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2023 Kia Sportage vs. Sorento

1. Introduction

The size and price points of the Sportage and Sorento are quite similar, but choosing the right vehicle comes down to a wide range of factors. Spinelli Kia has put together a comprehensive comparison of the two SUVs to help you decide on the best fit for you and your lifestyle. So let's start our comparison analysis with the design and interior features of both vehicles. [1][2][3] Please visit our Comprehensive Guide to Kia Model Comparisons to learn more about 2023 Kia Sportage vs Sorento.

Sorento and Sportage are two of the best-selling cars in the Kia lineup. With the 2023 launch of the all-new Sportage, we're comparing the two to help you decide the right SUV for your needs.

The year 2023 has witnessed the much-awaited and anticipated launch of new Kia vehicles, which have grabbed the attention of the masses. The majority of the people are confused about which vehicle to opt for and are looking for comparisons, pros, and cons of both vehicles. This article will help readers to have a clear understanding of both the Kia Sportage and Sorento. Both cars belong to the SUV segment, and that is what makes the comparison even more interesting.

2. Design and Features

In the US, Sorento and Sportage will appear with fairly different looks on account of the latter's lower positioning. Starting with Sportage, the resolute angular look is continued around the vehicle with a rectangular black outline around the blurry-shaped wheel wells. At the rear, the same blurry-type tail lamp as its bigger brother gives the Sportage a more sophisticated look. Sorento takes on a more rugged-looking exterior with widely spread wheel wells and a more vertical D-pillar, showing a more serious off-road attitude. So it seems that Kia's strategy is to have a more sophisticated-looking crossover and a more traditional SUV. [4]

Kia's 2023 Sportage is nothing if not a more mature expression of stylishness compared to the outgoing model. This quick glimpse at the forthcoming SUV displays a redefined lighting touch that splits the signature DRL into two sections. Instead of extending the new lighting touch across the hood as before, the second half of the DRL now wraps around the headlight. In addition to the lighting touch, the rounded shell of the previous Sportage is replaced with a more angular look. This is especially seen in the ball of the C-pillar, which has been pushed back for a sportier appearance and a stronger sense of speed. A supporting video compares the full shapes of both vehicles, showing how Sorento's increased D-pillar length gives a more solid look and emphasizes its lack of a front-wheel-drive model. At the rear, there's much more differentiation between the two.

2.1. Exterior Design

The following is a more top to bottom investigation of a portion of the primary highlights of Sportage and Sorento and how they come close to one another. Both vehicles have LED innovation on a few or the entirety of their lights. This is an exceptional showcasing point. The two vehicles have fog light LED lights. Both have mist light LED lights standard on the GT and discretionary on different models. Sorento has LED headlights and haze lights standard on all models. This gives the Sorento a slight edge in lighting innovation. However, Sportage has a more extended tail about the size of a huge hatchback. This style is famous in ventures, for example, the Mazda CX9 or Nissan Murano. This might be a subtractive element contingent upon the purchaser's impression of what establishes an SUV. Step and shade is interesting to a greater part of people. A vehicle about the size of Sorento with a more drawn out progression and shade as a rule gives an impression of value and toughness. This is for the most part in light of the fact that autos in recent many years were worked with that proportion. With current front wheel drive based stages, this isn't generally the best nature of a vehicle when enhancing weight circulation and interior space.

2023 Kia Sportage is a large vehicle matched with a small footprint. It is taller with short front overhangs and long back overhangs. This gives the vehicle a more determined look. It has the vibe of a colonial time among defenders and Discovery. Sorento has a more customary looking SUV extent. It has a long lodge with a long tail. It is very much proportioned and has the natural Kia look with the Kia tiger nose grille and squarer shoulders. Both are attractive vehicles in their various manners.

2.2. Interior Features

The Sorento also maintains its utility with 40/20/40 second-row folding five-passenger seating. It features more comprehensive sound insulation and an acoustic windshield to minimize NVH. Third-row seats are available in a variety of configurations including 50/50 folding seats or 60/40 power folding seats. The Sportage interior similarly emphasizes quality, sophistication and an innovative blend of technology and convenience features. Materials are of a higher quality with an upgrade to SOFINO leather seating surfaces on the EX model. Both vehicles have features such as a parking assist system, rear-camera display, dual zone automatic climate control and panoramic sunroof.

The newly designed interiors for Sportage and Sorento were engineered to surpass expectations for premium style and function in the SUV segment. The Sorento's bold atmosphere is enhanced in 2017 with a more advanced layout and available two-tone leather treatment. The restyled cabin achieves a more upscale appearance with a modernized navigation area and newly designed shift knob. The navigation screen is just slightly larger than that of the Sportage.

Coming from behind the wheel, the Sorento also offers an available 14-way power adjustable driver's seat with integrated memory system that remembers driver settings for the seat and mirrors. This can be very useful if there are multiple drivers of the same vehicle with different comfort preferences. The memory settings are easily accessible and can quickly change everything to the correct position for each individual. The Sportage does offer an 8-way power driver's seat with lumbar support, just without the memory integration. Both vehicles share heated and ventilated front seats with 3 settings.

The Sorento stands apart from the Sportage with the availability of their Smart Power Liftgate. This system is extremely useful when carrying items to and from the vehicle. Simply having the key on your person will allow you to stand within a few feet of the rear gate and it will open automatically, no hands or tricky footwork required. This is definitely a luxury when loading up both children and groceries.

As mentioned earlier, Kia does not compromise when it comes to features in their vehicles. The newest Sportage and Sorento are no exception. Both share a variety of luxury and convenience features intended to enhance everyday life for the driver and the passengers.

2.3. Technology and Connectivity

The Sportage has also come a long way in terms of superior technology and connectivity. The 8-inch infotainment touchscreen, also standard across all trims, has a 4-speaker audio system with steering-wheel mounted audio and Bluetooth controls. However, EX and SX models come with the option to upgrade to a premium audio and navigation system with a Harman-Kardon 320 W 8-speaker Surround Sound w/Clari-Fi and external amplifier. Though there are no specifics as to the quality of the display, it is known that the system has Android Auto and Apple CarPlay. The overall quality and design of the interface is relatively sleek but more basic compared to its sibling, the Sorento. Other technology features include fast-charging USB ports located inside the console and rear media and charged only in the SX model. Safety and driver assistance features are also available, mentioned in the safety section, however, Sorento still comes out on top in this regard. [5][6][3][2][7][8][9][10][11]

The Sorento is equipped with a 10.25-inch high-resolution color touchscreen and navigation system, Android Auto and Apple CarPlay, multiple device Bluetooth connections. Sorento SX and SX-Prestige offer a 12.3-inch full digital meter cluster where drivers can easily customize the different gauges. What they all have in common is a high-resolution display and HVAC (front seat only) and audio that is easy to navigate. Other tech features include multi-bluetooth connectivity allowing two phones to connect simultaneously, a wireless charger, multiple USB charging ports, and an additional USB charger in the rearview mirror for 2nd and 3rd row passengers. Other highlights are the industry-first Remote Smart Parking Assist, BOSE audio system, parking collision avoidance assist, and rear camera for safe and convenient driving and parking. In short, Sorento is leading the pack in terms of up-to-date technology and next-gen features.

3. Performance and Efficiency

The gasoline Sorento offers estimated fuel economy ratings of 21/28 MPG city/highway with FWD and 21/25 MPG with AWD. The Santa Fe is slightly more efficient, with ratings of 22/29 MPG (FWD) and 21/27 MPG (AWD). Although Kia does not list the specific fuel efficiency figures of the Sorento's FWD and AWD configurations, the Sportage is offered with FWD and AWD in both engine options, delivering a combined fuel economy of 26/25 MPG (city/highway) with FWD and 23 MPG with AWD for the 2.5-liter engine and 23 MPG with FWD or AWD with the Turbo engine.

The Kia Sorento and Hyundai Santa Fe share four different variations of the same powertrain. The gasoline four-cylinder is offered in both vehicles, delivering 188 horsepower and 179 lb-ft of torque. The engines are mated to a six-speed automatic transmission and may be had with either FWD or AWD in the Santa Fe, while the 2023 Sorento differs slightly by using a two-speed transfer case for 4WD.

The 2023 Kia Sportage is available with two engine options: a 2.5-liter gasoline four-cylinder, which is rated at 187 horsepower and 178 lb-ft of torque, and a more powerful 2.0-liter Turbo four-cylinder that makes 239 horses and 260 lb-ft. It still manages to get an estimated combined 25 MPG.

3.1. Engine Options

Kia comes with a great range of engines. The Sportage comes with a choice of the 2.0 engine that is featured in the base model all the way through to a 2.7 V6 engine that is featured in the Sportage EX V6 series. The four-cylinder with front-wheel drive is standard in the LX series. The first and second tier LX models come with a powerful 140-horsepower 4-cylinder engine that is capable of pulling the Sportage around town. Stepping up to a V6 model will get you an energetic 173-horsepower 2.7-liter V6 engine and either front or four-wheel drive. The 2.7 V6 engine is a more spirited and agile unit with smoother power delivery, and is highly recommended if you plan on doing quite a bit of highway driving or live in a hilly or mountainous area. The Sorento actually has the same options of engines and powertrains as the Sportage. The 2.0 engine is again featured in the base model all the way through to a 2.7 V6 engine that is featured in the Sorento EX V6 edition. The 5-speed manual is standard on all 4-cylinder models of the Sorento, and there is a 4-speed automatic option available for those who prefer the autos. Like the Sportage, the four-cylinder 2.0 vehicle is great for tooling around town and doing domestic duties. Expect the 4-cylinder Sorento to have decent fuel economy due to its smaller engine. The V6 engine is the same as that used in the Sportage and it is very powerful and torquey and, at only the cost of a small amount of fuel economy, provides a much better driving experience. The Sorento's four-wheel drive system is also similar to that of the Sportage offering on-demand 4WD with full-time High range. This is more than adequate for light-duty off-road application and for enhanced traction and stability in wintry conditions.

3.2. Power and Torque

Unlike Sportage, a full trim offering for Sorento has meant that there is a much broader range of engine and its capacity. Also, it is worth noting that some engines will vary between markets, so take that into account if looking from different countries. The 2023 Kia Sorento features a 2.5-liter four-cylinder engine with or without a turbo, a 1.6-liter hybrid engine, a much larger 3.5-liter V6, and in some countries a 2.2-liter diesel engine. For a smaller family, there may not be a larger engine or the V6 could be overkill or luxury out of budget. But generally, the hybrid engine is a better option for the economy and is a balance between ecology awareness and car performance. Step towards the top of the range and with this, more than one engine has a choice of AWD. This is more suitable for larger families, people who live in rural areas, or need to tow around a two-ton boat. The variety of engines really does give the 2023 Kia Sorento a balanced performance and fuel economy offerings. Step back into the comfort zone of the 2023 Kia Carnival, which sees a return of the standard 2.2-liter diesel engine. Another potential err towards budget-conscious families or for eco-aware families due to a rate of fuel efficiency for a family mover, large torque, and diesel fuel economy.

The 2023 Kia Sportage comes with an amazing turbocharged 2.5-liter four-cylinder engine that is paired with an 8-speed automatic transmission. The base engine is motivated at providing 191 horsepower, pushing the performance Kawasaki's way. The choice of engine may also affect the choices of drivetrains. The FWD configuration will offer better fuel economy and offers the option of an FWD lock mode on AWD models. Towing capacity of both engines has increased to 2,268 kilograms, making the towing around a ton more than the macron Sportage. The bigger engine will have more punch at 311 pound-feet of torque. Of course, a higher output engine and more features will come at the cost of an increase in vehicle price for a placement of 2023 Kia Sportage between the Sorento and the Carnival. Towing capacity of both engines has increased to 2,268 kilograms, making the towing around a ton more than the macron Sportage.

3.3. Fuel Efficiency

A factor worth mentioning is the availability and fuel efficiency of alternatives for each vehicle. Although neither the Sportage nor the Sorento is considered a truck, both offer a V6 model where all other similar vehicles have moved to a car-based platform and eliminated less fuel-efficient body-on-frame truck models. The 2WD Sorento and all other models of the Sportage are both car-based and similar in dimensions to the Toyota Camry. However, the availability of the Camry with a 4-cylinder 4.0L engine at 22 mpg city and 33 mpg highway offers a sizable improvement of fuel efficiency over any of these Kia SUVs. Something to consider for those interested in fuel economy but looking to crossover to a small-midsize SUV from a sedan.

The 2023 Kia Sportage and Sorento feature different engine options. In this case, the Sportage has the fuel efficiency advantage over the Sorento. The Sportage has multiple engine options. The 2.4L-4 (LX and XE models) is rated at 22 mpg city and 27 mpg highway. This is slightly better than the 2.7L V6 for the same model, which is rated at 19 mpg city and 25 mpg highway. The ultimate fuel efficiency is found in the 2WD 4-cylinder Sportage, which has a 23 mpg city and 28 mpg highway rating. The Sorento has either a 4-cylinder or V6 for any model in the lineup, so there is no true comparison of a V6 to a 4-cylinder engine in this vehicle. The 4-cylinder Sorento is rated at 21 mpg city and 27 mpg highway, which is surpassed by only the 2WD Sportage in fuel efficiency. The Sorento V6 is rated at 19 mpg city and 25 mpg highway, which is below the fuel efficiency for all but the V6 LX Sportage. The Sportage wins as the better fuel-efficient option of the two vehicles in comparison.

4. Safety and Convenience

The standard advanced safety features that will be found on both the Sportage and Sorento include frontal crash prevention, blind-spot warning, lane keeping assist, pedestrian detection, high beam assist, and rear cross-traffic alert. The Sorento does step this up by adding cyclist detection and an interior camera with a safe exit feature. Kia noted that safety has been an increased priority on all products, citing statistics which state that USA traffic fatalities increased by 24% in the first 6 months of 2021. Crash avoidance and safety ratings continue to be reasons that influence buyers' decision to purchase a particular vehicle. Both vehicles received IIHS Top Safety Pick ratings. The Sportage has not received an overall rating or any numerical ratings from the IIHS, and NHTSA has not rated it. NHTSA rated the 2021 Sportage with a 5-star overall safety rating, but safety ratings can change over the course of a generation. The 2023 Sorento earned top ratings in both the IIHS and NHTSA safety tests, offering buyers peace of mind in a worst-case scenario collision.

4.1. Advanced Safety Features

The Kia press release for the Sportage mentions that other variations of AEB, lane-keeping, and warning systems will feature in the different regions where the vehicle will be sold. So, this may not be the extent of advanced safety features to come for the Sportage.

The lane-keeping system on the Sportage, however, actively helps the driver steer the vehicle or keep it in its designated lane. This is done by way of a camera placed on the front view mirror, which detects lane markings and then assists the driver by directly applying force to the steering wheel. The camera is also able to detect which lane of a roundabout the driver is in and is able to change with the path of the lane when entering an intersection.

Another safety feature of the Sportage with enhanced capabilities is the lane-keeping system, where the collision warning system for the Sorento comes into effect. Both models have a lane departure alert security feature, which will warn the driver with a sound or visual alert if the vehicle is veering out of its lane. The Sorento takes this one step further with the collision warning system, which will provide a haptic warning by applying counter steering torque to the steering wheel.

In comparison, the 2023 Sportage has an advanced system that monitors not only vehicles and pedestrians but also cyclists. The system is also activated at low and high speeds, and in the event of detecting an impending collision, the AEB will apply the brakes with different levels of force to avoid the vehicle hitting the obstacle. The Sportage takes the AEB one step further by using the front view camera, which is linked to a collision avoidance assist system that is able to steer the car while the AEB is concurrently applying brake force to avoid a collision.

The next most notable difference between the two models is the autonomous emergency braking system (AEB), and it is much more than the name might suggest. The AEB on the Sorento only works at speeds of 7 km/h or higher and will only attempt to cut through engine power if it has detected an immediate crash risk. This means that the AEB will only have an effect on the braking system in some cases and will not automatically engage.

The camera on the Sportage is an improvement over the system on the Sorento because the depth and angle of the camera are adjustable. The Sorento only has the backup camera and does not allow for a choice in camera view.

The most notable safety feature on both models is the 360-degree camera, and it is the only safety feature that both models share in common. The camera is activated when the vehicle is put into reverse and gives the driver a choice between four different views (front, bird's eye view, rear diagonals, and rear). The purpose of offering different views is to assist the driver in seeing obstructions or pitfalls on the road in tight spaces.

4.2. Driver Assistance Systems

Blind-Spot View Monitor The available Blind-Spot View Monitor (BVM) shows a video view of either side of your vehicle when you activate the turn signal. The image appears in the instrument cluster, increasing your awareness of the adjacent lanes and any vehicles that may be in your blind spot. This system is designed to help prevent you from merging onto the occupied lane.

Smart cruise control (with stop and go) Smart Cruise Control uses the car's radar to regulate both the speed and the distance to the car in front. If the vehicle ahead speeds up, your Kia will accelerate to the pre-set speed. If it slows down, your car will drop to a pre-set distance. Stop & Go kicks in if traffic comes to a halt, bringing you to a stop, yet enabling you to set off again within 3 seconds – simply by the touch of the accelerator or cruise control button.

4.3. Comfort and Convenience Features

The Kia Sportage and Sorento hold an extensive range of comfort and convenience features, both vehicles hosting a large number of similar components and some features unique to their respective models. The complete list of features available for both models is still unknown, but from piecing together the confirmation and speculation regarding features, we can get a good idea of what will be offered. Common features in both models - automatic air conditioning and heating with front and rear controls, heated and ventilated front seats, a driver's seat integrated memory system, swiveling LED courtesy lights integrated in door handles, and a panoramic sunroof. Both vehicles are also expected to offer a powered tailgate with adjustable height setting and a hands-free option for opening the boot. Unique to the Sportage is a sliding and reclining rear seat system, while the Sorento is expected to offer a 'Relaxation Seat' which will allow the left-hand second-row seat to further slide back and recline, providing an extremely good level of rear passenger comfort.


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