Boston.com Compares Hyundai Santa Fe And Kia Sorento SUVs

We have all heard of sibling rivalry, but it’s also something that exists in business as well as in the family home.

The Kia Sorento and Hyundai Santa Fe come from the same parent, but they vie for customer attention in the hopes of scoring the most sales.

Boston.com recently took at the relationship to see just how it is that both do so well and what it is that makes them different.

One of the most noticeable differences between the Sorento and the Santa Fe crossovers is the seating configuration that each employs.

News update: Kia Sorento vs Hyundai Santa Fe – 2017 MY

Boston.com test drove the Santa Fe Limited that has a 6-passenger seating configuration, including dual captains seats in the second row and a small, some might say uncomfortable, third row seat.

The Kia Sorento SX has a similar configuration, although they go with a second row bench instead of the captains seats.

Hyundai get the nod in the way they utilize the second row. At 193.1 inches long, the Santa Fe bench is a good bit longer than the 184.4 inch Kia Sorento.

It may not seem like a massive amount in the grand scheme of things, but the 8.7 inch difference is immediately apparent the moment you open the rear doors of both vehicles.

The longer sill in the Hyundai means a little more legroom for passengers in the second row.

That’s not to say that Kia passengers are squished in, but at 2.5 inches, the difference is noticeable.

There is also a difference in cargo space, no matter what seat configuration is in play. With all the seats filled, the Kia Sorento delivers 9.1 cubic feet of storage, whereas thee Hyundai delivers a very roomy 13.5 cubic feet.

If all the seats are stowed, the Kia offers up 72.5 cubic feet of space, with a full 80 cubic feet available on the Hyundai.

Sorento vs. Santa Fe engine

With the exception of the lowest trim version, the Sorento comes with a 3.3L V6 engine under the hood, good for 290 horsepower and 252-lb.ft. of torque.

Both the six and seven passenger versions of the Santa Fe come with the same engine, but the Hyundai has the 5-passenger Santa Fe Sport that comes with a 2.0L Turbo engine that is almost a powerful as the V6, but with more torque at a lower RPM.

The difference is something you can definitely feel when merging onto the highway or accelerating from a stop.

It’s not all wins for the Hyundai, though, as Kia does better when it comes to curb weight.

The 6-passenger Santa Fe weighs in at 4.057 pounds, with the Kia 163 pounds lighter at 3,894 pounds.

The EPA fuel economy ratings are identical, but the Kia has more of a sporty feel and is more of a fun drive. Kia also gets the nod for their audio/heat interface.

It often comes down to personal choice, but the Hyundai features a central knob that needs to be pushed to confirm entries.

Compare that with the Kia Sorento interface that comes with a large 8-inch screen interface, as well as the traditional dual knobs for volume and tuning.

The Kia UVO and Hyundai BlueLink systems are also great, making smartphone integration a snap. If you put all that aside, there really is very little to separate the two.

The Hyundai Santa Fe Limited comes with a lower base price, but needs $3,000 of optional equipment to match what you get in the Sorento SX.

Hyundai get the warranty nod with their 84-month unlimited mileage corrosion warranty, compared to Kia’s 60 month, 100,000 mile warranty.

The upshot of all this information is that both vehicles do a great job of getting New England families from place to place comfortably.

What your decision may end up coming down to is the level of customer service that you can expect from your Hyundai and Kia dealers.

You can find more details about the comparison here.

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