Kia has added a revised Sorento SUV to its increasingly impressive range of vehicles in
The new Sorento is available in two models, the Limited and the EX, and only with a diesel engine.
Kia New Zealand boss John Keenan says that though petrol-powered versions are available, there are no plans to import them to New Zealand.
The 2007 Kia Sorento gets a new common-rail 2.5-litre diesel motor that meets Euro-4 emission standards. The new engine is smoother than the outgoing models and delivers more power and more torque.
The Sorento also has upgraded ride and better on-road handling, along with more comprehensive safety gear, better comfort and better equipment.
The vehicle’s main body structure remains the same, and the Sorento retains a separate ladder chassis frame. The separate chassis allows the Sorento to tow a 2.8-tonne braked trailer.
The styling has been given a smoother, more sophisticated and more contemporary look, though there are no radical touches.
It has larger and more rounded front and rear bumpers that add 20mm to the overall length; they’re also said to improve aerodynamics.
It has projection-style headlights and all 2007 Sorentos now ride on larger 17-inch diameter alloy wheels.
The interior gets redesigned seats providing greater comfort and more lateral support; a new dashboard and centre console house easier-to-read instruments and better controls for the upgraded air conditioning (dual zone climate control in the Limited) and CD/cassette sound system
incorporating an MP3 player.
Kia has used higher quality upholstery materials. The EX gets velour and the Limited gets leather highlighted with red needlepoint inserts and stitching. The trim colours are darker to be more practical for a vehicle that can be used off-road.
Changes to the all-independent suspension include retuned springs and dampers to give flatter and better poise on uneven road surfaces.
Brakes are discs all-round with ABS anti-lock braking as standard on both models.
For the first time, Sorento buyers can get an electronic stability programme (ESP), which improves safety in extreme cornering and lane change manoeuvres.
ESP is standard on the Limited.The new Sorento has a dashboard mounted switch to select the driving mode – 4WD high/low or a 2WD high system (which drives the rear wheels) for general
use and improved fuel economy.
The transmission change gate has been modified to make gear selection easier. A sequential sports shift feature allows the driver to manually select gears.
The Sorento’s four-wheel drive system has a low range transfer case for use in demanding off-road conditions.
Keenan says that Kia believes that in a large lifestyle vehicle, low range is a very practical and useful feature, providing additional traction when off-road or when towing on soft surfaces or on a slippery slope, such as a boat ramp.
Kia Sorento prices start at $49,800