The mid-size crossover and SUV segment is filled with numerous entries, but the three-row 2023 Kia Sorento is worth considering. The Sorento offers the utility of the larger V-6-powered Telluride, with better fuel economy and multiple powertrain configurations.
The Sorento, just like most Kia models, offers enough passenger space for its size, and even includes available niceties such as heated and cooled front and second-row seating.
The Sorento has a wide selection of engine options and is available with front- or all-wheel drive. A 191-hp 2.5-liter inline-four-cylinder engine is standard and a 281-hp turbocharged 2.5-liter four-cylinder is available too.
Both pair with an eight-speed automatic transmission and the hybrid model uses a six-speed automatic. The eco-friendly Sorento hybrid features a turbo 1.6-liter four-cylinder gas engine and an electric motor that work together to generate 227 horsepower.
The all-wheel-drive Sorento plug-in hybrid features the same engine and transmission as the lesser hybrid, but in this application, the powertrain makes a combined 261 horsepower courtesy of a more powerful electric motor.
The EPA estimates the Sorento returns up to 24 mpg in the city and 29 mpg on the highway when equipped with the base 2.5-liter four-cylinder engine.
The more powerful turbocharged 2.5-liter four nets EPA ratings of 22 mpg city and 29 mpg highway. The hybrid Sorento HEV is the most fuel-efficient with estimates of 39 mpg city and 35 mpg highway.
The plug-in hybrid has a combined rating of 79 MPGe. Drive the Sorento PHEV in its Hybrid mode and the plug-in model earns EPA-estimated fuel economy figures of 35 mpg city and 33 mpg highway.
The Sorento has an attractive layout, nice materials, and solid build quality. The dashboard can be outfitted with a 12.3-inch digital gauge cluster and a 10.3-inch touchscreen infotainment system.
The rest of the design blends rhombus-shaped air vents, integrated ambient lighting, and carefully stitched surfaces on the door panels and seat inserts. A variety of cubby storage spots and cup holders also fill out the console.
Along with a standard third row, its second-row bench can be swapped for a pair of captain’s chairs. Compared with the larger Telluride, the Sorento’s far-back seats aren’t comfortable for adults.
The Sorento enjoys a roster of standard and optional driver-assistance technology. The standard features include; standard forward-collision warning, automated emergency braking, lane-departure warning, lane-keeping assist, available blind-spot monitoring, and rear cross-traffic alert.
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