Kia will be bringing its new Sorento SUV to the Geneva Motor Show in March. It'll be the fourth generation of Kia's biggest 4x4 (well, biggest 4x4 that's sold in Europe anyway) and will once again platform-share with the Hyundai Santa Fe. Kia says that this Sorento rides on a midsize SUV platform, and is the first vehicle in the range to use it, but it's pretty closely related to the current big Hyundai.
More aggressive styling
This time around, there's a big change in the styling. Up front, in place of the current Sorento's clean and relatively simple design, there's something much more aggressive, with a 'Tiger Face' grille that seems to stretch to the very outermost edges of the body work. That effect is amplified by lights that are integrated into the grille shape, with subtle backward-swept LED daytime running light signatures.
Around the back, the new Sorento takes inspiration from the US-market Kia Telluride (which is the Kia 4x4 that's bigger than the Sorento, but we don't get it in Ireland), and is it just us or is there a hint of the old Toyota Land Cruiser Amazon about the rear styling?
First hybrid Sorento
On the engine front, all we know for certain is that Kia will this time around offer a hybrid model. This is likely to be a 1.6-litre petrol engine driving the front wheels, while an electric motor drives the rear ones. There will be a conventional diesel model too.
Inside, once again, the Sorento will be a seven-seater (which has long been key to the model's appeal) and space in the third row should be much improved if the blocky rear styling is anything to go by.
Profits will be ploughed back into EV research
Kia says that it's going to attack the "global SUV market by applying a range of innovations to the new Sorento, including advanced driver assistance systems and progressive connectivity and infotainment features." At a recent revealing of Kia's future model plans, the company's chief executive, Han-woo Park, confirmed that profits from big SUVs such as this and the Telluride would be crucial when it comes to investing in future electric powertrains.