As part of the DriveSTI family of bloggers I am periodically loaned cars for a week to try them out, see how they fit in with my lifestyle, and let you, my readers, know what I think of them.
My most recent car loan was the 2015 Kia Sedona LTD. Honestly – I never really had a high opinion of Kia cars in general. When they were first introduced in 1994 here in the US there were several issues. Basically Kia was introduced as the affordable economy car (read: cheap). They were essentially disposable cars. Everyone knew it. If you didn’t have a lot of cash or couldn’t afford high monthly payments your choices were limited to the Toyota Tercel and Kia Rio. That was really the most experience I had with Kia Motors until trying out the Sedona.
Since having children I have been intrigued by the idea of a minivan, but didn’t want the “soccer mom” stigma. The minivans of the past looked like little space shuttles, tons of room, 3rd row seating, and the were HUGE. I would see a minivan on the street and it was almost always driven by a harried looking mom (now ME) with a “my child is blah blah blah”sticker on the back. Maybe a stick figure family too. But with the Kia Sedona, away went the minivan look.
The Sedona I got was fully loaded – leather seating, 2 sunroofs, sweet digital displays on the dashboard, even reclining seats. Reclining! How cool is that? The look of the Sedona was not like the standard minivan – this is like a minivan, SUV, and wagon combined. It was sporty enough to not require that “honor student” sticker, low enough where my kids could get in and out on their own, and convenient enough to where I could fit into tight spaces and not have to worry about winged (and dinged) doors. I gotta say, those sliding doors are a DREAM. Even better is the key fob open/close as well as the interior buttons with the same function.
Another super awesome thing? Surround View Monitor. OMG! Why have I not seen this screen anywhere before? There are several little cameras all around the Sedona’s exterior, allowing not only the reverse camera, but a forward camera and side cameras where you can see precisely how straight your parking job is, how close you are to the curb, and how much room you have to back up/move forward when pulling out of a spot. Another bit of awesomeness is when you need to change lanes – 3 years ago I was involved in an accident where I got rear ended, then turned right into another car as I was trying to pull into the right lane. With the lane change assist sensors I would have been alerted that there was another car there and avoided at least that part of the collision.
I also LOVE that the 3rd row not only folds down. it folds down FLAT. No pulling the seats out, no weird bump. FLAT. Which means that if the need arises where I have to, say, pick up a dresser or tv or something big I can fit it in there.
I love that the Sedona is nothing like the Kia cars of old. Hyundai (who owns 1/3 of Kia Motors USA) must have had some influence on the designing and marketing of Kia. I felt incredibly safe in this car. I felt comfortable. And above all else? I didn’t feel like a soccer mom.
The 2015 Kia Sedona starts at an affordable $26K, up to around $45K for the Sedona Limited that I had. You can check out the options for yourself at your local Kia dealer.