The Kia Sorento is a large SUV that combines 4x4 ability with space inside for seven. In fact, it’s better at accommodating a full complement of passengers than any of its similarly priced seven-seat rivals, including the Hyundai Santa Fe, Land Rover Discovery Sport and Nissan X-Trail.
However, the Sorento is no longer the bargain that previous generations were; it’s slightly more expensive than an equivalent Santa Fe and much dearer than the Nissan X-Trail. We think it’s worth the extra, though – especially considering how much standard kit you get, even with the cheaper trim levels. The higher trims (KX-3 and KX-4) are seriously well equipped, but are pricey, too.
All Sorentos have four-wheel drive, and all but the entry-level KX-1 version are available with an automatic gearbox if you’re prepared to spend the extra. If you’re a company car driver, stick with the KX-1; it emits less CO2 than other versions, so will cost you a lot less in benefit-in-kind tax.
If you’re a private buyer, our recommendation is the KX-2 auto. It’s really well equipped, and although the automatic gearbox doesn’t do fuel economy or CO2 emissions any favours, it makes the big Kia easier and more relaxing to drive.
Before you buy any Sorento, though, think carefully whether you really need seven seats. That’s because there are plenty of better-driving five-seat SUVs available at this price, including the Audi Q5 and BMW X3. Both of those rivals also have plusher interiors and will hold on to their value better.