2021 Kia Carnival Review: Space Jam [w/video]



1.Intro/Design and Appearance
2. Space and Practicality 
3. Interior and Features 
4. Driving Experience
5. Competition, Conclusion



Space and Practicality 

There’s 3,090mm of space between the Carnival’s front and rear axles, so naturally there is a tremendous amount of room inside. As our launch news mentions, there is an eight-seat model with reversible bench on sale too, but we’ve tested the seven-seat model, where the three-seat second row is replaced by dual captain-style chairs. 

The second row thrones can be shifted both sideways, as well as fore-and-aft. Moving them inwards allows you to clear the rear wheel wells and push the seats back into ‘super-legroom’ mode. In that position, you can even recline to an almost horizontal position, which would be useful for naps on long journeys.


While the seat’s on-floor position controls are manual, the seats themselves feature electric adjustment for everything else, including the legrests, and also have seat ventilation – these are stand-out features and aren’t commonly found in captain seats, even in luxury limousines.  

Strange masked man not standard equipment

Walking to the last row isn’t too hard, even with the dual thrones closer. While it’s not as tall as an Alphard, the Carnival isn’t neck-achingly short either, which means there are no headroom issues either. 

The last row feels like the second row of a small car. Two adults will fit in comfort, and even with decent legroom, but a third will mean shoulder-squeezing. That’s still far better than a seven-seat SUV or smaller MPV though, where three in the last row is impossible, and the seatbacks are adjustable for angle too. 

So if you need to carry seven adults, the eight-seat model will better suit your needs, as the seven-seat model is able to cart around six adults with lots of room all around, and a plus one with a bit of squeezing. 
Boot space is ridiculous – 627-litres (more than a big sedan ) even with the third row in play, thanks to an in-floor cargo space. It can accommodate very tall items, but if you need more space, the third row folds flat with one pull of a handle.

Push the second row as far forward as it’ll go and you have 2,000+ litres of space, while the eight seater can remove all of its chairs for an insane 4,100-litres. In other words, if you need to carry more than that, just get a damn lorry.

Page 3: Lots of space, but is there substance too?

1.Intro/Design and Appearance
2. Space and Practicality 
3. Interior and Features 
4. Driving Experience
5. Competition, Conclusion

about the author

Derryn Wong
CarBuyer's chief editor has a keen interest in all things mechanical, technological, animal and mineral. He's particularly fascinated by eco-cars and cars which make no logical sense. An avid motorcyclist and photographer, he also enjoys cats. Follow him on Instagram @werryndong