Facelifted 2013 Kia Sorento Unveiled In Europe, U.S. Launch Timing Still Unknown

Kia released details this morning on an updated and refreshed Sorento sport utility vehicle for the European market, promising better handling and fuel economy. With that, only one question remains: when are those updates coming here?

The design on the Euro-spec model is fairly evolutionary, which makes sense considering that the 2013 model is technically a mid-cycle refresh. Designers cleaned up the front end with a subtly different curved grille/headlight setup, and smaller fog lamp apertures in the bumper fascia. The doors and greenhouseare mostly left unchanged, but the tailgate is all-new with shapelier taillights.

Kia says that the biggest changes to the model are under the skin, led by an updated chassis. Car says that the new Sorento chassis could save up to 220 pounds and go towards improving the car's handling and ride refinement. Kia also promises improvements to the Sorento's cadre of engines to deliver better fuel economy. Those engines are a 2.0-liter diesel engine that makes 147 hp, and a 2.2-liter diesel that produces 194 hp.

Inside, there's a revised center stack with a seven-inch touch screen, and an available panoramic sunroof that does without the previous sunroof's crossbrace. It also comes with a power sunshade.

While we do know that the new Sorento is a looker, we're not sure when these updates--sans the diesel engines, of course--will be applied to the U.S.-spec Sorento model. Kia was tight-lipped about the possibility of a refreshed Sorento, only saying that the current U.S.-spec car "will receive some product enhancements," without going into detail about what or when.

The European model bows this autumn, so expect an answer to that question by the end of 2012.

Sources: Kia, Car

Why do you assume the negative in your statement, " we’re not sure when these updates–sans the diesel engines, of course–will be applied to the U.S.-spec Sorento model" ?. If they decide to sell the diesel, it will be in a category that is sorely lacking in the choice of a good mileage option. Probably would attract a lot of buyers who get scared of the german manufacturers who only put them in upmarket offerings. To paraphrase the infamous quote in Field of Dreams, 'Offer it and they will Buy it'.

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