By Scott Oldham -- Contributing Editor
KBB Expert Rating: 8.8
Starting at just over $27,000, the 2017 Kia Sedona is just about the least expensive full-size minivan available. It’s also offered in five trim levels that fit a range of budgets. Whether bought as a value-oriented 8-passenger family shuttle or in 7-passenger premium form decked out in wood, leather and the latest technology, the Sedona is a serious rival to established minivans like the Honda Odyssey and Toyota Sienna. Reengineered just last year, the new Sedona offers a smooth ride, a powerful V6 engine and a well-crafted interior along with high-tech safety and convenience features including a new Autonomous Emergency Braking (AEB) system. When equipped with optional forward-collision warning, the new Sedona earns a Top Safety Pick + rating from the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety (IIHS).
If you want a lot of space for the least amount of money, the 7-passenger 2017 Kia Sedona L, with a starting price just over $27,000, is a fantastic value. It offers a smooth ride, stylish design and standard features like a tilt/telescopic steering wheel, 12 cup holders and keyless entry.
A loaded 2017 Kia Sedona offers loads of amenities, tech and safety features. However, other minivans offer options unavailable on the Kia. Only the Toyota Sienna offers all-wheel drive. And if a built-in vacuum is on your wish list, you’ll have to turn to the Honda Odyssey or the new Chrysler Pacific.
KBB Expert Ratings
For 2017, the new Sedona offers a new Technology Package that includes Autonomous Emergency Braking (AEB), which will intervene to avoid an accident. Also new are an updated infotainment system with Apple CarPlay and Android Auto, upgraded High-Intensity-Discharge headlights and an Acoustic Windshield to keep more noise out.
Kia puts a high priority on noise suppression, and the work pays off. This new Kia Sedona is exceptionally quiet. The roar from the standard V6 engine...
... is unobtrusive at all but full throttle, and road noise is hushed regardless of pavement quality. With 276 horsepower the Sedona can get up and go when you ask it to, and its sharp throttle response makes this van feel even more powerful than it really is. The operation of the 6-speed automatic transmission is generally seamless and properly responsive. Fuel economy, while not class-leading, is very competitive for the segment. The Sedona's overall ride quality is comfortable and smooth. The electric power-steering system could benefit from improved feedback, but the new Sedona is nicely balanced and isn’t afraid of twists and turns. We're also fans of the cockpit layout. Controls for climate and audio are intuitive and easy to reach.
FIRST-CLASS LOUNGE SEATING
Kids love these. And they are a segment exclusive. Standard on the top-line Sedona SXL models, these 2nd-row captain’s chairs look and feel very much like First Class airline accommodations. They recline within about 25 degrees of horizontal, and the vertical sections below the seat cushions extend to become footrests.
To achieve maximum cargo volume, the new Sedona’s track-mounted middle-row seats fold up and slide forward to stack against the front row. Third-row seats then fold below floor level. It’s all very easy to use and keeps you from having to remove big heavy seats and store them in the garage.
It’s easy to appreciate the new 2017 Sedona’s contemporary cockpit layout. It looks great and the controls are intuitive and easy to reach. Plus Kia still uses a touch screen for its infotainment system, which keeps things from getting overly complicated. The Sedona is roomier than a 3-row SUV, but trails rivals like the Odyssey and Sienna in back-seat room and cargo capacity behind the 3rd-row seats. Like its competitors, the new Sedona has three rows of seats and seating for eight or seven passengers, the latter figure reserved for higher-end trims with the desirable 2nd-row chairs.
Kia design has become a world leader regardless of price point, and the new Sedona is a looker, especially in SX Limited trim wearing its chrome 19-inch wheels. Kia set out to make this family vehicle look more like an SUV and less like a minivan. Key elements are a hoodline with less slope, side panels with minimal creases, and a beltline rising from the windshield pillar to the rear of the van. The new front fascia features Kia’s signature “tiger nose” grille and LED accents for the headlights, while the rear sports a roof spoiler and LED taillights.
Available in five trim levels, there’s a 2017 Sedona for essentially every budget. Standard equipment on the L includes AM/FM/CD/satellite audio system with 4.3-inch touch screen, Bluetooth and USB/auxiliary inputs, a rearview camera, air conditioning with front and rear controls, and the all-important pop-out "conversation mirror" to keep an eye on back-seat shenanigans. Other road-trip perks include 12 cup holders and tricot-fabric upholstery with built-in stain-resistance. Safety features include a bevy of airbags, traction and stability systems, and hill-start assist control. As with all new Kias, the Sedona has an excellent 10-year/100,000-mile powertrain warranty.
Adding features to the new Sedona means climbing trims. The LX includes 8-way-power driver's seat, power-sliding rear doors and power-folding outside mirrors. EX models add quite a bit more value with power-operated liftgate, leather seating, Kia's updated UVO infotainment system, USB 2.1 charger ports, backup-warning system, and tri-zone climate control. SX models have Infinity premium audio, 8-inch touch screen with navigation, ventilated front seats, blind-spot monitoring and LED headlights. Top-line SX Limited models up the luxe factor with Nappa leather, lounge seating, dual sunroofs and a heated steering wheel. Other options include smart cruise control and forward-collision and lane-departure warnings
The new Sedona is front-wheel drive and powered by a 276-horsepower 3.3-liter V6 with direct fuel injection that has already proven impressive in the Kia Cadenza sedan and Sorento SUV. It works wonderfully with the Sedona’s 6-speed automatic transmission and delivers plenty of power for this family hauler. Acceleration is more than adequate. The Kia Sedona's towing capacity is rated at 3,500 pounds. EPA fuel economy ratings are 18 mpg in the city, 24 mpg on the highway on the three lower trims, and decrease slightly in the generously equipped SX Limited model.
276 horsepower @ 6,000 rpm
248 lb-ft of torque @ 5,200 rpm
EPA city/highway fuel economy: 18/24 mpg (L, LX, EX models), 18/25 mpg (SX), 17/22 mpg (SXL)
Note: Due to changes in EPA testing to more effectively reflect real-world conditions, some 2017 models show slightly lower fuel-economy scores than their 2016 versions.
The 2017 Kia Sedona has a Manufacturer’s Suggested Retail Price (MSRP) starting at about $27,500 for a base L model. On the other end, the top-line SX Limited begins at nearly $43,000 and can climb a few thousand higher with options. Realistically, a mid-trim EX model that starts at roughly $34,500 represents a very good value. The Sedona is among the least expensive full-size minivans. The Nissan Quest starts around the same price, while the Honda Odyssey and Toyota Sienna are a couple thousand beyond the Sedona's base price. Before buying, be sure to check the KBB.com Fair Purchase Price to see what others in your area are paying for their new Kia minivan. When it comes to resale value the Sedona has typically trailed that of the Sienna and Odyssey.