- Best Overall SUV Value
- Best SUV Under $25,000
(Seoul) November 18, 2002 - The all-new Kia Sorento midsize SUV has won two top awards from the Northwest Automotive Press Association (NWAPA) at their annual MudFest competition. The Sorento was voted "Best SUV Under $25,000" and "Best Overall Value" by 25 members of the U.S. automotive media.
"We are extremely pleased to accept these awards from the MudFest competition," said Peter M. Butterfield, Kia Motors America`s Executive Vice President and C.O.O. "The Sorento is a stand out vehicle for Kia and a great value for consumers looking for styling, content and performance at an affordable price."
Kia Motors Corporation C.O.O. Mark Juhn said, "This award is testament to the extraordinary quality and value that the Sorento represents. Kia has already won a reputation for value. This vehicles demonstrates that we can also produce world-class quality without compromising our commitment to value pricing."
Each year NWAPA members determine the best "Family SUV" in each category. Every entry vehicle is equipped to replicate the features and options chosen by 80 percent of U.S. buyers.
The list of features includes such items as automatic transmission, anti-lock braking systems, CD players, power windows, door locks, remote keyless entry, four doors and more. In addition to new vehicles, the group brings back the best of the best from previous years as well.
The Sorento`s road handling abilities performed well on the slalom course, during acceleration and braking tests. All the vehicles also were also tested on an off-road course. "The Sorento stood out as the best value overall, not only because of its price point, but because it was well-equipped and well-built," said Ashly Knapp, a founding member of NWAPA. "The Kia was quiet and refined, yet rugged and capable on the off-road course. Coupled with the price and the warranty, it easily ranked in front of the competition."
"The Sorento is a brand-leading vehicle and marks a new direction for Kia," says Mr Juhn. "Kia expects to sell 52,000 Sorentos on the domestic Korean market in 2002 and another 57,000 on the international market. Projections for 2003 target 65,000 domestic and 110,000 international sales, although current demand indicates that both figures will rise substantially."
Founded in 1944, Kia Motors Corporation (www.kia.co.kr) is Korea`s oldest manufacturer of automobiles. A part of the Hyundai Automobile Group, the company currently exports approximately 600,000 vehicles per year through a network of distributors that covers 160 countries. Kia Motors is the major sponsor of the Australian Tennis Open.