2018 Jeep Grand Cherokee vs 2018 Kia Sorento
Posted on March 8, 2020
Upon first glance it might appear that the 2018 Kia Sorento with AWD would be a worthy mid-competitor to the 2018 Jeep Grand Cherokee. Even in its base form, the Jeep Grand Cherokee exceeds the capabilities of the Kia Sorento in every area that would concern some shopping for a true 4WD mid-size SUV.
The 2018 Kia Sorento comes standard with a 2.4 L 185-horsepower four-cylinder engine. Optional on upper level models is a 3.3 L V6 that produces 290-horsepower and 252 lb-ft of torque. The 2018 Jeep Grand Cherokee is available with one of four different engines, depending upon model. The base 3.6 L Pentastar V6 delivers 295-horsepower and 260 lb-ft of torque, out-muscling the Kia. Beyond the base are available 5,7 L and 6.1 L HEMI V8s and the 707-horsepower supercharged 6.2 L HEMI V8.
The 2018 Kia Sorento eight-speed automatic transmission was developed in-house at Kia and was designed primarily for front-wheel drive applications. The eight-speed automatic transmission in the 2018 Jeep Grand Cherokee was developed jointly by Jeep parent company FCA and ZF, the German transmission specialist that supplies Porsche and BMW. The Jeep's eight-speed transmission is also installed in the 707-horsepower Grand Cherokee Trackhawk, the fastest and most powerful seven-passenger SUV.
The 2018 Kia Sorento does not offer a true 4WD system, but rather an AWD system that primarily powers the front wheels and engages the rear wheels under slippery conditions. Kia does offer the option of a locking center differential to provide a limited level of off-road capabilities. It's somewhat similar to Jeep's Quadra-Trac I 4x4 system. The Quadra-Trac II system expands those capabilities, while the available Quadra-Drive II with rear electronic limited slip differential is a full-time 4x4 system that's always active. It is Jeep's most advanced 4x4 system and delivers superior all-weather capability by transferring up to 100% of available torque to a single rear wheel if needed. There's a unique on-road 4X4 system for SRT and Trackhawk models.
Kia offers a Drive Mode Select system that offers three settings: Normal, Sport, and Eco. No settings for off-road. On the other hand, the Jeep Grand Cherokee offers the Selec-Terrain Traction management System that provides five settings: Snow, Sand, Auto, Mud, and Rock.
The Kia Sorento has a maximum towing capacity of 5000 lbs when powered by its most powerful engine. Even when powered by the 3.6 L Pentastar V6, the 2018 Jeep Grand Cherokee Limited has a maximum trailer tow rating of 7400 in 4x2 configuration.
Fuel Tank Size
The 2018 Kia Sorento comes with an 18.8-gallon fuel tank. The 2018 Jeep Grand Cherokee has a 24.6-gallon fuel tank, which is a full 30% percent larger than the Kia's. Given that both are marketed as having off-road capabilities a larger fuel tank can come in handy when you wandered far off of paved roads.
The Trail Rated badge signifies exceptional capabilities under a variety of conditions encountered when off-road. The five-key areas of Trail Rated testing are traction, ground clearance, maneuverability, articulation and water fording. The Grand Cherokee Trailhawk and models equipped with the available All-Weather Trail Rated Group or the Off-Road Adventure II Group are all Trail Rated. Kia provides no information about the Sorento's off-road capabilities.
There's a reason that Jeep has the reputation that it does. The company is serious about building SUVs that are as capable off-road as they are on-road. So instead of being lured by an AWD SUV with limited capabilities come into Caledon Chrysler and drive a true legend, the 2018 Jeep Grand Cherokee.