The all-new 2015 Kia Sorento has arrived in Australia, priced from $40,990 for the Si petrol through to $55,990 for the Platinum diesel.
Available in three trim levels and the choice of a new 3.3-litre petrol V6 (Si and SLi) driving the front wheels, or the carried over 2.2-litre R Series diesel with active AWD system (Si, SLi and Platinum); the third-generation Sorento promises improved noise, vibration and harshness levels and upgraded interior.
Using the development styling name of “Streetwolf”, Kia’s design team settled on an evolutionary language which subtly highlights the new Sorento’s sleek, sinuous profile, while ensuring the new model has a bolder on-the-road presence.
The front of the new Sorento incorporates long, wrap-around headlamps and more prominent fog-lamps, as well as a larger, more upright ‘tiger-nose’ grille, with a distinctive three-dimensional diamond pattern that was first seen on the 2013 Kia Cross GT concept.
However, it is inside of the all-new Sorento where owners will find a more sophisticated, more luxurious cabin, featuring significantly higher quality materials with a greater proportion of soft-touch materials and leather.
All Sorentos come with standard seven-seat configuration, satellite navigation and a 5-Star ANCAP rating, thanks to a full suite of active and passive safety technology, including 6 airbags, ABS, electronic stability control, brake assist, vehicle stability management, hill start assist, rear view camera, front and rear parking sensors and tyre pressure monitoring.
The range-topping Platinum model adds Lane Departure Warning, Smart Cruise Control, Blind Sport Detection and Rear Cross Traffic Alert.
Kia says cabin noise has been reduced by 3 to 6 percent, depending on driving conditions, courtesy of new soundproofing material for the transmission tunnel, a 29 percent thicker dashboard soundproofing panel, larger engine and transmission mounts for greater powertrain refinement and, for diesel models, a new DPF cover and an acoustic shield integrated into the engine’s timing chain cover.
Under the bonnet is either the 3.3 litre MPI V6 petrol with 199kW of power and 318Nm of torque and a revised version of the popular R2.2 diesel (147kW and 441Nm). Both engines are designed to offer greater mid- and low-range torque, providing the smooth operation that drivers would expect from an SUV. All models are connected to a six-speed automatic transmission.
Owners can also customize the car’s driving characteristics to match current driving conditions with the Drive Mode Select system, activated via a switch on the centre console. ‘Normal’ mode is best suited for day-to-day driving, ‘Eco’ mode reprograms the shift points of the automatic transmission to achieve optimum fuel economy, while ‘Sport’ mode allows the gearbox to delay shifting and reduces the level of steering assistance for a sportier feel.
As with all Kia models introduce into the Australian market, the Sorento has undergone extensive localisation work, with an all-new steering and suspension setup.
The 2015 Kia Sorento hits showrooms in Australia from June 7.
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