A Review of the 2014 Kia Sorento SX AWD: Sporty, Roomy and Surprisingly Luxurious

The Kia brand has come a very long way over the past decade and the 2014 Kia Sorento SX AWD is a shining example of the automaker’s progress – offering an impressive list of amenities inside and out in a roomy, sporty midsized SUV that packs a price under $40k.

There was a point in time where the Kia lineup was all about a low sticker price, but the days of Kia making “cheap little cars” is long gone and the 2014 Kia Sorento SX AWD is a clear indicator of how much the brand has evolved. This midsized SUV is everything that the early Kias were not with a big, roomy cabin packed full of high tech goodies and a powerful drivetrain that sends power to all four wheels while still offering solid fuel economy. Best of all, the 2014 Sorento offers a long list of features at a much lower price point than comparably equipped competition.

The subject of this review was a 2014 Kia Sorento SX AWD – which means that it was one step from the top of the line package with just the Limited sitting above the SX AWD. The SX package comes with so many standard features that there are no optional packages for the SX other than AWD and the 3rd row seats, both of which my test vehicle featured. In total, my test vehicle carried a price of $38,550. Honestly, I wouldn’t bother with the 3rd row seats (I will explain why in the interior section of the review) so you can enjoy all of the features of the Sorento SX AWD for under $38,000 before you do any haggling…thousands less than some other vehicles in the midsized SUV segment with similar features.

The Exterior
There is no question that the current Kia lineup relies on a design that stands out in the crowd and the 2014 Sorento SX AWD is no different from the rest of its siblings. Some critics of the brand will complain that all of their vehicles look too similar to each other, but in the case of the Sorento – I find those similarities to the likes of the Optima and Forte to be a good thing.

2014 Sorento SX front

The most attractive portion of the 2014 Kia Sorento SX is the big, bold front end that features common design cues with the rest of the brand and that leads to one sporty looking SUV. The LED trimmed projection headlights are sharply angled and they flow beautifully into the huge grille which is wrapped in chrome and filled with a unique oval mesh design. The inner portion of the large upper grille bears the same flared design that we see in different forms on the rest of the modern Kia vehicles and when combined with the connected headlights creates a look that I really like. There is a unique air opening mounted in the middle of what some might call the bumper portion of the front fascia with large fog lights mounted vertically on the outer corners of the lower fascia. Another strongly angled grille is found in the lower fascia with a silver roll pan design lining the bottom edge of this sporty front end. I like SUVs that have a look that is truly sporty and the fact of the 2014 Sorento is unquestionably very sporty.

2014 Sorento SX side

Along the sides, the 2014 Kia Sorento SX has a long, level roofline that helps this midsized SUV to offer a great amount of interior head room, but it also bolsters the sporty feel that starts up front. Kia has infused strong body lines that almost all angle upwards as they reach the rear of the vehicle and that creates a very “fast look” from the side. All of the lines along the sides invite your eyes upwards as you scan from front to rear with body colored wheel opening moldings wrapping tightly around the standard 18 inch aluminum wheels…furthering the sporty attitude of the Sorento. To add a touch of class to the outside of this sporty utility vehicle, the company has added chrome door handles, chrome roof bars and a simple chrome strip running along the bottom of the side glass while LED filled side mirrors tack on some high tech feel.

2014 Sorento rear

Out back, you won’t find any chrome outside of the oval exhaust tip, but you will find more sharp, aggressive lines that finish off the 2014 Sorento SX in a very fitting way. The LED taillights are big, bright and designed with angles that make this rear end stand out in a crowd. Above the rear lights is a huge, darkly tinted rear window that allows great visibility to the driver and this rear glass is part of a large rear door that allows great access to the rear cargo area for those loading large items. Along the bottom of the rear end of the new Sorento is a grille area that matches what we see up front and another silver roll pan design that wraps down under the rear end.

The odds are good that if you don’t like the general design language of the Kia brand – you won’t like the 2014 Sorento. However, I really like the aggressive, sport style of the Kia design language and I love how the Korean automaker was able to apply this look to their midsized SUV.

The Interior
The 2014 Kia Sorento SX AWD isn’t the very top of the line package, but you wouldn’t be hard pressed to know that when you are sitting in the driver’s seat. In fact, the pricier Sorento Limited package only adds Nappa leather and heated rear seats – showing just how much the Sorento SX has to offer buyers. From top to bottom, front to back, the Sorento SX really doesn’t leave you wanting for much outside of those heated 2nd row seats.

2014 sorento sx front seats

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Comments

Really enjoyed this when I had it to test drive. BTW, the rear cargo, with the second row folded down, will accommodate a full queen-sized air mattress. Add in that great panoramic roof.. viola! Date machine. :)

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