The Kia Cadenza is a brand new vehicle, the first luxury offering by the Kia lineup.
The Cadenza was first seen at the Detroit Auto Show, and we saw it at the Cleveland Auto Show earlier this year, and now it’s finally arrived at the dealership of Waikem Kia in Massillon, Ohio. When we saw it in person, we marveled at the new level of luxury being offered by the Kia model.
The Kia Cadenza is known as the K7 back home in South Korea. It’s one of the most popular vehicles in Asia, and that plus the success of the 2013 Kia Optima SXL in America motivated Kia to make this model. It is also based off the Hyundai Azera and added European styling cues.
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European styling starts with the 8-sided Tiger Nose out front. It comes with thin LED headlights and chrome spoke rims.
“The Cadenza is the new flagship for Kia in the U.S. market, and when it goes on sale later this year, it will introduce a number of advanced systems that promise to set a new standard in the premium segment,” said Michael Sprague, executive vice president of marketing & communications, KMA, at the Detroit Auto Show.
VIDEO: 2014 Kia Cadenza debuts at the Detroit Auto Show
Under the hood, the Cadenza is powered by Kia’s most powerful V6 engine ever. The standard features of the Kia Cadenza Premium include 3.3L V-6 293hp engine, 6-speed automatic transmission with overdrive, and 4-wheel anti-lock brakes (ABS).
Other comfort features include navigation, backup camera, an analog clock, woodgrain trim, Bluetooth, leather seats with heated options, leather steering wheel, LCD center console, Advanced Smart Cruise Control (ASCC), Blind Spot Detection (BSD) and Lane-Departure Warning System (LDWS).
You can get your Kia Cadenza in 6 available exterior colors.
All Cadenza models come with a 10-year, 100,000 mile warranty.
Video: 2014 Kia Cadenza at the Cleveland Auto Show
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As such, everything about the Cadenza feels carefully crafted to impress while taming expectations. Its luxurious tidings and big footprint make it an enticing alternative to smaller—but similarly priced—sedans such as the Acura TL and Lexus ES350.
The Cadenza is an impressive effort by Kia. In eight hours or so of driving it, I came away with almost the same thought I had when I drove its cousin the Hyundai Azera: a solid effort to create a better than you would expect car. It’s one that should keep the Kia buyer that wants more, in a Kia showroom.
The Cadenza is a sharp looking car with the distinctive front grille and lamp treatment made a bit more distinctive. A sharp profile with well placed lines and an athletic looking stance give way to a fairly Audi-esque looking rear complete with oval dual exhaust ports.
Strong V6; upscale interior; easy-to-use electronics interface; generous standard features and warranty coverage.
Already faced with several great choices in the segment, large sedan shoppers can thank Kia for making their task more difficult. Compounding the issue, the 2014 Kia Cadenza’s unique mix of price, features and materials makes it a viable alternative to players on both the mainstream and luxury-brand sides of the divide.