After unveiling the mid-cycle refresh for the Europe-spec Kia Sorento mid-size sports utility vehicle (model year 2018) at the 2017 Frankfurt Motor Show in September, the South Korean carmaker is now set to do the same for the model bound for the United States. But days before Kia takes the wraps off the US-spec Sorento at the 2017 Los Angeles Auto Show, the carmaker has released a number of images of the new mid-size SUV for fans and enthusiasts to feast on.
Kia hasn’t released any details yet on the refreshed US-spec Sorento (2019 model year), even when the 2017 LA Auto Show is peeking around the corner. But perhaps, the South Korean has decided that it would best to divulge matters related to the new US-spec Sorento during the event.
For now, these two images are what Kia has provided to satisfy the curiosity of potential customers. However, he went as far as saying the images were taken while the mid-size SUV is managing through the perilous Hell’s Revenge 4x4 trail in Moab, Utah.
Considered as one of the most challenging and obstacle-filled 4x4 trails in the world, Hell’s Revenge presents a great test for any off-road vehicle with its slick rocks, steep climbs and descents as well as sharp turns. Around 6.5 miles long, it takes between two to three hours to complete the trail. According to Kia, the Hell’s Revenge trek was carried out to flaunt the impressive off-road capability as well as the sophisticated all-wheel drive system of the new 2019 US-spec Kia Sorento.
Normally, tackling the Hell’s Revenge requires an all-wheel drive system and additional equipment usually suitable for off-road adventures. This is why the 4x4 trail is not advisable for stock vehicles or novice drivers. As for Kia’s challenge on this trail, it was achieved using a 2019 Kia Sorento SXL with all-wheel drive and other optional features.
Driven by a professional driver, this particular 2019 Sorento SXL comes fitted with aftermarket all-terrain tires and protective skid plate as well as disconnect sway bars. Kia remarked that while most customers won't take their Kia Sorento units to extreme limits such as going on the Hell’s Revenge adventure, it is possible to take the refreshed mid-size SUV to an off-the-road adventure.
As a mid-cycle refresh, the new 2019 Kia Sorento sports some changes in styling. Looking at the images released by Kia, the changes visible on the exterior include the slightly modified taillights which boast an appearance that is now in line with its international sibling. Further visual changes include the LED light signature and the C-shaped pieces of chrome trim on the rear bumper.
The new 2019 Kia Sorento could also sport some mechanical changes, including its engine. But it is expected that the refreshed Kia Sorento might still be powered by a naturally aspirated 2.4-liter engine delivering 185 horsepower, a turbocharged 2.0-liter mill generating 240 hp, and a V6 unit developing 290 hp.