New York Auto Show: 2011 Kia Sorento SX

Kia Sorento SX

Is it real? On sale since January, the 2011 Sorento crossover is the first Kia built at the Korean company’s new factory in West Point, Ga. The Sorento SX now occupies the position as the top trim level.

What they said: According to Kia Motors, the 2011 Sorento is the best-selling vehicle in the company’s lineup.

What they didn’t say: With four new vehicles to talk about, Kia had plenty to say during its news conference at the New York auto show. Additional “surprises” promised in the near future most likely include a hybrid version of the Sorento. Kia displayed a diesel-powered Sorento hybrid at last year’s Frankfurt auto show, but didn’t bring up the subject in New York.

What makes it tick? The Sorento SX is powered by a 276 horsepower 3.5-liter V-6 engine, coupled to a 6-speed automatic transmission and available with 2- or 4-wheel drive. A slightly lower ride height, 18-inch wheels and Dual Flow Damper shock absorbers are standard. Inside are plenty of luxury touches, like leather seats, a premium Infinity sound system, back-up camera, navigation and Kia’s new UVO infotainment system.

How much? How soon? Already off to a strong start since going on sale in January, the Sorento SX arrives in showrooms this summer. Pricing will be revealed closer to the on-sale date. The base Sorento starts at $19,995, while the current range-topper, the Sorento EX, fitted with optional all-wheel drive, costs $28,895.

How does it look? The Sorento SX adds an extra dash of style and luxury to Kia’s popular new crossover.