2017 Kia Carnival Platinum Review

2017 Kia Carnival Road Test, Review

If you’re buying a proper family car in 2017, one that’s big enough for the kids, their friends, the groceries, bikes, footballs, cricket bats, dolls, and remote control cars, well the 2017 Kia Carnival just has to be on the list.

And I’m not just saying that for its people and load hauling abilities - it’s because of all the things that make it a good option for yourself.

For example, when in the driver’s seat it really feels more like a car than a people mover.

It isn’t hard to drive, or unpleasant, the only thing that makes it a little harder to pilot around is the length - but the Platinum grade model gives you front, side and rear cameras that display on the infotainment screen.

It gets along well, especially with the hefty 440kW from the diesel engine, and fuel economy is better than reasonable - I averaged as little as 8.0L/100km.

That compares extremely well with most seven-seat SUVs.

The ride is very good, it handles surprisingly well and has a better than expected turning circle.

It is more ‘liveable’ than a seven-seat SUV, including impressive sibling - Sorento, because you have a whole lot more headroom, this, from personal experience, is invaluable when loading/unloading small children.

The big electric sliding doors make entry and exit even easier, oh and you can even pull up to pick up the kids from school/sport and not even have to get out - the door control buttons are up on the roof.

It’s also comfortable up front with heated/ventilated seats, heaps of legroom and many sizeable and nicely-located storage areas.

There’s also lots of power outlets (front and rear), 10 cup holders, and air-vents in the back as well.

It’s also a good idea that Kia has had - you can lock the rear climate controls to avoid unnecessary sibling squabbles over the settings.

It would be nice to have a DVD system built-in in this top-spec model for rear seat passengers.

The front screen has DVD capability but that really doesn’t count as you can’t watch on the go.

I’m also not a big fan of shiny/smooth timber-like area at the top of the steering wheel, something with a bit more grip helps you spin the wheel with your palm when parking.

And digital radio and Apple CarPlay/Android Auto are glaring omissions.

Overall though there really isn’t much not to like in the Kia Carnival, especially when you factor in the other positives such as a five-star ANCAP safety rating, seven-year warranty and capped-price servicing.

The ultimate family car? If it isn’t, the Kia Carnival sure comes mighty close!

NUTS and BOLTS - 2017 Kia Carnival Platinum

  • Engine: 2.2 litre turbo-diesel producing 147kW/440Nm or 3.3 litre V6 petrol producing 206kW/336Nm
  • Transmission: Six-speed auto
  • Safety: Five stars
  • Warranty: Seven years
  • Origin: South Korea
  • Price: from $58,790 (petrol) and $61,290 (diesel)

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About Joel Helmes 3562 Articles
Joel is the founder and CEO of Behind the Wheel. Joel has a background as a radio broadcaster with on-air roles at 4BC, 4KQ, 2KY, 2LT and 2UE amongst others, as well as a news editor and program director. Joel’s relationship with cars stems back to his early childhood learning to change oil and brakes with his father and uncle. This continued on into his driving years owning an assorted collection of cars.

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