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The facelifted 2018 Kia Sorento has been detailed for the European market, hinting at the possible updates to the Australian version, which is due to arrive by year’s end.

Like the Korean version – which was revealed in July – the Euro-spec Sorento picks up a range of visual and technology upgrades for the new model year, along with a new eight-speed automatic transmission.

The upgraded SUV picks up LED headlights and tail-lights, a new dark metallic finish for the ‘tiger nose’ grille, new alloy wheel designs, along with revised front and rear bumpers.


Top: 2018 Kia Sorento GT Line (Euro), Bottom: 2017 Kia Sorento GT Line (Aus)

Inside, there’s a new steering wheel, a revised driver’s instrument cluster – which features a large TFT display for higher-spec models – an upgraded 8.0-inch infotainment system with Apple CarPlay and Android Auto, wireless phone charging, revised climate control switchgear, and an “increased proportion” of soft-touch materials and leather-trimmed surfaces for a more premium ambience.

Several interior colour schemes are available depending on variant, including single-tone black and two-tone black/stone beige with cloth or leather upholstery, along with brown or light grey leather. In Europe, buyers can also opt for a 640W Harman/Kardon 10-speaker audio system.

The facelifted Sorento also gets Kia’s latest ‘DRiVE WISE’ assistance technologies, which includes driver attention warning, lane keep assist, high beam assist, and dynamic bending function for the full-LED headlights.


Top: 2018 Kia Sorento GT Line (Euro), Bottom: 2017 Kia Sorento GT Line (Aus)

European customers have the choice of three engines; a 136kW/402Nm 2.0-litre turbo-diesel, a 147kW/441Nm 2.2-litre turbo-diesel, and a 138kW/241Nm 2.4-litre aspirated petrol. All powerplants are Euro 6 compliant, though only the 2.2-litre diesel that offers the new eight-speed automatic transmission.

Kia says the new self-shifter changes gears quicker, and the extra two gears allows for smoother acceleration while also reducing emissions from 172 to 159g/km.

Finally, the European market now gets the option of the GT Line variant (pictured) which adds sport-themed cosmetic upgrades inside and out. Australia already gets a GT Line model in the pre-facelift Sorento, so it’s likely we’ll get a similar update.

Highlights for the flagship model include quad-LED fog-lights, red brake calipers, chrome twin exhaust tip, quilted leather seats with GT Line embroidered emblems, steering-mounted paddle shifters and satin chrome highlights throughout the cabin.

Australia

The upgraded Kia Sorento arrives in European showrooms “from Q4 2017“, the same time frame given for the Australian-market version, though the company’s local arm is yet to confirm if we will get all the upgrades seen in South Korea and Europe.

Previously, the Sorento was slated for a third-quarter upgrade, though it’s likely the launch of the anticipated Stinger liftback has pushed back the introduction of the Korean SUV flagship.

We do know, however, that Kia Australia plans to bring Apple CarPlay and Android Auto compatibility as part of the upgrade, so expect the new 8.0-inch infotainment system to feature on locally-bound models.

Stay tuned for an update in the coming months.

MORE: 2018 Kia Sorento facelift revealed in Korea

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