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Sedona becomes serious contender

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Old 04-22-2006, 09:15 PM
nsyncfanatic03
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Default Sedona becomes serious contender

Sedona becomes serious contender

AUTO REVIEW

By G. Chambers Williams III San Antonio Express-News




The 2006 Kia Sedona minivan has become a true competitor in this crowded class. (KIA MOTORS AMERICA)
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One of the weakest minivan entries on the market just got a lot stronger.

Although the completely redesigned 2006 Kia Sedona might not be on the level of the top-selling Dodge Caravan/Grand Caravan or the best-selling import brand, the Honda Odyssey, or even the second-best-selling import, the Toyota Sienna, it’s good enough to be a major player in the minivan segment.

And in a class that accounts for about a million sales annually, it’s important to have a vehicle that can compete. Just ask Nissan, whose very nice Quest has had a hard time carving out a niche against the more-established vans from Dodge/Chrysler, Honda and Toyota.


Changes in the new Sedona, along with a starting price that is about $2,200 below that of the entry-level Odyssey, should give it great appeal in a market that has seen a lot of minivan owners shift to the new crossover utility vehicles.

And that’s not to mention the power, or lack thereof. The original Sedona was powered by a 3.5-liter V-6 engine rated at 195 horsepower. The new model bumps that up to 244 horsepower, which is even with the Odyssey, but the Sedona boasts 253 foot-pounds of torque, beating the Odyssey’s 240.

The new Sedona is just a bit more powerful than the Quest, which has 240 horsepower and 242 foot-pounds of torque, but it’s way above the 215 horsepower and 222 foot-pounds of torque in the Sienna.

Performance isn’t the primary selling point for most minivans, though, so the Sedona needs strengths in other areas to compete well against the segment’s leaders. And in several important attributes, it measures up well. Those include exterior styling, interior space and functionality.

The third row of seats, for instance, can fold completely into the floor to create a flat cargo space, and the center-row captain’s chairs can be folded forward or removed completely to add cargo space. The new Sedona also offers power sliding doors on both sides, as well as a power tailgate — features that many minivan buyers demand these days, but which weren’t available on the previous model.

Remarkably, styling is one of the new Sedona’s strongest points. It looks more like a crossover SUV than a minivan. Where the previous Sedona competed at least marginally in the segment because of its low price — beginning at about $21,000 — this newest model can justify its $2,000 increase in price over the ’05 model because of all the added amenities, including the extra power and better seating/cargo configurations.

The new Sedona’s aluminum 3.8-liter engine is shared with the Hyundai Santa Fe midsize SUV and Hyundai’s new flagship sedan, the Azera. It also will be shared with the Entourage minivan.

The new Sedona seats up to seven passengers and comes in two trim levels — the base LX and the up-level EX. The EX’s price begins about $2,600 higher than the base price. Standard features include cruise control, electronic stability and traction control, AM/FM/compact disc stereo system, remote tire pressure monitoring, power windows/mirrors/door locks with remote, and more.

Options include leather seats with front-seat heaters, memory for the driver’s seat, outside mirrors and adjustable pedals, a backup warning system, power sunroof, and a 660-watt premium entertainment system with a DVD player and 13 speakers with surround sound.
 
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Old 04-22-2006, 09:43 PM
97 3.5 Intrepid
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Default RE: Sedona becomes serious contender

The only reason why Dodge still sells the most is the name and they are slowly but surely losing sales because they are not aggressive enough, but fortuneatly they finally will offer a model that can compete in 07/08.
 
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Old 04-24-2006, 11:21 PM
HemiMan4451
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Default RE: Sedona becomes serious contender

Dodge is behind EVERY manufacturer in power in mini-vans. Well I know theyre not made for racing, but they need to step it up.
 
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Old 04-25-2006, 08:15 PM
97 3.5 Intrepid
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They are supposed to have the new 4.0L 24 valve V6 which will produce 255 hp & 275 ft-lbs of tq. The new 6-speed should help as well. They are actually not the lowest. The 3.8L currently produces 205hp & 240ft-lbs of torque. Out of the insignificant ones which don't sell worth anything, GMs vans only have a 3.5L 200hp & 220ft-lbs of tq and the Mazda MPV gets the weak non-VVT version of the 3.0L Ford Duratec from the Taurus which produces 200hp & 200ft-lbs of tq, but like I mentioned those don't sell.
 
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Old 04-28-2006, 10:58 PM
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Default RE: Sedona becomes serious contender

Right, so we aren't "behind EVERY manufacturer in power in mini-vans". Power is not what manufacturers are looking at when building mini-vans. Safety, security, features, price and functionability are...
 
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Old 04-29-2006, 01:02 AM
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Default RE: Sedona becomes serious contender

I agree, 0-60 times did not sway my choice to get a new T&C. The van, and the price is what did it for me. I got a real nice one this time! And to be honest it feels faster than our old Pacifica to me.

Joe
 
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Old 06-02-2006, 11:19 PM
97 3.5 Intrepid
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ORIGINAL: MidnightBlueNeon

Right, so we aren't "behind EVERY manufacturer in power in mini-vans". Power is not what manufacturers are looking at when building mini-vans. Safety, security, features, price and functionability are...
We are behind in safety. I think we are fine in features, except AWD was lost due to the Stow-and-Go seats, but they are supposed to be addressing that with the next model. Honda, Toyota, GM, Kia/Hyundai, and Ford are better in the off-set safety tests done at www.iihs.org. Functionability we are still kings with the dual-row Stow-and-Go.
 
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Old 06-03-2006, 11:19 AM
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Default RE: Sedona becomes serious contender

i dislike our minivans. we have a 03 grand caravan sport and a 06 T&C. the 3.8 feels alot faster then it is but it can most definitely hold its own. my problem with the minivan is the interior. the concepts are excellent with the exception of stowngo the interiors suck and i hate them the seats are most uncomfortable on the back. it is hard plastic with noticeable gaps. the materials all around suck.
 
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Old 06-03-2006, 09:14 PM
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Default RE: Sedona becomes serious contender

We considered the kia/hyundai....the biggest problem we saw is resale...even though they are building better cars the resale is still pretty bad.
 
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Old 06-06-2006, 02:20 AM
97 3.5 Intrepid
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ORIGINAL: gpzjack

We considered the kia/hyundai....the biggest problem we saw is resale...even though they are building better cars the resale is still pretty bad.
My problem is I still don't trust them despite what J.D. Power and Associates claims. I've seen too many KIA/Hyundais with serious problems at insanely low mileage.
 
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