2015 Kia K900 – The Best Car Kia has ever Made

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The Kia K900 Takes a Leap of Faith

As a brand best recognized by the makers of affordable and economical cars, none would ever expect Kia to build a super luxury sedan.  But through the eyes of Kia designers, who’s to say otherwise?  With both ambition and pursuit, fantasies became reality and the Kia K900 was born.

At a price point where only people who wear expensive suits can afford, the K900 is quite a leap of faith.  It’s not like it’s Kia’s first attempt though.  The K900 was the result of lessons learned from the well acclaimed and success of the Optima and Cadenza.

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Visually speaking, the K900 justifies its hefty price tag.  Up front lies Kia’s signature front grille design accompanied by HID front head lights in a form of both elegance and complexity.  Bottom front bumper also employs a stream of LED fog lights for enhanced looks.  Side view of the K900 remains subtle and composed with a minimalist roof-top silhouette, a parallel contour running along the handlebars and a chrome strip hugging the lower chassis.  Out back is a premonition of an Audi A6 with its dual chrome exhaust tip, and shortened trunk lid.  Along with its 19″ chrome alloy wheels, the K900 gives a bold and luxurious stance.

Base model of the K900 comes equipped with a 3.8L V6 producing a generous 311 horsepower, and 293 ft.lbs of torque.  And as tested, our press vehicle comes equipped with a menacing 5.0L V8 producing 420 horsepower, and 376 ft.lbs of torque.  Mated to the gearbox is an 8 speed automatic transmission with manual sequential shift mode.

Tech – how much is too much?

Many new cars not limited to luxury are incorporating a vast amount of technology.  But how well the technology is implemented best justifies its intent.  In the case of the K900, it’s a near perfect proportion of safety, features and ease of use.

technology dashboard

Heads Up Display technology incorporated into cars is nothing new.  There are some poor implementations out there, but the Kia K900 did a great job.  The Heads Up Display on the K900 projects speed and turn-by-turn indicators with navigation is turned on and blind spot alert.  I like it not just because it’s cool, but because of its simplicity and benefits of vital driving information.

Other key safety technology features in the Kia K900 include adaptive front lighting system that rotates in accordance to the vehicle direction of heading, lane departure warning system, blind spot detection and a 360 degree birds eye-view camera system.

Driving Behavior

I’ve never ridden a hovercraft, but I think the Kia K900 might be the closest thing.  The Kia K900 is quite possibly the smoothest ride you can possibly get.  To be honest, it’s unlike any other car I’ve ever driven – in a very good way.  Despite it’s bulky curb weight of 4,555 lbs, the Kia K900 feels feather light and silky smooth during acceleration.  There were certainly no short cuts taken in achieving this feat either.  The sophisticated 5-link independent front and rear suspension along with Kia’s in-house V8 GDI dual cam engine makes this all possible.

V8 Tau Engine

Accolade trickles down to the buttery smooth automatic 8 speed transmission as well.  Modes of operation also include Eco, Normal and Drive mode.

Click the Drive select button to enter Race mode and the dashboard immediately transitions into a state of visual alert with sharpened throttle response.  Unfortunately, I can’t say the same for the handling, and that’s where the Kia K900 falls short on things.  On a performance standpoint, steering precision is OK at best with its suspension behavior remaining static.

It’s also due to the simple fact that it’s a big car.  The long wheel base of 3,045 mm compromises some of its flexibility in addition to the massive 19″ wheels.

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One must realize that there is no car that ticks every single check box.  But the Kia K900 certainly hits most of the spots under the comfort section.  Cabin space is roomy, inviting and well sheltered from the exterior environment – you can’t even hear the engine run.  I was a bit surprised that the leather quality fell short of its genetic breed, the Hyundai Genesis.

The Missing Gap

This car ain’t cheap.  With all said and done, our tested model came priced in at $71,780.  This price tag doesn’t reflect luxury, it reflects the super-luxury.  The Kia K900 is placed in the pool to complete with the Audi A6, and the BMW 5/6 series.

Panoramic Sunroof

Pretty much anyone who just read the above statement would find such a thing absurd.  But take an open-minded approach and just drive this thing, the Kia K900 really doesn’t disappoint.  Likewise, blindfold a passenger and take him for a ride and I can bet they would never guess it was a Kia.

The Kia K900 may be slightly crippled by its lack of grunt around turns, but the ultra-smooth acceleration more than makes up for it.  And it’s not a flaw either.  There are certainly ones that outperform the Kia K900 around corners within the same caliber, but the ones that do don’t offer the shear level of comfort and ride quality.  And that’s the gap the Kia K900 aims to fill in the competition pool.

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The Hyundai Genesis V8 remains a qualifying option for those that seek a more lively driving experience with equal luxury qualities traits at a competitive price point with the more established German brands.

 

Specifications

  • Vehicle : 2015 Kia K900
  • Model : V8 Elite
  • Price as Tested : $71,780
  • Vehicle Type : Sedan
  • Seating Capacity : 2+3
  • Powertrain Configuration : RWD
  • Engine : 5.0 V8 Tau
  • Transmission : 8-speed Automatic
  • Horsepower : 420 Hp
  • Torque: 311 lb.ft
  • Fuel Economy: 10.3/15.7 L/100 Km city/highway
  • Wheelbase : 3,045 mm
  • Height : 1,490 mm
  • Width : 1,900 mm
  • Weight: 4,555 lbs (V8 Elite)
  • Additional Features : Heads Up Display, Smart Cruise Control, Lexicon 17 speaker system, 360 camera monitoring system, lane departure system, Panoramic sunroof

Pros

  • Ultra smooth acceleration
  • Powerful and silky smooth V8 and 8 speed automatic gearbox
  • Loaded with safety features and luxury qualities
  • Well execution of luxury technology
  • Ultra quiet and inviting cabin space

Cons

  • Lack of handling capability
  • Lack of steering feedback and no aspects of performance handling
  • Expensive price tag breaching the 70k mark.