Frankfurt, Germany - Kia has released details of its facelifted 2018 Sorento seven-seater, which will make its public debut at the upcoming Frankfurt motor show.

While most of the changes, inside and out, are cosmetic, there’s also a new eight-speed transmission for the 2.2-litre diesel variant and some interesting updates for the safety suite and in-car connectivity.

Starting at the front, there are new bumpers, LED headlights, and a new dark metallic finish on the ‘tiger-nose’ grille, with matching LED tail-lights over a new rear bumper, and a new design for the Sorento’s range of 17, 18 and 19 inch alloy wheels.

The flight deck gets a fresh instrument cluster, a new liquid-crystal climate control display, a new audio-visual navigation system, and a redesigned steering wheel. The car’s interior has also been retrimmed with more soft touch materials and leather.

The new Sorento comes with a wireless charging station for your smartphone in the centre console and a 20cm touchscreen that displays TomTom-powered navigation as well as Apple CarPlay and Android Auto. Available to order will be a 640 watt, 10 speaker Harman/Kardon surround-sound system.

GT Line

This is Kia’s name for a new range-topping trim level that includes four-lamp LED fog-lights, red brake callipers, a more prominent sill step and, for the diesels, chromed dual exhaust tips. The cabin boasts quilted seats in black leather with grey contrast stitching and embroidered GT Line emblems, satin chrome trim elements and special gearshift paddles.

Gearing up

The 2018 Sorento 2.2 turbodiesel is the first SUV to be fitted with Kia’s own eight-speed automatic transmission, replacing the previous six-speeder, although a six-speed manual is still available.

It also offers a choice of four drive modes - Eco, Comfort, Sport and Smart - which modulate the shift pattern accordingly, as well as the weighting of the power steering, while Smart mode adapts to the driver’s steering behaviour as road conditions change, automatically switching between Eco, Comfort and Sport modes.

Drive Wise

The new Sorento will be available in Europe with an active safety suite called Drive Wise that includes driver attention warning, sounding a chime and displaying a graphic in the instrument binnacle if your steering becomes erratic, lane-keeping assist, auto high beams, and full LED adaptive headlights.

No decision has yet been made as to whether or when the facelifted Sorento will be released in South Africa. As soon as we hear, so will you.

IOL Motoring
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