LA Show: No go for Kia Sorento X-Pro

Unveiling unparalleled off-road prowess, the Kia Sorento X-Pro dominates the automotive stage with its robust design and enhanced capabilities. Read more Unveiling the 2024 Kia Sportage Hybrid

Engineered for adventure, this variant boasts increased power, towing capacity, and distinctive styling. Unfortunately, the Kia Sorento X-Pro won’t grace Australian shores, but its formidable presence leaves an indelible mark on the SUV landscape.

Amidst the grand unveiling of the revamped Sorento series by KIA at the LA motor show, the spotlight shone on the enhanced Kia Sorento X-Pro model, a robust iteration that, regrettably, won’t grace the Australian market upon the SUV’s anticipated arrival in December.

This series, an evolution of the 2020 Sorento, draws inspiration from the flagship EV9 and upcoming hybrid editions scheduled for release in 2024, according to the Kia Sorento X-Pro.

Kia Sorento X-Pro

Leaked details in July hinted at the facelift’s distinctive features, showcasing a boxy front-end with vertically arranged headlights, exclusive amber daytime running lights, and an off-road-centric demeanor distinguishable from its predecessor.

In an evident nod to the off-road enthusiasm, Kia introduces the Kia Sorento X-Pro variant, positioning it as “prepared for more joyful trails.” This variant boasts augmented power and towing capabilities, 17-inch wheels ensconced in all-terrain tires, a centrally locking differential, skid plate embellishment, and distinctive styling elements.

The Kia Sorento X-Pro further claims approximately 25mm of additional ground clearance. The revised front and rear bumpers hint at heightened approach and departure angles, making it tempting for those partial to ‘soft-roaders.’ However, lacking true four-wheel drive, it may not cater to hardcore off-road enthusiasts.

Unfortunately, Kia Australia confirms that the Kia Sorento X-Pro variant won’t make its way to Australian shores, citing its North American origin as the primary reason. Alyson MacDonald, Kia Australia’s media and corporate communications manager, states, “Kia Sorento X-Pro is not on the cards for Australia, as we source from Korean production.”

The internal aesthetics of the incoming Sorento showcase a horizontal design motif, notably seen in elements like the air-conditioning vents. Meanwhile, a pair of dual 12.3-inch screens orchestrates a panoramic curved display, housing Kia’s novel Connected Car Navigation Cockpit (ccNC) operating system.

A new digital key system empowers owners to unlock and start the Sorento using an NFC-enabled smartphone, presumably via a dedicated mobile application.

Safety technology integrated into the Sorento includes forward collision avoidance, lane-keeping assistance, lane-following assistance, and a machine-learning-based smart cruise control system tailored to mirror the driver’s acceleration and braking patterns.

While the U.S. market anticipates two engine options for both front-wheel and all-wheel-drive models—a 2.5-liter naturally aspirated four-cylinder and a 2.5-liter turbocharged four-cylinder—Kia Australia, earlier this year, affirmed the utilization of existing engine options.

Down under, choices encompass the 3.5-liter V6 petrol (200kW/332Nm), 2.2-liter turbo-diesel (148kW/440Nm), 1.6-liter turbo-petrol hybrid (169kW/350Nm), and 1.6-liter turbo-petrol plug-in hybrid (195kW/350Nm).

Kia America discloses that the Kia Sorento X-Pro will feature an enhanced version of the 2.5-liter petrol four-cylinder engine, generating 209 kW/421 Nm. However, the fate of this engine option in Australia during the current model lifecycle remains uncertain.

As the Sorento prepares to grace showrooms in the coming weeks, pricing and local specifications are yet to be unveiled. An incremental premium from the existing $47,650 starting price is anticipated for the new range.

Kia Hyundai Channel

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