Kia Sorento Review

Gumtree Rating

4.5 rating

If you’re looking to regularly ferry around a large family with growing teens, there are few cars as comfortable as the Kia Sorento. Kia’s flagship seven-seater SUV, the Sorento is available in diesel, petrol, hybrid and plug-in hybrid variants, which gives used car buyers a wide choice of engines. While it’s no luxury offering, the Sorento scores highly in terms of practicality and affordability. Sharp styling and comfort-first handling also make this an attractive option if you need a gentle giant to take care of you and the family for years to come.

Visit the Kia Sorento model page to explore available cars and learn more.

What we think about the Kia Sorento

Spacious and dependable, the Kia Sorento is the true definition of value-for-money in the family-SUV segment.



Flexible cabin space


Affordable running costs


Plenty of handy features


Handling is great for cruising, but not much else

Looks will divide opinion

Currently in its fourth generation, the Kia Sorento is available with a choice of diesel, petrol and hybrid engines and front or all-wheel drive (AWD) configurations. The plug-in hybrid is slightly more powerful than the all-electric model. Choices in transmission include a six-speed manual and an eight-speed automatic. The Sorento comes in four trims, KX-1 to KX-4, and there’s plenty of room for personalisation. While all trims are well-equipped, you’d have to go with the top range models to get your hands on the panoramic sunroof.

Driving performance of the Kia Sorento

Our Driving Rating8 / 10

As a spacious full-sized SUV, the Kia Sorento has always prioritised ride comfort over off-roading capabilities. While you can expect some body-roll with the older generations, the newer variants use advanced tech for more composed handling. One thing Kia has nailed on the Sorento is the transmission, with smooth-shifting gear changes accompanying a firm suspension. Given the size of the car, Kia has taken extra care to include parking sensors as standard since the 2015 model to make city life easier. All in all, the Sorento manages to provide weighty handling that’s less than thrilling, but absolutely effortless to manoeuvre.

Safety and reliability of the Kia Sorento

Our Safety Rating9 / 10

Except for the first generation 2003 model, which achieved a four-star Euro NCAP rating, all Kia Sorentos boast a full five-star safety rating. All models across the board get driver, passenger, side and curtain airbags as standard. On the latest 2017 generation, the lengthy list of standard safety tech includes all-round LED lights, trailer stability assist to balance the car while towing, as well as active lane-keeping technology, which automatically guides the vehicle within its lane on a motorway. On top of all this, Kia’s reputation for reliability and huge improvements in build quality through the years give the Sorento a clear upper hand among rivals.

Under the bonnet of the Kia Sorento

Our Engine Rating8 / 10

Petrol engine choice with the Kia Sorento ranges from a meek 2.4-litre powertrain to a very capable 3.5-litre. The latest generation scraps the pure petrol engines for 1.6-litre turbocharged hybrid and plug-in hybrid variants that are built for everyday driving. A surprising 230 bhp allows the plug-in hybrid to propel this large car from 0 to 60 mph in 8.7 seconds. The familiar 2.2-litre CRDi diesel takes 9.1 seconds to get from 0-60 mph and has a top speed of 127 mph. If you’re looking for a cruiser, the PHEV or the hybrid variants are right for you. The diesel variants are the way to go if you need the best towing capacity.

What you'll find in the Kia Sorento

Our Design Rating9 / 10

Although the Sorento’s design has remained fairly boxy, it stands out just enough to make it quite appealing in the family-car segment. Angular lines and the signature “tiger-nose” grille amp up the bold looks on this chunky SUV. The latest model adds new bumpers, a revised chrome grille and smarter lights, making it the best iteration yet in terms of looks. Upgrading to the GT-Line can get you glam-packed sporty appeal thanks to the Xenon headlights and a thin silver skid plate.

Comfort and interiors in the Kia Sorento

Our Comfort Rating9 / 10

As Kia’s premium offering, the Sorento’s cabin feels quite plush and shows good attention to detail, featuring several functional storage spaces. The interiors are airy and there’s plenty of legroom and headroom to easily accommodate seven adults. At 608 litres, there’s also plenty of boot space in five-seat mode. A large touchscreen in the middle and a digital console for the driver take care of in-car infotainment. Better build quality and the use of up-to-date tech do make the newer models more appealing, but the older generations aren’t lacking by any means.

Kia Sorento interior wheel

What features you'll find in the Kia Sorento

Our Features Rating8 / 10

The Kia Sorento offers three trim levels for customisation. The entry-level 2 trim comes with a seven-inch touchscreen on the dashboard equipped with Bluetooth, DAB Radio, USB, Apple CarPlay and Android Auto connectivity. Upgrading to higher trims will get you satnav and a bigger screen. The top-line GT-X trims have LED fog lights and twin exhausts at the rear. It’s worth considering going for a mid-spec trim with a panoramic sunroof, which lights up the cabin and adds to the sense of space.

What fuel efficiency to expect from the Kia Sorento

Our Fuel Consumption Rating8 / 10

As a large car, you can expect the Sorento to be a bit of a gas guzzler, but it’s definitely competitive for its size. The diesel engine on the latest 2017 model achieves a relatively frugal 42.2 mpg, with CO2 emissions of 176 g/km. The petrol hybrid delivers 38.2 mpg on the top-line trims while the PHEV claims an impressive 176.6 mpg. Older generation models also achieve comparable fuel efficiency. Fitted with a 67-litre tank, the diesel is the way to go if you are expecting frequent long journeys. The hybrid is the best choice for a mix of driving needs, while the PHEV offers pleasingly silent commutes.

Running costs of the Kia Sorento

Our Cost Rating9 / 10

Despite being the most expensive Kia, running costs are quite low compared to rivals. The Sorento falls between insurance groups 24 and 28, while the X-Trail sits between 19 and 20. Kia has also built itself a solid reputation for reliability, and the Sorento is no different. With no major recalls on any models, it’s clear that the car is hassle-free to own. What’s even more reassuring is the seven-year/100,000-mile warranty, which is arguably the best on the market. The closest offering is sister car Hyundai Santa Fe which offers five years. This makes the Kia Sorento especially worth the money for used car buyers.

Our verdict of the Kia Sorento

4.5 rating

4.5 / 5 Gumtree rating

Offering lots of space, plenty of tech and great value for money, the Kia Sorento is a commendable seven-seater family SUV.