2019 Volkswagen Atlas vs. 2019 Kia Sedona

Detailed Review, Specifications & Comparison

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The Atlas has a standard Automatic Post-Collision Braking System, which automatically applies the brakes in the event of a crash to help prevent secondary collisions and prevent further injuries. The Sedona doesn’t offer a post collision braking system: in the event of a collision that triggers the airbags, more collisions are possible without the protection of airbags that may have already deployed.

Over 200 people are killed each year when backed over by motor vehicles. The Atlas SEL/SEL Premium has standard Maneuver Braking that uses rear sensors to monitor and automatically apply the brakes to prevent a rear collision. The Sedona doesn’t offer backup collision prevention brakes.

The Atlas offers all-wheel drive to maximize traction under poor conditions, especially in ice and snow. The Sedona doesn’t offer all-wheel drive.

The Volkswagen Atlas 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 Sedona doesn’t offer Daytime Running Lights.

The Atlas SE/SEL/SEL Premium has standard Car-Net, which uses a global positioning satellite (GPS) receiver and a cellular system to remotely unlock your doors if you lock your keys in, help track down your vehicle if it’s stolen or send emergency personnel to the scene if any airbags deploy. The Sedona doesn’t offer a GPS response system, only a navigation computer with no live response for emergencies, so if you’re involved in an accident and you’re incapacitated help may not come as quickly.

Both the Atlas and the Sedona have standard driver and passenger frontal airbags, front side-impact airbags, side-impact head airbags, front wheel drive, height adjustable front shoulder belts, plastic fuel tanks, four-wheel antilock brakes, traction control, electronic stability systems to prevent skidding, rearview cameras, available lane departure warning systems and around view monitors.

The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration does 35 MPH front crash tests on new vehicles. In this test, results indicate that the Volkswagen Atlas is safer than the Kia Sedona:







5 Stars

5 Stars




Neck Injury Risk



Neck Stress

180 lbs.

196 lbs.

Neck Compression

46 lbs.

60 lbs.

Leg Forces (l/r)

156/231 lbs.

464/103 lbs.

New test not comparable to pre-2011 test results. More stars = Better. Lower test results = Better.

The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration does side impact tests on new vehicles. In this test, which crashes the vehicle into a flat barrier at 38.5 MPH and into a post at 20 MPH, results indicate that the Volkswagen Atlas is safer than the Kia Sedona:





Front Seat


5 Stars

5 Stars

Chest Movement

.5 inches

.6 inches

Abdominal Force

48 G’s

98 G’s


Rear Seat


5 Stars

5 Stars

Spine Acceleration

39 G’s

46 G’s

Hip Force

527 lbs.

660 lbs.


Into Pole


5 Stars

5 Stars

Max Damage Depth

14 inches

15 inches

New test not comparable to pre-2011 test results. More stars = Better. Lower test results = Better.


The Atlas comes with a full 6-year/72000-mile basic warranty, which covers the entire truck. The Sedona’s 5-year/60,000-mile basic warranty expires 1 year and 12000 miles sooner.

The Atlas’ corrosion warranty is 5 years and unlimited miles longer than the Sedona’s (10/unlimited vs. 5/100,000).


The Volkswagen Atlas’ engines use a cast iron block for durability, while the Sedona’s engine uses an aluminum block. Aluminum engine blocks are much more prone to warp and crack at high temperatures than cast iron.

To reliably start during all conditions and help handle large electrical loads, the Atlas has a standard 680-amp battery. The Sedona’s 660-amp battery isn’t as powerful.


The Atlas’ standard 2.0 turbo 4 cyl. produces 10 lbs.-ft. more torque (258 vs. 248) than the Sedona’s 3.3 DOHC V6. The Atlas’ optional 3.6 DOHC V6 produces 18 lbs.-ft. more torque (266 vs. 248) than the Sedona’s 3.3 DOHC V6.

Fuel Economy and Range

In heavy traffic or at stoplights the Atlas’ 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 Sedona doesn’t offer an automatic engine start/stop system.

Brakes and Stopping

For better stopping power the Atlas’ brake rotors are larger than those on the Sedona:




Front Rotors

13.2 inches

12.6 inches

Rear Rotors

12.2 inches

11.9 inches

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

Tires and Wheels

For better traction, the Atlas has larger standard tires than the Sedona (245/60R18 vs. 235/65R17). The Atlas SEL Premium’s optional tires are larger than the largest tires available on the Sedona (265/45R21 vs. 235/65R17).

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

For better ride, handling and brake cooling the Atlas has standard 18-inch wheels. Smaller 17-inch wheels are standard on the Sedona L/LX. The Atlas SEL Premium’s optional 21-inch wheels are larger than the 19-inch wheels on the Sedona SXL.

Suspension and Handling

The Atlas’ drift compensation steering can automatically compensate for road conditions which would cause the vehicle to drift from side to side, helping the driver to keep the vehicle straight more easily. The Sedona doesn’t offer drift compensation steering.


The Atlas is 3.1 inches shorter than the Sedona, making the Atlas easier to handle, maneuver and park in tight spaces.

Passenger Space

The Atlas has 1.5 inches more front headroom, .6 inches more front legroom and 1 inch more rear headroom than the Sedona.


Maximum trailer towing in the Kia Sedona is limited to 3500 pounds. The Atlas offers up to a 5000 lbs. towing capacity.

Servicing Ease

The Atlas uses gas struts to support the hood for easier service access. The Sedona uses a prop rod to support its heavy hood. It takes two hands to open the hood and set the prop rod, the prop rod gets in the way during maintenance and service, and the prop rod could be knocked out, causing the heavy hood to fall on the person maintaining or servicing the car.


The Atlas’ 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 Sedona’s standard passenger windows don’t open or close automatically.

If the windows are left open on the Atlas SE/SEL/SEL Premium the driver can close them all at the outside door handle. The driver of the Sedona can only operate the windows from inside the vehicle, with the ignition on.

The Atlas’ 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 Sedona’s manually variable intermittent wipers have to be constantly adjusted.

Heated windshield washer nozzles are standard on the Atlas SE/SEL/SEL Premium to prevent washer fluid and nozzles from freezing and help continue to keep the windshield clear in sub-freezing temperatures. The Sedona doesn’t offer heated windshield washer nozzles.

The Atlas’ standard outside mirrors include heating elements to clear off the mirrors for better visibility. Kia only offers heated mirrors on the Sedona EX/SX/SXL.

The Atlas SEL Premium’s Park Assist can parallel park or back into a parking spot by itself, with the driver only controlling speed with the brake pedal. The Sedona doesn’t offer an automated parking system.

Economic Advantages

The Atlas will cost the buyer less in the long run because of its superior resale value. The IntelliChoice estimates that the Atlas will retain 50.52% to 52.72% of its original price after five years, while the Sedona only retains 33.34% to 38.67%.


The Volkswagen Atlas outsold the Kia Sedona by over three to one during the 2018 model year.

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

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