Current Model
The redesigned Kia Sorento has new engines and an available hybrid version. Three rows of seating come standard in either six- or seven-passenger configurations.
Upper trims get the six-passenger format with two individual seats in the second row. The base four-cylinder engine is neither quick nor quiet, but the 281-hp, turbo four-cylinder that comes on EX and higher trims gives strong acceleration and commendable fuel economy. But its dual-clutch automatic causes low-speed vibrations. The hybrid version is pleasantly powerful, beyond an initial delay off the line. The plug-in hybrid has a 32 miles of electric range if using a light foot. Handling is secure but the ride is rather stiff, except in the hybrid version. Standard active safety features include AEB with pedestrian detection and FCW. BSW and RCTW are standard on all but the base trim.
Road Test
Predicted Reliability
Predicted Owner Satisfaction
2021
2021 Redesign Year
Kia redesigned its Sorento SUV for 2021, with new engines and an available hybrid version. Three rows of seating is standard, in either six- or seven-passenger configurations.
The base four-cylinder engine is neither quick nor quiet, but the 281-hp, turbo four-cylinder that comes on EX trims and higher gives strong acceleration and commendable fuel economy. Unfortunately, its dual-clutch automatic causes some low-speed vibrations. The 1.6-liter turbo hybrid version is pleasantly powerful, beyond an initial delay off the line. All-wheel drive can be had with either gas engine, but the hybrid is front-drive only. Handling is responsive but the ride is rather stiff. Standard active safety features include FCW and AEB with pedestrian detection, while BSW and RCTW are standard on all but the base trim. A 261-hp plug-in hybrid with 32 miles of electric range joins the Sorento lineup for 2022.
$29,650 - $45,275
Average Retail Price
RELIABILITY VERDICT
OWNER SATISFACTION
OWNER REPORTED MPG
2016-2020
2016 Redesign Year
Redesigned for 2016, the Sorento is slightly larger than before but still remains "right-sized," splitting the difference between small and midsized SUVs. The SUV is functional and refined.
Three engines are available: the base 185-hp, 2.4-liter four-cylinder; a 240-hp, 2.0-liter turbo four; and the smooth and quiet 290-hp, 3.3-liter V6. All use a six-speed automatic. The cabin is quiet, and the ride is comfortable and composed. Handling is responsive and secure. Supportive seats and simple controls help make the Sorento easy to live with. Available safety gear includes adaptive cruise control, forward-collision warning, blind-spot detection, and rear cross-traffic alert, as well as a surround-view monitor. 
$25,225 - $37,875
Average Retail Price
RELIABILITY VERDICT
OWNER SATISFACTION
OWNER REPORTED MPG
$22,625 - $33,625
Average Retail Price
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OWNER SATISFACTION
OWNER REPORTED MPG
$20,000 - $29,400
Average Retail Price
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OWNER SATISFACTION
OWNER REPORTED MPG
$17,150 - $24,950
Average Retail Price
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OWNER SATISFACTION
OWNER REPORTED MPG
$14,700 - $20,075
Average Retail Price
RELIABILITY VERDICT
OWNER SATISFACTION
OWNER REPORTED MPG
2011-2015
2011 Redesign Year
The Sorento's 2011 redesign brought it into the modern era. The Kia became a car-based SUV with an optional third-row seat.
It also gained responsive handling and a steady, albeit stiff ride. The interior benefited from comfortable seats, easy to use controls, Bluetooth connectivity and lots of features for the money. High-end versions came with a large sunroof. Both the base four cylinder and the optional V6 returned 20-mpg overall in our tests. The pick of the range is an EX V6, which has a nicer interior and benefits from a slick V6 offering the same fuel economy as the four-cylinder. 2014 update brought a lively and refined new V6, a new electric power steering system, revisions to the suspension and interior upgrades. The new instrument panel and control layout are easy to manage. Comprehensive infotainment and in-car communications are available too and work well.  Overall, the Sorento is a good used car choice that's just as functional as larger three-row SUVs, but without the bulk.
$13,250 - $17,150
Average Retail Price
RELIABILITY VERDICT
OWNER SATISFACTION
OWNER REPORTED MPG
$11,450 - $14,700
Average Retail Price
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OWNER SATISFACTION
OWNER REPORTED MPG
$9,800 - $12,200
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OWNER SATISFACTION
OWNER REPORTED MPG
$8,825 - $10,425
Average Retail Price
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OWNER SATISFACTION
OWNER REPORTED MPG
$7,800 - $8,975
Average Retail Price
RELIABILITY VERDICT
OWNER SATISFACTION
OWNER REPORTED MPG
2003-2009
2003 Redesign Year
The original Sorento was an old-school, body-on frame SUV. Unless you need an enclosed pickup truck, skip this model.
It was good for towing, but a rough and tumble nature make this version an unpleasant choice as an everyday driver. The harsh ride is brutal, with bumps and ruts slamming into the cabin. Handling is also clumsy, although ultimately secure. The Sorento was initially powered by a 3.5-liter V6, which was upgraded to a 262-hp 3.8-liter for 2007. Either way, acceleration was quite spirited. But at 17 mpg overall, expect to pay at the pump. Low-range gearing makes it competent off-road, but it only has a part-time four-wheel drive system, which requires engaging and disengaging 4WD. This can be inconvenient, as you have to stop to make the change.
$5,400 - $6,625
Average Retail Price
RELIABILITY VERDICT
OWNER SATISFACTION
OWNER REPORTED MPG
$4,875 - $5,950
Average Retail Price
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OWNER SATISFACTION
OWNER REPORTED MPG
$4,750 - $5,675
Average Retail Price
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OWNER SATISFACTION
OWNER REPORTED MPG
$4,550 - $5,550
Average Retail Price
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OWNER SATISFACTION
OWNER REPORTED MPG
$3,000 - $3,925
Average Retail Price
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OWNER SATISFACTION
OWNER REPORTED MPG
$2,825 - $3,375
Average Retail Price
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OWNER SATISFACTION
OWNER REPORTED MPG
$2,825 - $3,275
Average Retail Price
RELIABILITY VERDICT
OWNER SATISFACTION
OWNER REPORTED MPG
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