2014 Kia Sorento LX AWD: Filed under “Things I want to own”

11.25.13

When the 2014 Kia Sorento showed up in driveway last week I thought, “Let me get my diaper bag and stroller.” Because this is clearly not the part of my life that requires 7 seats and a hatchback.

And then Jane had five friends over who wanted to go the High School football game and I felt like a genius for having just the right vehicle to cram a couple of 6 foot tall teenage boys into the back seat.

I felt safe and secure in the Sorento but the NHTSA star ratings aren’t in yet on the 2014 model. The 2013 Sorento is all four and five stars so I think it’s reasonable to expect that the 2014 will be at least as safe as the 2013.

Let’s talk about what it’s like to drive a Kia. As I’ve mentioned before Kia has a terrific navigation and bluetooth system. When Christina and I are waiting at the bus stop for our kids she’ll often hop into the cars I’m driving and we’ll lament the sad state of affairs on our luxury vehicles. Why is it that a $35,000 SUV is so superior to a Mercedes or a BMW navigation system? I was going to add Jaguar but I figured y’all would just laugh and be all, “Jaguar and technology bwah hahahahaha.”

The Sorento is not a quiet vehicle and you can hear the road, particularly if it’s rough. The Sorrento is also not a noisy one. It’s sort of in the middle with everything. You can feel the road enough to enjoy the ride but it’s not a bouncy four wheel drive truck experience nor is it the floating down the road sensation you get on some of GM’s larger trucks.

Kia is doing it’s own thing and that’s a good thing. Much like some of the other vehicles in the Kia lineup the Sorento appears to be designed around the actual needs of the driver. Does an SUV need to be high off the ground? Yes. How high? Not so high that you can’t get in an out in a skirt. Heated seats? Yessir, they have cooled seats too. Do you want to stream Pandora? Easy as pie with the Kia. All wheel drive? Of course.

One of things I couldn’t figure out until midway through the week was where the trunk release was located. Look up ladies and gents because there it is. When you’re dropping off the carpool kids they never close the trunk (they also don’t turn off lights and I’m unsure if that’s related) so one touch closes the trunk, just look up to the sunroof controls and you’ll see the button there. If there’s no sunroof look up anyhow.

I love third rows of seats but I hate it when they’re complicated to use. Apparently Kia wants me to be happy because the third row folds flat and doesn’t require an engineering degree to make it work. The second row seats also adjust and recline in case you’re taking a long road trip or if you need to adjust them to make a car seat fit more safely.

There’s no luxury missing from the Sorento. The MPG (19 to 24 with an average of 21) is good considering the curb weight and it’s a very attractive vehicle. I drove an AWD LX with a premium touring package that priced out at $35,750. If you can swing it I absolutely recommend the premium package because the zone heating and cooling made the kids really comfortable and I dislike having them scream at me that the car is too stuffy (my kids don’t actually scream but it sure feels like they do).

I need to note that although I was in a 4 cylinder small SUV with a paltry 191 hp I spent the week assuming it was a 6 cylinder. It’s somehow quite peppy and I like getting on the freeway at a decent speed.

If getting more than you paid for is attractive to you then the Kia Sorento is drop dead sexy.

 

2014 kia sorento red sorento seats fold flat

sorento and uvo

Goldberg and Gottlieb: Not a Law Firm

12.23.10

If Uncle Louie ever utters the phrase, “I’ve got an idea.” You’ll probably end up in the middle of a fantastic project, with your head spinning a little bit.

If you read today’s Sachem Patch, you’ll know that I’m having a car built by Demented Customs. Not just any car though, a Mom Car.

My regular readers are well aware of my love affair with the automobile, which competes only with my love affair with technology. It’s time that I take these two passions of mine and bundle them.

I’m currently trying to locate a Ford Country Squire from the mid 7o’s, a Chevy Impala (1973 is my favorite year) or a Buick Estate wagon. If it’s a Ford it would preferably a year where there is a third row pop up back seat. I’d prefer to find one from 1975-1978 as I’m a fan of the hidden headlights. I’m open to other models as well, but the point is to locate a mid-70 station wagon that’s in decent condition.

Ford Country Squire

Here’s where it gets fun, take a look at some of the work Demented Customs is doing.

In addition to making a Chevelle beautiful (every car is beautiful in it’s own way) they put in a new engine and blower, bringing the car to 650 hp. I’m not even sure that’s legal.

In order to understand what 650 hp looks like take a look at the Porsche 997 GT2, it has 523 hp at 6500 rpm, and a top speed of 204. Demented built a beast.

In any event, the boys at Demented are willing to take my station wagon fantasies to this same crazy level. In addition to making my wagon fast and beautiful, they are committed to adding the kind of technology that every family needs. We are currently discussion how to add:

  • tablet computers for the rear seat passengers
  • a wifi hotspot
  • a vacuum (this is actually non negotiable, I need one)
  • food and drink compartments that aren’t quite cupholders (I’m only looking at 70’s cars)
  • airbags and other safety items

I’m pinching myself that everyone’s willing to go along with this wacky idea. What’s most amazing is the we’ll have the support of Goldberg (yes the Bill Goldberg of Garage Mahal), and my Mommy Mobile will ultimately make it’s way to the Barrett-Jackson auto auction to raise money for charity.

But I’m totally driving it first.

I’m getting really excited about this, and I hope to locate a car in the next few weeks so we can get the ball rolling. Up until now, we’ve been trying to find a way to make it all happen.

Look for lots of video about the making of my first custom car. I can’t wait to share this adventure with you guys.