Is Kia Sorento Reliable?

Kia Sorento Reliability

Kia has sustained an impressive record of reliability. It is highly expected that the Kia Sorento maintains the same standard set by the brand. But can we say that the Kia Sorento is a reliable car?

Yes, Kia Sorento is reliable, with amazing fuel economy. Although the Kia Sorento doesn’t have the best reliability ratings for cars in its class, you will enjoy the benefits of the low maintenance cost, nice engine and performance, and great driving dynamics.

However, there are a few things you should look out for before buying a Kia Sorento. You must avoid its Dual Clutch Transmission (DCT) systems. They are problematic, with chances of breaking down when you get up to 10.5k miles.

You can avoid this hazard by being careful with the trim level that you choose. This includes being mindful of the driving conditions you mount on Kia Sorento’s DCT systems. If you can keep up with this, you are sure to enjoy a reliable car.

Let’s explore Kia Sorento’s reliability and some important things you should know about their reliability.

Are Kia Sorentos Reliable?

Kia Sorentos are reliable cars. They have high reliability and cool safety ratings, and you will spend less on repairs and maintenance.

According to Repairpal, Kia Sorento earns a reliability rating of 4.0/5.0, which keeps it in the 12th position out of 26 compact SUVs. This might not be the highest rating in its class, but not entirely bad either.

The cost of repairs and maintenance is also low on Kia Sorentos, and you can bank on the high dependability scores of Kia. Although the Kia Sorento had recalls in 2021, there are lots of amazing things about Kia’s little SUV.

With sleek designs, responsive handling, nice acceleration, and fewer chances of breaking down, there are also lesser chances of severe problems.

The Kia Sorento offers high fuel economy, and to ensure a reduction in emissions, the Kia brand adopts a hybrid model. Whichever way it is viewed, Kia Sorento is one of the few good cars that unleashes high power but less emissions; a very efficient system.

The safety ratings of the Kia Sorento are not the best in the industry. They haven’t earned the IIHS safety award, but it is important to note that they passed the crash test evaluation.

The engines of the Kia Sorento are great, with up to 281hp and 311lb-ft torque. This includes an 8-speed auto transmission, with options for the Dual Clutch transmission. Although there are reports that these systems are problematic, they deliver better speed and performance.

Why Kia Sorentos are Considered Reliable

1. Fuel Economy

Kia Sorento has reliable gas mileage. However, the gas mileage varies on different trim levels and engines. The 2.5L four-cylinder returns gas mileage of 24/29 mpg for city and highway, while the turbocharged 2.5L engine returns 22/29 mpg for city and highway.

Kia offers variations for a hybrid model and PHEV models. Irrespective of the variations, all Kia Sorento cars hold a tank fuel capacity of 67 liters. This increases the gas mileage achieved by the model.

The gas mileage of the Kia Sorento makes it cheap to run the car. You simply have to choose between Self-charging hybrid models, plug-in hybrids, and the traditional diesel system.

2. Low Maintenance/Repair Cost

Although Kia Sorento is initially costly to purchase, they have a cheap repair/maintenance cost. The annual average repair/maintenance cost for Kia Sorento is $553. This is cheaper than the average repair and maintenance cost of $651 for all car models.

Aside from the cheap maintenance and repair cost, Kia Sorento also has a low frequency of repairs. You get an average 0.869 frequency score for repairs and maintenance. It is important to note that the Kia Sorento wasn’t made of cheap materials. Not on top of its reliability ratings, but you have the assurance of driving them for a long time without many repairs.

JD Power gives the 2022 Kia Sorento a Reliability score of 77/100, with an 8.0/10 rating from Us car news. Number 10. in midsize SUVs, 33 in crossover SUVs, and 13 in three-row SUVs; these ratings are possible because of their overall performance.

3. Engine and Performance

Kia Sorento offers drivers the confusing option of choosing between a fuel-efficient engine or the turbocharged engine. Both engines achieve an amazing level of fuel efficiency, but there is a better fuel efficiency on the 2.5L four-cylinder than the turbocharged 2.5L engine.

Aside from the fuel efficiency of the Kia Sorento, you get a good suspension, stable handling, and precise steering. You can easily tell that Kia engineers did a great job on the suspension.

The driving dynamics, aerodynamics, speed, and power of these engines are superb. You get to choose between the 8-speed automatic transmission and the dual-clutch transmission. This is without mentioning the 2,000-pound towing capacity of the Kia Sorento.

4. Durability

Kia Sorento is not a perfect car, but you should expect great durability from the car. All trim levels of Kia Sorento are durable. Aside from the durability offered, you have a 10-year/100,000 miles warranty coverage to minimize your expenses on maintenance and repairs.

The powertrains are strong, and there is less severity and frequency of repairs. On an overall scale, you should expect your Kia Sorento to last up to 200,000 miles. This is greatly dependent on your level of maintenance and repairs.

The truth is, Kia Sorento isn’t the most reliable car in its class. There are better options, but if you choose to stick with them, you can rely on their durability.

You might notice rusts on your Kia Sorento after 3 – 4 years. This usually occurs in the tailgate region. However, you have Kia’s five-year warranty to rely on.

5. Design

Design is one of the few things that keeps Kia Sorento on top. These cars have a design that everyone will appreciate. The interiors, exteriors, and comfort, Kia Sorento has reliable designs.

The Kia Sorento sits on a monocoque chassis, an overall 10mm length, but with a bigger gap between the rear and front wheels. This gives the wheelbase a longer base that assures stability.

There are improvements in ergonomics and aerodynamics, impacting how the car steers, its accuracy, and the firm suspension always ready to deliver.

Kia fitted the Sorento with a unique Terrain mode driving system that gives you a wide range of options to choose from, depending on where you are driving through; mud, snow, or sand.

With the Kia Sorento, you get lots of space, technology, simple control interfaces, and an amazing driving experience. This is without failing to mention its efficient engines.

The dashboards are classy, have fresh looks, and have nice digital integration; you are getting a closer definition of Luxury from the Kia Sorento as seen in Mercedes cars.

Aside from the air vents that we feel need an upgrade, Kia Sorento's design doesn’t feel cheap. There are enough interior spaces in the car, designed in a form where each passenger has their own cup space.

The legroom and headroom are great, with complaints about the space in the third row; Kia has increased the space in its new Kia Sorento. This gives everyone enough knee room, regardless of your seated row. There are also USB charging ports for each passenger.

There is up to 45cu-ft cargo space if the third-row seat is folded, 12.6cu-ft overall space, and 75.6 from the front seat. You have enough boot space to load up 616 liters, although there are reductions in the hybrid model.

Kia Sorento Reliability: PROS

  • Good Fuel economy
  • Great Overall Performance
  • Nice Interiors
  • Great Cargo Space
  • Hybrid Model available

Kia Sorento Reliability: CONS

  • Bad dual-clutch transmission
  • No High safety ratings
  • Not the best reliability ratings


Kia Sorentos started as an expensive car. The prices were so high that Consumer reports advised against purchasing them. The reliability of these cars is not bad, but you shouldn’t have extremely high standards for them.

Euro NCAP awarded the Kia Sorento a five-star safety rating, with a four-star overall rating from NHTSA. There is no top safety pick award from IIHS. You will enjoy an array of safety features on the Kia Sorento, just as you will on any Kia premium car.

From Forward collision avoidance systems to emergency and tire pressure monitoring systems and even vehicle stability management systems, Kia Sorento has technologies to guide and keep you safe. To make the best choice, you must choose according to the trim level that matches your needs.

Frequently Asked Questions

What is the life expectancy of a Kia Sorento?

Kia Sorento has a life expectancy of 13 years and can last up to 200,000 miles. You must understand that there are no guarantees on how long your Kia car will last. This greatly depends on how big you are on maintenance and repairs, ensuring you don’t abuse the car with rough rides.

Does the Kia Sorento have transmission problems?

Yes. Kia Sorento has transmission problems, especially with the dual-clutch transmission. These transmissions are usually problematic, ranging from shifting delays, issues with acceleration, or even noise from under your car.