Pricing for the 2022 Kia Sorento PHEV has been announced at $46,175 for the SX trim and $49,075 for the SX Prestige grade. If that sounds high to you, keep in mind that the plug-in Sorento is available only in the top two trims and comes packed with a long list of standard features. It builds on the standard hybrid, which is available only in the mid-level S and EX grades. Additionally, every Sorento PHEV gets AWD standard and is eligible for federal tax credits and local incentives.
Powering the 2022 Kia Sorento PHEV is the same 1.6-liter turbo-four-based hybrid system as the standard Hybrid. However, the plug-in uses a more powerful 99-hp electric motor and a large 13.8-kWh lithium-ion battery. As a result, the total system output is 261 hp, an increase of 34 hp over the regular Sorento Hybrid. Torque remains at 258 lb-ft. The Sorento PHEV puts its power down through a conventional six-speed automatic gearbox instead of a planetary gear set. It also uses a mechanical AWD system, meaning the front and rear axles are connected via a driveshaft.
Thanks to the larger battery, the Sorento PHEV can travel 32 miles in all-electric mode. With a full tank and a fully charged battery, it’s good for 460 miles. When driven as a hybrid, the Sorento PHEV is good for 35/33/34 mpg city/highway/combined. Using a level 2 AC charge, you can fully charge the battery in around two hours. A conventional household outlet doubles charging time to roughly four hours.
The Sorento PHEV’s high starting price is the result of the long list of standard equipment. In the SX trim, you get 19-inch alloy wheels, full LED headlights, power front seats (10-way for the driver and 8-way for the front passenger), built-in navigation, a 10.25-inch main touch screen, and Kia’s full Drive Wise active driver assistance suite. The SX Prestige steps it up with a 12.3-inch digital gauge cluster, leather upholstery, 14-way power driver’s seat with four-way lumbar, memory, and thigh extensions, 10-way power front passenger’s seat with two-way lumbar, ventilated front seats, heated second-row seats, and a Bose audio system. You can also get the Navy Color package, which gets you a dark blue two-tone interior on the SX Prestige as long as you don’t opt for the Runway Red exterior color. Like the standard Sorento Hybrid, the PHEV is strictly a six-seater with second-row captain’s chairs standard.
When it goes on sale later this year, the 2022 Sorento PHEV will be the sole plug-in hybrid three-row crossover in the mainstream space. Before, you’d need to go to the luxury segment to get one where the Lincoln Aviator, Volvo XC90, and the two larger Range Rover models compete in. You can get a mainstream hybrid three-row but neither the Ford Explorer Hybrid nor the Toyota Highlander Hybrid has a plug. Based on what we can tell with the trim structuring, the Sorento PHEV’s value proposition remains strong thanks to the long list of standard equipment, efficiency, and generous all-electric range.
The closest competitor the 2022 Kia Sorento PHEV is the 2023 Mitsubishi Outlander PHEV, which will make its global debut this year before going on sale in the U.S. next year. However, that crossover competes in the compact segment and is smaller than the Sorento. It will also retain its e-AWD system featuring one electric motor on each axle instead of the mechanical setup found in the Kia.