With a body about 3 inches longer than before, the 2011 Kia Sorento totes passengers and their stuff more ably than the outgoing version.
The 2011 Sorento’s overall length of 184.4 inches and its 106.3-inch wheelbase split the crossover category with CR-Vs and Escapes below it and RAV4s and Edges above it in size. It feels larger than many of its competitors; the perception of space inside is better than in, say, the 2010 Chevrolet Equinox. In its class, only the RAV4 also offers a third-row seat, though the smaller Mitsubishi Outlander has a relatively useless third-row bench for the adventurous.
Front to back, the Sorento fits most adults and kids well. The front seats are unexpectedly well bolstered (in leather-trimmed versions, at least) and have lots of headroom and legroom. The second-row seats are usable for six-foot adults, with reclining seatbacks added for long road trips. The third row is for children only, though; the seat cushion sits almost on the floor and headroom is lacking.
For flexibility’s sake, the third-row seat folds flat to reveal a cargo area with a decently low load floor, and the second-row seats fold forward to expose a total of 72.5 cubic feet of hauling room. With the third-row seat in place, cargo room drops to a measly 9.1 cubic feet, and the seatback itself sits close to the rear hatch glass.