Wednesday - Aug 23, 2017

Auto Review – The 2015 Kia Sorento SUV

Auto Review - The 2015 Kia Sorento SUV

For those who want to own an SUV but don’t want to break the bank in the process, the 2015 Kia Sorento is an alternative worthy of serious consideration.

The Kia Sorento SUV has been around for more than ten years, with the 2015 model being the third version of this popular dual purpose vehicle fits nicely into a category of its own, being both compact and uncomfortable in terms of size and price.

Among the refinements that China has introduced for the 2015 model is a slightly more powerful V6 engine, a discreetly tweaked suspension as well as a number of refinements to its interior trim.

Despite its compact size, the 2015 Sorento comes with the optional attraction of a third row of seating, making for both a practical and comfortable town car as well as our rugged off-road vehicle.

Whether the Sorrento also comes into its own in the small to midsize SUV category is its availability in a wide number of configurations. Available with a choice of either either four- or six-cylinder engines, front- or all-wheel drive, as well as a permutation of two-row (five-seat) or three-row (seven-seat) seating layouts.

The Sorento’s 2.4-liter four-cylinder version is certainly built for comfort and not for speed generating just 191 horsepower. On the other hand the 3.3-liter V6 version which generates 290 horsepower is a much more sensible proposition, considering the size and weight of the vehicle, comfortable providing a more consummate overall driving experience in terms of both acceleration and finesse. Irrespective of the engine size , all Sorentos models come with a six-speed automatic transmission fitted as standard.

The Kia Sorento SUV comes with a choice of four trim levels: LX, EX, SX and SX Limited. The LX level of trim is comfortably high with standard equipment including tilt-and-telescoping steering wheel with integrated audio controls, cruise control, Bluetooth, automatic up/down driver’s window as well as alloy wheels. The EX version comes with a choice of all-wheel drive, three-mode adjustable steering, heated and cooled front seats, a GPS navigation system, an Infinity audio system backed up by ten speakers, a back-up camera, sunroof, power driven liftgate, dual-zone climate control with an added refinement being Kia’s first-ever blind-spot detection system.

This SUV also comes with Kia’s Flex Steer adjustable steering as standard, but only on the EX, SX and SX Limited models. Thanks to the Flex Steer, drivers only need to click on a button on the steering wheel in order to moderate levels of electric power assistance between Comfort, Normal and Sport.

As far as driving experience is concerned the car has a lot to offer thanks to its comfortable high driving position and slim windshield pillars, which combine to provide excellent forward visibility. On the downside the Sornto’s rearmost pillars are thicker than you would expect and backed up with the extra side windows means that the standard rearview camera is a handy piece of equipment to have on-board.

In terms of comfort, the front seats are flat and well-padded for all-day comfort with second-row seats are firm but still comfortable, thanks to its high perch, which does provide above average legroom, with the whole seat sliding backwards and sideways for increased cargo carrying capability around 36.9 cubic feet with all the seats in place. Those considering taking up the third row option, should take into account that head and leg room for passengers will be affected considerably.

As far as the Sorento’s interior controls are concerned, even the most techno-challenged should be able to cope comfortably, with all versions of the 2015 Sorento coming with an 8-inch touchscreen equipped with large buttons and a sensibly user friendly menu structure.

The Sorento in its 3.3-liter V6 engine and a six-speed automatic transmission configuration is rated deliver 20 miles per gallon in combined driving (18 city/24 highway).

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