A VIN decoder document seemingly confirms the latest Kia model name change.
Kia’s renaming scheme looks set to continue with its largest offering, the Sedona minivan. According to a VIN decoder document Kia submitted to the NHTSA (via SedonaForum.com), the Carnival name will supplant the Sedona when the minivan touches down here later this year.
The Carnival name has been in use for over two decades in various markets around the globe. When it showed up on North American shores, however, Kia rechristened it Sedona, after the Arizona town. Now the big people mover looks to be following the K5—the artist previously known as Optima—by adopting its home-market name here.
Other salient details are now available thanks to the document too. It confirms we’ll see just one engine in the Carnival later this year: a larger, 3.5-liter V6 producing 290 horsepower and 262 lb-ft of torque. The new engine puts the Carnival at the top of the class in terms of horsepower—by just 3 ponies—and ties both the Honda Odyssey and Chrysler Pacifica for torque. Shifting duties are handled by an eight-speed automatic. Kia will not offer either all-wheel drive nor a hybrid setup (both of which are available on the Chrysler and the new-for-2021 Toyota Sienna).
The Carnival will come in four trims (LX, EX, SX, SX Prestige), with a unique seating option for the entry-level LX. While North American trim specifics are currently unavailable, we expect the new minivan’s lux full-recline second row seats to be exclusive to the SX Prestige.
With the new model, Kia will be looking to reclaim some market share in the minivan segment. It sits in last place in the four-way fight: in 2020 it sold just 13,190 units, down 17-percent from the year before. Meanwhile, Chrysler shifted 93,802 examples of the Pacifica and Pacifica Hybrid in the same time.
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