The 2023 Kia Sorento sees no new notable features, however, each line-up is better equipped in terms of safety and creature comforts. The hybrid model drops its least expensive trim and joins the gasoline version at the top of the hierarchy with an SX-P trim. The Plug-In Hybrid version follows suit and is only offered in the SX-P trim.
Choosing Your Kia Sorento
The Sorento is available in eight trims LX, S, X-Line S AWD, EX, X-Line EX AWD, SX, SX Prestige, and X-Line SX Prestige AWD. Base prices range from $31,285 to $44,265 for the X-Line SX Prestige AWD.
The Hybrid is available in EX and SX-P trims with base prices of $36,590 and $42,390, respectively.
The Plug-In Hybrid (PHEV) Sorento is offered in the SX-P trim and is priced at $51,185.
The gasoline-only Sorento is available with two powertrains. The two lower trim levels are powered by the gasoline engine which is mated to an eight-speed automatic transmission (with a torque converter) and the more premium trims are equipped with a turbocharged engine and a dual-clutch automated transmission. Front-wheel drive is standard and all-wheel-drive is offered for $1,800 to $2,300, depending on the model, and features a push-button locking center differential. The Hybrid and Plug-In Hybrid (PHEV) models utilize a 1.6-liter turbocharged four-cylinder and a six-speed automatic. The PHEV returns an EPA-estimated 32 miles on a fully-charged battery pack and 34 mpg once that has been depleted. Kia estimates that the battery pack can be recharged in about 3.5 hours using a Level 2 charger.
|Trim||Engine / Transmission||Horsepower / Torque||Fuel Economy EPA|
LX, S (FWD)
X-Line S (AWD)
|191 hp / 181 lb-ft|
X-Line EX (AWD)
SX, SX-P (AWD)
2.5-L turbocharged four-cylinder
|281 hp / 311 lb-ft|
Hybrid SX-P (AWD)
|1.6-L turbocharged four-cylinder||227 hp / 258 lb-ft|
|Plug-In Hybrid SX-P (AWD)||6-speed AT||261 hp / 258 lb-ft||79 MPGe|
Passenger and Cargo Capacity
The LX and S trims feature a second-row bench and can seat a total of seven passengers while the EX trim and up are equipped with second-row captain’s chairs that limit the capacity to six.
The Sorento stretches to 189.4 inches and sits 74.8 inches wide which is about four inches longer than the typical two-row CR-V and RAV4. So while the third row isn’t all that spacious with 36.8 inches of headroom, 42.5 inches of hip room, and 29.6 inches of legroom, things could be worse (see the three-row Volkswagen Tiguan). Cargo room measures a tidy 12.6 cubic feet behind the third row, 38.5 cubic feet with the third row folded, and an expansive 75.5 cubic feet with both rows folded.
The turbocharged powertrains are capable of towing up to 3,500 pounds.
The base trim features automatic emergency braking, blind-spot detection, rear cross-traffic detection, high beam assist, rear occupant detection with ultrasonic sensors, safe exit assist, and leading vehicle departure alert while the S trim adds rear parking sensors, the EX trim adds an improved collision avoidance system, full-speed adaptive cruise control with highway driving assist, and the top SX Prestige trim is the only trim to feature a surround view monitor and a blind-spot view monitor by way of the digital gauge cluster.
The 2023 Sorento only managed a four-star overall safety rating from NHTSA while the IIHS awards it with its 2022 Top Safety Pick award, although the Sorento’s standard headlights were rated Poor.
The LX trim features an eight-inch touchscreen with Apple CarPlay and Android Auto and offers six charging ports. The S trim receives the larger 10.25-inch touchscreen and additionally includes navigation, remote connectivity, SiriusXM, two more USB ports, and a wireless phone charger. The top trim is noted for its inclusion of a Bose sound system with 12 speakers and a 115-volt power outlet.
The entry-level trim wears 17-inch alloy wheels, LED headlights, body-colored heated mirrors with integrated turn signals, tinted glass, an acoustic front windshield, and satin silver window trim. Inside are cloth seats, a 4.3-inch driver information display, and second-row air vents.
The S trim brings notable upgrades in the form of 18-inch alloy wheels, gloss-black mirrors, gloss black bumper trim, grille surround and mesh, window trim, wheel arches, roof rails, and a rear tailgate spoiler, as well as proximity entry, synthetic leather heated, with 10-way power adjustability for the driver, a leather-wrapped steering wheel, and a dual-zone climate control system.
The $1,300 Panoramic Sunroof Package is available and also adds LED interior lighting.
The X-Line S maintains the same notable equipment of the S trim but wears unique styling for a more rugged and unique design with molded-in dark silver skid plates, silver grille details, matte-black lower door cladding and wheel arches, and raised roof rails.
The next-level Sorento features 18-inch machined alloy wheels, a hands-free power tailgate, roof rails, fog lights, and an eight-way power passenger seat.
The X-Line EX wears similar styling to the X-Line S trim except with 20-inch matte gray wheels, molded-in silver skid plates, and a panoramic sunroof.
The SX trim’s exterior is noted for its 20-inch gloss black wheels, LED projector-beam headlights that earn a Good IIHS rating, daytime running lights, and tail lights, power-folding mirrors, a panoramic sunroof, and LED interior lighting, while the interior receives a 12.3-inch digital gauge cluster and satin-chrome interior door handles.
The top tier trim, new to the Hybrid model, features perforated leather seats with embossed bolsters, 14-way power adjustability with power thigh extensions and memory seat positioning for the driver, a 10-way power passenger seat, ventilated front seats, a heated steering wheel and second-row seats, and second-row sunshades.
The X-Line SX Prestige trim doesn’t hold any tricks up its sleeve and simply features the equipment of the SX Prestige and adds the styling of the X-Line EX trim.
The EX trim adds on the remaining desirable creature comforts and safety features without creeping over the $40,000 mark.