January 29, 2023

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2021 Kia K5 GT review | Car Reviews

Auto123 critiques the 2021 Kia K5 GT. The Optima is dead, prolonged live the K5.. .and the sedan!

The downward spiral of vehicles in recent many years is properly-documented, and it obtained only extra pronounced about the past yr, no many thanks to the pandemic. Consumers are getting extra SUVs than any other type of motor vehicle, and that’s nearly all at the expenditure of vehicles.

Also properly-documented is that a quantity of manufacturers have prolonged because abandoned sure segments. Significantly less alternative of study course usually means that vehicles offer even a lot less. Offer and demand from customers, hen and egg. Even those manufacturers still committed to the format are viewing the quantity of sedans they offer shrink each individual yr.

We salute those carmakers’ dedication. There are still and will often be significant quantities of auto potential buyers, some of whom just are not followers of the SUV format and many others who are simply just happiest at the wheel of a good ‘ol four-doorway.

Individuals potential buyers keep on to obtain what they want at Kia sellers, even in the mid-dimension phase. For 2021, the Korean automaker even comprehensively renewed the model it has been presenting for extra than 20 many years, less than a couple unique names. Try to remember the Magentis (2002-2010)? It turned the Optima (2011-2020), and now it has been remodeled yet again. Satisfy the K5.

Our intention in check-driving it was to identify if all the good factors remaining said about it because its start are justified.

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2021 Kia K5 GT, profile

Daring styling
There was a time when a sedan could be unattractive as heck and still dominate product sales charts in North The us. The Toyota Camry of yore will come to mind, for just one. Nowadays, while any company still committed to the sedan style has to give their model a minor a thing that will make it stand out, or chance it remaining a dud on the sector.

The K5 has inherited a couple highly unique features, including an initial headlight style and design, a grille that’s something but basic jane, and a strikingly minimize rear close. It’s daring, that’s for confident. But attractive? Nicely that’s in the eye of the beholder. But there’s no denying the model appears to be like unique, and that alone will be adequate to catch the attention of at least some couple potential buyers at first. Over and above that, having said that, in the medium and prolonged conditions, extra is necessary than originality.

2021 Kia K5 GT, front

Acquainted system
Soon after all these many years and decades, it is difficult to reinvent factors thoroughly when overhauling a model, but frankly those intent on producing a winning auto want to go daring or go residence, for the explanations mentioned over. For now, Kia only will get component way there with the K5 if you assess the new version to past year’s Optima. On the just one hand, you do now get all-wheel drive, but on the other there’s no hybrid selection in sight. For now, it is not component of the presenting. We say for now, mainly because it is well worth noting that this Kia is a rather shut cousin of the Hyundai Sonata… which will come in a hybrid configuration.

Now let us drive the imagined a minor additional: how about a plug-in hybrid version, when we await the slew of all-electric styles still to come and which will carry unique names?

2021 Kia K5 GT, front grille

2021 Kia K5 GT, entrance grille

Two engines
For now, the alternative for the 2021 K5 is in between two engines. Really, no, you never definitely have a alternative. With the 1st a few variants, EX, LX and GT-Line, you get the 1.6L turbocharged 4-cylinder motor (a hundred and eighty hp and 195 lb-ft of torque). Then the GT model, which we examined, will get a 2.5L turbocharged 4-cylinder (290 hp and 311 lb-ft of torque). An 8-speed automated transmission sends electric power to the wheels, the entrance ones in the situation of our tester.

The offer begins at $31,460 (including charges) and tops out at $42,a hundred and ten. That is a fairly steep cost to spend, at the two extremes in our perspective, a product sales pitch commencing all around $25,000 would have been appropriate below, if only as a way of hitting difficult on the sector. Luckily, the equipment degree is generous all all around.

Our GT version absolutely didn’t deficiency for something, geared up as it is with 19-inch alloy wheels, panoramic roof, LED fog lights, Bose audio technique, head-up exhibit, wi-fi charging for mobile gadgets, heated and ventilated entrance seats, heated steering wheel and heated rear seats.

2021 Kia K5 GT, interior

At the rear of the wheel
The most effective way to sum up the new K5’s driving expertise is to say that it is persuasive, but not remarkable. Contemplating the precarious status of sedans on the sector, we would have liked a thing a minor extra convincing as a way to entice potential buyers back again to the format

Let us be clear, the ride is solid. The steering communicates street come to feel properly, electric power is extra than sufficient with this GT version and the excess weight harmony makes you come to feel confident at the rear of the wheel. Nonetheless, for a extra dynamic come to feel, it would have been fascinating to give the K5 a confined slip differential, which would enable the entrance wheels adhere to the street far better when acquiring aggressive with the gas pedal, as properly as a torque vectoring technique to be capable to assault corners with extra self-assurance.

If sporty driving just isn’t your factor, you is not going to see the want for those. Nonetheless, if you like to expertise some thrills at the rear of the wheel, in the current set up of the K5 you will be dealt with to a unique sort of thrill, this sort of as a powerful torque result if you are regrettable adequate to strike the gas pedal when the steering wheel just isn’t straight (like when exiting a curve).

All this to say that extra could have been completed. Perhaps Kia wishes to subtly steer those potential buyers for whom dynamism issues toward the Stinger…

2021 Kia K5 GT, trunk, spoiler

2021 Kia K5 GT, trunk, spoiler

For the relaxation, the K5 delivers what you’d hope from a sedan: consolation and place, the two inside of and in the trunk. Kia didn’t overlook its mark below. As considerably as connectivity is worried, the necessities have been of study course current with our model, the sticker cost for which sits at $42,095, including delivery fees and other gizmos.

The K5 GT is also comprehensively geared up with security features and functions. As has come to be the norm with way too lots of carmakers’ suites of units, there are intrusive features that could compel you to dig by way of the owner’s handbook to learn how to disable them… when probable.

As for the fuel usage of the motor less than the hood of our model, officially it is 9.9L/100 km metropolis, 7.3L/100 km highway and 8.7L/100 km put together. Most of my driving was on highways and place roads, which explains the fantastic rating of 7.1L/100 km I tallied immediately after covering some 350 km.

And I didn’t spare the throttle.

2021 Kia K5 GT, three-quarters rear

2021 Kia K5 GT, a few-quarters rear

The K5 is a solid evolution of the Optima, but it does not stand for as massive of a leap forward as when the Optima changed the Magentis. Nonetheless now is specifically the time when the auto desires to make a massive splash if it wishes to seize a massive piece of the shrunken pie that is its phase.

This is not definitely to criticize Kia’s do the job with this motor vehicle – this is a good quality solution. It’s just that it would have taken a minor extra to break by way of in a phase that is losing momentum.

Of study course, the verdict that issues will be rendered by people. We are going to see how the model does at Kia sellers about the next couple months and many years.

2021 Kia K5 GT, rear light, badging

2021 Kia K5 GT, rear mild, badging

We like

Daring and attractive strains
Appealing driving come to feel
Tasteful interior style and design

We like a lot less

As well substantially torque result
The latest record of turbo engines at Kia
Absolutely nothing definitely incredible to enable it dominate a shrunken phase

The levels of competition

Chevrolet Malibu (for now)
Honda Accord
Hyundai Sonata
Nissan Altima
Subaru Legacy
Toyota Camry
Volkswagen Passat


2021 Kia K5 GT, rear