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2013 Kia Sorento

Overview
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2013 Kia Sorento Review

By

KBB Expert Rating: 7.6

The 2013 Kia Sorento is one of the best examples of a "right-sized" SUV – big enough to fit seven passengers in three rows of seats, yet small enough to easily maneuver through traffic and tight spaces. The Sorento's Goldilocks nature doesn't end there. This mid-size crossover offers three engine choices, and perhaps most impressive is the one in the middle, a direct-injection 4-cylinder that offers both power and fuel economy. With its good looks, host of amenities and premium options such as ventilated leather seats, the U.S.-built Kia Sorento is a seriously pleasing family vehicle. Throw in Kia's value pricing and its 10-year/100,000-mile powertrain warranty, and the Sorento becomes an even more attractive alternative to rivals like the Chevrolet Equinox and Toyota Highlander.

You'll Like This Car If...

If you're looking for a capable and family-friendly crossover SUV that won't break the bank yet still has plenty of features, put the Kia Sorento on your shopping list.

You May Not Like This Car If...

If you regularly need to carry seven passengers and still need room for their gear, the Sorento might be too small. In that case, look to a larger 3-row SUV like the Chevrolet Traverse, Ford Explorer or Honda Pilot.

KBB Expert Ratings

  • 7.6
  • 6.7
  • 7.1
  • 7.3
  • 7.5
  • 7.9
How It Ranks

#26

out of 39

Fuel Economy

#18

out of 39

Horsepower
View all rankings

Consumer Rating

8.1 out of 10
View all
consumer ratings
2013 Kia Sorento Low/wide front photo What's New for 2013

For 2013 the Sorento receives a new Kia badge up front, leather seating becomes standard for the mid-tier EX trim, and the 3rd-row seats are now standard on LX V6 models and optional on EX V6 and SX trims.

Driving the Sorento
2013 Kia Sorento Front angle view photo

Driving Impressions Around town or on the open road, the Sorento is a fine travel mate. The SUV is well-mannered, easy to maneuver, and relatively comfortable. Front-wheel drive (FWD) is standard, with...

all-wheel drive (AWD) optional on all trim levels. In a nice surprise, all-wheel-drive versions have a switch that locks the center differential for better traction on slippery surfaces and for when things get rough on occasional off-pavement excursions. With the base engine, acceleration is adequate, but there isn't much power in reserve for passing. More welcome is the newer direct-injection 4-cylinder engine that is optional in LX models and standard in EX versions. For those wanting the most power and towing capability (up to 3,500 pounds), a V6 is offered across the line. The Sorento's sole transmission is a smooth, refined 6-speed automatic. Seating position is good and interior controls are a cinch to locate and use.
Favorite Features

2.4-LITER DIRECT-INJECTION ENGINE
Though it's the same size as the base 4-cylinder, this engine benefits from direct-injection technology, which makes more efficient use of fuel to boost both fuel economy and power.

LOCKABLE CENTER DIFFERENTIAL
Rare on a crossover SUV, this feature on all-wheel-drive Sorentos helps the SUV gain better traction in slippery and off-pavement environments.

2013 Kia Sorento Details
2013 Kia Sorento Dashboard, center console, gear shifter view photo Interior

Peek inside a well-equipped Kia Sorento and you might think you're looking at a car from a premium brand. Details abound on the dash and door panels, and soft-touch surfaces are easy on the eyes and hands. Numerous cloth patterns and leather combinations help the Sorento to further distance itself from the plebeian models of its past. Legroom is good in the 3-passenger second row, but expectedly tight in the 2-seat third row. That last row is best for children, and folds flat when not in use. With both rows folded, cargo capacity swells to 72.5 cubic feet.

Exterior
2013 Kia Sorento photo

The Sorento has a boxy, angular profile of classic SUVs versus the rotund shape of competitors such as the Nissan Murano. In addition to endowing it with looks that will likely hold up well in the future, they also help make the most of the Sorento's passenger and cargo space. Up front is the new Kia badging surrounded by a honeycomb grille, which itself sits between menacing headlights. Exterior bits vary by model, with higher trims receiving items like silver roof rails and a rear spoiler. LX models ride on 17-inch wheels, and EX and SX trims ride on 18-inch wheels.

Notable Equipment
Standard Equipment

A base 2013 Kia Sorento comes with a 175-horsepower 4-cylinder engine and 6-speed automatic transmission, black wood trim, Bluetooth wireless connectivity, and AM/FM/CD/satellite audio system with USB and auxiliary inputs. Higher trim levels bring bigger and more power engine choices and features like leather seating, automatic climate control with rear compartment air conditioning, push-button start/stop, and the voice-activated UVO telematics system. Top-line SX models are stuffed with features like heated front seats, a 10-speaker Infinity premium audio system, and auto-dimming rear-view mirror.

Optional Equipment

Availability of extras depends on trim levels, but Kia has clustered popular options into packages. The Convenience Package on all-wheel-drive base models, for example, includes roof rails, backup warning system, UVO telematics system, and fog lights. EX and SX models include premium packages that include amenities like a navigation system, panoramic sunroof, air-cooled driver's seat, illuminated scuff plate, and heated steering wheel. Note that the packages can cost thousands extra, and are your only way of getting particular options such as a built-in nav system.

Under the Hood
2013 Kia Sorento Engine photo

The 2013 Kia Sorento offers a choice of three gasoline engines. Its port-injected 2.4-liter 4-cylinder makes 175 horsepower and 169 lb-ft of torque, while the 3.5-liter V6 turns out a far more energetic 276 horsepower and 248 lb-ft of torque. The GDI (gasoline direct-injection) 2.4-liter 4-cylinder may be the perfect choice, with 191 horsepower and an EPA estimated 30 mpg on the highway. All versions feature a Kia-designed 6-speed automatic transmission with Sportmatic manual shift mode. Towing capacity is rated at 1,650 pounds maximum for models with the 4-cylinder engines and 3,500 pounds for those with the V6.

2.4-liter inline-4
175 horsepower @ 6,000 rpm
169 lb-ft of torque @ 3,750 rpm
EPA city/highway fuel economy: 21/29 mpg (FWD), 21/27 mpg (AWD)

2.4-liter inline-4 (gasoline direct-injection)
191 horsepower @ 6,300 rpm
181 lb-ft of torque @ 4,250
EPA city/highway fuel economy: 21/30 mpg (FWD), 20/26 mpg (AWD)

3.5-liter V6
276 horsepower @ 6,300 rpm
248 lb-ft of torque @ 5,000 rpm
EPA city/highway fuel economy: 20/26 mpg (FWD), 18/24 mpg (AWD)

Pricing Notes

A base 2013 Kia Sorento has a Manufacturer's Suggested Retail Price (MSRP) starting just under $24,000, which represents a high-value proposition in this segment. Adding all-wheel drive to any model costs roughly $2,000 extra. EX trim models start under $28,000, and top-line SX models go for $32,500. A decked-out SX with all-wheel drive can reach $38,000. At these prices, the Sorento undercuts slightly larger competitors like the Toyota Highlander, Ford Edge, Nissan Murano, and Honda Pilot, and is on par with the Chevy Equinox. It is more expensive than the Dodge Journey. Be sure to check the Kelley Blue Book Fair Purchase Price to see what buyers are actually paying for the Sorento. In the long term, the Sorento's resale value is expected to be strong.

To find out what consumers are really paying for this vehicle, first select a style to see the Fair Purchase Price| Calculate payments for this vehicle

Get Your Fair Purchase Price See actual transaction prices, explore total cost to own, projected resale value and more.

2013 Kia Sorento Consumer Reviews

Overall Rating
8.1
Out of 10

Based on 214 Ratings for the 2011 - 2015 models.

Review this car
  • Value
    8.4/10
    Quality
    8.4/10
  • Reliability
    8.7/10
    Performance
    8.1/10
  • Comfort
    8.5/10
    Styling
    8.9/10

I'm Suprised That I like It So Much

By on Sunday, April 06, 2014

I own this car - My approximate mileage is 64,000

10 9.0
overall rating 9 of 10rating details

Reviewer Ratings

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

Pros: "Lots of space, handles well, great MPG, visibility"

Cons: "Not as quiet on the highway as I'd like"

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

"I bought my 2012 Sorento EX in August 2011. I selected it because Kia gave so much more for the money vs. others I liked. I already have 65K on it, and while I expected it to be competent, I guess I'm surprised that it has been much more than that. It gives me loads of space, it's quite comfortable, exceptional MPG (23/29), great acceleration for a 4 cyl, and with the exception of a seam in the driver's seat that opened (which Kia replaced), I have had no issues whatsoever. I don't keep most cars very long, due to my high miles driven, but when I replace this one (soon), I will give Kia another look. They earned it."

2 people out of 3 found this review helpful

East handling and reliability

By on Friday, March 28, 2014

I own this car - My approximate mileage is 11,000

10 8.0
overall rating 8 of 10rating details

Reviewer Ratings

Overall Rating
8/10
Value
9/10
Reliability
8/10
Quality
8/10
Performance
7/10
Styling
9/10
Comfort
8/10

Pros: "Plenty of interior space for a long drive"

Cons: "4 cylinder does not have enough push"

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

"I love my Sorento! It is great for highway driving and meets my needs of having to park in downtown. Fuel efficiency is wonderful, fill up once every 2 weeks, as I have the 4 cylinder. If I were to buy again, I would definitely get a Sorento, but would choose the 6 cylinder, as it lacks a little in power when getting onto the highway."

6 people out of 9 found this review helpful

Great car, great value

By on Monday, March 10, 2014

I own this car - My approximate mileage is 20,000

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: "Dependable, fun to drive, great value"

Cons: "Gas mileage lower than advertised, naviation so-so"

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

"This is my 2nd Sorento. Love the heated/ cooled leather seats, auto climate control, UVO system, etc. This car has nearly every feature you can get, including a glass roof. The only things that aren't perfect are the navigation system, the gas mileage, and cargo space. The navigation maps are not very accurate. (says my home and work addresses don't exist!) Gas mileage is close to posted ratings, but not quite. I knew about the cargo space when I bought the car, so I'm not saying I am disappointed, just wish it had a little more."

8 people out of 10 found this review helpful

We have had 2 Kia's in the last 5 years!!!

By on Tuesday, February 11, 2014

I own this car - My approximate mileage is 17,899

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: "We love it is all I can say, can't say otherwise.."

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

"We started out with a Kia Sportage in 2009 with a 4 cyl, & shifted up to Sorrento w/V-6 So we can better tow our 1650 Crestliner Aluminum Bass boat back & forth to Pleasant & Havasu lake, the Sportage was underpowered & now the Sorrento is powered great at 276HP! We love it as did the older Sportage, this just fits the bill better. A little pricey at 37,750. for the Sorrento FWD SX But it's fully loaded with everything you could imagine except all wheel drive & we like it that way, better mileage & less maintenance, we could have spent WAY LESS ON THE BASE MODEL BUT WE LIKE THE LOADED ONE!!! We decided because it has front twin traction drive, it's plenty of control on surfaces we drive & gets better mileage than the All Wheel Drive by around 2 MPG & is much less maintenance without another Differential, transfer case & other 4wd components! We get around 26mpg loaded on the highway & have lots of room. Very happy & Kia & sister company Hyundai have the best warranty..."

11 people out of 14 found this review helpful

it has a back up camera and navigation system.

By on Friday, January 31, 2014

I don't own this car

10 9.0
overall rating 9 of 10rating details

Reviewer Ratings

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

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

"it has a remote start, video player.I can not afford the payment anymore just want to get it payoff and hopefully get 3000 back from all i have put into it. i love it. drives smooth.no problems with it.It is blue.I am buying this SUV"

3 people out of 11 found this review helpful

GOOD TO BETTER

By on Friday, January 24, 2014

I own this car - My approximate mileage is 9,000

10 8.0
overall rating 8 of 10rating details

Reviewer Ratings

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

Pros: "Value-warranty-MPG"

Cons: "see review"

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

"I want to give this vehicle glowing remarks but I find myself comparing it to my previous MDX. Ride and comfort good but not as good. Sound system good but not as good. No heated mirrors. No power passenger seat. No grab bar over drivers head. BUT: Good value, warranty and MPG. I'd do it again."

7 people out of 11 found this review helpful

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