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Expert Rating

Kia Sorento

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Expert Rating

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Summary


The Kia Sorento is currently the Korean brand’s flagship model though shortly to be replaced in that role by the electric EV 6. The large SUV has been on sale since 2002 and is now in its fourth generation – the all-new latest model launched in 2021 with its first hybrid powertrains and the promise of a plug-in hybrid joining the range later.

Reviewers praise the Sorento’s combination of bold design and practicality – the car has great road presence, while also offering excellent interior space and the ability to perform well off-road. As of August 2021, it holds an Expert Rating of 70% based on 19 UK reviews.

The latest version has managed to incorporate the hybrid powertrain while still retaining mechanical all-wheel-drive, which Autocar states places it ahead of several rivals from European premium brands. The Sun says the “classy Sorento” is just like a Volvo but much cheaper.

Kia claims that the latest Sorento interior “represents a step-change in quality and design for Kia cabins” and reviewers tend to agree, many highlighting a definite step up in quality and a clear bid to challenge premium rivals in this area. Interior space also comes in for praise too, except for the third row of seats which are only suitable for children.

Engine choices range across a 1.6-litre petrol hybrid and a 2.2-litre diesel, with reviewers tending to recommend the diesel for its extra pulling ability. In fact, most seem to be waiting for the plug-in hybrid engine – our own review on The Car Expert concludes “the best engine isn’t available yet.” The petrol unit does get marked down for its intrusive audio presence at high revs.

Reviewers generally like the Sorento’s ride, although some consider it slightly too stiff and say it can be unsettled by poor road surfaces.

Sorento highlights

  • Plenty of ability on and off road
  • Plenty of interior space
  • Quality fit and finish
  • Mostly comfortable, refined ride on the road

Sorento lowlights

  • Very limited electric-only range
  • Some surfaces unsettle the ride
  • Hybrid petrol engine thrashy at high revs
  • Third row of seats strictly for youngsters

Key specifications


Body style: Large SUV/crossover
Engines: diesel, hybrid, plug-in hybrid
Price: From £39,360 on-road

Launched: Autumn 2020
Last updated: N/A
Update due: TBA


Media reviews


Reviews, road test and comparisons from across the UK automotive media. Click any of the boxes to view.

The Car Expert

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Auto Express

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Auto Trader

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Autocar

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Business Car

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Car

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Carbuyer

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Company Car Today

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Daily Mirror

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Fleetworld

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The Sun

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The Telegraph

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What Car?

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Which?

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Safety rating


Overall rating: 5 stars
Date tested: December 2020

82%

ADULT OCCUPANT

85%

CHILD OCCUPANT

63%

VULNERABLE ROAD USERS

87%

SAFETY ASSIST

The Kia Sorento gained a top-level Five Star rating when tested by Euro NCAP in 2020. Testers highlighted its active safety systems, not only the standard-fit autonomous emergency braking that performed well in several different scenarios, but a driver-alert monitor, lane-support system and camera-based traffic sign recognition. 

Eco rating


No eco rating

The Kia Sorento has not been lab tested by Green NCAP. This is a new initiative, launched in 2018 as a sister organisation to Euro NCAP. As yet, very few new cars have been tested for environmental impact by Green NCAP. Inevitably the testing programme was halted in early 2020 by the coronavirus pandemic, before resuming later in the year with an enhanced testing process.

If the Sorento is selected for assessment by Green NCAP, we will publish the results here.

Awards


Trophies, prizes and awards that the Kia Sorento has received

2021

  • Women’s World Car of the Year Awards – Best Large SUV
  • What Car? Awards – Best Large SUV
  • DieselCar & EcoCar Top 50 – Best Large SUV
  • Red Dot Design Award
  • iF Design Award

2020

  • Carbuyer AwardsCar of the Year

Similar cars


If you’re looking at the Kia Sorento, you might also be interested in these alternatives

Honda CR-V | Hyundai Santa Fe | Land Rover Discovery Sport | Mitsubishi Outlander | Nissan X-Trail | Peugeot 5008 | SEAT Tarraco | Skoda Kodiaq | SsangYong Rexton | Subaru Forester | Suzuki Across | Toyota Highlander | Volkswagen Tiguan Allspace

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Best car rankings

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The Car Expert has the ultimate ranking of the best and worst new cars on sale, based on scores from 25 of the top UK motoring websites

Best car rankings

Want to see how this car ranks against its rivals?

The Car Expert has the ultimate ranking of the best and worst new cars on sale, based on scores from 25 of the top UK motoring websites