Driving Impressions

With either V6 under the hood, the 2009 Kia Sorento has plenty of power for both city traffic and swift highway cruising. The suspension provides a pleasant ride and adequate handling on smooth pavement, but when the road gets rough, the ride gets bouncy, with a good deal of the bumps transmitted directly into the cabin. The Sorento's brakes might also be a cause for concern; in previous testing, we noticed significant brake fade after just two panic stops from 60 mph. Drivers who plan on any traversing of mountainous roads should keep this in mind.

The Sorento's steering feel, however, is satisfying and there's a minimum of body roll when cornering. Thanks to the Sorento's low-range transfer case and truck-based origins, off-road excursions can be tackled with relative ease, but the Sorento's capabilities still fall short of those possessed by more competent vehicles like the Xterra and FJ Cruiser.

    See also:

    Hazard warning flasher
    The hazard warning flasher causes the rear tail lights and front turn signal lights to flash on and off, which serves as a warning to other drivers to exercise caution when approaching or passi ...

    Hood
    Opening the hood: 1. Pull the release lever on the lower left side of the instrument panel to unlatch the hood. The hood should pop open slightly. 2. Go to the front of the vehicle, raise the ...

    A COMFORTABLE AND SOFT RIDE (TOO SOFT)
    Behind the wheel of the new Optima it’s easy to point out several more faults – although there are certainly some positive aspects to the driving experience as well. On the down-size, the ca ...