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2021 Kia Sedona Review

The Kia Sedona offers a cushioned ride, poised handling, and easy-to-use tech features. However, it doesn't match the roominess and fuel economy of some rivals.

Pros & Cons

  • Relaxed ride and handling
  • Intuitive infotainment controls
  • Lengthy warranty
  • Subpar mpg ratings
  • Smaller third row than rivals

Rankings & Awards

The 2021 Kia Sedona's #5 ranking is based on its score within the Minivans category. It was a finalist for our 2021 Best Minivan for the Money award. Currently the Kia Sedona has a score of 8.0 out of 10, which is based on our evaluation of 37 pieces of research and data elements using various sources.

8.0

Overall

Scorecard

Critics' Rating: 7.6
Performance: 7.7
Interior: 7.9
Safety: 9.0
Reliability:
J.D. Power Ratings Logo

Thinking of leasing a Kia Sedona?

The U.S. News Best Price Program saves users an average of $3,206 off the MSRP, and a lower price equals lower monthly lease payments. That means you could see a savings of $90 a month on a 36-month lease.

Is the Kia Sedona a Good Minivan?

Yes, the Kia Sedona is a good minivan. In fact, we named the Sedona a finalist for our 2021 Best Minivan for the Money award due to its solid combination of quality and value. Outside of its disappointing mpg ratings, it doesn’t have any major weaknesses. It has a gentle ride, balanced handling, and a good predicted reliability rating. Purchasing a new Kia Sedona also gets you a long warranty. Cargo space and engine power aren’t exceptional, but both are decent for a van.

Why You Can Trust Us: 37 Reviews Analyzed

To make our car rankings and reviews as consumer-oriented as possible, we do not rely on our personal opinions. Instead, we analyze hard data such as cargo space dimensions, horsepower specs, and predicted reliability, as well as the opinions of the automotive press.

This 2021 Kia Sedona review incorporates applicable research for all models in this generation, which launched for 2015.

U.S. News & World Report has been reviewing cars, trucks, and SUVs since 2007, and our Best Cars team has more than 75 years of combined automotive industry experience. We care about cars, but we care more about providing useful consumer advice. To ensure our impartiality, an independent party handles our advertising, and our editorial team doesn’t accept expensive gifts from automakers.

Should I Buy the Kia Sedona?

With an affordable starting price, intuitive tech, and a comfortable, composed ride, the Sedona is a good value. However, it’s worth looking at the competition. The Chrysler Pacifica has a higher starting price than the Sedona, but it also has more features and offers all-wheel drive. If you’re willing to look beyond minivans, you might consider an SUV like the Kia Sportage. Not only does this SUV share many of the Sedona’s strengths, but it’s likely to have a much more affordable purchase price too.

Find a 2021 Kia Sedona for sale near you »

2020 vs. 2021 Kia Sedona: What's the Difference?

Other than discontinuing the entry-level L trim, Kia made no major changes to the 2021 Sedona.

Compare the 2020 and 2021 Sedona »

Kia last redesigned the Sedona for the 2015 model year. Here are the key changes for the Sedona over the last few years:

  • 2017: gained available automatic emergency braking, Apple CarPlay, and Android Auto
  • 2018: no notable changes
  • 2019: eight-speed automatic transmission replaced six-speed; Android Auto and Apple CarPlay added to standard features list; refreshed exterior styling
  • 2020: no notable changes
  • 2021: base L trim discontinued

If you're considering an older model, be sure to read our 2018 Sedona, 2019 Sedona, and 2020 Sedona reviews to help make your decision. Also, check out our Best New Car Deals and Best New Car Lease Deals pages to learn about savings and discounts you can find on new vehicles.

How Much Does the Kia Sedona Cost?

The base Kia Sedona LX has a starting MSRP of $30,400, which is an average price for a van. The midlevel EX starts at $33,700, and the top-of-the-line SX has a retail price of $41,500.

Check out our U.S. News Best Price Program for great savings at your local Kia dealer. You can also find excellent manufacturer incentives on our Kia deals page.

Kia Sedona Versus the Competition

Kia Sedona vs. Toyota Sienna

The Toyota Sienna has two big advantages over the Sedona: It's available with all-wheel drive and a hybrid powertrain. Additionally, the Toyota comes with lots of standard driver assistance features, and it has better mpg ratings than the Kia. On the other hand, the Sedona has more room for passengers and nicer cabin materials than the Sienna. Choosing between these two minivans is ultimately a matter of preference.

Compare the Sedona and Sienna »

Kia Sedona vs. Honda Odyssey

The Honda Odyssey is a great minivan. It has more standard safety features than the Sedona, including adaptive cruise control and a collision avoidance system. The Odyssey also has more space for passengers and cargo, and it gets significantly better mpg ratings. It has a higher safety score too. On the other hand, the Kia has a lower starting price by around $1,400, as well as a better predicted reliability rating. It also has more standard tech features, including a touch screen with smartphone integration (to get those in the Odyssey, you'll need a higher trim). Still, if it’s in your budget, the Honda is the better vehicle.

Compare the Sedona and Odyssey »

Compare the Sedona, Sienna, and Odyssey »

Sedona Interior: Handsome

Sedona Cargo Space

This vehicle has 33.9 cubic feet of space behind the third row, 78.4 cubic feet behind the second row, and a total of 142 cubic feet with the second and third rows folded. Those are average figures for the class.

The third-row seats fold under the floor, but you must physically remove the second-row seats to get the maximum space. On the plus side, you can acquire some extra room with the Slide-n-Stow feature, which allows the second row to collapse behind the front row. There are also several bins and compartments throughout the cabin for small-item storage. A hands-free power liftgate is available.

How Many People Does the Sedona Seat?

The Sedona is a three-row minivan that seats up to eight people. Cloth upholstery, an eight-way power-adjustable driver’s seat, and Slide-n-Stow second-row seating are standard. Leather upholstery is available, as are an eight-way power-adjustable front passenger seat, heated and ventilated front seats, and a heated steering wheel. There are also 12 cup holders.

The seats are comfortable, and there’s plenty of space in the first two rows. Accessing the third row is easy thanks to the sliding second-row seats, and there’s enough room back there for taller passengers to be comfortable for a short time. On longer trips, though, those seats may start to feel confining.

Sedona and Child Car Seats

The Sedona comes with three complete sets of LATCH connectors: two for the second-row outboard seats and one for the third-row passenger-side seat. There’s also a single tether anchor for the third-row middle seat. The tether anchors can be hard to find, but the setup is otherwise easy to use, which is why the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety awarded it its second-highest rating of Acceptable.

Sedona Interior Quality

This Kia’s cabin boasts an upscale feel thanks to sleek-looking physical controls and soft plastic surfaces, including leather in higher trims, that would look at home in a luxury sedan.

Sedona Infotainment, Bluetooth, and Navigation

Using the UVO infotainment system is easy thanks to a responsive touch screen, smartphone connectivity features, and an abundance of organized physical controls. There’s also available twin 10.1-inch displays that serve as a rear-seat entertainment system. The screens come with wireless headphones and a remote control, as well as internet access through a smartphone connection.

  • Standard infotainment features: a 7-inch touch screen, Apple CarPlay, Android Auto, a six-speaker stereo, Bluetooth, and a USB port
  • Available infotainment features: an 8-inch touch screen, a navigation system, satellite radio, an eight-speaker Harman Kardon sound system, additional USB ports, wireless device charging, and a rear-seat entertainment system
  • Additional standard features: proximity keyless entry
  • Other available features: a sunroof, tri-zone automatic climate control, and push-button start

For more information, read What Is Apple CarPlay? and What Is Android Auto?

Read more about interior »

Sedona Performance: Pretty Good

Sedona Engine

Powering this Kia minivan is a 3.3-liter V6 engine rated at 276 horsepower and 248 pound-feet of torque. It’s paired with an eight-speed automatic transmission. There’s nothing wrong with this setup, as the engine is potent and helps the Sedona accelerate relatively swiftly. However, it’s not as robust as the powertrains in some rivals.

Sedona Gas Mileage

This vehicle earns an EPA-estimated 18 mpg in the city and 24 mpg on the highway. Those are disappointing ratings for the minivan class.

Sedona Ride and Handling

Minivans are often associated with gentle rides, and this Kia is no exception. It’s easy to drive, with a soft suspension and good road manners. Body roll is well-controlled, and the brakes are firm. Front-wheel drive is standard.

Sedona Towing Capacity

When properly equipped, this vehicle can tow up to 3,500 pounds.

Read more about performance »

Does the Kia Sedona Have All-Wheel Drive?

No, the Sedona is front-wheel drive only. For a van with all-wheel drive, consider the Chrysler Pacifica or Toyota Sienna.

Sedona Reliability

Is the Kia Sedona Reliable?

The 2021 Kia Sedona has a good predicted reliability rating of four out of five.

Kia Sedona Warranty

Kia covers the Sedona with a five-year/60,000-mile basic warranty and a 10-year/100,000-mile powertrain warranty. That’s great coverage for a minivan.

Read more about reliability »

Sedona Safety

Sedona Crash Test Results

The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration gave the 2021 Sedona an overall safety rating of five out of five stars, with five stars in the frontal and side crash tests and four stars in the rollover test.

The Insurance Institute for Highway Safety gave the 2021 Sedona the highest rating of Good in five crash tests and the second-highest rating of Acceptable in the passenger-side small overlap front test. The Sedona's headlights received the lowest rating of Poor for forward visibility.

The IIHS uses a different system for evaluating collision avoidance features. It gave this van the highest rating of Superior for its optional front crash prevention system.

Sedona Safety Features

Standard advanced safety features:

  • Rearview camera

Available advanced safety features:

  • Lane departure warning
  • Driver attention monitor
  • Stop-and-go adaptive cruise control
  • Front parking sensors
  • Rear parking sensors
  • Forward collision warning
  • Automatic emergency braking
  • Blind spot monitoring
  • Rear cross traffic alert
  • Automatic high-beam headlights
  • Adaptive headlights
  • Surround-view parking camera system

Read more about safety »

Sedona Dimensions and Weight

The Sedona is 16.8 feet long. Its curb weight ranges from 4,443 to 4,736 pounds, and its gross vehicle weight rating is 6,085 pounds.

Where Is the 2021 Kia Sedona Built?

Kia builds the 2021 Sedona in South Korea.

Which Kia Sedona Model Is Right for Me?

Kia offers the 2021 Sedona in three trim levels: LX, EX, and SX. All three models have eight-passenger seating, a 3.3-liter V6 engine, an eight-speed automatic transmission, and front-wheel drive. The base LX has a decent helping of tech features, but if you want more comfort or safety add-ons, look to the EX. You’ll have to upgrade to the SX model to get a larger touch screen or a navigation system.

Kia Sedona LX

The Kia Sedona LX trim has a base MSRP of $30,400. Standard equipment includes a 7-inch touch screen with Apple CarPlay and Android Auto smartphone integration, a six-speaker stereo, a USB port, Bluetooth, cloth upholstery, an eight-way power-adjustable driver’s seat, Slide-n-Stow second-row seats, proximity keyless entry, alloy wheels, and a rearview camera.

There are no major options for the LX, although you can get remote start for $425.

Kia Sedona EX

EX models retail for $33,700. They come with leather upholstery, heated front seats, a leather-wrapped steering wheel, satellite radio, two more USB ports, wireless device charging, push-button start, front and rear parking sensors, blind spot monitoring, rear cross traffic alert, and larger alloy wheels.

For $1,500, you can add a rear-seat entertainment system. The EX Premium package costs $4,800 and adds a hands-free liftgate, a sunroof, tri-zone automatic climate control, an eight-way power-adjustable front passenger seat, and a ventilated glove box. Also included in this package are several driver assistance features, such as forward collision warning, automatic emergency braking, an electronic parking brake, lane departure warning, a driver condition monitor, and adaptive cruise control.

Kia Sedona SX

The SX (MSRP: $41,500) gains an 8-inch touch screen, navigation, an eight-speaker Harman Kardon stereo, a heated steering wheel, ventilated front seats, and all of the EX’s options listed above. The SX also features adaptive headlights, automatic high-beam headlights, and a surround-view parking camera system. The rear-seat entertainment system remains available.

Check out our U.S. News Best Price Program for great savings at your local Kia dealer. You can also find excellent manufacturer incentives on our Kia deals page.

See 2021 Kia Sedona specs and trims »

The Final Call

The 2021 Kia Sedona is a well-rounded minivan. It provides a gentle ride, balanced handling, and sufficient engine power. Inside, you’ll find a handsomely designed cabin and a straightforward infotainment system. To top it off, the Sedona comes with a longer warranty than most other minivans. However, many of its rivals are more fuel-efficient or provide roomier third-row seating.

Don’t just take our word for it. Check out comments from some of the reviews that drive our rankings and analysis.

  • "Minivans are a great way of moving families and all their stuff, which is why the 2021 Kia Sedona makes such a smart choice. Available in three trim levels, the 2021 Sedona minivan undercuts many of its competitors in entry-level pricing, but the base LX is far from a stripped-down model. The Sedona isn’t quite as roomy as the Honda Odyssey, but it can carry up to eight passengers. A 3.3-liter V6 with 276 horsepower is standard, and the Sedona also offers a better warranty. Kia, however, doesn’t offer many advanced driver assists on the lower-priced Sedona LX. Nor is fuel economy a strong point for the 2021 Kia Sedona." -- Kelley Blue Book
  • "While crossover SUVs continue to lure buyers away from other types of automobiles, the Kia Sedona minivan soldiers on as an utterly capable vehicle well suited for family life. It offers excellent versatility and value, plus an enticing blend of amenities and available safety features. It’s also backed by a fantastic 10-year/100,000-mile powertrain warranty. For moving kids and cargo, minivans can’t be beaten." -- Autotrader
  • "Certainly, the Sedona does all the standard minivan stuff well. A strong V6 engine, generous cabin accommodations and impressive seat comfort help move seven or eight passengers effortlessly." -- Edmunds (2019)

Buying

Expert Advice

Last Updated: January 15, 2021

Dismal Sales: The Kia Sedona finished the year as the slowest selling model in the minivan class. Even the Dodge Grand Caravan, ranked second to last in minivan sales and soon to be discontinued, sold almost three times better than the Sedona last year. Kia dealerships moved 17.2 percent fewer Sedona models in 2020 relative to 2019.

Research more buying advice »
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