Kia Australia is reopening orders for its Sorento Hybrid and Plug-in Hybrid family SUVs, with deliveries to commence during the second quarter of 2024 – just don’t expect a lot of them.
Brand executives told media at the launch of the facelifted V6 petrol and turbo-diesel versions that the electrified variants would return solely in GT-Line trim, and be very limited in volume like the pre-update models.
As before, the Sorento HEV will be available in both front-wheel drive and all-wheel drive versions, while the PHEV is AWD only. Supply is expected to remain at similar levels to the outgoing range, meaning roughly 20 HEV units and 10 PHEVs per month.
Pricing and specifications are still to be confirmed, but the GT-Line models saw price increases of $3700 for both V6 FWD and Diesel AWD variants. We’d wager the HEV and PHEV models will see similar markups.
We can also expect a full localised ride and handling tune – something the pre-facelift HEV and PHEV weren’t subjected to – as well as a range of cosmetic and technology upgrades in line with the wider facelifted range.
The hybrid models should have a different set of wheels and tyres compared to the ICE versions, as Korean-market versions only offer up to 18-inch rims compared to the 20-inch rolling stock of petrol and diesel models.
Power in the Kia Sorento Hybrid comes from a 1.6-litre turbocharged four-cylinder petrol engine teamed with a six-speed automatic, as well as a 44kW/264Nm electric motor and 1.49kWh lithium-ion polymer battery.
System outputs are rated at 169kW and 350Nm, which is a little down on power compared to the PHEV’s. A Toyota Kluger Hybrid, by comparison, offers 184kW.
The Plug-in Hybrid uses a larger 13.8kWh water-cooled li-ion battery and a more powerful 67kW/304Nm e-motor, for system outputs of 195kW and 350Nm.
The PHEV can also run on pure electric power, up to 57km on the WLTP combined cycle and up to 70km on a pure urban cycle – at least based on the pre-facelifted spec. It’s unclear whether the facelift will bring any changes.
Kia Australia continues to battle with severely restricted supply of its electrified Sorento models due to demand from larger markets with emissions regulations. Australian models come from then same factory that supplies Europe and North America – although the US builds its own ICE models.
Stay tuned to CarExpert for all the latest.
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