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2017 Kia Sorento vs GMC Acadia

The redesign of the GMC Acadia puts it directly in competition with the Kia Sorento--two mid-size crossovers that offer roomy interiors and impressive performance. But which one will be the best option for your family and lifestyle?

2017 Kia Sorento vs GMC Acadia

Styling: Kia Sorento

While the styling of the 2017 Kia Sorento isn't innovative enough to get press, the design is exactly what you want in a mid-size crossover. Athletic, stocky, with aerodynamic flair for good measure, the Sorento is designed to appeal to as many buyers as it can--and that strategy is working.

In a world where crossovers are looking increasing more like tall cars than traditional SUVs, the recently redesigned GMC Acadia bucks that trend. The exterior styling of the Acadia looks like a more traditional SUV, with a bit more of a squared off style that looks more like a full-size SUV than a mid-size crossover. Some buyers will like that look--but the wider appeal comes from the Sorento.

Power and Performance: GMC Acadia

Not many buyers will choose the base 2.4-liter inline-four engine, since it's only available in the entry model in the Sorento lineup and it's only available with front-wheel drive. The considerably more powerful turbo-four will be a far more popular choice, thanks to its 240 horsepower but you can also opt for a 290-horsepower V-6 if you're looking for a more traditional SUV engine.

The base powerplant in the GMC is a non-turbo 2.5-liter inline-four that is a little more powerful than the base engine in the Kia, but the Acadia doesn't have an option to match the turbo-four in the Sorento. What the GMC does have though, is a 3.6-liter V-6 that's rated at 310 horsepower.

Interior Comfort and Quality : Kia Sorento

You can find three-row midsize crossovers with more interior space than the Kia Sorento, but the balance between space, comfort, quality, and value for money here is seriously hard to beat. In five-seat form the Sorento is very spacious, and as you go up the trim levels the quality of fit and materials is excellent. Having the option to choose between two and three rows of seating makes this a very versatile vehicle, which only broadens its already wide appeal.

All Acadias come standard with seven seats, so it's not as flexible as the Sorento off the bat. You'll also get a much smaller cargo space, with a tiny 12.8 cu.-ft area behind the third row. The passenger-carrying capability of the GMC may be family friendly, but that amount of cargo volume certainly isn't.

Safety: Kia Sorento

The crash test ratings of the Kia Sorento aren't perfect, but they're not too far off. Most buyers will only look at the overall ratings, of course, which are as good as it gets with five stars from the feds at the NHTSA and a Top Safety Pick+ rating from the IIHS.

The Acadia is highly rated for safety too, but don't expect the most advanced safety features unless you're going for one of the highest trim levels. Even then, it still falls short of the Kia as the GMC is an IIHS Top Safety Pick, without the highest + rating to boast about.

Learn More about the Kia Sorento

GMC would probably consider itself a more premium SUV than the Sorento, but that's not the case when you put them side by side. The Acadia comes with a standard third-row, but it's a pretty tight fit back there and you will pay almost $3,000 more for a base model than Kia asks for the entry level Sorento. The Acadia doesn't offer you anything more than the Sorento--and actually less--for a higher price. The clear winner here is the 2017 Kia Sorento.