Test, Kia Sorento Plug-in: super equipment and record consumption in the city

Test, Kia Sorento Plug-in: super equipment and record consumption in the city

Test, Kia Sorento Plug-in

Kia is certainly one of the car brands that has followed a convincing growth path in recent years. As a manufacturer of "low cost" cars, he has established himself as one of the best generalists, with quality products and a really favorable equipment / price ratio. Virtue well demonstrated by Sorento Plug-in hybrid, SUV in fact at the top of the offer of the Korean manufacturer, and therefore rich in content. Prices start at 53,000 euros.

Its image is impressive: 4.81 meters long, the body develops on taut and muscular lines, which restore presence and tone on the road. Shapes that are not too sophisticated, however, but convince for solidity and personality. It is not a question of elegance, of course, but rather of a concrete and fundamentally recognizable design. The interiors, on the other hand, are much more refined.

Here, attention to detail and technological equipment dominate: the seats are upholstered in good quality materials, and have numerous electrical adjustments (for driver and passenger front) and are very comfortable. The second row, the one for the rear passengers, also counts on the possibility of heating the seats and also for those sitting on the sides there is a compartment to store a bottle of water. There is not even a curtain to shelter from the sun. Sorento is available in a seven-seater configuration, the third row of seats is obtained from the boot: here the occupants sit in a less bright but still appreciable environment.

The space on board is considerable and can be shared in a pleasant way even with five adults on board. There are numerous USB sockets, to recharge, or to keep the charge, of your mobile devices. Kia Sorento, given the organization of the space on board, is a car designed primarily for traveling, a model whose intended use is the motorway, an environment where it stands out. However, we will talk about fuel consumption and driving dynamics later.

The on-board entertainment system uses a 10.25 ″ screen with Uvo Connect services: it is rich in functions, has attractive and colorful graphics and quite smooth operation. Connected to the internet, it offers useful content even during a trip, such as real-time traffic and updated weather conditions. The arrangement of the icons is logical and intuitive and allows you to read the menu in a clear and simple way. Of course, there is no lack of full compatibility with the Apple Car Play and Android Auto protocols, to see the applications of your mobile phone replicated on the screen.

The range of driving assistance systems is among the most complete available today. and almost everything is standard. This type of integration has allowed the car to obtain approval for the second level of autonomous driving. The best technologies are present here and are well calibrated: the adaptive cruise control brakes and accelerates in traffic in a convincing way; lane keeping is never abrupt or imprecise and the automatic emergency braking intervenes only in case of real need. Interesting is the camera system under the mirrors which, when inserted with the direction indicator, transmits the external image to the digital dashboard, a solution that allows you to assess any obstacles with extreme precision.

The Kia power unit Sorento is made up of a 1.6-liter turbo petrol engine with 180 hp and 265 Nm of torque, combined with an electric unit of 66.9 kW and 304 Nm of torque. The latter is powered by an externally rechargeable battery with a maximum capacity of 13.8 kWh. The system power thus reaches the remarkable value of 265 Hp. An interesting fact that allows excellent fluidity of movement, especially on fast-moving sections: this is the environment where Sorento stands out, it is stable and roll and pitch are minimal in relation to weight and size.

On long journeys and at cruising speeds, however, there is a certain noise, mainly due to the thermal engine which works at high revs above 110 km / h. The aerodynamic rustles penetrate inside the passenger compartment but with less insistence. Overall, the acoustic comfort could be better, especially on a car designed for long and demanding journeys. Moving to the mixed, the proportions certainly do not help agility even if Sorento showed good dynamism. Of course it is not a question of transferring pure driving pleasure to the driver, but all in all it is not an unpleasant or imprecise driving either. For example, the reactivity of the propulsive structure is appreciated.

In the city Sorento has shown that it knows how to behave in a truly efficient way: the intervention of the electric motor is constant and this ensures brilliance and precision when restarting and overtaking . Despite the segment and vehicle category, Sorento is appreciated for its ease even on chaotic and busy urban streets. Furthermore, the numerous driving assistance systems and perimeter cameras allow you to evaluate dimensions with great attention even when parking ... the only problem is to find it!

The six-speed automatic gearbox is fast and precise and satisfies the demand for power as needed; the four-wheel drive system effective in distributing torque in the event of poor grip or adverse weather conditions. Basically the car is front-wheel drive and can also have traction on the rear wheels in case of need. There are specific driving modes dedicated to the off-road world, but we must always keep in mind that Sorento is not a vehicle designed for too demanding adventures. It is good on the motorway and in the city, away from asphalt only for a few light excursions.

Let's conclude with consumption. The presence of the plug-in hybrid system is a useful addition especially in the city, here with a charged battery, you can travel even 20/22 km / l without too many problems. On the fast flowing sections the average distance varies between 15 and 10 km / l; much depends on the residual charge, always traveling with a charged battery undoubted benefits are obtained, if completely discharged, on the motorway the average drops to 9 km / l. And it's hard to do better. As for prices, the price list starts at 53 thousand euros, a high but competitive price when compared to the rest of the plug-in hybrid SUVs in the same segment.

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