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2023 Kia Sportage vs. 2023 Kia Sorento

1. Introduction

But some people do not understand what are the advantages and disadvantages of Kia 2023 Sportage and Sorento compared to some upper-class cars. Kia is not a top car manufacturer. With a label that is not a top car manufacturer, Kia may be considered by some people. But is it true? With its high exterior which lasts long, comfortable and unique interior, and several sophisticated features, won't it make Kia a top car manufacturer? This will be answered with Sportage and Sorento. Please visit our Comprehensive Guide to Kia Model Comparisons to learn more about 2023 Kia Sportage vs 2023 Kia Sorento.

The feeling of excitement for Kia fans when a new Kia car will be launched is very huge. They can't wait to see the new car. Considering that, this time, Kia has provided a 2023 Kia Sportage and 2023 Kia Sorento which are SUVs. Both cars are special to Kia fans. This can be proven by the high demand for both cars. Many people have given a positive response regarding this latest series of Kia cars. The people hope that after this Kia car is released, they can feel a new experience when driving. Because the image that has been given by Kia for a long time is providing a car with a high exterior and promising. This is proven by looking at several older series of Kia cars that still look cool and elegant compared to some other cars in the same class.

2. Exterior Features

For the size dimensions of the Sportage to Sorento, Sportage has a slight edge in length where it has 175.6 inches compared to Sorento’s 174.4 inches. These figures are for the FWD models. The AWD models for the two vehicles have a 0.1 inch difference for each vehicle. In width, the two are identical with 73 inches, and for height, the Sportage is the shorter vehicle with 64.2 inches compared to Sorento’s 66.7 inches. It should be noted that the Sportage is mostly regarded as a compact SUV and Sorento is regarded as a midsize SUV. The Sorento has larger interior and cargo space, but the two are fairly close in dimension.

Kia brand has always done well in its exterior design. With the 2023 Kia Sportage, it appears to have a more aggressive look with a strong, prominent grille. Sportage is said to look like a baby Telluride with slim headlights, though the front fascia is something that Telluride does not have. It has a totally different design that gives Sportage a unique identity. The rear has been updated to LED tail lights that wrap around the body, replacing the old lights that were mounted on the tailgate. The Sorento has moved away from its old basic design, shifting into a more modern SUV. Its boxy design has been smoothed out to give a rounder look, and it has adapted a stance that is similar to the Telluride. LED headlights and tail lights complete the modern look and give the Sorento a new character. The basic L and LX Sorento do not come with LED tail lights and have steel wheels, but they can be optioned on at an additional cost.

2.1. Design

The Sportage's front end sports a nicely integrated tiger nose grille and headlights that are topped off by little running lights that mimic the high-end Telluride SUV. The only difference is that on the Sportage, they wrap around to a point in the wheel well creating a bulge in the fender. Although trim dimensions of both models were not given, they are described as having a more muscular stance than the previous models. The increase in width for both models is 0.40 in. and it gives the Sorento and Sportage more road presence. The Sorento's side profile features a more conventional C and D pillar design than the Sportage. The Sportage has a D pillar that is pushed further rearward and terminates in a rear spoiler that is attached to the lift gate. Both models have crisp wheel wells and wheel designs that vary per trim and an aggressive looking lower valence.

Both the 2023 Kia Sportage and Kia Sorento are stunning for any avid vehicle traveler. The Kia Sportage is a complete redesign from the previous model and it looks like a smaller version of the 5-passenger-only Sorento. The Sorento gets a more evolutionary redesign that gives it a more capable look that is bolstered by the addition of an X-Line off-road package. The hood on the Sorento is longer and ends in a more upright tiger nose grille that is nested between a set of headlights that may have the most variation of any of the models.

2.2. Dimensions

On the other hand, the width and height of the 2023 Kia Sportage are now 0.4 inch and 1.4 inches taller than the previous model and 2023 Kia Sorento is 0.6 inch wider and 1.6 inches taller than the previous model. These results are even more prominent in relation to the older 2022 Kia Sorento which was 1.3 inches shorter and 0.4 inch wider than the outgoing 2023 Kia Sportage. Despite the increased dimensions of both vehicles, the relative differences in width and height have slightly decreased from 2022.

The wheelbase of the 2023 Kia Sportage is 4.5 inches longer than that of its predecessor at 108.3 inches but still 3.1 inches shorter than the 2023 Kia Sorento which is now also 4.5 inches longer than the previous model at 211.4 inches. This is one of the significant differences between the 2023 Kia Sportage and Kia Sorento and is responsible for the relative differences in cabin and cargo space. Volumetric comparisons between the 2023 Kia Sportage and the 2023-2024 Kia Sorento will be presented in later sections of this report.

Both the 2023 Kia Sportage and the 2023 Kia Sorento will be available in six trim levels, including the SX, EX, and LX, as well as the S, X-Line, and SX-Prestige. The 2023 Kia Sportage is a 5-passenger CUV while the 2023 Kia Sorento is a 6/7-passenger SUV. The resulting differences in the ranges of package and trim offerings are best illustrated by comparing the EX and SX 2.0T AWD models of the two vehicles. These comparisons are baseline but can be extended to the other available models of the 2023 Kia Sportage and Kia Sorento.

3. Interior Features

The Sorento has extra features such as auxiliary and USB charging and an extra 2nd-row console AUX/USB port compared to the Sportage.

Both vehicles build on the comfort and convenience features with the following technology and infotainment. Both vehicles are equipped with a color touch screen infotainment and reverse camera with rear parking assistance. The Sportage is available with a 6-speaker sound system, with the highest spec Sorento offering an improved 6-speaker dash-mounted CD changer, external amplifier, and subwoofer. The Sportage has optional premium Infotainment with the Limited featuring Satellite Navigation. However, the Sorento has an improved Premium Audio package available starting with the EX, featuring an external amplifier, subwoofer, and UVO1 eServices. The top of the range Infinity Audio in the Limited with Clari-Fi offers an external amplifier, subwoofer, and QuantumLogic Surround technology. The Sorento is the better choice for sound quality enthusiasts. However, both vehicles have plenty of infotainment options with a focus on hands-free mobile phone usage. UVO is available with smartphone connectivity with a 4G Data plan, and both vehicles have Bluetooth Phone and Audio streaming. [1][2][3][4][5][6]

Both vehicles are targeted towards families, so having an abundance of space, the Sorento is the better choice for larger families, although the Sportage still offers plenty. The Sorento also offers improvements to the cabin space, seating material, and color. The Sportage has black cloth as standard, however, the Sorento LX features Beige Cloth, Black Leather in the EX, and Black Leather in the Limited.

Cabin space is something both these vehicles have plenty of, but the Sorento is larger in all respects. It is 10mm longer, 10mm wider, 15mm taller, with a 35mm longer wheelbase. The Sportage is still quite large for a mid-size SUV, but due to its smaller dimensions, it has slightly less space in all areas. The Sorento therefore has more headroom, shoulder room, and legroom in the front and rear. The Sorento also has more boot space with 32L more capacity than the Sportage, but both vehicles have 50:50 split folding 3rd-row seats. So, if the 7th seat is not optioned in the Sorento, there is potential for up to 131L more space in the Sportage in a 5-seat configuration.

3.1. Cabin Space

Long story short, Sorento trumps Sportage in every way when it comes to cabin space.

The Sorento on the other hand has a much better situation. The 2021 model has best in class cargo space, and a reasonable amount of space in all three rows. Head and legroom for adults will no longer be a problem, and the third row seats might actually see the light of day. If the 2023 Sorento can keep these numbers, it would mean nothing but good things to come for the new model.

Last year's Sportage had no competitive advantage in any form of cabin space, and in all likelihood, the 2023 will be the same. It was at best average, and rear seat passengers will likely feel cramped on longer trips. In terms of cargo space, the 2022 Sportage ranks about middle of the pack, with 30.7 cubic feet of space behind the rear seats, and 60.1 cubic feet with the rear seats stowed.

When comparing cabin space of the 2023 Kia Sportage and 2023 Kia Sorento, the main difference will be how big the car is. Since the Sportage is a compact SUV and the Sorento is a mid-size SUV, the Sorento will have a better use of space and more room to offer than the Sportage; it is almost certain. Unfortunately, there are no official numbers or dimensions on the 2023 Sportage released yet, but we can compare last year's model for a rough idea.

3.2. Technology and Infotainment

The 2023 Kia Sportage and Kia Sorento are both equipped with advanced driver assistance technology, including safe exit assist, blind spot collision avoidance, rear cross traffic collision avoidance, and navigation-based smart cruise control curve. The Kia Sportage offers an 8-speaker surround sound system, and the SX and GT line models also have an additional 320-watt Harman/Kardon premium sound system. The GT line of the Sportage also offers a 12.3-inch full digital meter cluster for added modern sophistication while driving.

Both the 2023 Kia Sportage and the 2023 Kia Sorento come with an 8-inch touchscreen in the base model, while in higher trims both models are equipped with a 10.25-inch touchscreen. The Kia Sportage has a portrait-style display, whereas the Kia Sorento has a landscape display. Both models utilize the latest Apple CarPlay and Android Auto technology. The Sportage features an 8-speaker surround sound system, while the Sorento's premium sound system is built by BO system. Both models come with various USB charging ports, wireless phone charging, and cup holder mood lighting for added style.

3.3. Comfort and Convenience

The Kia's larger dimensions and proportions result in a more spacious and comfortable interior. They both carry five to seven people and have reclining rear seats, but the Sorento would be more ideal for that seven-passenger transportation. It offers the possibility of a third row that can either be split 40/20/40 or 50/50 depending on preference. Both have a remote release in the cargo area for the rear seats. The Sportage and Sorento offer available heated and ventilated seating surfaces for added comfort. The Sorento goes the extra mile for comfort with available second-row captain's chairs with full premium relaxation. The Sportage and Sorento offer an available panoramic sunroof to fully open the interior to the outdoors with no compromises. Step up to the Sorento, and you get an updated interior lighting system with a customizable dual LED light.

4. Performance and Engine Options

The powertrain for the 2023 Kia Sportage is quite different from the Kia Sorento. Powering the 2023 Kia Sportage is a 2.0-liter inline four-cylinder engine with 140 horsepower and 136 lb-ft of torque. The same engine is also offered with four-wheel drive. A larger and more powerful engine is now available in the 2003 Kia Sorento (which is now based on a car platform). A 3.5-liter V6 engine with 192 horsepower and 217 lb-ft of torque is now the standard engine for the new Kia Sorento. This engine, along with the rest of the vehicle, is to be manufactured in the United States at Kia's new manufacturing plant in Georgia. The 3.5-liter engine is to be mated only with a five-speed automatic transmission and will be available with front or all-wheel drive. This leaves the older 2.7-liter V6 from previous Sorentos as the only powertrain for the base LX that will not be available in all fifty US states (ULEV). A diesel version of the Kia Sorento will be offered in the USA, Japan, and Europe with a 2.2-liter inline four-cylinder engine with 197 horsepower and 324 lb-ft of torque. This engine is mated to an eight-speed automatic transmission and is only available with all-wheel drive. With the slew of different engines, the Kia Sorento provides impressive versatility, but for the purpose of this review, we will only focus on the 3.5 V6.

4.1. Powertrain

The Kia Sportage features a base 2.4-liter 4-cylinder. LX and EX trims come with a 2.0-liter turbocharged 4-cylinder that produces 240 hp and 260 lb-ft of torque, and is mated to a 6-speed automatic. Fuel economy is comparable to the Optima, with the 2.4-liter coming in at 21/28 city/highway, and the 2.0-liter turbo coming in at 20/26. Slightly better than the outgoing models. All trim levels come with front-wheel drive as standard, or all-wheel drive is optional. AWD models come with a lock feature that evenly distributes power to all four wheels at speeds up to 25 mph. The 2023 Sorento offers four different powertrain configurations. LX and EX trims come with a 2.4-liter 4-cylinder. This engine was featured in the outgoing model, and makes 185 hp and 178 lb-ft of torque. An improvement upon the previous model, fuel economy is rated at 22/29 city/highway with FWD. All-wheel drive is optional. The LX also offers a new turbocharged 2.0-liter 4-cylinder. This engine makes 240 hp and 260 lb-ft of torque. Compared to the base 2.4, this engine offers improved acceleration and similar fuel economy at 22/28 city/highway. All-wheel drive is optional, but the turbo engine also comes with the benefit of a new 8-speed automatic with a wet dual-clutch transmission. This powertrain is standard on the SX and SX-Prestige trims. A Hybrid model will also be available with the new Sorento. This model uses a 1.6-liter turbocharged 4-cylinder paired with a 44kW electric motor to produce a combined 227 hp and 258 lb-ft of torque. This is the same powertrain featured in the Kia Optima HEV. The Sorento Hybrid will also utilize a 6-speed automatic and will come with all-wheel drive as standard. A plug-in hybrid Sorento will be available in 2021. A powertrain will be standard on all Sorento models.

4.2. Fuel Efficiency

Summary To summarize, the 2023 Sportage has made excellent improvements in many areas to ensure further separation between itself and the Sorento. With the adoption of hybrid and plug-in hybrid engines into the new model, there will be a great increase in fuel efficiency, and also reductions in both the cost of fuel for the consumer and the vehicle's environmental impact. Although tougher regulations on combustion engine vehicles in many countries could potentially see the Sorento and the large 4x4 SUV market become redundant, at least there will still be a nice Sportage available to fall back on.

The Kia Sportage has excellent fuel consumption, providing around 27 mpg in the city and 30 mpg on the freeway. The Kia Sorento, due to a several hundred pound weight disparity, has achieved only 21/25 mpg. A large portion of this goes down to the engine and drive. As the Sportage is available with all-wheel drive, the Sorento does sacrifice fuel efficiency for power in this case. The real changes here occur when concentrating on the towing capabilities. With a massive 5000 lb maximum, the Sorento overshadows the 2000 lb Sportage, but at a hefty cost. During these tasks, the fuel efficiency of the Sorento can turn quite dismal.

4.3. Driving Dynamics

The end result is a ride that is much quieter, smoother, and more comfortable than the previous generation while maintaining good body control for a CUV, with better handling and steering response. Step in or over an uneven surface and you feel the difference. The car is quieter, there is less thud, and it feels more composed. I found the ride on the Sorento to be similar, as well as it should be, being based on the same platform. The only change I noted was the reduction in steering quicks. I assume this is down to the greater vehicle size and shape.

I tested the two top-spec SX and Limited models, with the 2.0T from the previous generation being dropped in favor of a 1.6T and the 2.4 being swapped out for the new K5's 2.5L. Both of these vehicles feature an independent suspension setup all-round with improved front and rear dual-flow dampers aimed at more precise control of oil flow, resulting in improved ride comfort and sporty characteristics. The new optimized high-performance tube (HPT) in the dampers is intended to reduce shock absorber friction by controlling the oil flow, while the new valve system provides more precise control of oil flow to ensure smoother ride quality and better handling. The Sportage implementation also includes improved wheel articulation and more linear steering.

What about the driving experience? Kia has made significant progress in its sedan driving dynamics in recent times. As new generations are released, they include more structural rigidity for improved handling and a greatly enhanced new generation of FWD components. To the point where the popular mid-size Optima will no longer differentiate its handling characteristics between the North American and other global markets (a good thing). This level of progression also includes improved ride quality and NVH for the new vehicles compared to the outgoing model, and the Sportage, in my opinion, sets a new level for the category.


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