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2008 Kia Sorento

Overview
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2008 Kia Sorento Review

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Styled and sized like a modern crossover utility vehicle, Kia's mid-size Sorento SUV retains the rugged body-on-frame construction preferred by off-road enthusiasts and those who need to tow heavier trailers. The Sorento's five-passenger cabin has the look and feel of an upscale SUV, making it as equally adept at shuttling business clients as it is at hauling the kids and family dog. Of course, the Sorento's long list of standard features, a choice of impressively powerful V6 engines, easy-to-swallow low sticker price and Kia's 10-year/100,000-mile powertrain warranty are also big draws. Safety is another area where the Sorento shines, with a five-star government crash-test safety rating, full-length side-curtain airbags and electronic stability control and traction control, all included as standard equipment.

You'll Like This Car If...

If you're looking for an SUV that's bigger than a Honda CR-V but smaller than a Dodge Durango, the 2008 Kia Sorento might suit you perfectly. Its long list of standard equipment, low base price and comfortable ride make it a good choice for the casual off-road warrior or those who keep their driving strictly on the pavement.

You May Not Like This Car If...

Powered by their rear wheels, the two-wheel-drive Sorento models don't offer the level of traction in ice, snow or mud provided by their front-wheel-drive competitors. The two V6 engines perform well but deliver mediocre fuel economy.

What's New for 2008

The Sorento LX receives a new 3.3-liter V6 engine good for 242 horsepower and 228 pound-feet of torque. A 3.8-liter V6 remains standard on the EX trim level.

Driving the Sorento

Driving Impressions On the road, the 2008 Kia Sorento seems as solid and secure as the best SUVs from Japan and the U.S, and the steering feels light but precise and controlled....

The Sorento's strong V6 engine offers plenty of low-end torque and highway performance. The five-speed automatic delivers crisp shifts and rarely has to hunt for the proper gear. The Sorento's somewhat soft suspension displays more front-end dive and rear squat than we would prefer during harder acceleration and braking. However, the handling in turns does not seem to be affected in the same way, and the Sorento delivers good cornering ability without excessive lean or body roll.

Wide Interior
The Sorento's wide interior provides for a roomy cargo area and offers plenty of shoulder room.

Array of Standard Equipment
For the money, few other SUVs can match the Sorento's array of standard equipment.

2008 Kia Sorento Details
Interior

This is a five-passenger vehicle, but we think that, if those passengers are adults, four would be a more comfortable fit. The Sorento's rear seats provide good headroom and legroom and allow for a fairly large cargo area behind them. The interior quality is commendably good, with substantial plastic components, rich textures and plush surfaces. Standard front and rear side-curtain airbags and a driver's knee airbag comprise a worthwhile safety bonus.

Exterior

The 2008 Kia Sorento looks sharp and, on appearance alone, could easily be mistaken for a high-end Japanese SUV. The flared wheel arches, high windowsill line and wide side moldings impart a feeling of solidity, while the high ground clearance and optional Torque-On-Demand four-wheel-drive system promise good traction in slippery conditions.

Notable Equipment
Standard Equipment

The LX trim level includes the 3.3-liter V6 engine, a five-speed automatic transmission, air conditioning, four-wheel anti-lock disc brakes (ABS), rear defroster, illuminated entry, remote keyless entry, auto-off headlamps, electronic stability and traction control, dual heated power mirrors, power windows, power locks, AM/FM stereo with MP3-compatible CD player and 10 speakers, front and rear side-curtain airbags, driver's knee airbag, fuel tank skid plate, cruise control, tilt steering wheel, four 12-volt outlets, alloy wheels and a rear wiper and washer. The EX with Luxury Package adds a 3.8-liter V6, fog lights, side cladding, power sunroof, eight-way power driver's seat, heated front seats, leather seating and interior trim, automatic headlamps, 16-inch machined alloy wheels, dual-zone automatic temperature control and full-time four-wheel drive.

Optional Equipment

Options include Torque-On-Demand full-time four-wheel drive, fog lights, remote start and a rear spoiler. Stand-alone options and accessories include a power moonroof (EX), trailer hitch and side step bars.

Under the Hood

The Sorento's 3.8-liter V6 is a strong engine with good pulling and passing power, and it works particularly well with the five-speed automatic transmission. The new 3.3-liter V6 in the LX reduces weight and cost, but delivers nearly as much power as the larger 3.8-liter. Those who need to tow up to 5,000 pounds, however, will want to opt for the larger engine, as the 3.3-liter is tow rated up to only 3,500 pounds.

3.3-liter V6
242 horsepower @ 6000 rpm
228 lb.-ft. of torque @ 4500 rpm
EPA city/highway fuel economy: 16/22 (2WD), 15/22 (4WD)

3.8-liter V6
262 horsepower @ 6000 rpm
260 lb.-ft. of torque @ 4500 rpm
EPA city/highway fuel economy: 15/21 (2WD), 15/20 (4WD)

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2008 Kia Sorento Consumer Reviews

Overall Rating
7.9
Out of 10

Based on 632 Ratings for the 2003 - 2009 models.

Review this car
  • Value
    8.2/10
    Quality
    8.0/10
  • Reliability
    8.3/10
    Performance
    8.2/10
  • Comfort
    8.4/10
    Styling
    8.5/10

Luv my Sorento

By on Friday, May 15, 2015

I own this car - My approximate mileage is 135,000

10 9.0
overall rating 9 of 10rating details

Reviewer Ratings

Overall Rating
9/10
Value
10/10
Reliability
9/10
Quality
9/10
Performance
9/10
Styling
10/10
Comfort
9/10

Pros: "smooth ride, reliable, comfortable and spacious"

Cons: "gas mileage"

Likely to recommend this car? (1-10): 9

"This is the longest I've ever owned a car and it has been nothing but reliable. Strong ladder truck frame makes it durable, yet it has a very smooth ride. Not great on gas, but I guess you can't have it all."

I have owned 3 kia's great and reliable!

By on Wednesday, May 13, 2015

I own this car - My approximate mileage is 180,000

10 10.0
overall rating 10 of 10rating details

Reviewer Ratings

Overall Rating
10/10
Value
10/10
Reliability
10/10
Quality
10/10
Performance
10/10
Styling
10/10
Comfort
10/10

Pros: "reliable and factory parts last longer"

Cons: "wish kia made trucks"

Likely to recommend this car? (1-10): 10

"I prefer kia vehicles over most other brands...I have had very minor issuse with the 3 that I have owned...I purchased all 3 vehicles used and with high milage..the only repairs I have had to do on my kia sorento is replace U-joints in the drive shaft and battery..the other 2 were radiator on one and clutch plate on the other...they are very reliable and durable.."

2 people out of 2 found this review helpful

Great car

By on Tuesday, February 24, 2015

I own this car - My approximate mileage is 6,600

10 10.0
overall rating 10 of 10rating details

Reviewer Ratings

Overall Rating
10/10
Value
10/10
Reliability
10/10
Quality
10/10
Performance
10/10
Styling
10/10
Comfort
10/10

Pros: "There isn't enough good I can say about this car."

Likely to recommend this car? (1-10): 10

"I bought this car off the show room floor. I only had the cassette player installed extra. It has been the most reliable car I have ever owned. No recalls and nothing major to fix. I love my Kia and if I ever did trade it in it would be for another one!!"

5 people out of 9 found this review helpful

Best engine performance of any car I have owned

By on Saturday, February 14, 2015

I own this car - My approximate mileage is 120,000

10 8.0
overall rating 8 of 10rating details

Reviewer Ratings

Overall Rating
8/10
Value
8/10
Reliability
10/10
Quality
6/10
Performance
7/10
Styling
5/10
Comfort
6/10

Pros: "no major repairs through 120,000 miles"

Cons: "interior wears early"

Likely to recommend this car? (1-10): 8

"On the down side the interior is "ticky-tacky" and I find I am changing head lamps and light bulbs a bit too often, but this is a great performing car"

6 people out of 11 found this review helpful

My milage low but few repairs, good performance

By on Saturday, February 07, 2015

I own this car - My approximate mileage is 60,000

10 9.0
overall rating 9 of 10rating details

Reviewer Ratings

Overall Rating
9/10
Value
9/10
Reliability
9/10
Quality
8/10
Performance
6/10
Styling
9/10
Comfort
9/10

Pros: "good value for price"

Cons: "wish every purchase was this good"

Likely to recommend this car? (1-10): 9

"The Sorento EX offered most buttons and whistels for the money. Paying cash, I found best buy researching fair price and then approaching fleet dealer for best deal. This driver found all makes and models of SUVs test driven handled poorly. But Kia did not display the drawback of high balance center so obvious in others. Airbag function (as indicated by dash light) took several trips back to dealer, and one to a neighboring state, before Kia issued a recall. Beyond that, independant mechanic i.e. not dealership, replaced AC compressor and one window motor in door. A few minor electrical issues at first. And I replaced struts on rear hatch door once in the 10 years of ownership. Kia was new manufacturer at time of purchase. I was pleased that make has established reasonably good reputation. I would buy another Kia."

6 people out of 9 found this review helpful

I bought this car new, has 31,000 miles on it and

By on Wednesday, February 04, 2015

I own this car - My approximate mileage is 31,000

10 10.0
overall rating 10 of 10rating details

Reviewer Ratings

Overall Rating
10/10
Value
10/10
Reliability
10/10
Quality
10/10
Performance
10/10
Styling
10/10
Comfort
10/10

Likely to recommend this car? (1-10): 10

"have had no trouble with it, rides good, handles well and have enjoyed owing it, and will probably buy another one if I ever buy another car"

4 people out of 8 found this review helpful

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Trading in or Selling? Know where you stand with the most up-to-date Kelley Blue Book Value at your fingertips. See your car's value

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