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The SLi is $1000 more than the Hyundai. That buys an ex­tra two years of fac­tory war­ranty (seven vs five) and ex­tra equip­ment. But Kia hides its capped price ser­vic­ing costs (you must en­ter a ve­hi­cle ID online, which makes it hard to com­pare be­fore you buy). And it’s dearer to main­tain de­spite hav­ing the same en­gine ($1330 over three years). The fourth year/60,000km ser­vice jumps to $661.


Kia has found a frac­tion more power and torque from the same 2.2litre four-cylin­der turbo diesel en­gine (147kW/441Nm), but it also uses more fuel (7.8L/100km), likely due to the Sorento’s heav­ier body. At least it sounds muted com­pared to the Hyundai.


Based on the same un­der­pin­nings as the Kia Car­ni­val peo­ple mover. The qual­ity of the ma­te­ri­als is a step above the Hyundai (in­clud­ing back­lit con­trols and the dig­i­tal speedo dis­play) The Sorento also has more cargo room than the Hyundai (605L front two rows of seats up, 1662L back two rows of seats down).


Six airbags and a rear view cam­era are stan­dard. Scored a five-star rat­ing from Euro NCAP but the test vechile was left-hand-drive and there can be en­gi­neer­ing dif­fer­ences with right-hand drive cars.


It’s not the class leader but the Sorento drives OK for a fam­ily SUV. I pre­fer the slightly more taut feel­ing of the Santa Fe Elite be­cause, around town, the Sorento can feel cum­ber­some as it shifts its weight in corners, and the rear sus­pen­sion can make a loud thump if you hit a sharp bump. As with the Hyundai, the Kia’s tow­ing ca­pac­ity is lim­ited to 2000kg, but the down weight on the tow ball is only 100kg.

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