By KBB.com Editors
KBB Expert Rating: 6.4
In the world of minivans, the 2011 Kia Sedona is a giant. It offers almost all the features, power and safety of the best minivans, but it costs thousands of dollars less. From its 10-year/100,000 mile warranty to its long list of standard features, the 2011 Kia Sedona is an excellent choice for a family on a tight budget. If there is a fly in the ointment, however, it's the Kia Sedona's resale figures, which rank well below the class leader Honda Odyssey and even below the traditionally underachieving Dodge Caravan. Still, if long-term ownership is more important than retained value, the 2011 Kia Sedona promises years of happy commuting and low monthly payments.
If you think saving money on your next minivan purchase means sacrificing features, comfort and power, the 2011 Kia Sedona will make you think again.
While the 2011 Kia Sedona looks competitive on paper, in person the styling both inside and out is rather generic. Also, those who lease or regularly trade in their vehicles probably won't be impressed by the Sedona's low resale values.
The 2011 Kia Sedona receives an all-new 3.5-liter V6 engine capable of making up to 271 horsepower. That's 23 more horsepower than the previous 3.8-liter V6. A new six-speed automatic transmission replaces the old five-speed. This combination helps improve fuel mileage by two miles per gallon in the government's highway driving cycle. Also new are side mirror turn signal indicators. Now standard on all models, Bluetooth allows hands-free operation of most cellphones. A new, slightly revised grille, shared by other Kias, differentiates the 2011 from the 2010.
Driving Impressions For a minivan, the 2011 Kia Sedona delivers a pretty pleasing driving experience. It corners well, brakes well and accelerates with surprising vigor. The new six-speed automatic displays no sign...of gear hunting, delivering seamless shifts and excellent fuel economy. The captain's chair seating is fairly comfortable, but the seat bottoms proved a bit short for our long legged occupants. Seating in the third row is also well designed, but best suited to young children who don't have to worry about legroom. The Sedona's overall ride is smooth and controlled, and interior sound levels are low enough that we could easily hold a conversation with the second and third-row passengers. On the flip side, the Sedona's turning circle is quite large (39.6 feet) and its ability to maneuver into tight parking spaces is limited.
7.1 Surround Sound System
An available 10-speaker, Infinity audio system features front- and second-row center-channel speakers. It delivers impressive music and movie performance.
Even though it isn't the most responsive manu-matic transmission, the ability to choose your own gears will be especially welcomed by those that also appreciate the Sedona's relatively eager handling.
The 2011 Kia Sedona's seven-passenger layout consists of four captain's chair-style seats. The two in the second row are both removable and reclining. The second row seats also feature a one-touch fold-and-flip device permitting easy access to the 60/40 split bench third-row seat. When not hauling people, the third-row seat can be folded flush into the floor, creating an enormous 141.5 cubic-foot cargo hold. Features of note include power windows in the sliding side doors, a dual glovebox and available power rear vent windows. On the downside, the Sedona's plastic parts feel rather hard and cheap, the faux wood center console is just downright tacky and interior colors are limited to beige and gray.Exterior
While the Honda Odyssey and Nissan Quest have raised the bar for minivan styling, the Kia Sedona sails into 2011 with its same ho-hum appearance. But this is a minivan, not a luxury car, so function should trump form. Its sharply sloping front nose makes it a bit difficult to see the front end when parking, but large side glass makes for excellent 360-degree visibility. The base LX models feature rear sensors designed to warn the driver of objects near the rear of the vehicle, while the up-level EX trim includes a rearview camera to help backing in tight quarters. The EX comes with 17-inch aluminum wheels, while 16-inch covered steel wheels are standard on the LX. Other standard EX features include fog lights and roof rails.
In addition to a 3.5-liter V6 and a six-speed automatic transmission, the base Sedona LX includes tri-zone air conditioning, power locks, power mirrors, power windows, dual sliding rear doors and cruise control. The AM/FM/CD sound system comes with auxiliary and USB inputs, steering wheel mounted audio controls, SIRIUS Satellite Radio and Bluetooth hands-free cellphone connectivity. Standard safety equipment includes front, front-side and three-row side-curtain airbags, advanced anti-lock brakes (ABS), tire pressure monitoring system and electronic stability control, all of which are either currently or imminently government mandated.
Stepping up to the 2011 Kia Sedona EX adds fog lights, power driver's and front passenger's seats, heated mirrors, AM/FM/CD/MP3 stereo system, auto-dimming rearview mirror, HomeLink, leather-wrapped steering wheel and shift knob, power third-row vent windows and power sliding side doors and tailgate. The Power Package, available only on the base LX trim, adds power sliding side doors, automatic headlamps, 16-inch alloy wheels and a rearview camera. The up-level EX trim offers the Luxury Package that includes leather seating, heated front seats, sunroof, power-adjustable pedals and tri-zone automatic climate control. The Premium Entertainment Package includes an Infinity 7.1 Surround Sound system with an in-dash six-disc CD changer and rear DVD entertainment system with two wireless headsets.
The Sedona's 3.5-liter, 24-valve, all-aluminum powerplant with continuously variable valve timing makes it one of the most powerful minivans. Combined with a responsive new six-speed automatic transmission, the Sedona merges, passes and deals with traffic with ease, whether it's on the highway or headed to the supermarket.
271 horsepower @ 6300 rpm
248 lb.-ft. of torque @ 4500 rpm
EPA city/highway fuel economy: 18/25
By jaup2 on Tuesday, July 22, 2014
I own this car - My approximate mileage is 16,000overall rating 10 of 10rating details
Pros: "It's a great price for what I paid, fun to drive.."
Cons: "no cons as of yet."
Likely to recommend this car? (1-10): 10
"I bought this van right off the truck, with only 4 miles on it... I traded in my 2012 Kia sportage, loved that car to. Do to medical demands I had to go bigger, which was the van. I never test drove it on the lot.. I knew my sportage was good so I had no problems believing this van wouldn't be good to.. It's been a year, I still miss my sportage, but wouldn't trade my sedona either.. It hasn't given me any problems as of yet. What can I say... I Love my Kia!"
By tomerikac on Friday, July 18, 2014
I own this car - My approximate mileage is 59,000overall rating 9 of 10rating details
Pros: "functional, roomy, dependable, great on trips"
Cons: "not real luxurious, seems to go through tires"
Likely to recommend this car? (1-10): 9
"This is our 3rd Kia and 2nd Sedona. We are pleased overall with all our Kias, especially this one. It is very roomy, great for trips, has been dependable, and with fair gas mileage. The extra seats have come in handy and with the 3rd row down, it is a hauler for many things. Ours is the LX and I wish I could have found a well priced used EX instead. However, we are happy. We will probably drive it for many more years."
By AZ2KC on Monday, July 14, 2014
I own this car - My approximate mileage is 150,000overall rating 9 of 10rating details
Pros: "Value, Reliability. Cost per mile is unmatched"
Cons: "slight road noise (easily fixed w/ better tire)"
Likely to recommend this car? (1-10): 10
"I bought this new in 2007. I have high praise for this van. I have owned Dodge Grand Caravan and Honda Odyssey. This was a fraction of the price new of those and had much better reliability. 2 minor issues, the head light bulbs would burn out quickly when using after market bulbs. One set of OEM bulbs later and no more issues. Last issue was slight road noise. Upgraded factory tires (which I got 67k miles out of) to better quality tire and its now quiet. I would definitely buy another. My driving conditions are varied. The first 2/3rds of its life was stop and go city traffic and the last 50k have been more highway style driving. The only thing I would ask from Kia is to make the rear wiper blade assembly available in aftermarket so I don't have to go to dealership for replacement. I had 2 small warranty claims during the 5/60 and they were handled quickly and done right the first time."
2 people out of 4 found this review helpful
By Dev on Tuesday, July 08, 2014
I own this car - My approximate mileage is 38,000overall rating 9 of 10rating details
Pros: "Looking for a great value and warranty this is it!"
Likely to recommend this car? (1-10): 8
"No mechanical, body, instrumentation or convenience issues. Gas mileage is acceptable given vehicle weight & size. Interior/exterior finish is good. Handles, rides comfortably and w/reasonable quietness. Cargo space and passenger access is very good. Std features are good."
By UAV Guy on Wednesday, June 25, 2014
I owned and sold this car
Reason: POOR QUALITY CAR
Pros: "Cheap car"
Cons: "It's cheap for a reason. Electrical nightmare"
Likely to recommend this car? (1-10): 1
"I bought this car new, and within the first year, I replaced the battery, only to have to replace that battery less than 2 years later. I have replaced 2 of the door lock actuators, only to replace all 4 less than 6 months later. I've replaced the assist handle on the passenger side when it crumbled in my wife's hand one day. Replaced the back up camera when it started working intermittently. In the last 7 months I have averaged a trip to the garage for warranty work every month. Oh and on the doors giving me issues, KIA was worthless in helping out, I called the 800 number just for them to tell me they couldn't do anything until it happens 3 times, when I told them the doors had already failed me 3 times they said well it will have to happen again before they could do anything. I took the car and traded it in for a Toyota and will never own another KIA again."
4 people out of 6 found this review helpful
By Michelle on Wednesday, June 18, 2014
I own this car - My approximate mileage is 127,000overall rating 9 of 10rating details
Cons: "14 mpg city and 17 on hwy"
Likely to recommend this car? (1-10): 9
"I have been driving this van for six years and have nothing negative to say. It has never needed anything beyond a battery and brakes. The inside looks good and it drives solidly."
1 person out of 3 found this review helpful