After an online breach on Friday gave us our first taste of the production version of Kia’s 2009 Seoul Motor Show KND-5 concept car, the South Korean automaker today came out with official photos of its new range-topping sedan that has been named K7 for the domestic market and Cadenza for the rest of the world. The mid-size sedan that will replace the Opirus / Amanti (depending on the market) will make its overseas premiere at the Saudi Arabia, Kuwait and Dubai international motor shows, towards the end of the year.
Soon-Nam Lee, Director of the Overseas Marketing Group, Kia Motors, said, “New Cadenza will showcase the continuing evolution in Kia’s striking design language through the harmonious blend of light and lines. It will also present a new concept in luxury sedans in terms of performance and technology.”
The latest work of Kia’s chief designer Peter Schreyer and his team remains close to the original concept and incorporates all the fancy-pansy styling cues we see on the automaker’s newest models such as the Sorento, Forte / Coupe and Venga.
Still, to be completely frank, the Cadenza is a disappointment when compared to the KND-5 concept model as the vehicle’s proportions have been altered -look at the front overhang for example- while many of the styling details have been watered down.
Sure it looks a million times better than the Amanti, but a game changer (in terms of styling) it is not. Or at least that’s what we think.
There are no photos of the Cadenza’s cabin but Kia says that highlights include the “futuristic ‘floating’ dashboard” and an “interior mood lighting strip that runs along the dashboard to the door trim” – whatever that means.
According to Kia, available new technologies will include a heated steering wheel (for winter driving in cold markets), powered extendable seat cushions (for extra thigh support), automatic defogging of the windshield and ventilated front seats (for cool comfort in hot markets).
The new Cadenza is expected to go on sale in South Korea before the end of the year and the rest of the world during the first half of 2010. Kia’s new mid-size sedan will most probably be offered with a 2.4-liter four-cylinder petrol engine with direct-injection churning out about 200 HP and the Kia/Hyundai Lambda V6 petrol. A diesel option should also be in the mix for certain markets.