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Kia Sedona (2005 and Earlier)



  • Automatic headlights are not the same as daytime running lights. All vehicles sold in Canada have had daytime running lights for a few years now. As soon as the vehicle is started the headlights come on at reduced power. Usually no tail or marker lights. The headlight switch turns on all lights at full power. Our Caravans use the front park lights instead of reduced power headlights. Some US vehicles offer daytime running lights now.

    The Kia automatic headlights come on at full power when the computer decides that it is dark enough outside. Headlights and taillights come on but not the dash lights until the headlight switch is turned on.

    Several of the electronic items on the Kia appear to be user-adjustable. For e.g., Kia Canada advised me that the automatic windshield wipers are adjustable. Perhaps the headlights are as well. Good Luck.
  • Excellent report jlngwr! I sure would like to see other owners impressions and experiences with the Sedona.
  • Does the 8 way power drivers seat include "Tilt"?
  • The driver's seat does tilt front to back. This a nice feature for my short wife.

    There seems to be some difference between the Canadian Kia's and the U.S. vans. My van is an EX but does not have the auto wipers. In the manual it states that some may have this feature. It is not an option you can have added. Is there other differences?
  • Where I live the closest dealer is 60 Mi. away. I'm really looking hard at the Sedona but I'm a little concerned about the service and getting parts. Also have heard that the extra weight affects the power and gas milage in town driving. any comments? on Edmonds town hall there are some negetive reviews. I still like the looks and price.
  • should have been
  • still looking for an owner that can tell me if the A/C is cold...going in for the fix and would like some feed back so the dealer doesn't say that's the way it is. Thanks
  • Cookie - yes, gas mileage is only 15 mpg in town by my experience, but power is fine - good pick-up for fast starts when necessary.

    Seeley - the a/c is very cold, and cools down the van quickly. This is true for the front vents and the rear vents. My son (who should probably move to the North Pole), finds it delicious. BTW, the heat is also strong. My other son (who should probably move to equatorial Africa) finds it comforting after a soccer game played in the rain. For me, the steam that radiates off of him is like being in my personal mobile sauna (just kidding).
  • jimjpsjimjps Posts: 146

    BTW, even though C&D notes it is the same length as the Toyota Sienna, the Kia is significantly higher (typical of vehicles made for the worldmarket) and feels like it has greater floor-to-ceiling heigth. The Sienna seems more like a big station wagon to me.

  • jimjpsjimjps Posts: 146
    C&D remarks on how slick all the doors and latches work.
    "These were early production cars... probably massaged to showroom perfection." It is not really a new car, they have been manufacturing them in Korea and selling them world wide for about a year. Yes, the doors and latches work great on all of them.
  • The dealer had only two EX's in stock so I went ahead and got one of them even though I had to get a sun roof. The other extras were the leather package and two tone paint plus shipping bringing the price up to $23,210. They tried to add three "conditioning" packages at $195 each which I told them to forget- (they did). The final drive out price took off $500 and the Kelly Blue Book trade-in value for my '96 Grand Caravan (plus TTL, of course) AFTER at least five "I'll go back and try to do better" efforts by the sales guy. Now comes the real test of time and useage. BTW, I am surprised to read in the Owner's Manual that spark plugs have to be changed every 24k miles. Any comments on that?
  • Why? Because it does not have the "Magic Seat".
    To most reviewers, a minivan is primarily a "CARGO" hauler which happens to be convenient to carry up to 7 passengers. Notice the undue emphasis Edmunds and Consumer Reports place on the ability to carry cargo.
    Edmund's Chief Editor states that fun to drive and attractive are not important in a minivan when he trashes the 2001 GC ES while lavishing praise on the spartan 1999 Odyssey EX for the Magic Seat and uses creative math to deceive readers as to the REAL depreciation of the 1999 Odyssey EX.
    Funny. To most people the depreciation of a vehicle is the difference between the price actually paid less the amount received when sold. Edmunds paid $29,970 ($3755 OVER MSRP) for the 99 Odd EX and sold it for $22,000 which is a depreciation of $7,970 and NOT the $369 reported in the wrap up.
    Using Edmund's Creative Accounting, the 1999 Odyssey EX depreciated only the amount from MSRP less the unreliable Edmund's TMV for a 99 Odd EX. Why not use accurate facts Edmunds?
    Edmunds paid ABOVE MSRP and sold for much less than their bloated TMV. The REAL depreciation of the Edmund's 99 Odd Ex was almost $8000 instead of the reported $369.
  • I'm gonna give my impressions as the occur,ok? First of all, some of the features which kinda pushed me toward the Sedona are disappointing. 1. Keyless entry--you get one remote device and it only opens the drivers door; you have to open the drivers door to get to the button to open the other doors. The rear gate won't open (not even with the key) until you turn the ignition switch to the on position THEN push the unlock button!!!!! 2. The trip computer is a joke; all you get is a clock, outside temperature, estimated miles to empty (based on what?), and average speed?? since you last re-set it. 3. The turning radius is noticeably bigger than the Dodge GC.On the plus side (maybe I should say neutral side) folding the third row seats works ok once you figure what they mean in the instructions.4. Automatic lights. All I can say about that is whoopie (with a small w). Keep tuned for the latest impressions. I might add, if I had READ these impressions before yesterday instead of experiencing them, I probably would have bought a 2001 Chrysler product (with an extended warranty); they sure are offering some good discounts!
  • Sorry, Sorry! My thumb must have been weak when I tried the keyless entry. It DOES unlock the passenger and sliding doors on the second push of the button. It took a third push to unlock the rear hatch.
  • Yes, you only get one keyless entry fob. But if you push the unlock button twice all doors will unlock. Similarly, if you turn the key in the driver's door twice, all the doors unlock. The only minivan with this feature, I believe. Perhaps get the rear hatch lock checked by your dealer. Ours unlocks with the other doors regardless of the position of the ignition.

    The computer is indeed limited in functions. I would have appreciated a compass, for example. However the thermometer is handy and the remaining distance has proven useful. I consider the computer a bonus for this money.
  • I am also tired of hearing the praises heaped upon the Odyssey minivan. I realize it is a good van. But I do not like the way it looks, and I certainly am not going to pay over MSRP and wait 6 months to order one, just to have some magic seat.

    Comparing a $22K loaded Sedona with other $30+K minivans option for option is like comparing apples to oranges. The reviewers are basically saying "the Sedona is a good van, but it doesn't have power side doors and a magic hiding third seat". First of all, everyone who has power sliding doors are scared of them or have had them break. Personally I wouldn't want them on my vehicle. And removing modular seats or folding them over is not a big deal.
  • The reviewers who compare all vans to those with fold-flat 3rd seats are obviously not daily van users with wives/kids etc.

    We evaluated the available vans with such seats extensively before purchasing our Kia. The Mazda seat is light and folds easily by one person. The counterpoint to this functionality is a thin, hard seat that upright is extremely uncomfortable. It also has a very limited range of reclinability. Both my wife and my 4-yr-old quickly vetoed the seat.

    The Honda seat is much more comfortable and can actually be occupied by human beings. However, the seat is very heavy and unlikely to be folded flat by just one person.

    We briefly looked at a Pontiac van with the fold-flat seat, but the general fit and finish of the interior was very poor and discouraged us from even test driving the vehicle.

    The Kia rear seats, in our opinion, are some of the most comfortable in the industry. They are also the only ones that can be removed individually, rather than as one bench. This makes each one much lighter to handle and provides a six-people-plus-cargo flexibility that the Mazda and Honda do not.
  • DTKWOKDTKWOK Posts: 131
    Being an Odyssey owner I admit that the magic seat feature is being blown out of proportion, but it is a good design, simple and functional. I'm one of those few people who have the need to go between cargo and people hauler.I have not found the seat to be hard at all, to deploy or hide away. Even with the third row up, I still have good cargo room in the back, thanks to the deep well (more than a Sienna, for example) and open space under all three rows of seats, for the long stuff.
    With that being said, i think the Sedona has a lot going for it, value-wise. Without competition from other companies, the bigger companies wouldn't really have as much an incentive to improve their line. I'm pretty sure if Kia didn't offer a 5 spd tranny, that Honda wouldn't have stuffed one into their '02 models either, or upped the hp.
    But a word of caution, it is best not to get a first year production model for any car. Even though it's been out in other parts of the world for a year or two, changes probably have to be made for the US market (e.g. left hand vs right hand drive), it's usually the little things that cause the most problems. Just a though anyway.
    Carlton1, did you get a chance to sit in the '02 Odyssey seats yet? Were they more supportive than the previous years? I remember you saying that you didn't like the side bolstering as much.
  • jasdmwjasdmw Posts: 118
    The rear seats in The Sienna are split as well.

    Also concur that all buying the Sedona now are guinnea pigs. Recall the Hyundai Pony followed by the Sonata that sold millions basically on price. Turned out to be not the best designed or reliable vehicles (understatement). Not that this is necessarily the case here; I have seen the van and it certainly has potential. I just wouldn't want to be one of the first.
  • In response to the older article, about the weight of the Sedona, I've noticed that ALL of the Korean models are a little heavy.

    I can assure you that it is NOT because they are using stronger door beams. It is most likely the result of a weaker engineering process. In general, the US, Japan, and German makers have had years of experience in learning how to take weight out (mainly using CAE). The Korean makers are probably not yet caught up - yet.
  • The XG will have the same engine as the Sedona for the 2002 model year--3.5l found in the Terracan, and Equus.

    But the horsepower for XG is 220 horsepower, instead of Sedona's 195HORSEPOWER. I think Hyundai should do the same for Sedona. It would look better on paper, as well as reality.
  • I have a 2001 Mazda MPV, and it has the 3rd row "magic" seat. It is awesome! It is very easy to flip, the seatback does have a wide range of recline, and it becomes a rear-facing seat for tailgating. No need to remove the third seat with a Mazda!
  • Of course, those magic seats are very useful. But are they as comfortable as the Sedona's third-row seat? Obviously no, since the MPV is waaay smaller than the Sedona, and also because the MPV, is, just a tall wagon (no offense made-please don't yell at me).
  • jlngwrjlngwr Posts: 51
    Just recently started having problems with one of the slider doors not opening from the inside (the door most used). At first I thought the child lock was inadvertantly set on lock, but not so. Two people have experienced this (including an adult). However, the door opens fine from the outside. Has anyone else experienced this? What could be the reason?
  • toyrotatoyrota Posts: 66
    If you compare the Sedona with the MPV (rear headroom and legroom), they appear to be quite comparable in rear seat space? 37" legroom and 39" headroom.
  • I am interested in purchasing a Sedona, however, have there been any crash tests done as of yet. Also, what is the safety rating of this van. Sounds like a great deal. My concern is does it hold up in a crash?
  • smahlesmahle Posts: 14
    I have not had any troubles with the doors. I would say take it to the dealer. So far, no rattles, shakes, or any annoying problems with this van. I have had it for 2+ months and it is the by far the best of the three previous vans I've owned.

    No independent crash tests have been done that I am aware of. It had to have passed the basic government tests to be sold in the U.S.

    The MVP is a nice larger wagon. Don't compare that to this van. The magic seat was not worth the higher cost to me. As long as you haul kids who don't know any better, that seat is fine. Try taking a long trip in the back of a Venture. One inch foam just doesn't cut it for adults or kids over 50 lbs.
  • drew_drew_ Posts: 3,382
    Yes, IIHS front offset or NHTSA full-width front & side impact crash testing has not been done on the Sedona. You might have to wait a while for them to be released. However, you will definitely see the results posted here as soon as they become available.

    Vans, SUVs, and Aftermarket & Accessories message boards
  • martibmartib Posts: 11
    I'm looking a purchasing a new sedona ex and I'm wondering about the tires that come with the van. My dealer says that these are the standard tires that they are shipped with but I;ve never hared of them. They are Hamkook tires???? If anyone has an opinion on these or if you know if the dealer will do a swap to a more popular brand please let me know. Apparently they can also be shipped with Kumho tires, never heard of them either. Your feed back is appreciated.
  • mcperrmcperr Posts: 74
    The Sedonas coming to Canada arrive with either Hankooks or Kumhos. Our local dealer has an even mix of both.

    Hankooks have been around for quite some time. I have had them on several vehicles and have never had a quality problem or recall. Their ice and winter tires are especially good and well-known in ralley circles.

    Our Sedona came with the Hankooks. Apart from being over-inflated by the dealer, they are a reasonably quiet, good-riding tire. I expect that the tread pattern and compound will be very good on ice this winter.

    I have never owner Kumhos, so no opinion.
  • Martib...I have an Ex for about three weeks now. The van rides very well on those Hankooks. Can't here them on the road (that is a smooth road). They handle great on wet and dry roads. I'm sure they are of a well made quality.. Great deals are out there now, saw an add that states " free installed T.V. with the purchase of a Kia.
  • aniryuaniryu Posts: 61
    I believe almost all Korean vehicles come with either these tires because these companies are Korean-brands.
  • lngtonge18lngtonge18 Posts: 2,228
    I have almost 19K miles on my Kumho tires (have a 00 Hyundai Accent). They are good quiet tires and grip the road amazingly well in the dry without hardly ever squealing (quite good for a car with dinky 13" tires). Their wet performance leaves something to be desired as I can spin the front tires easily and the front brakes lock prematurely sometimes, but a lot of those problems have to do with the small width of my tires and the light weight of my car. I have never had a shimmy problem with them and they have kept their balance well (only balanced them once to prolong tire life). I even took my car to 111 mph and the tires handled that high speed with no problems. I have been quite impressed with this inexpensive Korean tire. So, in short, I wouldn't worry about the quality of these tires.
  • jlngwrjlngwr Posts: 51
    my sedona lx came with Hankooks. The car rides very smooth and quiet and handles well in dry and wet conditions. My husband, who knows something about these things, had Hankooks put on his Geo Prizm when "the junky Goodyear tires" it came with gave out after a few years. He says they are a really good tire for the money.
  • steverstever Posts: 52,457
    How's the mileage?

    List of EPA Mileage Best and Worst

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  • Has anyone purchased their Sedona through ""? I am looking at getting an EX with leather for $21,444. Seems like a good deal. What do you think?
  • To the current Sedona owner:

    How does handling around corners or turns in the Sedona eventhough it weighs so much? I'm not talking about "sports car" handling but more of stability and if it is top heavy around corners or turns. I am thinking about buying one but would like to know how the crash test result would be from IIHS first. Great looking van for sure and the price is right.

    Thanks in advance.
  • mcperrmcperr Posts: 74
    It's difficult to know what to compare the Sedona to. In my opinion it definitely handles heavier than the regular Caravan and Mazda, but these are both shorter vehicles. Compared to the Grand Caravan and Ford Winstar, I find it quite similar, especially to the Ford.

    The weight is only noticeable in sharp corners and turns. That said, I followed my wife driving our Kia accross town last week and observed that the van actually leans very little in corners. Perhaps the high seating position makes it seem worse from the driver's seat.

    Handles great on the highway, though. Drove 100km in a strong crosswind last weekend and was glad for a little extra weight to help the vehicle stay planted.
  • lngtonge18lngtonge18 Posts: 2,228
    I didn't think they offered such a large minivan with a manual tranny! How cool! Kudos to Kia for still offering that setup. Too bad us Americans can't get ahold of it. Might make owning a minivan a little less drab...
  • drew_drew_ Posts: 3,382
    It probably has a smaller 4 cylinder engine though, as in many parts of Asia, one is taxed by engine displacement just as in Europe. A manual tranny would make the best use of the limited horsepower.

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  • We purchased our Sedona EX on Aug. 31, the last day of 1.9% financing. It is equipped with leather, tu-tone paint and sunroof. MSRP $23201, purchase price $22201. Mileage on a most recent trip was 25 mpg. Day to day city mileage averages 16 MPG.
  • If any of you are interested in watching a roadtest review of the Sedona, you can catch it on Motorweek beginning Oct 26 on PBS channel. You can check it out at and clik on "On the Air" and "Upcoming shows". You can also get it on speedvision but the schedule isn't the same as the one listed on the site.
  • jimjpsjimjps Posts: 146
    One of the popular engines available with the manual tranny overseas is a V6 turbodiesel. This is very well suited to the Sedonas weight since turbodiesels are always very torquey. MPG is quite good also. I have seen some road tests with this power plant. That would certainly be the engine/transmission combo I'd want if I had the choice. Of course the 3.5 gas engine is also a great engine in my opinion.
  • jimjpsjimjps Posts: 146

    The Sedona has actaually been around for 2 years and in Europe is called the Kia MPV. I would think most of the chassis bugs have been worked out. I stand corrected - the turbodiesel is a 4-cylinder, not a V6. The other euro engine is a 2.5 V6 gas engine. Manual and automatic

    trannys available with both engines.
  • argon3argon3 Posts: 1
    Went to look for a Sedona today in the Chicago area. The first dealer had a charge for $1500 listed as something like "Market Value Adjustment" or some other such bogus thing added to the invoice. Add to that an "appearance package" that must have consisted of a wax job and a Scotchgarding of the upholstery that ran about $900. Outrageous? Why would Kia allow dealers to screw up a good thing by adding questionable charges to the invoice?
    The next dealership that I visited had no such charges on the was fairly straightforward. He did answer my concerns about safety by telling me that Kia had done an independent crash test using the same labs and criteria as NHTSC and that the results were an exceptional rating. Anyone hear anything about this? Is it true?
    Hard to decide between a Sedona and an Odyssee right now. About $5000 difference.
  • drew_drew_ Posts: 3,382
    Manufacturers typically do not reveal their internal crash test results. As of now, I am unable to dig up any crash test results (worldwide) for the Sedona. Sorry, but it looks like you may have to wait safety and crash test results are of the high priority for you. As soon as they are released, we will post them in here.

    Vans, SUVs, and Aftermarket & Accessories message boards
  • Every one I have talked to are concerned about the resale value and the trade in value of the Sedona , Anybody out there have any thoughts on this??? The minute you buy it the price goes South.
  • fezofezo Manahawkin, NJPosts: 10,379
    Assuming that the Sedona follows other Kia products, resale is where you are going to take an enormous hit. For the most part crash tests are also traditionally poor on Kias.

    I just bought on Odyssey and these are major factors in my decision. With three kids I'm not guessing on crash tests and I'd bet you that 5 years down the road (or less) any savings the Kia offers would be gone due to poor resale value.

    This isn't meant to bash Kia - I expect them to continue to improve and the Sedona is a nice enough looking, functional van. It just isn't for me yet.
    2015 Mazda 6 Grand Touring, 2014 Mazda 3 Sport Hatchback, 1999 Mazda Miata 2004 Toyota Camry LE, 1999.
  • pjd58pjd58 Posts: 366
    It's true the resale of Kia's are terrible. Although, if you are going to be keeping your Sedona for many years I wouldn't be concerned about the resale.

    We purchased a MPV in April, Kia wasn't available. Our MPV will take a big hit on resale but we intend to keep it for 8 years. I can't see spennding 5-6K more for an ODY to get a better resale. I believe the Sedona is a great van and you get alot of bang for your buck. Check out the problem boards, the Sedona and MPV have had fewer problems than the ODY. My best friend works at a Honda Dealership, he's a service writer, and told me " the ODY is the most unreliable Honda".
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