2017 Kia Sorento
- Controls are easy to operate
- Cabin is well-made and attractive
- Second-row seats are versatile and comfortable
- Strong value proposition
- Most seven-passenger competitors offer more interior space.
- Turbo engine isn't as punchy or efficient as expected
2017 Kia Sorento pricingin Ashburn, VA
Edmunds' Expert Review
The 2017 Kia Sorento looks to double down on last year's full redesign, adding deeper smartphone integration and more advanced safety features to its dossier. But the story remains the upward mobility that Kia's midsize crossover has lately shown. Previously known as a midsize crossover at a relatively compact price, the Sorento has graduated to full-fledged midsize status, competing on luxury and performance (and, yes, price) with the segment's best.
Offering no fewer than three engines, the Sorento maintains a presence on the value-oriented end of the spectrum with its base 2.4-liter four-cylinder. Step up to the 3.3-liter V6, however, and you're looking at acceleration and refinement that easily justify the higher cost, although we're lukewarm on the available turbocharged 2.0-liter four. You can go with a two-row layout or a three-row setup -- the latter offers adequate space in the way-back for kids. A number of three-row rivals boast more interior volume overall, but with its easily manageable size, the Sorento provides a nice combination of maneuverability and versatility.
If you're looking for alternatives, it depends on which Sorento you're considering. If it's the two-row version, we'd suggest checking out the well-rounded Ford Edge or the Sorento's corporate cousin, the Hyundai Santa Fe Sport, with the luxurious Jeep Grand Cherokee entering the conversation at the Kia's higher trim levels. Three-row competitors include the Hyundai Santa Fe and the Toyota Highlander. Overall, we like how the 2017 Kia Sorento brings a little something for everyone, and as such it merits consideration from a wide range of crossover SUV shoppers.
Every 2017 Kia Sorento comes standard with antilock brakes, traction and stability control, front side airbags, and front- and second-row side curtain airbags. All but the LX come standard with a rearview camera. Optional on LX and standard on EX, SX and SX Limited are rear parking sensors and Uvo eServices (geo-fencing, speed alert and curfew alert for secondary drivers). Other available safety technologies include a blind-spot monitor with rear cross-traffic alert, lane departure warning and a forward collision mitigation system with automatic emergency braking.
In Edmunds brake testing, an SX V6 needed 121 feet to stop from 60 mph, which is about average.
In government crash tests, the 2017 Sorento received the top five-star rating for overall crash protection, with five stars for total front-impact protection and five stars for total side-impact protection. Likewise, the independent Insurance Institute for Highway Safety awarded the 2017 Sorento the best possible score of "Good" in the small-overlap frontal-offset, moderate-overlap frontal offset, side-impact and roof-strength tests. The Sorento's seat and head restraint design was also rated "Good" for whiplash protection in rear impacts.
Trim levels & features
The 2017 Kia Sorento is a midsize SUV available in five- and seven-passenger configurations. There are five trim levels: L, LX, EX, SX and SX Limited. Note that the L model, the SX Limited and the EX with the turbocharged engine (EX 2.0T) are five-passenger only, while the EX V6 and the SX are seven-passenger only. The four-cylinder LX comes standard with five-passenger seating and can be optioned with the third row; the LX V6 is seven-passenger only.
The base L comes standard with 17-inch alloy wheels, stain-resistant fabric upholstery, a tilt-and-telescoping steering wheel, 40/20/40 split-second-row seats (fold, slide and recline), Bluetooth connectivity, a CD player, satellite radio and USB and auxiliary audio inputs.
The Sorento LX adds a sound-reducing windshield, roof rails, a rearview camera,a 4.3-inch touchscreen interface and two rapid-charge USB ports.
Optional on LX is the Convenience package, which adds Uvo eServices with Apple CarPlay and Android Auto smartphone integration, rear parking sensors, an eight-way power driver seat (plus two-way power lumbar), heated front seats, dual-zone automatic climate control, a leather-wrapped steering wheel and an auto-dimming rearview mirror. When the V6 engine is specified, the Convenience package also includes a blind-spot monitor with rear cross-traffic alert. The third-row seat can be added to the Convenience package on the four-cylinder LX (it comes standard on LX V6).
The LX's optional Advanced Technology package adds an upgraded instrument cluster with a 7-inch driver information display, a forward collision mitigation system with automatic emergency braking, adaptive cruise control, lane departure warning and an electronic parking brake.
The Sorento EX comes standard with the LX's Convenience package (except the blind-spot monitor), 18-inch wheels, sound-reducing front side glass, keyless ignition and entry, leather upholstery, steering-wheel-mounted shift paddles (2.0T engine only) and second-row manual side sunshades. The EX Premium package adds the blind-spot monitor, a 110-volt household-style plug, an adjustable-height hands-free power liftgate, power-folding mirrors and the upgraded instrument cluster. The Advanced Touring package can be added to the Premium package and includes a panoramic sunroof, LED interior lighting and the safety components of the LX's Advanced Technology package.
When you go with the Sorento SX you get the Premium and Advanced Touring package equipment (minus the safety components of the LX's Advanced Technology package) and adds upgraded steering, 19-inch wheels, LED running lights and taillights, special exterior trim, a 10-way power driver seat (plus four-way power lumbar), driver memory settings, an 8-inch touchscreen interface with a navigation system and a 10-speaker Infinity sound system with Clari-Fi digital music improvement technology. Optional on SX is an Advanced Technology package that adds adaptive xenon headlights, a heated steering wheel, ventilated front seats and the safety components of the LX's Advanced Technology package.
Finally, there's the SX Limited with the full contents of the SX's Advanced Technology package plus chrome-clad 19-inch wheels, LED foglights, upgraded leather upholstery, a leather-and-wood-trimmed steering wheel and heated second-row outboard seats.
A six-speed automatic transmission and front-wheel drive are standard on every 2017 Kia Sorento. All-wheel drive is optional on all except the base L trim.
Standard on the L and LX trim levels is a 2.4-liter four-cylinder engine that produces 185 horsepower and 178 pound-feet of torque. The EX 2.0T comes with a turbocharged 2.0-liter four-cylinder engine that produces 240 hp and 260 lb-ft of torque. Optional on LX and EX, and standard on SX and SX Limited, is a 3.3-liter V6 rated at 290 hp and 252 lb-ft.
According to the EPA, the 2.4-liter engine should return 24 mpg combined (21 mpg city/28 mpg highway) with FWD and 22 mpg combined (21/25) with AWD. The EX 2.0T achieves 23 mpg combined (20/27) with FWD and 22 mpg combined (19/25) with AWD. The V6 yields 20 mpg combined (18/25) with FWD and 19 mpg combined (17/23) with AWD.
Notably, a turbocharged Sorento achieved 23.6 mpg on our standardized 120-mile driving loop, while an SX V6 returned 23.3 mpg. These results suggest that the turbo engine's real-world advantage in fuel economy may be even smaller than the EPA estimates indicate.
In Edmunds track testing, an all-wheel-drive Sorento EX 2.0T loped to 60 mph in 8.7 seconds, a leisurely performance given those healthy output numbers. An all-wheel-drive SX V6 hit 60 mph in 7.6 seconds, an adequate showing for a V6-powered crossover in this class.
Towing capacity is 3,500 pounds with front-wheel drive and 5,000 pounds with all-wheel drive.
There is a marked sense of sophistication in the 2017 Kia Sorento's ride. Even top-of-the-line models with their big 19-inch wheels manage to soak up bumps without harshness. Kia's midsize crossover is also impressively quiet, especially in the EX trim and above, so count the Sorento as a good candidate for a comfortable family road trip.
Every Sorento comes with Driver Mode Select, which features three modes (Normal, Sport and Eco) that alter transmission shift points and steering effort. Although we could detect the changes in the former, it was difficult to differentiate between the steering settings. It's important to note, though, that the SX and SX Limited actually have a different steering system that should yield a greater sense of precision than the other trims. We found it to be a little on the light side, but suitably precise and confidence-inspiring for this class of vehicle.
The base four-cylinder engine sometimes struggles with the Sorento's not-inconsiderable size and weight. Opting for the V6 engine is recommended, as its 290 hp is certainly better suited to a vehicle of this size. If you can live without seven seats, the EX's turbocharged four-cylinder may appeal as an in-between option, but it lacks the low-end punch we've come to expect from modern turbo engines.
Most surfaces in the 2017 Kia Sorento are soft to the touch and richly textured, while available two-tone color schemes accentuate these quality materials. There's enough of a premium look and feel that higher trim levels seem properly luxurious. Much the same can be said for the appealing dashboard design, which happily also includes user-friendly controls. Kia's touchscreens are generally among the simpler electronics interfaces around, with big virtual buttons and clear labeling.
Legroom is generous in the second row, and you can further customize the Sorento for greater comfort or cargo space as the second row seats slide, recline and fold flat via levers in the cargo area. This versatility is present regardless of seating configuration, which isn't always the case in competing SUVs. As for the third-row seat, it's got room for kids or smaller adults; however, larger crossovers like the Toyota Highlander do have more adult-friendly space (as well as seatbelts for eight).
Cargo capacity behind the third row (11.3 cubic feet) is really only good for a pair of small suitcases or several grocery bags. There's roughly 38 cubic feet behind the second-row seat, with maximum capacity reaching up to 73.5 cubes when you fold the second row. That's more than you'll find in many five-passenger midsize SUVs, but less than what a number of competitive three-row crossovers offer.
Most helpful consumer reviews
2017 Kia Sorento video
MARK TAKAHASHI: I'm Edmunds editor Mark Takahashi. And here's an Expert Rundown of the 2017 Kia Sorento. There's a lot to like about the 2017 Kia Sorento, even among other mid-size SUVs. It's hard to beat the value proposition for a long list of features, reasonable pricing, and the industry's longest warranty. As a family hauler, its top safety scores should be a strong draw for shoppers. The Sorento is available as either a two or a three-row SUV, with the last row being suitable for smaller passengers only. There's not a lot of cargo space behind the third row. But overall, you get more capacity than the average two-row SUV. The second row seats are comfortable and score points for their ability to slide and recline. They also fold flat using remote levers in the cargo area. The Sorento's interior is well-made and attractive, making it look and feel more expensive than it is. The bottom line is the Kia Sorento is worth your attention. Whether it's the two or three-row model, it competes well against the Hyundai Santa Fe Sport as well as the Ford Edge, even the Toyota Highlander, which is one of our favorites. Also, keep an eye out for the forthcoming Volkswagen Atlas.
2017 Kia Sorento Expert Rundown Review
Looking for a great crossover SUV that gets you a lot for your money? The 2017 Kia Sorento might be a good match. Here's a quick rundown of what we like, what we don't and the bottom line from the Edmunds editors.
Features & Specs
2017 Kia Sorento for Sale
There's ambition behind the 2017 Kia Sorento. Redesigned for the 2016 model year, it makes its way into this new year with some significant refinements. That includes improved smartphone integration, a few choice safety tweaks and some trim variations. Previous generation Sorentos may have been compact crossovers at a keen price, but this latest Sorento has ascended up into mid-size mainstream where the competition is stiff and the options list must be comparable.
One advantage the Sorento brings into the fray is that it can be tailored to any customer. There are three different engines available: a base non-turbocharged 2.4-liter four-cylinder, a turbocharged 2.0-liter four and a thumping 3.3-liter V6. Those powerplants all come mated to a six-speed automatic transmission churning either the front wheels or all four of them.
Particularly when equipped with the V6, the Sorento is a refined and sophisticated everyday driving companion. And it's versatile too, with a choice of two or three rows of seating. Save the rearmost seat for the toddlers, however.
With its multiple personalities, the Sorento can be considered an alternative to virtually any crossover, from basic compacts to three-row behemoths fitted out like the Sultan of Brunei's personal 747. Well, minus the gold-plated lavatories and on-board dining room(s).
Fuel consumption naturally varies according to powertrain choice. The best fuel economy numbers come with the 2.4-liter four-cylinder engine and front-wheel drive that specs out at 24 mpg combined (21 city/28 highway). The lowest ratings are generated by the Sorentos with the big 3.3-liter V6 under their hoods and all-wheel drive. Those come in at a thirsty 19 mpg combined (17 city/23 highway). The turbocharged four-cylinder models have numbers closer the naturally aspirated four then the six.
With its wide range of talents, even wider range of options, and overall versatility, the Sorento attracts, no surprise, a wide range of buyers. It's one of Kia's best-selling vehicles and the largest crossover the company makes. It's also the first vehicle Kia produced (and continues to produce) at its assembly plant in West Point, Georgia.
Cutting through the blizzard of Sorento possibilities takes some solid research, and seeking out some good advice is always a good idea. And you've already taken a good first step by starting your buying journey here at Edmunds.com.
2017 Kia Sorento Overview
The 2017 Kia Sorento is offered in the following submodels: Sorento SUV. Available styles include LX 4dr SUV (2.4L 4cyl 6A), EX 4dr SUV (3.3L 6cyl 6A), EX 4dr SUV (2.0L 4cyl Turbo 6A), LX 4dr SUV AWD (2.4L 4cyl 6A), L 4dr SUV (2.4L 4cyl 6A), EX 4dr SUV AWD (3.3L 6cyl 6A), LX 4dr SUV (3.3L 6cyl 6A), Limited 4dr SUV (3.3L 6cyl 6A), SX 4dr SUV AWD (3.3L 6cyl 6A), SX 4dr SUV (3.3L 6cyl 6A), Limited 4dr SUV AWD (3.3L 6cyl 6A), LX 4dr SUV AWD (3.3L 6cyl 6A), and EX 4dr SUV AWD (2.0L 4cyl Turbo 6A).
What do people think of the 2017 Kia Sorento?
Consumer ratings and reviews are also available for the 2017 Kia Sorento and all its trim types. Overall, Edmunds users rate the 2017 Sorento 4.5 on a scale of 1 to 5 stars. Edmunds consumer reviews allow users to sift through aggregated consumer reviews to understand what other drivers are saying about any vehicle in our database. Detailed rating breakdowns (including performance, comfort, value, interior, exterior design, build quality, and reliability) are available as well to provide shoppers with a comprehensive understanding of why customers like the 2017 Sorento.
Edmunds Expert Reviews
Edmunds experts have compiled a robust series of ratings and reviews for the 2017 Kia Sorento and all model years in our database. Our rich content includes expert reviews and recommendations for the 2017 Sorento featuring deep dives into trim levels and features, performance, mpg, safety, interior, and driving. Edmunds also offers expert ratings, road test and performance data, long-term road tests, first-drive reviews, video reviews and more.
Our Review Process
This review was written by a member of Edmunds' editorial team of expert car reviewers. Our team drives every car you can buy. We put the vehicles through rigorous testing, evaluating how they drive and comparing them in detail to their competitors.
We're also regular people like you, so we pay attention to all the different ways people use their cars every day. We want to know if there's enough room for our families and our weekend gear and whether or not our favorite drink fits in the cupholder. Our editors want to help you make the best decision on a car that fits your life.
Which 2017 Kia Sorentos are available in my area?
Shop Edmunds' car, SUV, and truck listings of over 6 million vehicles to find a cheap new, used, or certified pre-owned (CPO) 2017 Kia Sorento for sale near. There are currently 3 new 2017 Sorentos listed for sale in your area, with list prices as low as $30,575 and mileage as low as 0 miles. Simply research the type of car you're interested in and then select a car from our massive database to find cheap vehicles for sale near you. Once you have identified a used vehicle you're interested in, check the Carfax and Autocheck vehicle history reports, read dealer reviews, and find out what other owners paid for the 2017 Kia Sorento.
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Should I lease or buy a 2017 Kia Sorento?
Is it better to lease or buy a car? Ask most people and they'll probably tell you that car buying is the way to go. And from a financial perspective, it's true, provided you're willing to make higher monthly payments, pay off the loan in full and keep the car for a few years. Leasing, on the other hand, can be a less expensive option on a month-to-month basis. It's also good if you're someone who likes to drive a new car every three years or so.