Set to become the first entry-luxury player in the Korean automaker's U.S. product portfolio, the 2014 Kia Cadenza got its reveal today in the Motor City. Also known in the domestic market as the K7, this lavishly equipped front-drive 4-door will go up against rivals like the Acura TL and Toyota Avalon when it arrives in showrooms here. "Since the introduction of the range-topping Optima SXL last year, we have seen an increasing number of customers in our retail outlets looking for a sedan with even more upscale amenities and technology," said Michael Sprague, executive vice president of marketing & communications, KMA. "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."

Sharing a good bit of its platform engineering with the current Hyundai Azera - another of its potential rivals -- the new Kia Cadenza features clean and subtly expressive exterior styling that starts with the signature "Tiger Nose" front fascia treatment and runs all the way back to its LED taillamps and dual oval exhaust tips. The Cadenza's spacious cabin features supple leather upholstery set off with real wood trim and chrome accents. Its extensive roster of standards includes everything from a primo navigation system with SiriusXM Traffic and UVO eServices, 8.0-inch high resolution touch screen and a 550-watt/12-speaker Infinity premium audio system to dual-zone auto climate control with rear seat ventilation, Smart Key with push-button start, 10-way power adjustable driver's seat and a back-up camera and warning system.

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For those who require even more of the good life, the 2014 Cadenza also will offer two option groups. The Premium Package brings a full-length panoramic sunroof with power retractable sunshade, HID headlamps with adaptive front lighting, 7.0-inch TFT LCD instrument cluster, premium Nappa leather seats, 12-way ventilated driver's seat with memory function, heated front/rear outboard seats, heated steering wheel, power tilt/telescoping column and a power rear sunshade. The Technology Package steps it up with 19-inch alloy wheels, an electric parking brake, Advanced Smart Cruise Control and a water-repellant hydrophobic windshield along with a radar-based Blind Spot Detection system and a Lane Departure Warning System. 

Its luxurious character notwithstanding, the new Cadenza was designed to deliver an equally serious measure of sport sedan driving fun. To that end, the car's super-rigid body structure is made up of 60 percent high-strength steel, ensuring a solid foundation for its crisply tuned suspension that's matched with 245/45 tires on 18-inch alloy wheels in base form or larger 245/40 rubber on models fitted with the Technology Package. Sole and formidable motivation for this upline Kia sedan comes from a 3.3-liter direct-injected V6 engine with continuously variable valve timing. Running on regular unleaded gasoline, it cranks out a healthy 293 horsepower and 255 lb-ft of torque which gets sent to the Cadenza's front wheels via a 6-speed paddle-shiftable Sportmatic transmission.

Pricing information for the 2014 Kia Cadenza will be announced closer to its actual on-sale date. It's now believed the car likely will start around $32,000-$35,000.


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