SUV 7 places
The new generation of Sorento, the fourth, appeared on our roads in 2021 with a single engine. A plug-in hybrid block of 265 hp. The 7-seater SUV now receives the reinforcement of a non-rechargeable hybrid engine which should revive the interest of families.
The first reason is financial because with this engine, the selling price goes from €51,490 to €43,990 for the same finish (Motion). In return, you will have to ignore 4-wheel drive, accept a lower power level (230 hp) and pay two small penalties. The first on CO2 emissions. The highest amount, like our test version in high-end “Premium” finish in 7 places, is €1,276 (153 g of CO2). The second penalty concerns that on the weight which reaches 580 € (1,858 kg), at the rate of 10 € per kilo beyond 1,800 kg. Government taxes included, the case is still valid for the customer.
Going down in power on a vehicle of this size can lead us to fear the worst in terms of road performance. It is not so. The supercharged 4-cylinder petrol engine is the same as the plug-in hybrid. It is a 1.6 of 180 hp. Unlike, it is associated with a less powerful electric motor, here 60 hp, powered by an also smaller battery (1.49 kWh) placed in the floor under the driver. It is, except for a few details, the same principle used by Toyota for 20 years.
In town, this hybridization makes it possible to start off with the vigor and silence of electric power over a short distance (around 2 km) while optimizing fuel consumption. After 30 km/h or when the torque requirement is high, the internal combustion engine takes over to ensure. This battery recharges itself via the internal combustion engine and during the braking phases. Average consumption is logically higher compared to the rechargeable hybrid (charged batteries), however, the customer will find his way around.
With a 67-litre tank, this simple hybrid version offers greater autonomy.
We noted an average of 7.5 l/100 km in mixed use, which is correct in view of the massive size to be moved. On the highway, driving at the limits, consumption reaches 8 l/100 km. Note that we achieved this score with 4 people on board. With 7 passengers, consumption will logically be higher. Another important difference is the capacity of the tank. This gains 20 liters compared to the rechargeable hybrid due to the disappearance of the “large” batteries. Now with 67 liters available, the Sorento can go further and longer.
The 230 announced are practically all there, do not expect lightning acceleration or energetic revivals but rather a reserve of power largely sufficient to overtake and resume low because the Sorento must deal with a large mass and an average level of torque (350 Nm). The SUV actually behaves as it presents itself: like a vehicle of a good father who pours into flexibility and comfort. And in terms of comfort, the Korean SUV has nothing to envy its rare competitors the Toyota Highlander, Hyundai Santa Fé and Ford Explorer.
The Sorento was designed primarily for the US market and its large expanses. The highway is logically his favorite space. The soft damping, the light steering and the neat soundproofing invite you to swallow the miles, your buttocks well wedged in height in a seat as wide as an armchair. In return, this massive size (length of 4.81 m and width of 1.90 m) requires driving with great caution in town and in car parks. In this regard, the 360° camera is a valuable asset during manoeuvres.
Available in five or seven places for an additional €950, the Sorento is designed for the family because it is not only the driver who is delighted thanks to a functional and technological cockpit but also his passengers. The rear seat slides out leaving a gigantic amount of legroom, the backrests tilt and fold down electrically in 60/40 mode. Better, the high finishes add an individual cup holder, heated seats, a SUB port and a blind. In 5-seater configuration, the trunk volume is close to a utility generating 898 liters, it’s huge! The 7-seater version, available in a pack, offers two jump seats which, despite a somewhat short seat, allow you to travel in good conditions, provided you do not exceed 1.70 m. Passengers in the third row will also benefit from personal air conditioning and USB connectivity.
Sold for €56,940 excluding penalty, this top-of-the-range “Premium” finish offers a level of refinement close to that of the premium competition. The ultra-equipped car is ultimately €10,000 cheaper than premium competition like BMW with the X5 or Mercedes with the GLE. Here, the leathers and plastics used are of good quality as well as the technological content. The 10.25 ” touch screen in landscape position is perhaps a little too small. However, its resolution is good and the operating system is efficient. It has Android and Carplay connectivity. Only the Bose Audio system disappoints with its power and shallow bass.