Going green is going to cost you some green as Kia has announced the 2023 Sorento Plug-In Hybrid (PHEV) will start at $49,890.
That’s a significant jump from the 2022 model, which started at $45,190, and the increase can largely be explained by the elimination of the entry-level SX variant. Now, the model is offered exclusively in SX-P guise and it’s $1,800 more than its predecessor.
Unfortunately, buyers won’t find much new as updates are limited to retractable rear sunshades and a 115-volt inverter that can be used for powering items such as a laptop. The only other new addition is HomeLink, which was curiously absent from last year’s model.
While the price increase will likely give buyers pause, the Sorento PHEV comes nicely equipped with a GT-Line front bumper and 19-inch alloy wheels. They’re joined by LED lighting units, rain-sensing wipers, and a standard panoramic sunroof.
Moving into the cabin, there’s perforated leather front seats with heating and ventilation as well as power adjustment on both sides. The model also has heated second-row captain’s chairs and a split-folding third-row.
Once seated behind the heated leather steering wheel, drivers will find themselves looking at a 12.3-inch digital instrument cluster and a 10.25-inch infotainment system with GPS navigation as well as Android Auto and Apple CarPlay. Other highlights include a Bose audio system, a wireless smartphone charger, and a dual-zone automatic climate control system.
On the safety front, there’s an alphabet soup of driver assistance systems including Smart Cruise Control with Stop and Go, Highway Driving Assist, and Forward Collision Avoidance Assist with Junction Assist. They’re joined by Blind-Spot Collision Avoidance Assist, Rear Cross-Traffic Collision Avoidance Assist, Rear Occupant Alert, and Safe Exit Assist. Rounding out the highlights are High Beam Assist, Lane Departure Warning, Lane Keep Assist, and Lane Following Assist.
Power is provided by a plug-in hybrid system that consists of a turbocharged 1.6-liter four-cylinder engine, an electric motor, and a 14 kWh battery pack. This setup gives the crossover all-wheel drive as well as a combined output of 261 hp (195 kW / 265 PS) and 258 lb-ft (349 Nm) of torque.
While the crossover isn’t fast, as the dash to 62 mph (100 km/h) takes 8.7 seconds, it can travel on electricity alone for up to 32 miles (51 km). The Sorento PHEV can also be recharged in around 3.5 hours using a Level 2 charger.