Kia Motors America has announced the sales launch of their all-new seven-passenger midsize SUV, dubbed the Borrego. Revealed at the Detroit Motor Show earlier this year, the new Borrego offers a compromise position between large capacity and fuel economy. The release brings new details of the SUV as well as pricing information.

The Borrego runs on regular unleaded and achieves class-leading fuel economy of 15/22mpg city/highway for its V8 with two-wheel drive, and a respectable 15/20mpg city/highway for the four-wheel drive. The new midsize also houses Kia's most powerful engines to date, coming standard with a 3.8L V6 that generates 276hp (206kW) as well as offering an optional DOHC 4.6-liter V8 engine rated at 337hp (251kW). When mated to the V8, the Borrego is capable of towing up to 7,500 pounds (3409kg).

The Borrego comes standard with air conditioning, an AM/FM/CD/MP3 six-speaker audio system with USB and auxiliary input jack, and is the first Kia vehicle to offer SIRIUS Satellite Radio with a three month trial subscription as standard equipment. Two trim levels are available, LX and the upscale EX. The primary upgrades include larger 18" alloys (17" are standard on the LX), standard heated side mirrors, dual-zone climate control and a multi-function trip computer. More leather trim and upgraded options ranges are also perks of the EX trim package.

The Borrego features two major advantages over its competition: more interior room than the Ford Explorer, Nissan Pathfinder, Toyota 4Runner, Jeep Grand Cherokee and the new Honda Pilot, and its virtually unmatched warranty program - a 10-year or 100,000-mile limited powertrain warranty; a five-year or 60,000-mile limited basic warranty; and a five-year or 100,000-mile anti-perforation warranty. A five-year/60,000-mile roadside assistance plan is also part of the plan.

Both Hyundai and Kia offer similar warranty programs, designed to give customers confidence in buying from a relatively small manufacturer without a more prestigious badge on the bonnet.

The Borrego will start at $25,245 in the U.S. for the base model V6-powered LX trim, with the V8 a $4,750 option. The better-equipped EX trim starts at $27,995 for the V6 model, with a $3,000 premium for the V8. All models are subject to a $750 destination fee on top of the MSRP.


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