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Kia Sorento 2003 4-door SUV
Trim Shown: Sport Utility
The Sorento joins the crowded ranks of the small-SUV class. It's larger than the beastly and outdated Sportage, as well as most of its competitors. It's an old-style body-on-frame truck. The Sorento is powered by a 3.5-liter, 192-hp engine from Hyundai, Kia's new owner. Acceleration is quite spirited, but fuel economy is abysmal. With its low-range gearing, the Sorento is competent off-road, but the stiff ride is awful. Handling is clumsy, and the rear axle easily hops on washboard surfaces. It proved ultimately secure in our avoidance maneuver.

See Reliability page for the latest 2003 Kia Sorento recalls.

Safety Equipment

ABS available, standard from 2007. ESC standard from 2007. Head protection air bags standard from 2011.

Road Test

The Sorento makes a good first impression. It has a roomy interior, fine attention to detail, a long list of accessories, and good off-road capabilities. But an uncomfortable ride, poor gas mileage, and clumsy handling count heavily against it.


  • Off-road ability, controls and displays, towing capacity, interior features.


  • Ride, fuel economy.


2 front, 3 rear
Drive Wheels
4WD , Rear

In most cases, automotive warranties are based on the vehicle identification number (VIN), and the warranty will be valid regardless of ownership. The dealership can tell you exactly how much warranty is left.

Read more about extended warranties
Body Styles
4-door SUV
Transmissions Available
  • 4-speed Automatic
Engines Available
  • 3.5-liter V6 (192 hp)