Read the introduction of this vehicle to our long-term fleet.
See all of the long-term updates on this vehicle.
What We Got
We ordered a top-tier 2015 Kia Sedona SXL to experience the best of what the newly redesigned minivan had to offer. It had the same 3.3-liter V6, six-speed transmission and front-wheel-drive configuration shared across all trims. And as we've come to expect from Kia products, it had an abundance of standard features.
Standard Sedona items included the basics: Bluetooth connectivity, USB ports, a backup camera, remote keyless entry and a fold-flat third row of seats. Specific to the SXL trim were leather seats, 19-inch wheels, an eight-speaker Infinity sound system, navigation, Kia's UVO infotainment system, a 110-volt power inverter, two sunroofs, a power liftgate, power-sliding doors, front and rear parking sonar, and second-row captain's chairs with extendable leg rests. The only optional feature on our minivan was a $995 rear entertainment system.
So equipped, our 2015 Kia Sedona SXL carried an MSRP of $41,590.
"I think our Sedona has a pretty soft ride on the stock Kumho tires. You get the occasional hard impact but that's more likely the result of the suspension running out of travel. It's very smooth on the highway, and in the city it soaks up most rough roads without much harshness." — Ed Hellwig
"There's nothing special or standout about the engine or transmission, though you can manually select gears and the 3.3-liter V6 does provide enough motivation to hang with the rest of the minivan competition." — Jonathan Elfalan
"I also looked up our lifetime fuel economy for the long-departed 2011 Honda Odyssey and 2011 Toyota Sienna minivans we had in the test fleet. Both were more efficient than our Sedona." — Brent Romans
"Even with six passengers and luggage, the Sedona returned an impressive 21 mpg over the course of the trip, just 1 mpg off the EPA highway estimate." — Cameron Rogers
"I loaded everyone in and took off when I got the thumbs-up from all passengers. The Sedona's generous interior space and highly adjustable second row allows three adults to sit in tandem without triggering any claustrophobic reactions." — Cameron Rogers
"Climbing in through the automatic sliding side doors, the girls immediately set about extending footrests and reclining seatbacks, snuggling in for the 20-minute ride. ... the back of the Sedona is a pretty nice place to be." — Kelly Hellwig
"Unfolding the third-row seats is a pain. The grab handle is at an awkward angle that makes pulling the seats back into place difficult. Anyone shorter than 5-foot-10 would have a tough time with this mechanism." — Ed Hellwig
"I was in a hurry to get my groceries home ... so I placed the bags in the too-spacious-for-my-current-needs cargo area. ... Well, nothing got destroyed, but a lone Anderson Valley Summer Solstice Seasonal Ale liberated itself from its restrictive cardboard confines, abandoned its five brethren and tried to come find me in the front seat." — Bryn MacKinnon
"The center console bin. I love this thing. Really. The upper black tray slides back and forth. Keep it forward and it's an ideal place to store your phone, keys, corporate parking garage keycard. ... slide it back, it hides whatever you've got in it from prying eyes. Doing so also provides access to the console's bin storage underneath." — Brent Romans
"It's those seats. The padding is fine, the shape suits me well. And against all odds, my wife finds them quite comfortable too. ... But that stitching. ... It goes right down the middle and amounts to a reinforced edge that lines up with my spine. ... the horizontal stitch line creates a rigid intersection that locks on to one of my vertebrae." — Dan Edmunds
Audio and Technology
"The whole point of real-time traffic updates is the ability to make real-time decisions. That's why systems like the one in our Sedona so often frustrate me. ... the traffic map shows nothing but green on my route. Yet here I sit in traffic at a standstill. ... obviously the setup in our Sedona needs some work." — Ed Hellwig
"The Sedona does not have a screen that folds down from the roof. Instead it folds up from the back of the center console. ... Unfortunately, this console-mounted system looks more like a tacked-on aftermarket accessory than something Kia intended to include on their people mover from the start." — Cameron Rogers
"Car Pros offered a welcoming customer area with easy Internet access, and the available snacks were a nice touch. I'm never a fan of the upsells, but our adviser was casual about them and asked in a manner that wasn't annoying." — Mike Schmidt
"I noticed that the steering wheel was cocked to the right. ... The curved contours of the horn pad and sloping steering wheel spokes are intentional styling cues used by every manufacturer to make trivial amounts of this phenomenon less obvious, but the Sedona's wheel is far enough off that it's plain to see." — Dan Edmunds
"A plastic bottle rolled down by my feet and made me press the wrong pedal." — that guy who rear-ended us, causing over $4,000 in damage
"I first noticed a few creaks coming from the side doors. ... None of the noises are particularly intrusive or even all that noticeable in most day-to-day driving. It's when things are quiet, like driving over a speed bump in a parking garage, that the rattles from the side doors are more obvious." — Ed Hellwig
Maintenance & Repairs
The Kia requested routine service in 7,500-mile intervals. We spent $63 at 7,500 miles and $115 at 15,000 miles. Both dealer visits fell into the realm of completely normal. Creaky side doors were inspected at the 15K visit and were the only excitement aside from, well, the accident.
Just days into our test of the Sedona, and hours away from leaving on a cross-country road trip, the van was rear-ended. It sat 28 days in the body shop and cost $4,255 to repair, which was paid by the at-fault party.
No recalls or technical service bulletins were issued during our test.
Fuel Economy and Resale Value
Observed Fuel Economy:
The EPA estimates 19 mpg (17 mpg city, 22 mpg highway) for the Sedona. By the end of our 20,000-mile test, we had averaged 18.2 mpg. Our best fuel economy was 27.1 mpg, and our best range on a single tank carried us 395 miles.
Resale and Depreciation:
Our 2015 Kia Sedona SXL had an MSRP of $41,590 when it entered our garage 12 months ago. After 20,360 miles it depreciated in value by 38 percent, according to the Edmunds TMV Calculator and based on a private-party sale.
Here is how this compared to similar long-term minivans before it: 2011 Honda Odyssey (18 percent), 2011 Toyota Sienna (22 percent), 2012 Nissan Quest (34 percent, with 26,000 miles) and, for historical reference, our 2006 Kia Sedona (41 percent with 25,000 miles).
More standard equipment than the competition at this price point. Fuel range of nearly 400 miles per tank. The UVO infotainment system is one of the most capable and easy-to-use alternatives out there. Front and rear seats are great for long-distance cruising. Comfortable ride quality over broken city streets. Plenty of passing power on the highway. Simple dashboard layout makes everything easy to find and use. Excellent navigation system that's easy to program. Useful storage spaces throughout the interior.
Ride quality was negatively affected when loaded down with a full load of passengers. Raising the third-row seat was cumbersome. Occasional creaks and rattles from the side doors. It depreciated in value more than other class-leading minivans.
The Kia Sedona used to be a second-tier minivan that competed mostly on value. It's still a value leader, but it's now competitive with the top-tier minivans when it comes to comfort, features and overall quality. It has its shortcomings, but they're not the deal killers they once were. Anyone shopping for a new minivan should consider the Sedona before settling on one of its more well-known competitors.
|Total Body Repair Costs:||$4,255.35|
|Total Routine Maintenance Costs:||$177.38 (over 12 months)|
|Additional Maintenance Costs:||None|
|Scheduled Dealer Visits:||2|
|Unscheduled Dealer Visits:||None|
|Days Out of Service:||28 due to body damage|
|Breakdowns Stranding Driver:||None|
|Best Fuel Economy:||27.1 mpg|
|Worst Fuel Economy:||12.2 mpg|
|Average Fuel Economy:||18.2 mpg|
|True Market Value at service end:||$25,870 (private-party sale)|
|Depreciation:||$15,720 (38% of original MSRP)|
|Final Odometer Reading:||20,360 miles|
The manufacturer provided Edmunds this vehicle for the purposes of evaluation.