Kia in February revealed the 2022 Carnival and described the vehicle as stronger and stiffer than the outgoing Sedona it’ll replace.
The three-row Carnival “Multi-Purpose Vehicle” targets what Kia calls “the unoccupied space between SUV and family hauler.” It’s a unibody SUV that shares the new third-generation “N3” platform as the Sorento and K5.
“Kia’s engineers made sure it was lighter, stronger and quieter than the outgoing architecture,” Kia wrote in a news release Feb. 23.
The OEM said it incorporated more “hot-stamped parts and ultra-high-strength steel for increased average tensile strength and torsional stiffness that result in better driving dynamics.”
Kia product communications national manager James Hope on Friday said the Carnival used hot-stamped steel in 14 locations, two more spots than the Sedona.
He said these hot-stamped steel areas included:
• Around the entire driver and passenger front doors
• Across the windshield header
• Crash channels in the lower part of the firewall
• Rear chassis channels that run longitudinally from the rear car opening toward the 2nd row of seats. (Minor formatting edits.)
Hope said he didn’t receive any information about aluminum usage on the large vehicle.
Besides all of the higher-strength steels, repairers will encounter more “sound absorbing and insulating materials to minimize road, wind, and engine noise” when the Carnival reaches dealers this quarter, according to Kia.
Other body and tech details of possible interest include:
- Kia said it adjusted the aerodynamics on the wheels, mirrors and front bumper for better gas mileage.
- The OEM said the hood had “(d)ramatic” body lines, the headlights and taillights are connected with “(a) bold cutline,” and the wheel arches are “(b)rawny.”
- The mirrors feature a two-tone color scheme. Gloss black wheels are possible.
- Trim includes skid plate garnish and “black/chrome rocker panel moldings.” The Carnival is also the first vehicle featuring Kia’s new logo.
- The headlights are LEDs; it’s unclear if the taillights are.
- A camera with a night vision function to see the backseat comes standard in nearly all trims, as does an intercom to talk to the back seat.
- UVO telematics are available, including the ability for the Carnival to call 911 if an airbag is triggered.
- Kia boasted that the SUV included “12 standard Advanced Driver Assistance System (ADAS) features – the most comprehensive standard ADAS suite in segment – and available segment exclusive Blind-Spot View Monitor.” Kia didn’t spell out all 12, but highlights mentioned include autobraking, blind-spot monitoring and autobraking, rear cross-traffic autobraking, parking distance alerts, lane centering, automatic high beams and alerts to drivers perceived as potentially inattentive due to the vehicle’s movement.
Kia sold 13,190 Sedonas in 2020.
Kia, Feb. 23, 2021
Featured image: The 2022 Kia Carnival is shown. (Provided by Kia)