Kia Sorento Plug-in Hybrid added to model range

Kia Sorento PHEV joins a growing list of practical envirocar alternatives to straight petrol or diesel engines and what are way more practical that pure EV solutions.

The Kia Sorento Plug-in Hybrid (PHEV) GT-Line is an ultra-low emissions version of the brand’s flagship global SUV. Designed and engineered to take on everything life throws at it, the all-new Sorento PHEV GT-Line combines supreme practicality with the lowest emissions in the Sorento range.

2021 Kia Sorento PHEV

  • Equivalent all-electric range of up to 68 kilometres 
  • PHEV produces 36 g/km of CO2 in normal use (WLTP weighted combined)
  • Award-winning Sorento platform accommodates PHEV powertrain while providing generous space for seven occupants
  • New ‘Terrain Mode’ enhances all-wheel-drive capability

2021 Kia Sorento PHEV

The award-winning Sorento is the only vehicle in the mainstream Large SUV segment to offer petrol, diesel and plug-in hybrid drivetrain options. The Sorento PHEV GT-Line is the first electrified model in the Sorento line-up with its powertrain combining a turbocharged engine with a high-capacity battery pack and high output electric motor. With a fully charged battery pack, the powertrain enables drivers to complete shorter drives on all-electric, zero-emissions power.

This innovative platform that underpins the fourth generation Sorento has been designed from the outset to accommodate electrified powertrains. The platform and large body ensure it retains the generous cabin and luggage space and five-and-seven-seat layouts that define other models in the line-up. 

“The Sorento PHEV promises to push boundaries as one of the most versatile, practical and spacious plug-in hybrid SUVs on the market, and with the Sorento being an award-winning package, I couldn’t think of a better time to introduce the PHEV into the line-up,” said Kia’s Chief Operating Officer, Damien Meredith.

2021 Kia Sorento PHEV

“Along with Niro range, the Sorento PHEV is another stride in the right direction towards a greener future. With the introduction of Sorento HEV and the highly anticipated EV6 next year, Kia will be lifting the electric vehicle benchmark to an all-time high.”

The platform of the Sorento is based around a compact engine bay structure creating greater cabin space between the axles. Not only does this enable the PHEV’s swept-back design, but the structure and layout mean the Sorento is able to accommodate a plug-in hybrid powertrain for the first time. 

2021 Kia Sorento PHEV

Sorento PHEV’s ‘Smartstream’ 1.6-litre turbocharged engine and transmission mounted electric motor offers optimal fuel efficiency with impressive power (195kW) and torque (350Nm) outputs. The electric motor producing 304Nm of torque is mounted between the petrol engine and transmission allowing the full output of both the petrol engine and/or electric motor to be transferred in parallel through the transmission with minimal energy loss. 

2021 Kia Sorento PHEV

With the integrated Type 2 charging socket, you can use the standard 3-pin cable supplied with the PHEV – Type 2 to Type 2 cable or the charging point’s own cable. Whichever you choose, simply plug-in and the LED light located near the charging point will present the charging status and battery level making it ideal for knowing the status of the battery immediately. A bespoke charging cable for charging at home from a normal household socket will be provided as well as an in-cable control box to help moderate the amperage to ensure complete safety.

2021 Kia Sorento PHEV

New for the fourth generation, and standard on the PHEV GT-Line variant, the latest Sorento models offer enhanced all-terrain capability thanks to a new Terrain Mode. Controlled using the Mode Select dial on the centre console, drivers can choose from ‘Mud’, ‘Snow’ and ‘Sand’ modes. The systems automatically optimises the drivetrain to best suit each scenario, adjusting engine torque output and distribution as well as stability control characteristics. Terrain Mode also adjusts shift timings for the six-speed automatic to suit different surfaces.

2021 Kia Sorento PHEV BATTERY

Energy storage is managed by a 14kWh Lithium-ion polymer battery pack located under the vehicle floor. The large battery capacity allows the PHEV to travel up to 68kms on electric power. Monitoring the various functions of the Sorento’s electric drive systems is made easy by the clear displays of the battery and charging status on the class-leading 10.25” navigation display and 12.3” driver digital cluster. 

2021 Kia Sorento PHEV

The 10.25” navigation unit displays nearby charging station locations and information. The screen can be split in two for easy access to applications, vehicle information and multimedia content and allows you to control the 12-speaker BOSE® premium surround system which, like all Sorento variants, is compatible with Android Auto and Apple CarPlay.

The 12.3” driver digital cluster is an intelligently designed, customisable supervision cluster providing the status of the hybrid charging system, including fuel and battery levels and use. Its high-resolution screen makes it easy to read a wealth of information at a glance.

Being the first electrified Sorento means that EV and HEV mode is interchangeable. In EV mode, ideal for urban driving – it uses only electric energy for zero-fuel, emissions-free driving. In HEV mode, it operates both energy sources, the engine and the electric motor simultaneously. 

2021 Kia Sorento PHEV

For Kia’s General Manager of Product Planning, Roland Rivero, the fourth generation Sorento is a game-changer in the Australian market.

“The Sorento has been a great success in Australia providing five-star safety and exceptional convenience levels in its segment, and the PHEV will continue to take the story forward,” said Rivero.

“While the Sorento was initially launched in 2002 as a utilitarian body on frame all-terrain vehicle, it quickly evolved into a more luxurious monocoque package and now, in its fourth generation, Sorento has been transformed into something even more desirable.

“Supply limitations impacting the automotive industry as a whole, combined with Sorento’s global popularity, has steered us to offering the Sorento PHEV in only the top of the range GT-Line for now.”

The all-new Sorento PHEV GT-Line will be fitted with 19” alloy wheels and will be available in seven exterior colours. As a GT-Line AWD offering, Sorento PHEV will include a black interior trim coupled with Quilted Nappa leather-appointed seats.

2021 Kia Sorento PHEV

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About Rob Fraser 2486 Articles
Rob Fraser – General dogsbody & Director Rob is the founder of the business. He constantly mutters something about way too many red wines one evening being to blame. Often known for taking the 4WD in the driveway over the sports car, he has travelled pretty much everywhere in Australia and when he is bored goes for a drive. He first learned to drive on the farm in a left hand drive WW11 Jeep when he was 11, and was hooked on 4WDriving way back then. In addition to 4WD he is an avid motoring enthusiast and has maintained a strong interest in the industry ever since his teens. He has owned way too many cars in his time as well. Having previously lived at the top of corporate life he retired in 2000 and hasn’t put a suit and tie on since. Cars are his passion so why not have a business doing what you love he figures. He has towed either a caravan or camper trailer to most parts of Australia, has run guided tours for camper trailers’ and instructed drivers in off road towing.