Kia Motors has announced the All-New Kia Sorento Plug-in Hybrid for the first time, an ultra-low emissions version of the brand’s SUV. The new model combines absolute practicality with low running costs and high power, and increases the appeal for the D-segment SUV.
The Sorento Plug-in Hybrid is the second electrified model in the all-new Sorento line-up, and sits alongside the low-emissions Sorento Hybrid. The new variant combines a powerful turbocharged petrol engine with a high capacity battery pack and high output electric motor, giving drivers the ability to complete shorter drives on all-electric, zero-emissions power.
The Plug-in Hybrid model accomplishes this while maximising space and adaptability, with the advanced platform that underpins the fourth-generation Sorento designed from the outset to accommodate electrified powertrains. The new platform and large body ensure the Plug-in Hybrid model holds the generous cabin and luggage space and five- and seven-seat layouts that define other models in the line-up.
In the first half of 2020, electrified models – including mild-hybrid, hybrid, battery electric and plug-in hybrid vehicles – accounted for around one in four of all Kia vehicles sold in Europe*, with sales speeding up year-on-year
Sales of the Sorento Plug-in Hybrid will commence in select European markets in early 2021, with Kia’s unique seven-year, 100,000 miles warranty as standard. UK on-sale date, pricing and specification will be announced in due course.
High-power, low emissions
The Sorento Plug-in Hybrid is the lowest-emitting andmost powerful model in the Sorento line-up in Europe.The core of its ‘turbo hybrid’ powertrain is its 1.6-litre T-GDi (Turbocharged Gasoline Direct injection) engine, which, on its own, produces up to 180ps and 265Nm torque. The engine is paired with a high-capacity 13.8kWh lithium-ion polymer battery pack and a powerful electric motor which produces 66.9kW and 304Nm torque.
Combined, these powertrain components enable the Sorento Plug-in Hybrid’s powertrain to produce up to 265ps and 350Nm torque.
The Sorento Plug-in Hybrid’s all-electric range will be adequate to enable drivers to complete most short drives on electric power alone. Its all-electric range and CO2 emissions are pending homologation and will be confirmed by Kia closer to the car’s on-sale date.
Power is sent to all four wheels through a six-speed automatic transmission. The transmission allows the full power of the engine and motor to be transferred in parallel, with minimal loss of energy. The result is immediate acceleration response at any speed, and direct access to available battery power at higher speeds.
Design and packaging
Kia’s new midsized SUV platform, introduced with the fourth-generation Sorento and underpinning the new Plug-in Hybrid model, plays a key role in accommodating the new powertrain. Its innovative structure and layout maximises space for passengers and luggage, with the battery pack located beneath the floor of the cabin.
As a result, the Sorento Plug-in Hybrid offers generous space for up to five or seven passengers like its Hybrid and diesel counterparts. It also offers one of the largest cargo capacities in its class, with the larger battery pack not taking up significant amounts of boot space – up to 809 litres (for seven-seat models) or 898 litres (five-seat models) with two rows of seats in place. In seven-seat models, with all seven seats in place, boot space is 175 litres (compared to 179 litres for its Hybrid counterpart).
Visually, Sorento Plug-in Hybrid models maintain the same modern exterior design as other models in the line-up, with ‘eco plug-in’ badges and a charging port on the rear quarters standing out as the only points of differentiation.
The same comprehensive range of ‘connected car’ and safety technology
The Sorento Plug-in Hybrid offers the same high level of technological innovation as other Sorento models. The touchscreen infotainment system allows full, seamless smartphone integration with Apple CarPlay™ and Android Auto™. A powerful 12-speaker BOSE® surround-sound audio system is also available, carrying a more immersive sound to all passengers, as well as a cabin Mood Lighting system, with up to 64 colours for users to choose from.
It also offers Kia’s innovative UVO Connect telematics system, connecting drivers by providing invaluable information via the in-car touchscreen and on their smartphone. Featuring Kia Live services, it provides drivers with live traffic information, weather forecasts, points of interest, and details of potential on- and off-street parking (including price, location and parking availability) – in addition to nearby vehicle charging points. UVO Connect also enables drivers to send route directions to their car before a journey, and check the location of their vehicle at any time.
UK specification will be announced in due course.
The All-New Sorento Plug-in Hybrid will be built for Europe and many other markets at Kia’s Hwasung manufacturing facility in Korea. European sales are due to commence in early 2021 in select markets. Every model sold in Europe will offer Kia’s unique seven-year, 100,000 miles warranty as standard, extending to cover the battery pack and motor. UK on-sale date, pricing and specification will be announced in due course.