With consumers learning toward SUVs and crossovers, the Kia Sedona is one of the last remaining minivans on the market. But the Sedona remains a popular option among growing families. It boasts space, affordability, and Kia’s bargain tech. But is the latest Sedona safe?
One thing is sure: The Kia Sedona’s headlights aren’t up to snuff.
The 2021 Kia Sedona fails in one key safety area
The Insurance Institute for Highway Safety recently tested the Kia Sedona. Though most of the minivan’s ratings are good, one glaring failing score stands out. IIHS safety testing shows the new Sedona’s headlights aren’t up to par.
The IIHS gives the Kia Sedona’s headlights a failing score of Poor. And unlike many other modern vehicles, this score extends across all trim levels. Standard halogen headlights on lower-trim Sedonas receive an overall rating of Poor, with both low- and high-beams showing “inadequate” visibility on curves and excessive glare.
Upgraded LED headlights on higher-trim Sedonas are curve-adaptive, which the IIHS likes. However, they still caused a glare excessive enough to earn a Poor rating. In fact, with the higher-end LED lights, high-beam “visibility was inadequate in all four tests,” the IIHS states.
How does the Kia Sedona perform elsewhere in safety testing?
If you overlooked the Poor headlight score, the Kia Sedona appears to be a safe vehicle. The 2021 model earns a Good rating in all crashworthiness categories except for in the passenger-side small overlap front testing category. There, it earned an Acceptable rating. It also received a Superior rating for its optional front-crash prevention system.
The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) awards the 2021 Kia Sedona an overall safety rating of five stars, the highest possible score. The minivan performed well in NHTSA testing areas, including frontal crash, side crash, and rollover categories. The Sedona earned a five-star rating in all categories except for rollover, where it received four stars for its rollover risk of 13 percent.
The Sedona’s safety features
Most IIHS and NHSTA scoring is based on available safety systems, but that doesn’t mean all Kia Sedona trims are equal. The 2021 Sedona comes standard with very few advanced safety technologies, Kia‘s website shows.
In fact, the only advanced standard feature on the base LX trim is a rearview camera. All other advanced safety features are available as options. They include lane-departure warning, driver-attention monitoring, adaptive cruise control, front/rear parking sensors, blind-spot monitoring, forward-collision warning, and automatic emergency braking.
Upgrading to the mid-trim EX brings standard blind-spot monitoring, rear cross-traffic alert, and front/rear parking sensors.
And the highest-trim Sedona, the SX, comes with an available surround-view monitor and park distance warning.
According to U.S. News, the 2021 Kia Sedona starts around $30,000, and SX models start around $40,000. The Sedona’s sole powertrain choice is a 276-hp, 3.3-liter six-cylinder engine paired with an eight-speed automatic transmission. As for fuel economy, the Sedona gets an EPA-estimated 18 mpg in the city and 24 mpg on the highway.
Standard features on the base Kia Sedona include a seven-inch touchscreen infotainment system with Apple CarPlay, Android Auto, and Bluetooth. Also, expect Slide-n-Stow second-row seating and an impressive 10-year warranty.