The Kia Sorento has been given a facelift. That’s not fresh news – we carried that one in June – but a press release announcing the SUV’s European debut at the upcoming Paris show caught us at the headline. It reads “Completely new platform for upgraded Kia Sorento”.

Back then, Kia only said that the refreshed Sorento gets a re-engineered bodyshell, enhanced powertrains for best-in-class fuel economy with lower emissions, improved ride, handling and refinement, plus additional convenience and safety features. There have been reports mentioning a new platform shared with the third-gen Hyundai Santa Fe, and here’s the confirmation.

Kia adds that the subframes which support the suspension are new, stronger designs which give more precise location of the suspension components. Larger suspension bushes, longer trailing arms at the rear and “High Performance Dampers” work together to improve ride comfort and stability. Steering is also now more direct with 2.95 turns lock-to-lock. Kia’s new FlexSteer system will be optional, providing three different steering weights.

Engine options include a 2.4L Theta II GDI engine (192 PS and 242 Nm) and a 2.2L R-series turbodiesel. With 197 PS and 436 Nm (automatic) or 421 Nm (manual) of torque, this is the engine to go for. Every Sorento will have a six-speed transmission (manual or auto) and a choice of 2WD or 4WD.

These are the first official pics of the refreshed cabin, which can be had with seven seats. A new two-part glass panoramic roof with a single powered roller blind shade will be available. There are more soft-touch surfaces – with satin chrome finish for the door handles, air-vent surrounds and switches – plus a new LCD instrument cluster and centre stack with eight-inch LCD screen (seven-inch in Europe).

Access is improved by the lower ride height (-10 mm), and the cabin floor has also been lowered, increasing legroom by 30 mm in the second row.

Looks wise, there are new front and rear bumpers with vertical-axis fog lights, a new front grille and headlamps with LED positioning lights, and a new tailgate with reshaped LED combination lamps. There are also new, optional 10-spoke machine finished 19-inch alloys.