2014 Kia Cadenza Test Drive

?2014 Kia Cadenza emerges as newest flagship?


Del Mar, CA ? The 2014 Kia Cadenza made its debut at this year?s North American International Auto Show in Detroit to embark on fulfilling its role as Kia?s newest flagship of the line, representing the most powerful and technologically advanced vehicle that the Korean automaker has ever introduced on our shores.

Kia entered the U.S. marketplace 18 years ago as a rather obscure marque and has risen to become the eighth largest brands in the U.S by volume. The 2014 Cadenza is a premium, entry luxury sedan, based on basically the same platform as that of its sister company Hyundai?s Azera. Cadenza will be available in only one trim level, which is referred to as Premium, and which begins pricing at $35,100. There are two upscale option packages available that progressively up the ante in terms of both features and equipment ? the Luxury Package Cadenza which starts at $38,100; and the top-of-the-line Technology Package Cadenza that comes with a starting price tag of $41,100. Add $800 for Destination and Handling charges for each.

The Premium 2014 Kia Cadenza brings in-car technology and infotainment to a heightened level on the playing field. Standard features consist of an advanced navigation system with SiriusXM Traffic? and UVO eServices, displayed on a high-resolution 8-inch touch screen, a Rear-Camera Display?and Back Up Warning System, and a premium 550-watt Infinity? 12-speaker audio system including rear surround speakers and subwoofer. All 2014 Cadenzas come equipped with leather seat trim with heated front seats, dual-zone automatic climate control with rear seat ventilation, Smart Key keyless entry with push-button start, 10-way power adjustable driver?s seat and Bluetooth? wireless technology.

The Luxury Package adds a full-length panoramic sunroof with a power retractable sunshade, HID headlights with an adaptive front lighting system, a 7-inch TFT LCD instrument cluster, premium Nappa leather seats, a memory-enabled 12-way ventilated driver?s seat with seat cushion extension, heated steering wheel with power tilt and telescoping steering column. Rear outboard passenger seats are heated, and there?s also a power rear sunshade.

The Technology Package enhances the Luxury Package with 19-inch alloy wheels, an electric parking brake with auto hold and Advanced Smart Cruise Control capable of maintaining a set distance to the vehicle ahead and helping to bring the car to a full stop if necessary.? Also included are water-repellant hydrophobic front side windows, a radar-based Blind Spot Detection system with Lane Change Assist, and Kia?s first-ever Lane Departure Warning System that provides both audible and visual alerts to the driver should they unintentionally drift out of their lane.

A fully-loaded 2014 Cadenza with Luxury and Technology packages also offers a White Interior Package at no additional cost which includes White Nappa leather trim, wood-grain accent window switch surrounds and a premium headliner material that extends to the pillar trim, rear parcel shelf and sun visors.


Cadenza displays an upscale European-influenced overall design that reflects a new trend among new car buyers ? ?smart value?. The styling was penned by Peter Schreyer, Kia Motors? president and chief design officer. Cadenza fills a void that formerly existed between mainstream and luxury vehicles. Up front is a new interpretation of Kia?s signature ?Tiger-Nose? grille flanked by quad projection beam headlights, nestled behind crystalline lenses. A unique transluscent LED light panel sits atop the headlight assembly. The Cadenza showcases a wide lower fascia that contributes to the Cadenza?s bold, athletic stance, while chrome trim accents surround the fog lights and grille adding to the vehicle?s premium sport sedan flavor. LED positioning lights and projection beam headlights provide additional European sophistication.

Cadenza?s profile or silhouette, provides a strong and elegant image. The vertical nose is imposing, with the long hood sensuously sculpted to meet the swept-back windshield. The greenhouse curves gently to the C-pillar and is surrounded by a tasteful chrome bezel that flares upward at the rear door, creating a beautiful glass droplet. Beginning just aft of the front-door cutline is a chiseled indentation that sweeps upward, transitioning into the tail lights. Classic chrome accents adorn the lower portions of the doors and the treatment continues into the rear fascia. The 19-inch alloy wheels offered in the Technology Package resemble the blades of a jet turbine and add to the Cadenza?s athletic stature.


Out back, the standard LED taillights are positioned high on the deck and are designed to cut across a large portion of the vehicle, lending to the Cadenza?s broad stance. The twin oval tail pipes accentuate the Cadenza?s sporty yet elegant design.


The Cadenza?s interior wraps occupants in a pleasant environment complete with soft leather upholstery and warm wood and chrome accents. Occupants may enjoy both class-leading front legroom and headroom, along with soft ambient lighting and horizontally positioned switchgear that provide an uncluttered and sophisticated aesthetic.? An analog clock is positioned between the automatic climate controls lending a classic essence.? The center console is angled slightly toward the driver for optimized control, and an available large 7-inch high-resolution TFT LCD screen in the gauge cluster serves up a wide range of vehicle information including turn-by-turn navigation and infotainment. Chrome bezels encase the HVAC and audio controls, air vents and the standard push-button start.? Standard Bluetooth, wood-trim door inserts, one-touch automatic up/down power front windows and power-folding heated outside mirrors with integrated turn signal indicators harmoniously blend to form the Cadenza?s premium image.


The Cadenza?s power source is a 3.3-liter, DOHC, 24-valve V6 engine that makes 293 horsepower at 6,400 rpm while delivering 255 pound feet of torque at 5,200 rpm. Energy is metered to the front wheels through an electronically controlled six-speed automatic overdrive transmission with Sportmatic@ featuring manual shift? capability and steering wheel mounted paddle shifters. The engine is positioned in an East/West orientation up front.

The Cadenza features a sport-tuned fully independent suspension with a MacPherson strut setup forward and a multi-link rear design with dual flow shocks for ride and performance enhancement.? The Cadenza rides on standard 245/45R-18 tires, with 245/40R-19 tires are included in the Technology Package.


My driving partner and I piloted a fully loaded 9with the Luxury and Technology Packages) 2014 Kia Cadenza with an exterior finish of Smoky Blue metallic, complemented by a Bone and Charcoal-toned interior, accented by polished wood trim. The base sticker read $35,100. While the final price totaled $41,900.

SUMMARY: Despite its mechanical similarities to Hyundai?s Azera the Cadenza? seems to be much more planted and stable, which results in an overall sportier feeling in terms of its handling characteristics. The electric power steering initially seems a little benign when traveling in a straight line, but steps up to a sportier feel in twisting and challenging scenarios.

The Cadenza is definitely worthy of its flagship status. The 3.3-liter V6 serves up a healthy dose of Oomph, with pleasing acceleration and a broad torque curve, while still managing to deliver a respectable level of fuel economy ? 19-mpg city and 28-mpg highway.? The 6-speed automatic is smooth and precise in making its changes, and the steering wheel mounted paddle shifters deliver responsive gear changes without hesitation.

The interior is well executed and quite comfortable with switchgear properly positioned for easy, intuitive operation, and the inventory of technological features is most impressive. The UVO eServices seems to have the edge on GM?s OnStar system as far as infotainment and telematics go. The seating is quite comfortable, but the front passenger seat would benefit from having a height adjustment to avoid a sinking feeling, or that of sitting in a hole.

Add to all of the Cadenza?s value laden features and equipment along with its eye-catching and appealing good looks, Kia?s first ever complimentary Scheduled Maintenance program, and the 2014 Kia Cadenza?s becomes equally appealing to one?s budget.

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[wptabtitle] SPECIFICATIONS: 2014 Kia Cadenza [/wptabtitle]

Base Price: $35,100.
Price as Tested: $41,900.
Engine Type and Size: 3.3-liter DOHC, 24-valve Gasoline Direct Injection V6
Horsepower (bhp): 293 @ 6,400 rpm
Torque (ft./ lbs.): 255 @ 5,200 rpm
Transmission: Electronically controlled six-speed automatic Overdrive with Sportmatic@ with manual shift capability and steering wheel mounted paddle shifters.
Drive Train: Transversely mounted front engine / Front-Wheel Drive.
Suspension: Front – Independent MacPherson struts, coil springs, anti-roll bar.
Rear – Independent multi-link, coil springs, anti-roll bar.

Brakes: Hydraulic power-assisted four-wheel discs (vented front) with ABS, BAS, ESC, TCS, VSM, EBD, BAS and TPMS.

Tires: Hankook Optimo H426 P245/45 R19 mounted on 10 -“V”-spoke (20) alloy wheels.

Wheelbase:?112.0 inches

Length Overall:?195.5 inches

Width:?72.8 inches

Height:?58.1 inches

Curb Weight:?3,792 lbs

Fuel Capacity:?18.5 gallons

EPA Mileage Estimates:?19-mpg city / 28-mpg highway

Drag Coefficient: Not listed.

0 – 60 mph: Not tested.












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