How To Put A Kia Sorento In 4WD Or AWD. Unlock The Power!

How To Put A Kia Sorento In 4WD Or AWD

An image of a Kia Sorento - How To Put A Kia Sorento In 4WD Or AWD
How To Put A Kia Sorento In 4WD Or AWD | Photo Credits: Kia

The KIA Sorento offers a delightful driving experience, providing comfort and various powertrain choices.

When venturing off-road or tackling rough terrain, activating your Sorento’s AWD or 4WD becomes essential.

To understand the workings of this mechanism, we conducted thorough research to present you with the answers below.

Enhancing control on slopes, muddy, wet, or slippery roads involves utilizing one of the following systems, depending on the availability in your KIA Sorento:

  • Auto-Mode AWD: Activate this system by pressing the auto-mode button on your steering wheel.
  • Automatic Engagement on Full-Time AWD: Your car seamlessly adjusts to this mode without requiring any manual action.
  • 4WD: No activation is necessary for this mode, unless you have a part-time 4WD, where you need to manually shift either a lever or a switch to engage 4×4.


Continue reading to gain insights into how to effectively use the AWD or 4WD system in your KIA Sorento.


How To Put A Kia Sorento In AWD



The AWD system in the KIA Sorento distributes torque power to both the front and rear axles, offering enhanced traction and control.

There are two variants of AWD available in the KIA Sorento, each serving specific purposes:


Auto-Mode AWD:


When the vehicle is in auto-mode, power is evenly distributed to all four wheels.

By pressing the auto-mode button on the steering wheel, the car adjusts torque distribution to all four wheels, adapting to varying road conditions.

This feature allows for quick traction adjustments, such as during rain or snow, providing better stability on slippery or icy roads.

Additionally, auto-mode aids in maneuvering through slopes or turns, offering increased traction for safer driving.


Automatic Engagement on Full-Time AWD:


In this AWD variant, the car automatically detects tire slippage, typically on wet roads, and redirects power to the rear axle and attached wheels to enhance traction.

This system is well-suited for normal road driving and seamlessly adjusts to off-road conditions, enabling the driver to maintain maximum control over the vehicle for a smoother ride.

It operates intelligently by continuously monitoring the traction of all four wheels and distributing power to those requiring additional assistance.

This smart functionality helps conserve fuel by activating AWD only when necessary, optimizing fuel efficiency.


What Happens When Your Automatic Engagement AWD System Fails?


Your KIA Sorento comes equipped with a warning system designed to alert you to any issues with the AWD system.

If a problem arises, you’ll be notified through illuminated warning messages on your dashboard.

If you see an “AWD Off” or “Check AWD” message, it’s a clear indicator that there’s an issue that requires your attention. In such cases, immediate action is necessary.

When the system prompts you to check it, it signifies a problem that needs investigation.

The vehicle should be inspected to identify and address the underlying issue.

If the message indicates that the AWD has been disabled, it means you won’t be able to operate the car in AWD mode until the problem is resolved through servicing.

It’s worth noting that the AWD system may also deactivate if there are discrepancies in tire diameter or air pressure between the axles.

Your mechanic will need to address these issues to restore AWD functionality.


An image showing AWD lock - How To Put A Kia Sorento In 4WD Or AWD
How To Put A Kia Sorento In 4WD Or AWD | Photo Credits: Kia Owners Club Forum


How To Put Your KIA Sorento On 4WD


Your Kia Sorento operates in 2WD mode when driving on smooth surfaces like pavement or tarmac.

However, when facing challenging terrain such as mud, slippery roads, or wet surfaces, switching to 4WD becomes necessary.

This allows the engine to distribute torque to both the front and rear wheels, enhancing vehicle control.

Once back on regular roads, it’s advisable to switch back to 2WD mode for optimal efficiency.

For vehicles equipped with part-time 4WD, transitioning between 2WD and 4WD modes on your Kia Sorento is simple.

While driving, you can accomplish this by shifting the car’s lever or activating the switch, depending on your vehicle’s configuration.


What To Expect From An AWD or 4WD


Advantages Of AWD And 4WD


Enhanced Traction in Challenging Terrain

Experience improved control and traction on rough roads or rocky terrain with the AWD or 4WD system in your KIA Sorento.


Minimized Spin During Cornering

Navigate unexpected corners confidently, as the system helps prevent your vehicle from spinning out, ensuring safer driving experiences.


Disadvantages Of AWD And 4WD


Potential Drawbacks of AWD and 4WD Systems

  1. False Sense of Security: While these systems enhance traction, drivers may overestimate their vehicle’s capabilities, leading to risky driving behaviors. Despite improved traction, it’s crucial to remain cautious, especially in adverse weather conditions.
  2. Increased Costs: The installation and maintenance of AWD or 4WD systems contribute to higher purchase and upkeep expenses. Advanced systems often include additional components like driveshaft software and multiple differentials, adding complexity and raising repair costs.
  3. Higher Fuel Consumption: Operating under AWD or 4WD modes requires more fuel compared to 2WD vehicles, resulting in increased fuel consumption and potentially higher expenses at the pump.
  4. Extended Braking Distance: The added weight and complexity of these systems can lengthen braking distances, making it crucial for drivers to anticipate stops earlier. Heavier vehicles require more distance to come to a complete halt, increasing the risk of collisions compared to lighter cars.



Frequently Asked Questions


Is AWD The Same As 4WD?


In essence, the primary distinction between 4×4 and AWD lies in their operational modes.

AWD systems remain constantly active, autonomously distributing torque to the axles when encountering low-traction scenarios.

On the other hand, 4WD systems are part-time, requiring manual engagement by the driver through a lever or button within the vehicle’s cockpit.


Which Is Stronger AWD Or 4WD?


Exactly, the ruggedness of 4WD systems enables them to endure more punishment and provide increased power.

Through the utilization of low- and high-range settings, drivers can precisely adjust the distribution of power and torque to optimize traction across a variety of scenarios.




In conclusion, the KIA Sorento offers a delightful driving experience with various powertrain choices.

Activating the AWD or 4WD system becomes crucial when venturing off-road or facing rough terrain.

Understanding how these systems work is essential for safe and efficient driving.

The AWD system distributes torque to both front and rear axles, enhancing traction and control.

Auto-Mode AWD and Automatic Engagement on Full-Time AWD offer seamless adjustments to varying road conditions, providing stability and maneuverability.

When the AWD system encounters issues, warning messages on the dashboard prompt necessary action, ensuring the system’s proper functioning.

Additionally, transitioning between 2WD and 4WD modes in the Kia Sorento is straightforward, allowing drivers to adapt to different driving conditions.

While AWD and 4WD systems offer advantages such as enhanced traction and minimized spin, they come with potential drawbacks, including increased costs, higher fuel consumption, and extended braking distances.

Drivers should remain cautious and mindful of their vehicle’s capabilities, especially in adverse conditions.

Ultimately, understanding how to effectively utilize the AWD or 4WD system in the KIA Sorento enhances driving safety and performance, ensuring a smooth and enjoyable ride.

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