The name Kia in the Korean language means “to rise” and that is certainly what this automobile manufacturer is accomplishing as it grows the expansion of the brand. Not only have they introduced a new KIA logo but they are also turning out new models and upgrades to existing models at a fast rate. One model which has just gone through a facelift is the fourth-generation Kia Sorento the flagship of the SUV line-up.
Launched in 2002 as a utilitarian all-terrain vehicle, the Sorento has been transformed into something altogether more desirable representing the perfect balance between premium quality features and value for money.
Noticeably more sculptured with more contemporary geometric details project a more confident more mature and more desirable in design. A wider shaped hallmark ‘tiger nose’ grille wraps around the integrated headlamps on each side. A more assertive wider rectangular lower air intake and sharp bumper lip capped with a skid-plate enhancing its robust appearance. The Sorento is 10mm wider than its predecessor and 10mm longer at 4,810mm with the wheel-base grown by 35mm to 2,815mm. Extended bonnet length, new vertical tail lamps, sharper lines in the bodywork, lower rear bumper all contribute to the new- look design. Choice of 10 paint finishes and an option of 18 or 19-inch aluminium alloy wheels depending on the trim grade.
Inside the cabin you will find one of the highest-quality interior spaces found in any Kia to date. Twin digital displays on the dash a 12.3-inch driver instrument cluster and a 10.25-inch touchscreen infotainment and navigation system. Interior features offered are Mood Lamp System generating soft ambient downlighting from beneath the dashboard and door trim along with wireless smartphone charger and a powerful BOSE surround-sound system. Leather upholstery, metallic trim and embossed satin-effect surfaces add to the sophisticated appearance and ambience.
Powered by a new 2.2-litre “Smartstream,’ diesel engine producing 148kW at 3,800 r/min and 440Nm of torque between 1,750 and 2,750 r/min. 19.5kg lighter from the new aluminium block over the previous cast iron block. Paired with Kia’s new eight-speed wet double clutch transmission designed to offer smooth gear shifting characteristics. New Terrain mode makes the Sorento more capable in mud, snow, and sand.
Depending on spec the cabin incorporates audio-visual navigation, Smartphone integration with Apple and Android, Bluetooth, USB ports, charging points and a powerful 12-speaker BOSE surround sound. Advanced driver assist such as Collision Avoidance, Blindspot View Monitor, Smart Cruise Control, lane Following Assist and Driver Attention Warning again depending on specification grade.
The Sorento is offered in three distinct trim levels the EX+, SX AWD and SXL AWD. Each level has its own features which are standard to the grade before optional extras are applied.
For example the flagship SXL AWD has the following specifications;
Driver Memory Power Seat with cushion extension
BOSE surround sound with 12 speakers
Dual LED headlamps (high and low beam)
LED rear combination lamps
Smart Cruise Control
2.2 CRDi 7 Seater EX+ 2WD 8DCT R809 995
2.2 CRDi 7 Seater EX+ AWD 8DCT R849 995
2.2 CRDi 7 Seater SX AWD 8DCT R914 995
2.2 CRDi 7 Seater SXL AWD 8DCT R988 995
Unlimited km, 5 year warranty and a 6 year/90 000km maintenance plan.