Feature

New cars: 2011 Kia Sorento

What the critics say about the $19,995 2011 Kia Sorento

Autoblog
Korean automaker Kia “pretty much nailed the bull’s-eye” with its 2011 midsize crossover, “offering exactly the kind of vehicle” today’s American buyers prefer. To accomplish this, Kia scrapped the old Sorento design—canceling the 2010 model altogether—and is building this brand-new vehicle in its first U.S. plant, near Atlanta. Cabin materials are “middle-of-the-road,” but the car stands out for its “calm, quiet, and composed” driving demeanor.

Car and Driver
The aging Sorento SUV, first introduced in 2003, has been successfully reinvented as “a far more relevant, if slightly less macho, crossover.” The car has plenty of room for cargo and passengers, and comes with “a list of luxury-grade options—not that you’d ever mistake this for a Lexus inside.” Just be sure to skip the optional third-row seats, “which few people more than 12 years old will find tolerable.”

Motor Trend
A changeover to unibody construction “imparts a decidedly more refined and confident character” to the Sorento. All-wheel-drive versions also get a “more street-oriented” power-distribution system that improves handling on- or off-road. Base-model upgrades include such “generous features” as air conditioning, power everything, and MP3/USB audio inputs. Even-more-upscale options, such as ionized-air purification, reverse sonar, and a “panoramic sunroof,” are also available.

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