Car Buyer Labs

Car Buying Advice, Tips, and Reviews

A black 2020 Kia Sorento is shown driving to a used Kia Sorento dealer.

The Italian Korean: The Sorento

Next time you’re at your used Kia Sorento dealer, think about what you’re buying, a Korean car with a name that references the southern Italian resort city of Sorrento (yes, spelled with two R’s). The city of Sorrento was named after mythical Sirens, who were rumoured to have lived in the area. Who knew such an understated SUV could have such an exotic beginning? It’s just another thing to add to this wonderful vehicle’s charm.

For those who don’t know, the Sorento is one of Kia’s most popular SUVs. This three-row model sits between the compact Sportage and the larger Telluride in the Kia lineup, making it a great option for families. If the Kia Sorento’s popularity and unique name aren’t enough to grab your attention, maybe the price will be. The Sorento is an extremely affordable used vehicle, and this midsize SUV is also known to hold its value in a competitive market, making it a great investment.

The Kia Sorento first hit the Canadian market in 2003, and after four generations, the SUV remains a top competitor in the midsize market. The seven-seater vehicle offers a lot for the dollar, including premium cabin materials, supportive seating, user-friendly tech, and great fuel economy to round it out. If a used Kia Sorento is on your wishlist, you have plenty of models to choose from. Finding an affordable, dependable, midsize SUV can be tough, but Kia makes it easy.

The Third Generation: 2016-2020

The last few years of the third generation were a stand-out for the Sorento. Smart buyers know that buying a vehicle towards the tail end of a generation usually means fewer recalls, fewer issues, and more of the good stuff. However, even the first model years of the third-generation Sorento are reliable options, and you can usually find them cheaper when shopping used.

The 2016 model is available in six different trims with three different engine options, so drivers looking to snap up a bargain might very well find one. There are also two-row and three-row models available to satisfy your passenger and cargo needs. The cabin is known for its comfortable, supportive seating and driver-centred design that makes driving feel like second nature. You can expect decent fuel economy from the 2016 Sorento, as it can get up to 9.8 L/100km depending on engine choice. This year is noted for having balanced and responsive steering that makes it a fun and enjoyable vehicle to drive.

A grey 2020 Kia Sorento is shown from a rear angle driving through a grassy field.

The 2019 Refresh

The refresh that followed in 2019 means drivers can get an updated exterior with a different grille, bumper, and headlamps. New safety features were also made standard for a safer and all-around more comfortable driving experience. Drivers looking to save a little at the pumps will be happy to hear that the 2018 Sorento doesn’t disappoint, offering above-average fuel economy from its base 2.4L engine.

The 2019 model is one to look out for to get the best balance of features and price. With high-end detailing in the cabin, responsive steering, and updated tech that lets drivers connect their smartphones to Apple CarPlay or Android Auto for a personalized driving experience, drivers can expect to get a lot for their money.

The 2019 Sorento also boasts plenty of power from its available 3.3L V6 engine, making it a great commuter vehicle as well as a family hauler. You can enjoy plenty of cabin space and comfortable seating to keep you feeling relaxed on long trips. The 2019 model is often considered one of the best used Sorento options because of its ample cargo space, flexible seating, and excellent reliability, making it the perfect vehicle for families on the go that need an SUV that fits into their life and not the other way around.

The Fourth Generation: 2021-Present

The latest fourth-generation Sorento is stunning, with a larger wheelbase and extended length, giving drivers more for their money than ever before. The modern design and state-of-the-art tech make the 2021 Sorento one of the best pre-owned buys on the market. While some claimed this version was a little less stylish than its predecessors, it didn’t fail to perform where it counts. If you’re searching for a lightly used vehicle that still gives you the latest tech and safety features, check out the fourth-generation Sorento and be prepared to be impressed.

A used 2021 model gives drivers access to a lot of updates when it comes to the latest tech and safety while allowing them to avoid the high price tag of a brand-new vehicle. The modern cockpit design puts everything right at your fingertips, while the large infotainment touchscreen is user-friendly and makes it simple to connect your smartphone with Apple CarPlay or Android Auto so that you can bring along your favourite apps, receive messages, and listen to custom playlists for a completely personalized driving experience.

While the 2021 Sorento still comes standard with all-wheel drive, the engine lineup has been rearranged. A new 2.5L replaced the old 2.4L, giving drivers a bit more power. The V6 was also dropped from the lineup, but there is still plenty of power to be had when drivers level up to the optional turbocharged engine. With its 1,588 kg tow rating, the turbocharged version picks up where the V6 left off.

The 2022 model year saw the introduction of all-new hybrid and plug-in hybrid options to complement the standard gasoline powertrains. The 2022 Sorento Hybrid is rated for 6.6 L/100km, allowing you to save gas while driving a roomy three-row SUV. The plug-in hybrid is even more efficient, with a 51 km all-electric range and an efficiency of 3.0 Le/100km. With drastically improved efficiency and more cabin space, it’s no wonder the redesigned Sorento received instant acclaim and won awards around the world.

The 2021 Sorento continues to offer all of the flexibility drivers want when it comes to a comfortable ride and seating arrangements that allow them to access as much cargo space as needed, making it easy to bring along extras like luggage, sports gear, and the family dog. Add to that an IIHS Top Safety Pick, and you know you’re in good hands when you get behind the wheel of a used fourth-generation Kia Sorento. If you’re looking for the ultimate value, check out a pre-owned 2021 model to get unbeatable performance at an unbeatable price.

A red 2021 Kia Sorento is shown driving on a winding road by a rocky mountain.

Which Works For You?

Which used Sorento works for you? Are you looking to shave a few thousand off the price and go for a fully loaded 2021 or 2022 model? Or are you hunting for a high-quality, reliable SUV for an unbelievably low price? If so, the third-generation Sorento is the one to watch out for. Whichever you choose, it’s hard to go wrong with such a well-known multifunction machine. The Kia Sorento is ready and waiting at your local Kia dealership. When you buy a Korean car with an Italian name, there’s no doubt you’re in for a unique driving experience. What are you waiting for? There’s no looking back. Get behind the wheel, take one for a test drive, and experience what all the hype is about for yourself.