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2016 Kia Sorento KBB Expert Review

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KBB Expert Rating 8.6 / 10
This Car - 2016 Kia Sorento
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Consumer Rating 9.1 / 10

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KBB Expert Review

Vehicle Details Interior  Dashboard, center console, gear shifter view photo

The 2016 Sorento maintains Kia's reputation for interiors that feel more luxurious than you'd think, especially on Limited models with their softer leather. Yet all models benefit from the new dash and interior design, which borrow from Kia's K900 and Cadenza luxury sedans. The front-row and 2nd-row seats are comfortable, with plenty of headroom and legroom, but like most midsize SUVs, the third row is reserved for the smallest of adults and children. Cargo space behind the third row is limited to small items, but fold it down and you have more than adequate room for larger items.

Exterior   photo

Is the new Sorento the best looking SUV in its class? Maybe. We like the blunt nose, and Kia's "tiger nose" grille treatment looks exceptionally good here. The Sorento's added length goes a long way to reducing the stubbiness of the old car, making the new SUV look sleeker and much more modern. Base and LX models offer 17-inch wheels, while EX models get 18-inchers, and SX gets big 19-inchers, which are chrome on V6 Limited models. The LED fog lights and additional chrome trim on Limited models make for a convincingly upscale look.

Notable Standard Equipment

The base 2016 Kia Sorento L comes equipped with the 2.4-liter 4-cylinder engine, seating for five, air conditioning, Bluetooth, a USB input, and audio and cruise controls on the tilt-telescoping steering wheel. A better bet is the LX, which adds UVO, a backup camera and sound-deadening windshield glass. EX models come standard with the 2.0-liter turbocharged 4-cylinder, plus more sound insulation, dual-zone climate control, leather, and an 8-way power driver's seat. Sorento SX models add blind-spot detection with cross-traffic alert, navigation and an Infinity sound system, while Limited models include premium Nappa leather and heated and ventilated front seats.

Notable Optional Equipment

The 290-horsepower V6 engine is an option on LX, EX, and Limited models, and standard on the SX. All-wheel drive is also available on all models except the take-it-or-leave-it base L. Most other upgrades are bundled into option packages, such as the LX model's Convenience package adds a power driver's seat, heated front seats, and backup sensors. An EX Premium Package adds the Smart Liftgate, blind-spot detection and push-button start, while the Technology Package for Limited models adds adaptive cruise control, lane-departure warning, and the all-around-view parking monitor.

Under the Hood

New Sorento buyers have a choice of engines, but it gets complicated. Standard in L and LX models is a 2.4-liter 4-cylinder offering up 185 horsepower, 178 lb-ft of torque, and the best fuel economy – 29 mpg on the highway. The standard engine in EX and Limited Sorento SUVs is the new 2.0-liter turbocharged 4-cylinder, with 240 horsepower and 260 lb-ft of torque. However, that engine is only available on 2-row models. Three-row EX and Limited models, and all SX models, come with the 3.3-liter V6 with its 290 horsepower. A 6-speed automatic is the only transmission available. All-wheel drive is available on all models except the base L, and features a locking center differential for extremely low-traction situations, and Torque Vectoring Cornering Control, which makes the Sorento more secure in corners regardless of traction conditions.

2.4-liter inline-4
185 horsepower @ 6,000 rpm
178 lb-ft of torque @ 4,000 rpm
EPA city/highway fuel economy: 22/29 mpg (front-wheel drive), 21/26 (AWD)

2.0-liter turbocharged inline-4
240 horsepower @ 6,000 rpm
260 lb-ft of torque @ 1,450 rpm
EPA city/highway fuel economy: 20/27 mpg (front-wheel drive), 19/25 (AWD)

3.3-liter V6
290 horsepower @ 6,400 rpm
252 lb-ft of torque @ 5,300 rpm
EPA city/highway fuel economy: 18/26 mpg (front-wheel drive, AWD LX and EX), 17/23 (AWD SX and Limited)

Pricing Notes

There's a 2016 Kia Sorento for virtually any budget. Base L models start just under $26,000 (including the $895 destination charge), but the $27,000 Sorento LX is worth the extra money thanks to additional features and available options, and that's still lower than many SUV competitors. On the high end, Limited models start at about $40,800 with the turbocharged 4-cylinder engine, or a bit more than $42,000 with the V6. Add the $1,800 all-wheel-drive system, and a loaded 2016 Sorento Limited V6 will cost you a bit less than $45,000. That's on par with competitors like the Nissan Pathfinder and Toyota Highlander, and note that well-equipped mid-range models like the EX are still well under $40,000. Be sure to check's Fair Purchase Price to see what others in your area are paying, and note that the New Sorento should hold its value pretty well over the long haul.

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