Kia Sorento PHEV 2022 review: New plug-in hybrid EV seven-seater SUV – Watch out Kluger hybrid?
It looks how we like the way it drives and its practical interior but youre watching this video, because this one has a plug and it says hybrid across the back. Does that add something to an already good suv, or does it simply add too much to the price before we find out? Remember therell be a full written review over on carsguy.com.au. We are going to talk about each of those elements individually. So therell be time codes on your screen now, if you want to skip ahead or in the timeline below or in links in the description, also remember if you are watching on youtube and you are enjoying our videos remember to hit like subscribe and the bell notification Icon just to stay up to date with all of our latest content. Now, first things: first, we need to address the elephant in the uh in the park here and thats. The plug in hybrid version of the sorrento is only available in the top spec gt line. Trim, while that means it comes with all the bells and whistles, it also comes with a relatively large battery pack, allowing nearly 70 kilometers of electric only driving range. Now, while thats pretty good for something that big, it also adds over 15 000 to the price compared to the variant below it. Standard gear at the gt line level is great, though it includes a 10.25 inch multimedia touchscreen, with apple carplay and android, auto as well as built in nav.
It also includes a 12.3 inch digital dashboard 8 inch head up, display, quilted nappa leather interior trim, full electrical adjust for the front seats with both heating and ventilation, dual zone, climate control, heated rear seats, a panoramic sunroof led headlights, keyless entry with push start ignition ambient Interior lighting and a 360 degree parking suite a subtle difference for the plug in hybrid. It only gets 19 inch alloy wheels instead of 20 inch ones, which are standard on the other gt line variants Music a year into its life, and the sorrento still looks just as dashing a standout piece of design. Even when faced with such tough competition in this segment, like mazda cx 9, its eye catching grill is complemented nicely by those led light fittings and the contrasting black highlight pieces work well with any color combination. Its angular design elements give it a tough look, especially around the rear and even from the side. This big suv has lovely balance proportions. The new kia badge for this years update only serves to add more to an already contemporary package inside, and this car is just as good looking. This is a really futuristic and ergonomic cabin, and everything in here looks and feels the part dials for important features have not been forgotten and the angular vibe continues through the cabin via the squared off motifs used throughout. The only thing different about the plug in hybrid is its slightly more liberal use of piano black interior finishes.
I love this fish scale pattern that runs through the dash. I love these funky vent fittings. I love the science fiction, design of it all, which is really reinforced by those two big screens, and because this is a gt line variant. It removes the big stalk shifter here with a dial which is a nice upmarket touch. It might look and feel good, but is it really practical, especially with the addition of such a big battery under the floor, its all as practical as it looks too, with big pockets in the doors suitable for our large cars guide bottle, which also fits in these Areas here, youve got a wireless charger here and a giant center console box as well, and you have really good adjustability from this seat, which manages to balance the sporty feeling from behind the wheel with great visibility over the front, which is not an easy feat. Now back here i have heaps of room because well, of course, i do have you seen the length of this car, but its worth mentioning the great amenities you get back here as well. Theres a full size bottle holder here in the door theres another one. Further down as well, dual layered pockets, three usb outlets, theres, dual adjustable air vents, theres rear heated seats back here as well, so its fully loaded kids will love it, but im an adult im, 182 centimeters tall. Is it possible for me to fit in the third row? I bet thats what youre wondering so lets find out im going to move this seat forward until i think ive set it to something im comfortable with im going to hop in the back row, see if it still works now, im seated behind that position that i Just set the second row to and im surprised to find i actually have quite a lot of knee room in here.
What i have less of is headroom, but all things considered its pretty good, given that well, i actually fit in fact im not sure how key has managed it, given that theyve got that huge battery pack under the floor as well. On top of that, kids are going to love it back here, because theres, an independently controllable fan, speed, dual usb ports, a little tray for tid bits and a full size bottle holder as well. Finally, boot space is lower than on non electrified variants, but not by much with less than 30 liters or essentially, an unnoticeable amount lost in each configuration. Each space is competitive for this segment, regardless, although it will be tricky to fit anything with all the seats up. As that space is tall but thin and narrow, now the plug in hybrid is the only way you can get petrol and all wheel drive in the sorrento range because remember, the v6 is front wheel drive only the way it achieves. That is quite unique. It pairs this 1.6 liter four cylinder turbocharged engine with an electric motor in the transmission transmission loses two gears as a result compared to the other variants, but you dont notice so much anyway, because well youve got the electrification to make it up on the fuel front, Claimed fuel consumption for this plug in hybrid variant is absurdly low at just 1.6 liters to 100 kilometers its far beyond what even toyota can manage with its popular self charging hybrid systems with a plug in hybrid, though it really does depend on how you use it Run the battery down and you can expect your fuel usage to go through the roof.
Thankfully, the sorento has some rather brilliant drive modes to help keep fuel consumption low, even when you might not be able to charge it up on the topic of charging. The sorento hybrid has what they call a type 2 charging socket now. The good thing about that is its the most popular kind in australia, so you shouldnt have trouble finding a place to charge it up. The only issue with this one specifically, is that its quite slow it charges at a rate of 3.3 kilowatts, and that means the best way to charge. This is in your garage overnight, rather than convenience, charging at, say the shops, for example. Even if you find a charger that will do 7.2, kilowatts or above its not going to charge any faster than it would in your garage, so thats a bit of a shame to see. So one thing you should know straight away is all plug in hybrids. Are really quite different in the way they drive and the greatest thing about our sorrento here is: it does something that not many do right, and that is that it has a really convincing hybrid mode. Now ive got to explain what i mean by that some plug in hybrids are really good at being an electric vehicle. Some plug in hybrids have a really great sporty mode where you can turn off the electrical features altogether and sort of drive it as a more conventional car and uh sorrento here, doesnt really have that.
But what it does have is a proper hybrid mode, and i wish all plug in hybrids had this. What it does is it allows you to get the most out of the electric motor in your first part of your acceleration, and then itll only use the engine where it really has to that kind of gives you the best of both worlds, and it drives more. Like a traditional toyota hybrid that people are more familiar with in the market, and this hybrid mode also does a great job of preserving your battery life and thats important because, as i mentioned earlier, your charging time is quite slow, so its hard to convenience charge this Car, but with such a great hybrid mode that lets you maintain your battery life for quite a long period of time, while keeping your fuel consumption down. It means you can go outside of your comfort zone with this vehicle when you go on a holiday, for example, and you might not have your usual garage spot to charge this plugin up its not going to matter as much because you can rely on that hybrid Mode to maintain your battery and keep your fuel consumption down even over a length of time is say a week and thats great too, because it removes that nervousness of driving a plug in hybrid as an electric vehicle and getting that range anxiety before you know your Fuel consumption is going to spike when the engine comes in.
You can just switch back to that hybrid electric mode when your battery life starts to get a little low and keep your fuel consumption down now, while it does have a combined power output, thats, almost on par with the three and a half liter v6, and much Much much more trim fuel consumption, it doesnt quite have the same performance. It is weighed down a bit by that all wheel drive where, as the three and a half liter v6 is front drive, so it doesnt quite feel as athletic as that that option, but still its got plenty of power to be going on with it, feels more Refined than the diesel or the v6 put together, and it does give you the confidence of that all wheel drive if youre venturing off the tarmac or even for a little bit of cornering on the topic of cornering theres, a lot about the sorrento. That is just great, regardless of variant weve talked about this before, but i really like the steering in this car. I really like the visibility in this car. I really like the balance over both axles when it comes to the ride and suspension tune. That also helps to keep the cabin quiet as well. All those factors combine to really make the sorrento feel a fraction of its size when youre behind the wheel. It really feels light and engaging to drive almost like its some sort of huge hatchback and thats really good to see not every seven seat.
Suv can pull off such a feat. Now, despite that great hybrid mode, there is one area where the sorento does lack as a plug in hybrid thats. The fact that its missing customizable regenerative braking theres only one mode and when you hop on the pedal you can control how much the car regens sort of like you can in a toyota hybrid. But it would be nice to see the regen kick in automatically. I really think you could get better electrical efficiency that way around as a top spec gt line. The plug in hybrid gets the full range of active safety features, including auto emergency, braking with pedestrian cyclist and junction detection. Reverse auto, braking blind spot monitoring with rear cross traffic alert and even blind spot cameras in the digital dash lane keep assist with lane departure warning adaptive. Cruise control driver attention, alert, intelligent speed, limit, assist and safe exit assist thats up there with the best in the segment to boot. The sorrento gets a suite of seven airbags, including a new center front, airbag its worth, noting that the curtain airbags dont totally cover that. Third row, although both the second and third row do get child seat mounting points, the sorrento has a maximum five star and cap safety rating to the 2020 standard, which includes the plug in hybrid variant, Music. The sorrento is covered by cares pioneering 7 year and unlimited kilometer warranty, which is still amongst the best across the market, but it does have newcomers from china starting to close in regardless.
The plug in hybrid is also covered by a cap price servicing schedule for the life of the warranty, which does carry a premium over the variants below it. It will need to visit a service centre once a year or every ten thousand kilometers theres. So much to like about this plug in hybrid everything. New here adds to an already great seven seat, suv package, but with some drawbacks, when it comes to charging, you will need a really specific kind of lifestyle to live with this car. To get the most out of it, namely youll need somewhere to charge it up at home for those who do fit that criteria and who are willing to take a chance on the extra cost of this suv. Theyll be rewarded with something that feels semi premium.