, HD Radio, and more.

The SX begins the upper range, and comes with the V6 engine as standard.[21] The navigation system comes standard, as does HD Radio and the Infinity sound system. Push-button start with a smart key comes standard.

The Limited, previously known as the SX Limited, offers the same I4 engine as standard and the V6 engine as optional in the EX and SX models.[clarification needed] Nappa leather seating surfaces are standard equipment, as are heated and ventilated front seats, and heated rear seats. A panoramic sunroof is also standard, as are chrome alloy wheels. For 2017 the 5 passenger SX Limited is discontinued.

The SXL is the top-of-the-line model, and offers the V6 engine as the only option. Loaded with Autonomous Braking, heated and cooled seats, Lane Departure Warning, HID Headlights, LED Front Fog Lights. 19" Alloy Wheels, UVO eServices with Navigation, 8" Color Touch-Screen Display, SiriusXM® Traffic, HD Radio™, Android Auto™ and Apple CarPlay™, Infinity® 10-Speaker Audio w/ Clari-Fi™, External Amplifier & Subwoofer, HD Radio all as standard. Rear-Camera Display, Rear Parking Assist System (RPAS), Surround View Monitor (SVM), Blind-Spot Detection (BSD), System Rear Cross Traffic Alert (RCTA), Advanced Smart Cruise Control (ASCC), Forward Collision Warning System (FCWS) [22]

Mid-Year 2018 facelift[edit]

In 2018, Kia announced that the Kia Sorento will receive a new front grille with refreshed headlamps and tail lamps with similar design cues derivied from the 2019 Kia Forte and the 2018 Kia Cadenza for the 2019 model year. The L, LX, EX, and SX trim levels will receive refreshed projector beam headlamps with LED positioning lights. The SXL trim levels will receive new LED headlamps with LED Daytime Running Lights, LED Amber Turn Signal and positioning lights, and LED tail lamps. The Sorento SX trim is also available with LED headlamps as an option with the SX Touring Package. The EX and SX trim levels feature projector beam foglamps and SXL trim level has Full LED foglamps, the LED foglamps are also available on the SX trim level with the SX Touring Package. Other changes include new exterior colors, new wheels, third row seating now standard on all trim levels with all engine types, driver attention warning system added to all trim levels, and a 2.4 liter engine will replace the 2.0 liter engine on lower trim levels. The 2019 Kia Sorento will feature a 3.5 liter V6 engine on higher trim levels. Five trim levels will be offered L, LX, EX, SX, and SXL. The trim levels are available with All Wheel Drive except for the base L trim level which is only available with Front Wheel Drive.[23]


The 2017 Sorento received a "Top Safety Pick" rating from the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety (IIHS).[24]

Test Rating
Overall: 5/5 stars
Small overlap front: Good
Moderate overlap front: Good
Side: Good
Roof strength: Good
Head restraints & seats: Good
Front crash prevention: Superior
Headlights: Poor/Good varying with trim level
Child seat anchors (Latch) ease of use: Acceptable


In November 2014, Kia Motors collaborated with 20th Century Fox to create a Wolverine-themed Sorento to promote the home media release of X-Men: Days of Future Past. The custom Sorento made its debut at the 2015 Australian Open, with a series of videos featuring Rafael Nadal teaming up with the X-Men to save the tennis event from the Sentinels.[25]

In January 2015, Kia Motors released their Sorento Super Bowl XLIX commercial featuring Pierce Brosnan.[26]


Calendar year United States[27] Canada Thailand Global
2002 8,451
2003 40,787
2004 52,878
2005 47,610
2006 50,672
2007 36,300
2008 29,699
2009 24,460
2010 108,984
2011 130,235
2012 119,597 219,154[28]
2013 105,649 14,542[29]
2014 102,520 55[30]
2015 116,249 14,372[31] 11[32]
2016 114,733 9[33]
2017 99,684 12[34]
2018 107,846[35]


  1. ^ 2005 owner's manual
  2. ^ "KIA Sorento 2007 1.G Owner's Manual". Retrieved 2017-03-13.
  3. ^ "Archived copy". Archived from the original on 2007-08-12. Retrieved 2007-07-30.CS1 maint: archived copy as title (link)
  4. ^
  5. ^ "2003 Kia Sorento". Insurance Institute for Highway Safety. Retrieved 2017-05-29.
  6. ^ "2007 Kia Sorento". Insurance Institute for Highway Safety. Retrieved 2017-05-29.
  7. ^ "Ao"Азия Авто"". Retrieved 2010-10-30.
  8. ^ "2011 Kia Sorento – First Drive Review – Car & Driver". Retrieved 2010-10-09.
  9. ^ Korzeniewski, Jeremy (2009-03-18). ""More 2010 Kia Sorento shots hit the web" From (March 18, 2009)". Retrieved 2010-10-09.
  10. ^ Kia Sticks with Sorento Name for All-New Crossover Sep 25, 2009. CBS Interactive
  11. ^ Miersma, Seyth. "New-look 2014 Kia Sorento takes the stage in Los Angeles". Retrieved 22 August 2016.
  12. ^ "2011 Kia Sorento". Insurance Institute for Highway Safety. Retrieved 2017-05-29.
  13. ^ Kia Sorento crash test result Archived 2011-07-25 at the Wayback Machine ANCAP
  14. ^ Kia Sorento Awarded 'Top Safety Pick' by Insurance Institute for Highway Safety June 2, 2010 /PRNewswire/
  15. ^ Kia Sorento R picks up first global award – in NZ Fri, 4 Dec 2009. Allied Press Ltd
  16. ^ "Kia Sorento Tops Tests Of Small and Midsized SUVs". Consumer Reports. 2010-06-01. Retrieved 22 August 2016.
  17. ^ Miersma, Seyth. "Kia previews its Super Bowl baby commercial, far cry from Adriana Lima". Retrieved 22 August 2016.
  18. ^ Bowman, Zach. "Behold, Kia's Space Babies Super Bowl commercial". Retrieved 22 August 2016.
  19. ^ "Kia Sorento Prime". Retrieved 14 January 2017.
  20. ^ Missing or empty |title= (help)
  21. ^ "2016 Kia Sorento: Customize & Price - Edmunds". Retrieved 22 August 2016.
  22. ^ "Build Your Own Kia Car - Choose from Sedans, SUVs, Crossovers, Hatchbacks & SUVs".
  23. ^ Hall, Emme. "2019 Kia Sorento First Drive: Refreshed and refined". Roadshow.
  24. ^ "2017 Kia Sorento". Insurance Institute for Highway Safety. Retrieved 2017-05-29.
  25. ^ Joseph, Noah (2014-11-24). "Kia Sorento bares its claws for X-Men Special Edition". Retrieved 2014-11-25.
  26. ^ De Guzman, Marcus (2015-01-29). "Watch: Pierce Brosnan Makes an Unexpected Getaway with Kia". The Clipping Point. Retrieved 2015-01-30.
  27. ^ "News - Sales Data - Sales Data - Kia Motors America Newsroom".
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  30. ^ "Sales Report เจาะลึกยอดขายรถยนต์รวมปี 2557 ที่ละเอียดที่สุดในไทย". February 1, 2015.
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  32. ^ "Exclusive Sales Report เจาะลึกยอดขายรถยนต์รวม ปี 2558 / 2015 ที่ละเอียดที่สุดในไทย". June 10, 2016.
  33. ^ "Sales Report เจาะลึกยอดขายรถยนต์ ธันวาคม 59 - สรุปยอดรวมปี 2559 / 2016 แบ่งตาม Segment". January 26, 2017.
  34. ^ "Sales Report เจาะลึกยอดขายรถยนต์ ธันวาคม 60 - สรุปยอดรวมปี 2560 / 2017 แบ่งตาม Segment". January 29, 2018.
  35. ^

External links[edit]