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2024 Kia Sorento Hybrid vs. 2024 Ford Escape Hybrid Comparison

The 2024 Kia Sorento Hybrid and Ford Escape Hybrid are two different means of balancing SUV levels of roominess and versatility with fuel mileage that would make an economy car proud. This is no easy engineering feat, but the Sorento and Escape prove these attributes are not mutually exclusive.

The 2024 model year brings minor changes to color and trim options for the Sorento Hybrid. This 6-passenger sport-ute gets down the road courtesy of a 227-horsepower hybrid powertrain paired with a 6-speed automatic transmission and front- or all-wheel drive. This powertrain gives the Sorento Hybrid an impressive EPA rating of 37 mpg combined in city and highway driving.

The smaller 2024 Ford Escape Hybrid might not have a third row of seating like the Sorento, though it does come with many standard features and delivers even better mileage. The Escape’s 192-horsepower hybrid powertrain is matched with a continuously variable automatic transmission. It’s also available with front- or all-wheel drive, and in either configuration, is rated to return 39 combined mpg.

To see how they compare beyond their respective fuel mileage figures, let’s explore the strengths and similarities of each.

2024 Kia Sorento Hybrid

The Sorento Hybrid is available in two trims, EX and SX Prestige. Pricing starts at $36,690, not including a $1,325 factory-to-dealer destination charge. You can choose front- or all-wheel drive in the EX, whereas the SX Prestige comes standard with all-wheel drive. The SX Prestige carries an asking price of $42,490. 

Kia Sorento Hybrid Highlights 

Standard captain’s chairs: Kia equips the Sorento Hybrid with second-row captain’s chairs versus a 3-passenger bench seat available in non-hybrid variants. This lowers seating capacity to six, yet we think the tradeoff is worth it. Not only are the captain’s chairs more comfortable, the resulting pass-through between the seats provides easier access to the third row.

SX Prestige trim: As the top-of-the-line trim, the SX Prestige comes packed with comfort and safety features. Among many others, these include leather seating, a surround-view parking camera, heated and ventilated front seats, a Bose audio system, reverse automatic emergency braking, 19-inch alloy wheels, and rear-window sunshades.

Warranty coverage: The Sorento Hybrid brings a 5-year/60,000-mile standard warranty and powertrain coverage of 10 years or 100,000 miles. This far exceeds the Escape Hybrid’s coverage, along with that of pretty much all the Sorento’s direct rivals.

Check this week’s Fair Purchase Price or see the Sorento Hybrid models for sale near you. 

2024 Ford Escape Hybrid

2023 Ford Escape PHEV in blue near wooden fence.

The Ford Escape Hybrid has an asking price of $33,490, not including the $1,495 destination charge. This is for the ST-Line trim that comes standard with an 8-inch touchscreen, wireless Apple CarPlay and Android Auto, a power liftgate, and 18-inch alloy wheels. The Escape’s hybrid powertrain is offered in the ST-Line, ST-Line Select, Platinum, and ST-Line Elite trims. The ST-Line and Platinum trims are available with front- and all-wheel drive. With the ST-Line Select and ST-Line Elite, all-wheel drive is standard.

Ford Escape Hybrid Highlights

Fuel economy: The Escape Hybrid returns some of the best fuel economy figures you’ll find in a hybrid-powered SUV. It’s rated to return 42 mpg in city driving and 36 mpg on the highway for an impressive combined rating of 39 mpg. Better still is that these mileage numbers remain the same when all-wheel drive is added.

Wireless Apple CarPlay and Android Auto: You can travel fully connected and cord-free in your Ford Escape Hybrid. We’re big fans of wireless smartphone connectivity and appreciate that it’s standard equipment here. Other convenient tech touches in the entry-level Escape Hybrid include a Wi-Fi hot spot, four USB ports, satellite radio, and an 8-inch digital gauge display.

Tech Pack 1: Available on the Escape Hybrid ST-Line, the Tech Pack 1 option bundle is a bargain at only $995. It groups adaptive cruise control with stop-and-go functionality, traffic sign recognition, navigation with pinch-to-zoom, rear parking sensors, a digital rearview mirror, and a larger 13.2-inch touchscreen. 

Check this week’s Fair Purchase Price or see the Escape models for sale near you. 

Similarities

The Sorento Hybrid and Ford Escape Hybrid make strong cases for paying a little extra to get a fuel-sipping powertrain. Compared to their less expensive non-hybrid variants, they justify a higher asking price by packing plenty of sought-after driver aids and onboard tech items. 

Conclusion

We know many SUV shoppers will be immediately drawn to the fact that the Sorento Hybrid has a third row of seating, while the Ford Escape Hybrid does not. That sounds good in theory, except the rear seats in the Kia are snug and best used only by small children. And with every seat occupied, there’s only about 12 cubic feet of cargo space behind the third row. With them folded, this expands to about 38 cubic feet versus 34.4 cubic feet in the Escape Hybrid.

The Escape Hybrid has a lower starting price and is slightly more fuel-efficient. If you want to save some money, the Ford is the better pick. Yet the Sorento Hybrid feels more refined in how it drives, along with the design and quality of its classy interior.  

  2024 Kia Sorento Hybrid  2024 Ford Escape Hybrid
Starting Price  $36,690  $33,490
Popular Powertrain      
Engine  Turbo 1.6-liter gas-electric 4-cylinder Turbo 2.5-liter gas-electric 4-cylinder
Horsepower  227 hp @ 5,500 rpm 192 hp @ 6,250 rpm
Torque  258 lb-ft 155 lb-ft @ 4,500 rpm
Transmission  6-speed automatic  CVT 
Fuel economy MPG 39 city/35 highway/37 combined 42 city/36 highway/39 combined 
Also Available  AWD AWD
Specs       
Basic Warranty  5 years/60,000 miles   3 years/36,000 miles 
Powertrain Warranty  10 years/100,000 miles   5 years/60,000 miles 
NHTSA Overall Safety  4 stars  5 stars
Max Seating Capacity  6  5 
Wheelbase  110.8 inches   106.7 inches 
Overall Length  189.4 inches   180.5 inches 
Width  74.8 inches   74.1 inches 
Height  66.7 inches   66.1 inches 
Turning Diameter  37.9 feet   38.4 feet 
Headroom, Front  40.3 inches  40.0 inches 
Headroom, 2nd Row  39.1 inches   39.3 inches 
Headroom, 3rd Row 36.8 inches NA 
Legroom, Front  41.4 inches   42.4 inches 
Legroom, 2nd Row  40.7 inches   40.7 inches
Legroom, 3rd Row  29.6 inches  NA  
Shoulder Room, Front  59.1 inches   57.6 inches 
Shoulder Room, 2nd Row  58.1 inches  56.0 inches
Shoulder Room, 3rd Row 53.0 inches NA 
Cargo Volume Behind 2nd Row 38.5 cubic feet   34.4 cubic feet 

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