From £30,7407

Dashboard, infotainment, sat-nav and passenger space

Kia’s trim levels for the Sorento begin at 2 (wireless phone charging, digital instrument cluster, ambient lighting), move through 3 (leather upholstery) and culminate with 4 (nappa leather, panoramic sunroof, ventilated seats, Bose sound system), but all versions benefit from the car’s mammoth dimensions.

Inserting 35mm in the Sorento’s wheelbase has liberated yet more passenger space, and any concerns we had about head room in the outgoing model have been dispelled. Width is also unusually generous and such is the expanse between the driver and front-row passenger that the car feels distinctly American.

Knurled rotary gear selector, another subtle attempt to move upmarket, is nicely textured, and a cut above what you would expect in terms of solidity and action

Large families will warm to the seven-seat Sorento especially quickly. One 6ft passenger in the third row can sit directly behind another in the second row, and both will be comfortable for middle-distance journeys, at the least.

The Kia also offers considerable versatility, should you need it: the second row of seats can be slid fore and aft and can also recline, even if the 60/40 split doesn’t give you quite as much flexibility as you’d have in an Audi Q5 or the Peugeot 5008. However, the Sorento does feature usefully ‘premium’ electric switches in the boot, which make the process of folding down the second-row seats hassle-free.

In design terms, where the old Sorento was doggedly conventional, this reinterpretation feels much more modern, although it does more to superficially mimic premium brands than actually recreate what they offer. The broad digital displays and prominent air vents are Mercedes-esque, while the textured ‘metal’ is very Audi.

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The Kia can’t match those brands on perceived quality, and the interior also lacks the imagination shown by Peugeot, but the place is at least coherent and offers both plenty of space and a commanding view of the road.

Kia Sorento infotainment and sat-nav

Prospective Sorento owners have the choice of two infotainment set-ups. Entry-level 2 trim, as seen on our test car, uses an 8.0in touchscreen whereas 3 and above upgrade that to an expansive 10.3in touchscreen with less physical switchgear.

However, both versions are integrated into the same Mercedes-style display panel and flow into the digital instrument binnacle. If your last experience of an interior by Kia was more than five years ago, you’ll be pleasantly surprised by the technological array, and cars with 4 trim have a Bose sound system.

Both touchscreen systems are also kept usefully separate from the climate control, buttons for which sit lower on the dashboard. Apart from the size, the main difference is that the smaller touchscreen goes without built-in navigation. This is perhaps the one reason why Kia is offering both Apple CarPlay and Android Auto as standard across the range. The screen itself is decently responsive, if not quite as crisp as some, and there’s also generous provision of USB ports.