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text and photos by Cor Steenstra
I used the 2013 Kia Sorrento SX AWD as transportation to several events celebrating the Royal Crowning of King Willem-Alexander of the Netherlands. There were parties and events planned all over the South land, by the surprisingly vast amount of Dutch nationals and ex-patriots residing here.
I preferred a vehicle with practical options, but also one that would allow me to drive the vast distances in total comfort, and look half-way decent to boot. This Sorrento SX AWD did the trick, very well.It is properly equipped with a sumptuous leather interior, featuring an interior design that was both modern and ergonomic, looked good and was of excellent quality. The drive was comfortable as well, both on the freeways as well as in town traffic, and the turning circle on the narrow Beverly Hills/Hollywood Hills areas was surprisingly practical.
Compared to the previously tested Sorrento, this model had small but eye catching face lift updates on the front fascia and the rear, and also seemed to have a better general appeal through the side treatments in body color.
When it was first introduced on te US market, the Kia Sorento presented itself as a very serious contender on a market that was new to Kia. It has to compete with long established competition from well established companies,Â and it amazingly did so with remarkable ease. It clearly showed that Kia was on a different path from before, and that it was serious about tackling the the global markets with excellent products at a good price. A sign of things to come.
The new Kia Sorento follows in its footsteps in a very worthy way, although we are clearly spoiled by the events of before. Our expectations were clearly set higher than before, but the Sorento has no problem delivering. It is again a modern design exterior and interior, and it has the quality level that we have started to become used to from Kia, a standard that, dare we say it, is higher than that of its established Japanese competitionâ€¦!!! What..?? Yesâ€¦!!
No longer can Toyota, Nissan and erstwhile Mitsubishi claim to set any standard in this segment at all. that role has skillfully been taken over by Kia and Hyundai. Ah well.., it happened to the US big three by the Japanese, and now things move on.. What will be next?