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Kia Carnival LV vs. SX Prestige

1. Key Differences

From all of this information, we can see that there is a notable change when comparing all of the features from the LV type to the SX type, particularly in the exterior and interior.

For safety consideration, the SX type has gone further by adding more airbags both front and curtain airbags (1st and 2nd row). The SX type also has better sound insulation and an NVH pad. The LV type and SX type have the same height adjuster where seat height is not adjustable but can be improved using seat rail and still use the same carpet and headrest. The LV type has a better door trim than the SX type. Both the carpet and headrest of the SX type use leather. Leather door trim is used for the LV type and SX type to improve it by using wood grain garnish. The LV type comes with a better captain seat that has a double armrest and has a table with a box as well as a conveyor. And the last for the interior is the side table on the 3rd seat row that is only used by the LV type. This shows that there is a significant change from the LV type interior to the SX type that explains the higher price of the SX type. The SX type has completely gone further from the previous series with stock standard features with higher quality. [1][2][3] You also can view: Kia Sportage on our guide 'Introduction to Kia Model Specific Reviews and Features'

Owners of the LV type get one sliding door on the right side (driver side) and power sliding door feature on the left side (passenger side). SX Prestige, on the other hand, has two sliding doors, power sliding door features, and one-touch touch point. The color of the door handle suits the body color of the car and there is no door step at the sliding door. It makes the LV series more comfortable because of easier access to the 2nd row. Step-in has a leather wrap and room lamp as well as a pocket door and mode. The LV type of Kia Carnival has a 16" disc and the SX type has a 17" disc with the same ventilated disc. And both series still have the same rear brake. The LV type is slightly better when considering the suspension. With the same strut and H-type subframe, the LV type has a spring variable rate and the SX type has a spring constant rate.

Kia Carnival LV and SX Prestige have been the most distinguishable among the Kia Carnival types. It can be seen through the exterior as well as the interior, performance, and technical specifications. This section is aimed to show the gap between those two types of Kia Carnival. This information is classified into several subheadings such as the exterior features, interior features, and performance and technical specifications.

1.1. Exterior Features

A luxury version of the Kia Carnival LV has various differences compared to the SX Prestige version. Let's start with the exterior features mentioned on the Kia Australia website. For the LV version, it speaks about the powerful on-demand sliding doors, front and rear parking sensors, and the 18-inch machine-finished alloy wheels. While the SX version also speaks about the same on-demand powerful sliding doors, it has a power tailgate and a smart power sliding doors function. With the smart key, all you need to do is stand within 1.5m of the door and it will automatically open. This feature is usually found in luxury cars and, while it may not be a big difference to some, it certainly adds character to the vehicle's luxury distinction. As for the parking sensors, the SX version has not only front and rear parking sensors but also a front view monitoring function. Although this may not be strictly considered an exterior feature, it is built off the parking sensors and is not mentioned in the LV version. Regarding the wheels, the SX version has the same 18-inch alloy wheels, but it has the option to upgrade to 19-inch wheels. Again, there may not be a high demand for larger wheels, but the feature is available, which is all that matters. Furthermore, the SX version also speaks about the LED rear combination lamps, whereas the LV version does not mention any lighting features. LED lights are far more efficient than halogen or filament bulbs, they are brighter, produce less heat, and are considered more stylish in modern cars. Any car with LED lights over a standard bulb is often deemed of higher quality. This shows a slight lack of detailing with the LV version. Finally, speaking about the tires, the SX version has the Tyre Mobility kit, whereas the LV version does not mention anything. This is just a small different feature, but tire kits are desirable to have in Australia where they are subject to numerous road conditions and debris. An increased amount of features has been noted in the SX version compared to the LV version. These features will typically appeal more to families wanting a luxurious vehicle for the short term or long term. And of course, the more interest, the better, involved with the expansion of the Kia brand. [4][5][6][7][8][9]

1.2. Interior Features

The gap between the two models is very apparent when looking at the convenience and electronic options. The LX model only provides standard functions such as AC/heater, audio, cruise control, power windows, and keyless entry. The model aiming for basic needs has minimized costs effectively. Although an option package is available for the LX model, the prices reach around the same cost. The focus on SUV competitors and luxury has resulted in a decrease in LX sales.

When looking at the interior, the LX model provides standard 7 seats with fabric trim. Meeting customers' needs for a basic minivan spec is a good thing. However, the SX model, which provides luxury with 11 seats, is the popular choice. The 11-seat space and luxury it provides is unmatched by any other competitors. Additionally, the comfortability of the middle 2nd row seats is very popular with its armrests on each side and wide seating spaces. Although the front seats are the same in both the LX and SX models, the driver and passenger can enjoy the comfort of power seats and leather trim.

Kia Carnival is a minivan that aims for the SUV market in its sales. LX (low-spec) starts at 13 million won and SX (prestige) starts at 20 million won. While looking at the standard & optional feature differences between the two models, both target different customer needs and experiences.

1.3. Performance and Engine

In the Carnival LV, you are provided with an 8-speed automatic gearbox, offering a ratio spread that ideally suits the V6's wide power band and a low first gear for brisk off-the-line acceleration. Meanwhile, sportmatic transmissions enable you to switch gears if you wish to manually change up or down. In comparison, the step up to an SX Prestige, buyers gain an extra ratio in the transmission, offering a more fuel-efficient drive. The clever and responsive 8-speed automatic transmission also enables two different drive modes depending on desire, including a comfort mode, or for those particularly windy roads, a sport mode, adjusting shift points to increase performance and response time.

Both the Kia Carnival LV and SX Prestige come with a 3.5-litre V6 engine which produces 200 kW and a significant increase in performance with 332 Nm of torque. Regardless of whether it's merging into highway traffic or climbing a steep grade, the Carnival delivers smooth performance with power to spare while the stepping has a vastly better response time in the more up-spec prestigious model.

2. Similarities

There are two ways a marketing pitch can go for a product it’s trying to sell at the top: you can either market the features only available in this product, or you can market how much the entry-level product is lacking. SX Prestige has access to the higher level of the ‘Lane Following Assist’, in which the LV only holds the ordinary ‘Lane Keep Assist’. Price dependent, many would argue it is a safer decision to purchase the higher-grade Carnival to obtain the safety features that are only just available in the entry grade. LV’s other limiting factor is within the two premium paint options. While it’s a nice feature to have, one could argue it’s a feature that’s not partly relevant when assessing the safety and technology features of both vehicles. Overall, there is not a large disparity in the safety features between these two variants, so it makes the part of the extra purchase for the SX not sound too unreasonable. LV comes with some Tri Zone Climate control, front parking sensors, and proximity smart key with push-button start. These are nice added touches for somewhat essentials that are still available in the higher variant.

The current and real headline act for both of these models is the availability of advanced safety assist systems. Previously, the Carnival was carrying an embarrassing 4-star ANCAP rating from 2016. This was never a reflection of the safety while driving the car; it was always due to inappropriate and dangerous categories of equipment being withheld from variants into the modern day, e.g., rear passenger side blow-up curtains. However, now we see that both variants hold a 5-star ANCAP rating in their most recent tests, and now with aligning safety equipment that is fitting and current for the year. LV now has access to these driver assist technologies, and the price cut between the LV and the SX at the time of purchase is relatively small, which may make way for quite a few sales to upgrade.

2.1. Safety Features

Kia Carnival is recently separated into three variants, with the LV model becoming the new entry point. There is still lots of Kia Carnival goodness going on here – which can also be read in our full review of the Carnival range. But how does the new entry point stack up against the next model up, which is the SX Prestige? Let’s take a closer look.

2. Similarities

MV Kia Carnival: Comparison between Kia Carnival LV and SX Prestige

2.1. Safety Features

Additionally, all new Carnivals will come with seven airbags (driver knee included), a reversing camera, and rear parking sensors, with front parking sensors and a 360-degree camera available on the Platinum and standard on the SX. Step up to the SX and you'll also get the safe exit assist system, which is designed to prevent rear passenger door openings into the path of approaching traffic. Finally, all grades of Carnival have been awarded a 5-star ANCAP safety rating. These are all impressive feats and should serve the Carnival well in ensuring that it protects its occupants from harm.

All of the Carnival's active safety is standardized under the Kia Drive Wise banner, and includes AEB with vehicle and pedestrian detection (day and night) and cyclist detection (day only), lane keep and lane following assist, driver attention alert, adaptive cruise control with stop and go functionality, speed sign recognition, and junction turning deceleration functionality. Blind spot collision avoidance assist and rear cross traffic avoidance assist are also included in this comprehensive active safety suite.

Safety is everything with big family vehicles, and the new Kia Carnival is poised to provide it. The all-new platform is loaded with safety features, while the structural improvements in the SUV's crash-worthiness have also made substantial strides.

2.2. Technology and Infotainment

USB charge ports and multimedia data ports are located throughout the vehicle to keep driver and occupants' devices charged. There is a radiating feature around the door handles, with a color-changing display that allows the driver and passengers to personalize their Carnival whether approaching or disembarking the vehicle. Remote Engine Start is available on the Key Fob and Smart Key with UVO link, allowing you to warm up or cool down your vehicle before entering to ensure optimum climate control. Kia Connect services are available through the UVO link display Audio system and come with a complimentary one-year subscription. These services include remote commands (e.g. remote start and stop), emergency services (e.g. 911 connect and roadside assistance), vehicle diagnostics, maintenance alerts, and vehicle notifications (e.g. geo-fencing, speed alerts, and curfew alerts). This feature is only available with Kia Carnival SX and higher trims.

2.3. Comfort and Convenience

In any modern car, infotainment plays a major role and Carnival is not the exception here. SX Prestige Carnival offers a cluster 12.3” supervision TFT LCD which is lacking in the LV Carnival 8” touch screen. With advanced infotainment, SX also offers a premium sound system from Harman Kardon with 12 speakers compared to the 6-speaker system in the LV variant. Now that’s double up! An added convenience is the rear occupant alert for the parents which SX offers when you leave your kids in the car.

One of the very few features which SX Carnival offers over LV is the One-Touch Auto Up & Down Power Windows with Safety for both driver and front passenger, which is a bit surprising why this was not offered in the LV variant. LV offers quite similar but the basic level with just power window.

Comfort and Convenience: Both Kia Carnival LV and SX Prestige come with mentioned features such as smart power tailgate, tri-zone climate control air-conditioning, cooling glovebox, electric park brake, rear-view monitor (in mirror), multiple USB charging points throughout the cabin, under-floor storage, and 3rd row sunshade blinds. LV and SX make sure that they do not compromise any feature in terms of comfort and convenience at any level. With the Heat and Ventilation system, Carnival offers both slide and ottoman function for their 2nd row seats to get in and out of the 3rd row with ease. SX Carnival offers one-touch power sliding doors which help when your both hands are full and you need to access the 2nd row or 3rd row. SX also offers a smart key remote which is an added convenience to open/close and start the car with ease.

2.4. Warranty and Maintenance

The Odyssey sedan model also has a 2-year/40,000km service pack available that may be considered an advantage over Kia in that it offers a fixed price on servicing for the initial years of ownership. This option is not available for the Odyssey people mover model. Choosing to compare the Carnival with the Odyssey should be done with this factor in mind.

Honda Odyssey offers a 5-year unlimited km warranty and 5-year roadside assist, which is the most similar to Kia Carnival. Honda does not have a capped price service program for the Odyssey; however, the warranty program does offer peace of mind to the customer.

The Toyota Tarago warranty program is quite inferior in comparison to Kia. The warranty period is 3 years/100,000km and has no included service program. Tarago customers will need to inquire with their dealer for service pricing, and with no set price on the service, the risk of paying excess fees is much greater.

The Kia capped price service program runs for a total of 7 years/105,000km and clearly defines the maximum price a customer will pay for each scheduled service during this time. Each service has its own set price and is shown on the Kia website to give customers an indication of the costs to maintain the vehicle.

The warranty is transferable to future owners, as long as the full terms and conditions are on-sold. This means that a Carnival with 4 years of Kia warranty remaining will have a higher resale value than one without such an advantage. Buyers should compare the warranty period, as many competitors are still offering only a 3-year warranty.

Kia offers an industry-leading warranty program that includes a 5 year/100,000km warranty, 5 year/100,000km roadside assistance, and a capped price service program for the length of the warranty or 7 years/105,000km, whichever comes first.

3. Price and Value

What is also important to note is how much the car costs to run. The fuel consumption for both petrol and diesel is less on SX. For petrol, it is 10.9 L/100km as opposed to 11.6 on LV, and for diesel, it is 7.6 as opposed to 8.1. In both cases, this represents a 6% difference in fuel consumption between the two models. Now, when considering the average 15,000km driving per year at the average fuel price of $1.30 per litre, this will be $118 more per year on fuel for LV petrol and $177 more on fuel for LV diesel. As for the diesel, the fuel saving alone would pay half the additional cost for buying the diesel SX in just over a year. This is very significant considering the Carnival is likely to be driven in excess of 200,000 km, and it is something which, even without considering the other running and repair costs, makes the SX far better value in the long run.

On the whole, the SX remains something of a bargain, with the extra comfort, safety, convenience, and drivability at a price much less than that which would be expected for the amount of additional equipment and level of luxury provided. When considering the additional features on SX, including those options that are not even available on LV, such as engine type, SX seems excellent value for money.

Both Kia Carnival LV and SX Prestige are available in petrol or diesel. The base price of LV is $33,990 for the petrol and $35,990 for the diesel. On the other hand, the base price of SX is $42,490 for the petrol and $44,990 for the diesel. This means the difference in price between LV and SX for both petrol and diesel is consistent at $8,500. At a glance, the pricing of SX seems quite high, but when considering the features and extra cost of adding these features on LV, it is justified. The table below clearly shows why.

3.1. Pricing Comparison

The price of the LV version has been estimated to start at approximately $25,000, while the fully loaded top of the line Carnival is expected to cost around $35,000. This is consistent with a price range typical of minivans. Since the Carnival is a new product for the US, and their marketing of the vehicle has not yet begun, the price range could change, although this level of price modification is unlikely. Pricing for the base level SX is not available. Generally, this vehicle is expected to cost a few thousand dollars more than the base LV. These numbers represent something of a bargain for the fully loaded versions, as the smaller minivans can often cost as much as the Carnival. However, the Carnival will not yet have established any reputation or resale value, which could result in a depreciated cost for purchasing the used vehicle. This will be offset by the fact that KIA has the best warranty in the business, with a 10-year, 100,000-mile warranty on the powertrain, which can be transferred to another owner, and a 5-year, 60,000-mile basic warranty. KIA owners are a very satisfied group, with the vehicle's cost-to-satisfaction value being a high one. This is relevant to our group, as an estimated cost of vehicle ownership over a 5-year period, as many minivan buyers are economical shoppers. The availability of vehicles and cost to insure have yet to be determined and are relative to the market at the time.

3.2. Value for Money

It would be unrealistic to expect Carnival to match the Odyssey VTi in terms of sheer value for money, given the price and size differential. Honda's people mover is one of the most spacious and flexible offerings in the segment and it all starts at just twenty-seven grand, though the big jump to VTi-L and Odyssey Luxury models is more balanced in terms of the amount of kit offered, including in-built SatNav. Moving up to petrol V6 models of the Kia, Carnival's Mode '2' is a sizeable four thousand less than the equivalent Odyssey VTi and, when functional features are considered, a little closer to the mark. Comparing to the Odyssey VTi-C, our choice would be the bottom of the range Carnival and the Kia would emerge as the clear winner should future ease of maintenance cost be an issue due to the use of chain-driven engines. Value for money between the two Carnival models is a no contest. Between the convenience of eight seats and the extra functional and luxury features on offer, the extra two grand on the SX Prestige is money well spent. In terms of logo value, an extra ten grand would be demanded by the likes of Toyota or Honda for the same type of people mover.

4. Conclusion

Remember that since the introduction of Kia Rondo, the car maker has always been proving themselves in getting better in every range they priced. A five year up and we got Carnival. From body design to the car equipment, they are better than what they used to be. This is the evidence of a better product from a company and also a choice for the buyer to look for past products. Between LV and its Carnival, even though having no power sliding door (LV uses electrics and SX uses power) and fewer interior features compared to the SX, it’s actually quite worthy for a buy since there’s not much to complain about this car and the price is much more reasonable. And for the SX owners, you won’t regret that one. This car is worth to be marketed as a big family car and from that car images with logos and special designs that a big family man would love, it’s too cool to be just used by one person and it is. Carnival is cheap in its range and fancy as well. My advice is, if you are not in budget limitations, buy the SX (Prestige). The car features and all packages the best, performance and the equipment complete the car luxury. Although it may cost more than what you expect, it’s different if you are hoping for something that's worth it. And last but not least, I hope the next generation Carnival is much more developed and brings us great surprises from its luxury but cheap cars. That’s all folks! Thanks for reading.


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[2] M. COMMON and P. LANE, "Path (um)," 2021. psu.edu

[3] M. Ferré Gras, "Desarrollo de una web segura," 2023. ub.edu

[4] D. POSTERS, "E200," namwheels.com, . namwheels.com

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[6] C. Falgoust, "A Photo-Elicitation of the New Orleans Mardi Gras Costume Tradition and an Exploration of the Impact this Tradition has on the Identity of Participants," 2024. uark.edu

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[9] Y. Mall, H. North, H. West, C. Common, H. East, "LISTEN. LEARN. ACT.," artworxto-images.s3.ca-central-1, 2022. amazonaws.com

Kia Carnival LV vs. SX Prestige

The Kia Carnival LV and SX Prestige offer different sets of features and amenities tailored to meet varied customer needs. While the LV version focuses on providing value and practicality, the SX Prestige offers top-of-the-line features for those seeking luxury and advanced technology.