When it comes to minivans, most automakers have either phased them out of the lineup or are beginning to. There are a few still being made today, the Kia Sedona being one of them. In the last few years, the Sedona has risen in popularity, possibly because of its SUV/minivan balance.
But, this is the last year we’ll be seeing the Kia Sedona, according to MotorTrend. It’s leaving the lineup and coming back in a different form.
What happened to the Kia Sedona?
Kia is getting rid of the Sedona van, but it’s not what you might think. The van itself isn’t going away, only the name. After years of using the Sedona moniker, it will now change to the Kia Carnival, which is the name of the van in markets from other countries.
The Kia Carnival was introduced in other markets, throughout the world, back in 1998. It didn’t come to North America, the UK, and a few other countries until a couple of years later, but even then it was under a different name, the Kia Sedona.
Actually, this isn’t the only time Kia opted to change the name of one of its vehicles. Kia previously sold one of its sedans under the Optima name, while they sold it in other markets as the K5. Now, it’s known as the K5 everywhere.
When the Kia Sedona came to America
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The Kia Sedona, introduced at an auto show in New York in 2001, began selling in the American market in the summer of that year. Kia built it to seat seven passengers, with bucket seats in the first and second rows and a split bench in the third row. The 3.5-liter V6 engine got 15 mpg on city roads while traveling on the highway got the van 20.
A redesign in 2006 brought a more powerful engine. The Sedona ran on a 3.8-liter V6 motor that was paired with a five-speed automatic that had overdrive and auto-manual. This combination brought 18 mpg in the city and 25 on the highway.
The next redesign for the Sedona occurred in 2015 when Kia offered more impressive upgrades. This minivan could seat seven to eight passengers and was powered by a 3.3-liter V6 engine connected to a six-speed automatic transmission. The combination allowed the van to get 18 mpg on city roads and 24 when out on the highway.
What will the new Kia Carnival model offer?
While there’s not a whole lot known about the 2022 Kia Sedona – now the Kia Carnival – model, there are a few things we do know. The body sits on a newly constructed chassis for midsize vehicles. MotorTrend reports the frame is the Hyundai-Kia N3 platform. This is the same one the Optima sedan, now known as the K5, uses. The wheelbase length is about an inch longer than the old frame, and the overall length of the vehicle is 1.6 inches longer.
The new length offers a bit more room in the cabin, particularly the third-row seating. Kia’s cargo area behind the rear seats is 22 cubic feet of space. If you fold down all the seats and only use the front two, you can get up to 102.6 cubic feet of space to haul larger items.
We now know that the minivan will have a 3.5-liter V6 engine under the hood. Paired with it is an eight-speed automatic transmission. This combination, reportedly, will get you 26 mpg on the highway and 19 in the city. That’s two more highway mpg than the previous 3.3-liter V6 motor.
The 2022 model will bring a whole new vehicle, not only in styling but also in name. Kia’s Carnival minivan, or as they call it, the great utility vehicle, should show up in America in late 2021.