2018 Alfa Romeo Stelvio vs. 2018 Kia Sorento

Detailed Review, Specifications & Comparison

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Safety

To provide maximum traction and stability on all roads, All-Wheel Drive is standard on the Stelvio. But it costs extra on the Sorento.

The Alfa Romeo Stelvio has Daytime Running Lights to help keep it more visible under all conditions. Canadian government studies show that driving with lights during the day reduces accidents by 11% by making vehicles more conspicuous. The Sorento doesn’t offer Daytime Running Lights.

Both the Stelvio and the Sorento have standard driver and passenger frontal airbags, front side-impact airbags, side-impact head airbags, front seatbelt pretensioners, height adjustable front shoulder belts, plastic fuel tanks, four-wheel antilock brakes, traction control, electronic stability systems to prevent skidding, available crash mitigating brakes, lane departure warning systems, blind spot warning systems, front parking sensors and rear cross-path warning.

Warranty

The Stelvio’s corrosion warranty is unlimited miles longer than the Sorento’s (unlimited vs. 100,000 miles).

Reliability

The engine in the Stelvio has a single overhead cam for simplicity. The engines in the Sorento have dual overhead cams, which add to the number of moving parts and the complexity of the cylinder heads.

The battery on the Stelvio is in the trunk, which protects it from hot underhood temperatures which can degrade battery life. By keeping the Stelvio’s battery 20 to 30 degrees cooler, its life is increased by years. The Sorento’s battery is in the hot engine compartment.

Engine

The Stelvio’s 2.0 turbo 4 cyl. produces 95 more horsepower (280 vs. 185) and 128 lbs.-ft. more torque (306 vs. 178) than the Sorento’s standard 2.4 DOHC 4 cyl. The Stelvio’s 2.0 turbo 4 cyl. produces 40 more horsepower (280 vs. 240) and 46 lbs.-ft. more torque (306 vs. 260) than the Sorento EX’s standard 2.0 turbo 4 cyl. The Stelvio’s 2.0 turbo 4 cyl. produces 54 lbs.-ft. more torque (306 vs. 252) than the Sorento’s optional 3.3 DOHC V6.

Fuel Economy and Range

On the EPA test cycle the Stelvio gets better fuel mileage than the Sorento 2.0T AWD (22 city/28 hwy vs. 19 city/25 hwy). the Stelvio gets better fuel mileage than the Sorento SX/Limited V6 AWD (22 city/28 hwy vs. 17 city/23 hwy).

In heavy traffic or at stoplights the Stelvio’s engine automatically turns off when the vehicle is stopped, saving fuel and reducing pollution. The engine is automatically restarted when the driver gets ready to move again. (Start/Stop isn’t accounted in present EPA fuel mileage tests.) The Sorento doesn’t offer an automatic engine start/stop system.

Transmission

An eight-speed automatic is standard on the Alfa Romeo Stelvio, for better acceleration and lower engine speed on the highway. Only a six-speed automatic is available for the Sorento.

Brakes and Stopping

For better stopping power the Stelvio’s brake rotors are larger than those on the Sorento:

 

Stelvio

Sorento

Front Rotors

13 inches

12.6 inches

Rear Rotors

12.5 inches

12 inches

The Stelvio’s standard front and rear disc brakes are vented to help dissipate heat for shorter stops with less fading. The rear discs on the Sorento are solid, not vented.

Tires and Wheels

For better traction, the Stelvio’s optional tires are larger than the largest tires available on the Sorento (255/45R20 vs. 235/65R17).

The Stelvio’s standard tires provide better handling because they have a lower 60 series profile (height to width ratio) that provides a stiffer sidewall than the Sorento L/LX’s standard 65 series tires. The Stelvio’s optional tires have a lower 45 series profile than the Sorento SX/SXL’s 55 series tires.

For better ride, handling and brake cooling the Stelvio has standard 18-inch wheels. Smaller 17-inch wheels are standard on the Sorento L/LX. The Stelvio’s optional 20-inch wheels are larger than the 19-inch wheels on the Sorento SX/SXL.

Suspension and Handling

The Stelvio offers an optional driver-adjustable suspension system. It allows the driver to choose between an extra-supple ride, reducing fatigue on long trips, or a sport setting, which allows maximum control for tricky roads or off-road. The Sorento’s suspension doesn’t offer adjustable shock absorbers.

For a smoother ride and more stable handling, the Stelvio’s wheelbase is 1.6 inches longer than on the Sorento (111 inches vs. 109.4 inches).

For greater off-road capability the Stelvio has a greater minimum ground clearance than the Sorento (8.1 vs. 7.3 inches), allowing the Stelvio to travel over rougher terrain without being stopped or damaged.

Cargo Capacity

A low lift-over cargo hatch design makes loading and unloading the Stelvio easier. The Stelvio’s cargo hatch lift-over height is 28.5 inches, while the Sorento’s liftover is 29.9 inches.

Towing

The Stelvio’s standard towing capacity is much higher than the Sorento’s (3000 vs. 2000 pounds).

Servicing Ease

The engine in the Stelvio is mounted longitudinally (North-South), instead of sideways, as in the Sorento. This makes it easier to service and maintain, because there are no rear spark plugs and the accessory belts are in front.

Ergonomics

The Stelvio’s front and rear power windows all open or close fully with one touch of the switches, making it more convenient at drive-up windows and toll booths, or when talking with someone outside the car. The Sorento’s standard passenger windows don’t open or close automatically.

The Stelvio’s rain-sensitive wipers adjust their speed and turn on and off automatically based on the amount of rainfall on the windshield. This allows the driver to concentrate on driving without constantly adjusting the wipers. The Sorento’s standard manually variable intermittent wipers have to be constantly adjusted.

While driving with high beams on, sensitive light sensors available for the Stelvio detect other vehicles which could be blinded and automatically switch to low beams. The Sorento doesn’t offer automatic dimming high beams.

The Stelvio’s standard side window demisters help clear frost or condensation from the side windows in the winter. The Sorento doesn’t even offer side window demisters, so the driver may have to wipe the windows from the outside to gain side vision.

The Stelvio offers optional automatic dimming rear and side view mirrors which automatically darken quickly when headlights shine on them, keeping following vehicles from blinding or distracting the driver. The Sorento offers an automatic rear view mirror, but its side mirrors don’t dim.

The Stelvio has a standard dual zone air conditioning allows the driver and front passenger to choose two completely different temperatures so people with different temperature preferences won’t have to compromise. This makes both the driver and front passenger as comfortable as possible. Dual zone air conditioning costs extra on the Sorento and isn’t available on the Sorento L.

The Stelvio’s standard automatic temperature control maintains the temperature you set, automatically controlling fan speed, vents and temperature to maintain a consistent, comfortable environment. The Sorento L doesn’t offer automatic air conditioning.

The Stelvio’s available GPS navigation system has a real-time traffic update feature that plots alternative routes to automatically bypass traffic problems. (Service not available in all areas.) The Sorento’s navigation system doesn’t offer real-time traffic updates.

© 1991-2018 Advanta-STAR Automotive Research. All rights reserved.

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