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2009 Kia Borrego photos

Kia's redesigned SUV competes well with stalwarts like the Ford Explorer, and even offers some surprising luxury features, along with solid tech. But is it the right time for an SUV?

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Wayne_Cunningham.jpg
Wayne Cunningham
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1 of 14 Corinne Schulze/CNET
Kia's product planners got sideswiped by last year's high gas prices, as the upgraded Kia Borrego was just about to go into production. This traditional SUV can be had in two- or four-wheel-drive versions, seats seven, and comes with a V-6 or V-8 engine.
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2 of 14 Corinne Schulze/CNET
Although configured as a traditional SUV, the exterior design shows a modern refinement, with softer lines and a petite grille.
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3 of 14 Corinne Schulze/CNET
This Borrego has the 3.8-liter V-6, adequate for driving around town, but lacking power when passing at speed. Unfortunately, mileage isn't great with this engine, and isn't even much of an improvement over the V-8 version.
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4 of 14 Corinne Schulze/CNET
The Borrego's modern design language is shown in the enhanced front-fender line and the rear-side windows, which kick up at the trailing edges, rather than being simple rectangles.
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5 of 14 Corinne Schulze/CNET
With its soft suspension, we noticed the Borrego tended to bounce around on the freeway. This behavior probably wouldn't be as noticeable with a fully occupied cabin.
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6 of 14 Corinne Schulze/CNET
Third-row seating allows for seven occupants. Cargo area is ample with the third-row seats folded down.
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7 of 14 Corinne Schulze/CNET
This Borrego was nicely appointed, as the optional Luxury package included leather seat inserts and a power-adjustable steering wheel.
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8 of 14 Corinne Schulze/CNET
The Borrego includes audio controls on the left of the steering wheel and cruise control on the right. There is also a voice command button hidden below the left side of the steering wheel hub.
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9 of 14 Corinne Schulze/CNET
A basic trip meter shows up in the speedometer display, while the tachometer, on the left, uses a unique angular design, which is taken up on the right side with the fuel and temperature gauges.
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10 of 14 Corinne Schulze/CNET
When fitted with the V-6 engine, the Borrego gets a five-speed-automatic transmission. The V-8 version gets upgraded to a six-speed automatic.
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11 of 14 Corinne Schulze/CNET
The available touch-screen navigation system works well enough, and covers the basics, but only has one feature we consider advanced: text to speech, that lets it read out street names under route guidance.
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12 of 14 Corinne Schulze/CNET
An iPod and USB port is a welcome addition to the tech in the Borrego.
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13 of 14 Corinne Schulze/CNET
We are impressed by the graphics for the audio system on the touch screen. Here you can see what the satellite radio interface looks like.
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14 of 14 Corinne Schulze/CNET
You can play MP3s off of an iPod, USB drive, or from a CD with the Borrego's audio system. This Inifinity system offers good quality sound.

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