2025 Kia Carnival Adds Hybrid Variant, New Tech

Now entering its fourth year, the Kia Carnival is finally adding a hybrid variant. The Canadian premiere of the updated minivan took place at the Canadian International AutoShow in Toronto today.

We say “finally” because rivals including the Toyota Sienna and Chrysler Pacifica have been offering a gas-electric model for some time. Ditto for three popular Kia crossovers, namely the Sportage, Sorento and Niro. Read on for the complete details.

The 2025 Kia Carnival Hybrid is equipped with a turbocharged 1.6-litre four-cylinder engine and an electric motor generating 54 kW—the highest output of all Kia hybrid models. The 242 total horsepower and 271 lb-ft of torque are handled by a six-speed automatic transmission rather than a CVT like competitors use. For increased efficiency, the driver can select multiple levels of regenerative braking.

Photo: Julien Amado

The 3.5-litre V6 producing 290 horsepower and 262 lb-ft of torque, paired with an eight-speed transmission, continues to motivate other Carnival models. Again, no AWD option is available.

Safer and Smarter

With regard to safety, Forward Collision Avoidance Assist has been enhanced and now includes Junction Crossing, Lane-Change Side, Lane-Change Oncoming and Evasive Steering Assist. This is in addition to several other advanced driver assistance features already available.

Exclusive to the Carnival Hybrid is Shift by Wire and available Remote Smart Parking Assist. The latter means you can let the vehicle park itself with the touch of a button, whether inside or outside of the vehicle.  

Photo: Julien Amado

More Technology and Versatility

As previewed by the first pictures that were released last fall, the 2025 Kia Carnival is redesigned and looks a bit futuristic, especially with the new Star Map daytime running lights and taillights. The revised front bumper and grille are also worth mentioning, as well as the five brand new wheel designs.

Inside, look for a cleaner and sleeker layout featuring a standard 12.3-inch touchscreen. A similarly sized digital instrument panel and a head-up display can be found in select models. By the way, the infotainment system is shared with the new EV9 electric crossover and can stay fresh thanks to over-the-air software updates.

Photo: Kia

Let’s talk about the seats before we wrap this up. For the first time, Kia will give customers the ability to choose on the top SX trim. As with the previous model, the second-row VIP captain's chairs for maximum relaxation are still available. However, for those that want to maximize their seating and cargo capacity, Kia will now offer an eight-passenger option complete with removable second-row bench seating. That’s great.

The gas version of the 2025 Kia Carnival is expected to arrive in Canadian dealerships this spring, while the Carnival Hybrid will follow in the summer. Prices will be announced closer to launch. The 2024 model currently ranges from $37,495-$50,995.

Watch: 2024 Kia EV9 AWD GT-Line Review

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