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2017 Kia Sorento Review

The 2017 Kia Sorento is one of our top-ranked used midsize SUVs. It combines outstanding safety and predicted reliability ratings with an impressive, high-quality cabin.

Pros & Cons

  • Easy-to-use infotainment system
  • Potent available V6 engine
  • Stable handling
  • Quality interior
  • Weak standard engine
  • Limited options for base model

New for 2017

  • Apple CarPlay and Android Auto became available
  • New safety features include adaptive headlights and automatic emergency braking

Rankings & Awards

The 2017 Kia Sorento's #1 ranking is based on its score within the 2017 Affordable Midsize SUVs category. It was the winner of our 2017 Best 3-Row SUV for the Money award and the winner of our 2017 Best New Cars for Teens award and the winner of our 2020 Best Used Cars for Teens award. Currently the Kia Sorento has a score of 8.6 out of 10, which is based on our evaluation of 24 pieces of research and data elements using various sources.




Critics' Rating: 8.8
Performance: 7.4
Interior: 7.6
Total Cost of Ownership: 8.7
Safety: 9.8
J.D. Power Ratings Logo

2017 Kia Sorento Overview

Is the 2017 Kia Sorento a Good Used SUV?

The 2017 Kia Sorento is a very good SUV, whether you choose the standard 2-row model or the available 3-row model. The Sorento provides a comfortable cabin, an easy-to-use infotainment system, and plenty of space for both cargo and passengers in 2-row models. If equipped, the third row is best suited for children.

The base engine is underwhelming, but the available V6 engine moves this midsize SUV up to speed quickly. We named it a 2020 Best Used Midsize SUV for Teens because of its combination of overall quality, predicted reliability, high safety ratings, and accident-avoidance technologies.

Why You Can Trust Us

We do not base our used car rankings and reviews on our personal opinions. Instead, we collect information like safety and reliability reports, total cost of ownership estimates, and the views of the automotive press. We analyzed two dozen professional evaluations for this 2017 Kia Sorento review to help you make an informed buying decision.

Our experienced team of writers, editors, and analysts has been ranking and reviewing the best cars, trucks, crossovers, and SUVs since 2007. We remain unbiased by refusing pricey gifts and trips from auto manufacturers and employing an independent agency to manage the advertising on our site.

How Much Is the 2017 Kia Sorento?

Based on almost 1,900 listings for the 2017 Kia Sorento on our site, list prices range from $18,500 to $27,000. The average list price is $21,800. Prices vary depending on the vehicle's condition, mileage, features, and location.

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How Much Does the 2017 Kia Sorento Cost to Own?

The 2017 Sorento’s estimated five-year costs for gas, insurance, maintenance, and repairs is $24,368. That’s below-average for the midsize SUV segment.

Is It Better to Buy a Used or New Sorento?

The 2018 Kia Sorento is little different from the 2017 model. The 2017 Sorento the better choice because you’ll save money and get a nearly identical SUV to the 2018 model. If you buy the 2017, however, be sure it’s a certified pre-owned model. Kia’s 10-year/100,000-mile powertrain warranty is fully transferable only if you buy a CPO model.

Read about the new Kia Sorento »

There are no highly ranked 2018 midsize SUVs you can purchase for the average list price of the 2017 Sorento. To find one near that price point, you’ll have to drop down to the compact SUV class. The Subaru Forester (starting price of $22,795) and the Hyundai Tucson ($22,500) are both good vehicles. The Forester comes standard with all-wheel drive and the Subaru EyeSight bundle of active safety features, including automatic high-beam assist, blind spot monitoring, adaptive cruise control, and pre-collision braking. The Hyundai has excellent safety and predicted reliability ratings.   

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Which Model Year of the Kia Sorento Is Best?

The 2017 Sorento is part of a generation that launched in 2016. The 2017 model adds Apple CarPlay, Android Auto, adaptive headlights, and automatic emergency braking to the options list. If you can do without these features, consider saving money with a 2016. We don’t recommend buying earlier models. They have less composure on the road and don’t handle as well as 2016-and-later models.

Compare the 2015, 2016, and 2017 Sorento »

How Reliable Is the 2017 Kia Sorento?

The 2017 Kia Sorento has an excellent predicted reliability rating of 4.5 out of five from J.D. Power.

Read more about Sorento reliability »

2017 Kia Sorento Recalls

As of this writing, the 2017 Sorento has two recalls. The first deals with an improperly heat-treated crankshaft, while the second concerns trailer brake lights staying illuminated (when they shouldn’t).

See more information on Kia Sorento safety recalls »

Which Used Kia Sorento Model Is Right for Me?

The base L trim is pretty bare bones in terms of standard features. The LX adds features like roof rails, rapid-charge USB ports, and an acoustic windshield. The EX is a good choice with its standard leather seats, heated front seats, and the UVO infotainment system. For more, the SX offers a 10-speaker audio system, navigation, and 10-way power adjustable driver's seat with 4-way power lumbar support and seat extension.

See 2017 Kia Sorento trims and specs »

What Does Kia's Certified Pre-Owned Warranty Cover?

Kia offers a certified pre-owned program for vehicles five years old or less and with fewer than 60,000 miles. Eligibility is determined by the vehicle’s initial sale date. Kia’s certified pre-owned vehicles receive the balance of the original 10-year/100,000-mile new-car powertrain warranty as well as a one-year/12,000-mile comprehensive Platinum warranty on non-powertrain parts. Every CPO Kia must pass a 164-point inspection. Additional benefits like towing and roadside assistance may be available, so read the Kia warranty page carefully.

According to our analysis, Kia has one of the best CPO programs among affordable car manufacturers.

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How Safe Is the Sorento?

The Insurance Institute for Highway Safety named the 2017 Sorento a Top Safety Pick. It earned the highest rating of Good in all crash tests. The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration gave the Sorento five out of five stars overall with five stars in the front and side crash tests. It earned four stars in the rollover test.

See Sorento safety scores »

2017 Kia Sorento Versus the Competition

Which Is Better: 2017 Kia Sorento or 2017 Hyundai Santa Fe?

Like the Sorento, the 2017 Hyundai Santa Fe comes in 2- and 3-row configurations. The base Sorento has a nicer interior than the base Santa Fe. The Kia also has one of the highest predicted reliability in the segment, even though the Santa Fe’s is good at 3.5 out of five. The Santa Fe has a sportier ride and is a good midsize SUV overall. However, the Sorento – with its comfortable, spacious interior and smooth ride – is the better choice.

Which Is Better: 2017 Kia Sorento or 2017 Honda Pilot?

The 2017 Honda Pilot consistently ranks high among midsize SUVs. However, the Sorento is the better choice unless you need lots of cargo space. The Sorento has slightly higher safety ratings and a better predicted reliability rating than the Honda. The Sorento is also projected to cost less to operate over five years. Still, the Pilot gives you more cargo space than the Sorento.

Which Is Better: 2017 Kia Sorento or 2017 Kia Sportage?

You might consider downsizing to a compact 2017 Kia Sportage. Though it has less cargo space, the Sportage offers many of the same features as the Sorento, along with superior fuel economy and better handling composure. Although it’s smaller overall, the Sportage might be a better fit that also saves you some money.

Compare the Sorento, Santa Fe, and Pilot »

2017 Sorento Performance

How Does the 2017 Kia Sorento Drive?

The 2017 Kia Sorento drives well with good steering feedback. (The SX trim with an upgraded steering mechanism is especially sporty.) In addition to responsive handling, the Sorento also delivers a comfortable ride. The 2017 Sorento has a 185-horsepower four-cylinder engine that provides inadequate acceleration. An available turbocharged 240-horsepower engine fares better, while the available 290-horsepower V6 is the best of the bunch.

Does the 2017 Kia Sorento Get Good Gas Mileage?

The base Sorento’s 185-horsepower four-cylinder engine has an EPA rating of 21 mpg in the city and 28 mpg on the highway, which are good numbers for the class. The all-wheel-drive Sorento maintains the same around-town mileage but drops to 25 mpg on the highway. The 240-horsepower, turbocharged four-cylinder engine has a rating of 20/27 mpg city/highway, while the 290-horsepower V6 engine drops down to 18/25 mpg city/highway.

2017 Kia Sorento Towing Capacity

When properly equipped, front-wheel-drive Sorento models have a towing capacity up to 3,500 pounds. All-wheel-drive models can tow up to 5,000 pounds.

Read more about Sorento performance »

2017 Sorento Interior

How Many People Does the 2017 Sorento Seat?

In its standard configuration, the 2017 Sorento seats five. An available third row bumps seating to seven. Second-row legroom is good and the seats slide and recline. The available third row is best suited for children.

How Many Car Seats Fit in the 2017 Kia Sorento?

The Sorento’s second row has a full set of LATCH connectors in the outboard seats, and a tether anchor in the middle seat. The 2017 Sorento’s LATCH system has the second-highest rating of Acceptable from the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety. The tether anchors may be confused with other hardware, according to IIHS.

2017 Kia Sorento Features

The base 2017 Sorento has few features beyond satellite radio, Bluetooth, and a USB port. Available upgrades include a 4.3 inch touch-screen audio display, Kia’s UVO infotainment system, an 8-inch touch screen, Apple CarPlay and Android Auto smartphone integration, navigation, HD Radio, a 10-speaker Infinity sound system, a three-prong power outlet, push-button start, remote start, and dual-zone automatic climate control. The UVO infotainment system is easy to use.

See 2017 Kia Sorento specs »

Read more about Sorento interior »

2017 Kia Sorento Dimensions

Kia Sorento Cargo Space

Cargo capacity in the 2017 Kia Sorento is average for the midsize SUV segment. There is 38.8 cubic feet behind the second row and around 73 cubic feet with all seats folded. Models with a third row have 11.3 cubic feet of space behind the last row.

2017 Sorento Length and Weight

The Sorento is about 15.5 feet long. The curb weight ranges from 3,704 to 4,343 pounds, depending on the engine and drivetrain.

Where Was the 2017 Kia Sorento Built?

The 2017 Sorento was built in Georgia.

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