A few weeks ago I received an email from Kia offering me $75 if I took a test drive in their new 2011 Kia Sorento. I had seen the Kia advertisements on TV and had noticed a few of the new models running around town already. So this morning I had a doctor’s appointment and on my way back stopped at the local Kia dealership. What surprised me was that there were only a two of the new models on the lot, but I noticed three by the main office with sold signs on them. I was greeted by a sales person and presented the form I had received from Kia and requested a test drive.
I had previously driven a 2008 Kia Sorento a few years ago and found the vehicle rode like a truck since it was built on a truck frame. The ride was solid but bounced like you were riding on a wash board. Though the Sorento I had driven came with a V-6 it felt more like a 4 and the interior was nothing to write home about. The exterior was OK, but looked dated, kind of like a Dodge Durango in styling that hasn’t changed in years.
The sales person brought up a new Sorento which was an EX model that had the new, 2.4 liter, 4 cylinder engine rated at 175 hp, coupled to a 6 speed automatic transmission and also included the convenience package which was an upgrade to the base model. I took the vehicle for a drive through mainly city streets with only one straight area of roadway in which I hit the gas. The 4 cylinder had plenty of power, was quiet, and the transmission shifted effortlessly.
While we were driving I asked the sales person a few questions and learned more information about the vehicle. He stated the new Sorentos were selling very well. Besides the three they had ready for delivery, they had another seven coming in next week, two of which had been sold already. Of course I have never talked to a car sales person that didn’t say their model was selling well. But in this case he may have been telling the truth.
The vehicle rides very well and is more car-like than the previous Sorento model. The fit and finish inside of the car is very nice and having the radio, cruise control, and blue-tooth controls on the steering wheel is a nice touch. The Sorento also comes with a camera backup system, dual moon roofs, navigation system, and more which drives the price well into $30k. The model I drove was $24k after a $1k rebate.
If you are looking for a CUV you may wish to test drive the 2011 Kia Sorento for yourself.