Come 2023, the Carnival was further downgraded by the non-profit organization with a marginal rating in the updated moderate overlap front crash test. Said ratings carry over to the 2024 model, which is the pre-facelift specification in the United States market. Overseas, the Carnival went through a mid-cycle refresh for 2024. The facelift is coming to America for the 2025 model year.
What else did the IIHS find unsatisfactory with the Carnival? Similar to 2023 and 2022, the 2024 model comes with two headlight variations. The LED projector-style headlights of the SX Prestige trim level are up to par, yet the LED reflector-type headlights of lesser grades are poor at best. According to the Virginia-based nonprofit organization, visibility isn't up to snuff on the left side of the road for both the low beams and high beams. What's more, visibility while cornering could be better as well.
We're not done yet, though. The IIHS also rates new vehicles for front crash prevention, and the Carnival didn't perform as expected in the nighttime vehicle-to-pedestrian scenario. Rather than superior or advanced, the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety deemed the automatic emergency braking system basic. Can it get any worse?
During initial testing, the second-row captain's chair on the left broke loose from the floor. Both the seat and crash test dummy tipped sideways and backward, eventually winding up on the floor of the third-row area. How did Kia fix this problem? As per the IIHS, the South Korean automaker strengthened the rails that attach the second-row seats to the floor. Otherwise said, Kia found out that aggressive cost-cutting measures have consequences.
After the paragraphs above, you might think that nobody in their right mind would buy a Carnival in the US of A. The truth of the matter is that Kia doesn't sell too many. From January 2023 through September 2023, deliveries totaled 33,173 units. The Sienna and Odyssey, by comparison, moved 47,753 and 56,359 units. The undisputed leader of the segment is Chrysler with 112,198 units of the Pacifica.
At press time, you can get a brand-new Carnival for $33,200 plus destination charge. Aforementioned competitors are slightly pricier, with the Sienna and Odyssey coming in at $37,185 and $37,840 right off the bat. As for the Pacifica, make that $38,020 at the least.