The latest Sorento will be the first SUV to be based on Kia‘s new platform when production commences later this year. With a compact engine bay structure, shorter overhangs and a longer wheelbase, the platform enables the car’s stylish new design and on-road posture, as well as its comfortable ride and satisfying handling traits.
The overall length of the new Sorento has been extended by 10 mm to its predecessor, while the wheelbase is up 35 mm to 2,815 mm. The cabin now provides more room than in many other midsize SUVs, while intelligent packaging means the new Sorento will also offer class-leading cargo space.
When the first-generation Sorento was launched in 2002, it was underpinned by a robust body-on-frame chassis, maximizing space and all-road ability. The shift to a monocoque structure for the second-generation Sorento in 2009 marked a step-change in the car’s on-road character and behavior. Kia’s new midsize SUV platform represents a similarly important leap forward for the next-generation Sorento, allowing the car to set new standards in its segment for space, practicality, efficiency, and quality.
For Korea, Europe, and North America, the structure and layout of the platform accommodate the Sorento’s potent new ‘Smartstream’ turbo hybrid powertrain. Representing the first application of electrified power in the Sorento line-up, the new powertrain comprises a 1.6-liter T-GDi (turbocharged gasoline direct injection) engine, 44.2 kW electric motor and 1.49 kWh lithium-ion polymer battery pack. The engine and motor produce a combined total output of 230 ps power and 350 Nm torque, providing low emissions with high levels of performance from the new electrified powertrain. The intelligent packaging of the new platform means the battery pack can be located beneath the passenger cell, with no impact on cabin or luggage space.
Additional powertrains will be announced in the future, including gasoline engines and a powerful new plug-in hybrid variant. Korean and European customers can also specify the Sorento’s new four-cylinder 2.2-liter ‘Smartstream’ diesel engine, producing 202 ps and 440 Nm torque. This is paired with Kia’s new 8-speed wet double-clutch transmission (8DCT), developed to offer the smooth-shifting characteristics of a conventional automatic while enhancing efficiency over dry clutch DCTs.
A powerful ‘Smartstream’ 2.5-liter T-GDi engine will also be available from launch in Korea and North America, developing 281 ps and 421 Nm torque. Matched with the new 8DCT, the 2.5-liter turbo engine combines direct injection and multi-point injection technology, enabling it to subtly adapt its combustion cycle at different engine speeds to enhance performance and efficiency in everyday use.
In addition to its new platform and powertrains, the new Sorento implements a range of high-tech safety and convenience features, differentiating it further from other midsize SUVs.
Kia’s first Multi-collision Brake system enables the Sorento to mitigate the severity of secondary collisions. It automatically applies vehicle brakes when the airbags have been deployed after an initial collision, further protecting occupants from secondary frontal or side impacts. The Multi-collision Brake system will be available depending on the market with a total of eight airbags to further enhance collision safety, including front-seat center side airbags and knee airbags.
Depending on the market, the Sorento is also available with a remote smartphone Surround View Monitor. This allows users to check the vehicle’s surroundings with their smartphone in conjunction with the in-vehicle Surround View Monitor to maximize parking convenience.
Designed and engineered to take on everything life can throw at it, the new Sorento will make its debut on March 3 at the 2020 Geneva International Motor Show.