Kia has announced that it will be introducing the Grand Carnival in the US on February 23, officially replacing the Sedona moniker that has been in use since 1998. The decision is part of Kia’s strategy to promote its new global brand identity, and so it will be the first model to wear the new Kia badge.
Besides the badge change, the Sedona is essentially the same car as the Carnival. The fourth-generation people carrier was first unveiled in June 2020, offering vastly better looks with the equipment to match. Unique design features include the striking fascia that comprises the slim LED headlights and radiator grille, chromed C-pillars, conjoined LED tail lights, as well as wheel sizes ranging from 17 to 19 inches.
Inside, you’ll find a Mercedes-aping freestanding display panel with twin 12.3-inch displays, wireless Apple CarPlay and Android Auto connectivity, and a Jaguar-like rotary gear selector. The Carnival can be had as a seven-, nine- or 11-seater configurations, too. In three-row form, the car gets reclining “Premium Relaxation Seats” for the second row, with adjustable armrests and ottomans. There’s also a one-touch “Relaxation” button that reclines the seat for a business class experience.
Another thoughtful addition is the ability for the driver and front passenger to communicate with occupants in the rearmost row via a small camera and a voice amplifier (piped through the rear speakers). Those at the back can also use the Carnival’s voice recognition system to control the infotainment and other vehicular functions.
For powertrain, the top Carnival will get the 3.5 litre direct- and port-injected V6 that produces 294 PS and 355 Nm of torque. This particular mill comes with cooled exhaust gas recirculation, integrated thermal management and a cross-flow system to maximise efficiency.
A smaller 2.2 litre Smartstream four-cylinder turbodiesel engine can also be had, offering 202 PS and 440 Nm. This diesel mill is now made from aluminium instead of cast iron, saving at least 20 kg. All engines are paired with an eight-speed automatic gearbox.
For safety, the “Grand Utility Vehicle” will come with Kia’s latest advanced driver assist systems, which includes autonomous emergency braking with pedestrian and cyclist detection, adaptive cruise control, lane centring assist, blind spot monitoring, rear cross traffic alert, traffic sign recognition, driver attention warning, and the segment-exclusive blind-spot view monitor.
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