2018 Kia Sorento Review

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The Car Connection
The Car Connection

The Car Connection Expert Review

Marty Padgett Marty Padgett Editorial Director
September 29, 2017


The 2018 Kia Sorento ticks all the crossover-SUV boxes, especially in turbo-4 form.

Like honey, the Kia Sorento won't go bad on shelves. It's latest redesign was two model years ago, and we're still sweet on its nice ride, quality materials, and plenty of configurations.

We have a lot of good things to say about the 2018 Kia Sorento, which is how we arrive at a 7.7 overall score. (Read more about how we rate cars.)

No matter which 2018 Kia Sorento you choose–L, LX, EX, SX, or SXL–Kia’s biggest crossover has a generically handsome silhouette that weaves itself right into the big tapestry of modern utility-vehicle design. It’s smooth, not jagged; well-detailed, but not too blingy. It’s outfitted with a soft-touch cabin organized in neat, easily parsed regions. We’d let the same crew redecorate our house, which is either high praise or a cry for help, or both.

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Power comes from a lowly 4-cylinder in base models. We prefer the 240-horsepower turbo-4 new to this generation, but it can’t be ordered with a third-row seat. The big V-6 comes off less eager than the turbo-4, yet it’s 50 hp stronger, without much of a drain on fuel. All come with a well-tuned 6-speed automatic, and the turbo-4 and V-6 can combine with all-wheel drive, with a locking center differential.

Inside the cabin, the Sorento makes its best impressions. It acts more like a plush luxury SUV, with soft-touch plastics, handsome leathers, and supple front seats. The second-row bench needs more work than the available third row: its low bench cushions don’t have the right support or shape. The cargo area’s more usefully shaped and larger than before, but still not vast unless the third-row seat is absent or folded.

Crash-test scores are very good, and the Sorento offers the latest safety technology on most models. Other features include touchscreen infotainment, big chrome wheels, and higher-end audio, as well as surround-view cameras.

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The Car Connection Consumer Review

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MSRP based on L FWD
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Expert Rating
Rating breakdown on a scale of 1 to 10?
Styling 7
Performance 7
Comfort & Quality 8
Safety 9
Features 9
Fuel Economy 6
Best in Mid-Size SUVs
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2018 Kia Sorento Pricing Insights

  • 2017 Sorento becoming scarce; 2018 stock building
  • Bonus: $3,000 cash on 2017s; extra $1,000 bonus on 2.4L
  • Finance: 0.0% APR for up to 66 months on 2017s
  • Lease: From $209 for 36 months on 2017s
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