2003 Kia Sedona EX 3.5L from North America


As long as it stays reliable, we love it


Nothing yet, only had a few days.

General Comments:

I bought the 2003 Sedona EX for ease of entry (hip replacement) and for my wife to use after I am healed. Only had it a few days and 200 miles on it, so I cannot offer long term satisfaction and reliability yet, will review again in a few months.

We looked at Ford Wind star, and have not heard anything good about them, then the Dodge Grand Caravan and Caravan Sport (most popular), drove both Caravans and the KIA, and hands down, the KIA won. It may not be as quiet as the Dodge, however, it is quiet with some wind noise above 70 MPH, but not obtrusive, and I believe more comfortable.

The ride is smooth and minimizes road bumps, acceleration, engine, and transmission are great so far. The standard features of the EX are just what we all wanted. Front seats are fairly comfortable and the kids appear content in the rear seats. Interior fit and trim are very good!

Driving on the expressway has some very slight wander, but steering is very tight, I better than the car we replaced or the Dodge 1500 we own as well.

Overall, so far it is great, but until some time has passed and mileage has been put on, overall satisfaction cannot be properly determined.

I read hundreds of reviews and ratings on the Windstar, Sedona, and Caravans, and yes, people have reported problems with the KIA's, but look at the others as well, KIA appears to be rated by the owners, you and me, to be an excellent vehicle overall. I should also state that the EX was about the same price as the Grand Caravan Sport comparably equipped, within about $1200 of each other, so cost was a minimal issue. Unless you add $1500+ for an extended warranty on the Dodge that still does not match the KIA warranty.

I have no regrets as of yet and only time will tell.

Would be nice if ABS was standard, and mileage was better, but just do your homework before you buy any vehicle so you don't end up with surprises.

We like it so far!

Would you buy another car from this manufacturer? Don't Know

Review Date: 16th October, 2003

6th Sep 2005, 18:12

Well now that you've owned your Sedona for a couple of years, what do you think of it now? I'm curious to see if you would buy another.

8th Sep 2006, 12:13

Have 62,00 miles on 2003 Sedona bought new, fell a part after 50,000 dealer unwilling to fix check engine light problem. They just turn off light with test equipment and blame any other place it has been serviced. Gas cap has been replaced twice, and check engine light comes on when nobody has touched it since dealer put it on. One dealer admitted they had not idea what some of the problems were. Very poor dealer attitudes on service, waiting to see if receive response to online communication with KIA corporate, did not return voice mails left for them. Next week taking to third dealer, then retaining an attorney, this will be 8th time for same problem. Dealers dishonest have to stand over them to be sure they place the reason brought in on ticket as they know they are liable for lemon law.

2003 Kia Sedona EX from North America


A Bargain with an excellent warranty -- but Kia needs to do some homework!


The plastic fuse box cover is in just the wrong place, and it's too cheaply made as well -- so it comes off frequently. I gave up and stuck it in the glove box.

Just a month after purchase, it developed a vibration (I'm assuming tire balance, but haven't taken it in yet).

They really should give owners a complete set of covers for the seat mount valleys -- Our toddler got his foot caught in an open valley and twisted his ankle as a result. We're not get-rich-quick types who file lawsuits against deep-pocket corporations, but Kia may should wake up and smell the coffee -- taking care of small details like that will keep them out of court.

General Comments:

The Kia's price is definitely right.

Dealers that advertise the Sedona price leaders should carry a better selection of colors. What was available at my dealer was two of the blandest colors.

Kia also needs to offer a bright red and perhaps two or three other solid colors as well.

Specific observations about the Kia we own:

1) It's much harder to move around in the Sedona than it was in our 92 Dodge Grand Caravan; but the Sedona weighs more. You would think some of that weight would have gone to a little more room, but no.

2) There is about 10" less space available behind the rearmost seat. The same luggage we packed easily in the Dodge is too big for the Kia -- we have to leave things behind. Right now we're thinking of two solutions: 1) roof rack and carrier; or 2) tow hitch (NAPA, $175, or Kia $275) & $400 4'x8' utility trailer from Wal-Mart or Northern.

3) Related item, there is much less room between the seats than in our old Dodge. We could put our toddler's car seat behind the driver (on the middle seat) in the Dodge, and there would still have been room for his feet. There's an inch or two less in the Sedona -- which may not sound like much if you are not as concerned with back-seat passengers.

4) The rear doors don't have their own key locks. If the Sedona had key-less entry, this would not be an issue. But as things are, try holding onto a toddler and an infant, having to open the front passenger door, then reaching in to hit the unlock button (because *only* the driver's side lock will unlock ALL doors; the passenger's side lock does not)

5) Key-less entry systems are cheap, and they should be included.

6) The rear hatch is manually operated -- and I don't think they offer an inside pushbutton release yet (which our 92 Dodge had). Little stuff like this isn't that expensive; and Sedona should have it.

7) The front cupholder design is complicated and, well, almost useless for holding drinks.

8) In our state, every citizen has the right to carry firearms openly. The dashboard cupholder in our Dodge was a perfect "mount" for my holstered pistol; it kept me "legal". But in the Kia, there is no suitable place to keep it where it will be legal.

9) Buyers of Sedona should definitely opt for the roof rack.

10) The air conditioning is barely adequate when not driving at highways speeds. This is probably because RC-134 refrigerant is way inefficient compared to R-12.

11) Seat fabric was too "grippy". I put some seat covers on them to protect them for later resale and also to alter the feel.

12) Automakers are missing the boat with standard stereos, and Kia is no exception. It would cost them very little to put some decent amplification into their stereo, and add some subwoofers somewhere -- so that us baby boomers with jobs and kids, and no time to go to the autosound specialist, can occasionally crank it up and be pleased with the result.

Would you buy another car from this manufacturer? Don't Know

Review Date: 21st September, 2003