Kia Motors America evidently will make good on its plans to bring its premium Cadenza sedan to the North American market, unveiling this long awaited and much delayed model at the North American International Auto Show in Detroit this week. This front-wheel-drive five-passenger sedan will slot above the Kia Optima and bring a level of refinement not offered previously by this Korean car manufacturer.
Kia is banking on customers finding the Cadenza's European styling appealing as a reason to look closer at this sedan. Figure that the new product will help Kia will keep some of its current customers including those that may have purchased the Optima SXL, its current flagship model.
One trim level will be offered when the Kia Cadenza goes on sale this spring. Its standard features match well against premium models and may best compete against models such as the Lexus ES and the Buick LaCrosse, front-wheel-drive sedans too. This sedan will also match up against the Hyundai Azera, a sedan from Kia's corporate cousin.
Standard equipment includes soft leather seating, wood and chrome accents, ambient lighting, power accessories including power heated automatic folding side mirrors. SiriusXM satellite radio with traffic reports, telematics service, a 550-watt Infinity audio system with 12 speakers, Bluetooth connectivity, dual zone climate control and keyless entry with push button start are included.
Premium and technology packages allow for further customization of any Cadenza. The premium package includes upgraded leather seating, a heated steering wheel with power tilt and telescoping, a power retractable sun shade, heated front and rear outboard seats and a power rear window sunshade. Choose the technology package and your Cadenza is outfitted with 19-inch alloy wheels, blind spot detection, lane departure warning, an electric parking brake, smart cruise control and a hydrophobic windshield.
Engine and Transmission
One engine and transmission offering will be available with the 2014 Kia Cadenza. This model is powered by a 3.3-liter gasoline direct injection V-6 engine making 293 horsepower at 6,400 rpm and 255 foot-pounds of torque at 5,200 rpm. Kia pairs this 24-valve engine with a six-speed automatic transmission featuring manual shifting capabilities. Steering wheel mounted paddle shifters are included.
The 2014 Kia Cadenza sits on a 112-inch wheelbase and is 195.9 inches long, 72.8 inches wide and 58.1 inches tall. The Cadenza has a sport-tuned suspension with MacPherson struts in the front and a multi-like rear set up in the rear.
Pricing has not been announced yet for the 2014 Kia Cadenza, but we expect it to come in slightly below the Azera's $32,250 tag. With premium and technology packages included, a fully equipped Kia Cadenza might retail for upwards of $40,000. That's a price point where Kia has not gone before. Then again, the Cadenza is unlike any Kia product to date.