The 2021 Kia Sorento just came blazing in with its hot new look, but are looks deceiving? Is the Kia Sorento the best three-row SUV option for your family, or could you be happier in a different option? Let’s evaluate a few of the drawbacks with the 2021 Kia Sorento.
Avoid the Kia Sorento
We aren’t calling the 2021 Kia Sorento a bad SUV by any means. The new, confident look is excellent. Older versions of the Kia Sorento had a soccer mom, minivan feel. Now the updated look makes the Sorento feel like a more confident and capable SUV.
Also, no offense to minivans, they are great too. They are the most convenient way to haul a family around, but if you want something more comfortable to maneuver, then a midsize SUV is a great alternative.
The 2021 Kia Sorento has released its official pricing yet, but the 2020 model starts around $26,990. With the redesign, the price could be moderately increased to about $28,000, which is still cheaper than rivals. But before you go all-in on the Kia Sorento, check out why you may need to consider other options.
1. The 2021 Kia Sorento has less towing power
The 2020 Kia Sorento had a beefy V6 engine option and could tow up to 5,000 lb. That is very impressive for its price range. Now the V6 engine has been dropped for the 2021 model. Instead, the 2021 Kia Sorento has a 2.5-liter inline-4 base engine with 191 hp and 182 lb-ft of torque.
To be fair, the 2020 Kia Sorento has a 2.4-liter engine with 185 hp and 178 lb-ft of torque. So the 2.5-liter with the 2021 model is more powerful, but we’re focusing on towing here.
Also, we know, 191 hp doesn’t sound weak at all, but now the 2021 Kia Sorento can only tow 3,500 lb. This makes it less capable of hauling larger trailers. According to CarIndigo, the 2020 Kia Sorento took 9.9 seconds to accelerate from 0 to 60 mph.
That makes it pretty challenging to merge into traffic or pass people on the highway. But perhaps the 1.6-liter turbo engine with the hybrid transmission will provide a little more pep. It’s paired with a 44- kW electric motor to produce 227 hp, according to Edmunds. Unfortunately, we will have to wait until the 2021 Kia Sorento hits the race track to see if it’s faster.
2. The Kia Sorento has limited options
You can sort of get what you want with the Kia Sorento. There are five different trim levels to choose from. However, the hybrid powertrain can’t be paired with all-wheel drive. For now, you will have to go with the gasoline engine to gain some off-roading capability.
Also, you need AWD to tow up to 3,500 lb, so the hybrid option isn’t the best for towing either. However, if you wait, Kia is currently suggesting that a plug-in hybrid Kia Sorento with AWD will be available later. The plug-in hybrid may have an increased towing capacity.
3. The 2021 Kia Sorento is small
The 2021 Kia Sorento looks bigger than it is and decided to sacrifice cargo space for passenger space. It can seat up to 7 passengers comfortably, which is excellent for taller kids. However, it might be challenging to carry all their stuff.
There are 11.3 cubic feet of cargo space behind the third-row seat of the Kia Sorento with up to 73 cubic feet total. The Toyota Highlander, which is known for having a cramped third row, has up to 84.3 cubic feet of cargo space.