By on September 23, 2013

20120527_kia_k9_1

Is the world ready for a $70,000 Kia? Just days after the moniker for Kia’s new rear-drive flagship was revealed, Automotive News is reporting that top-trim versions will approach the $70,000 mark.

The K900, which is based on the Hyundai Equus, will retail for between $50,000-$70,000, according to AN, with Kia looking to move 5000 units per year. For comparison, Hyundai sold just under 4000 units of the similarly priced Equus last year, suggesting that Kia has rather grand ambitions for this car  in the United States – a puzzling notion given that sales in South Korea are falling far short of expectations.

As part of the K900′s launch, a Super Bowl ad campaign will be used to roll out the car, a year after the $35,000 Cadenza hit showrooms. But selling a competitor to the Toyota Avalon and Chevrolet Impala is a much different proposition than selling what one dealer describes as “a 7-series value for a 5-series price.” No matter how much extra training and revamping Kia’s sales staff and stores receive.

 

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99 Comments on “Kia K900 Could Top $70,000 In The United States As South Korean Sales Slump...”


  • avatar
    28-Cars-Later

    Heck, they could have called it K90000 and explained the model name is the MSRP.

  • avatar
    Alex L. Dykes

    I honestly never thought I would be a Kia fan, but the Forte and Cadenza have really changed my mind. The result is that I have high expectations of the K900, hopefully they are justified. My only concern at the moment is the plan to use the 5.0L V8 without modification. Everyone else in this segment is boasting twin-turbo V8 power. Either they need to be well below the V8 competition or have some other angle. Not sure what that would be.

  • avatar
    stars9texashockey

    Hyundai/Kia have done some amazing things in the last 10 years. This and the Equus are an overreach though. Needed to have held the line at the Genesis price point for a few more years.

    • 0 avatar
      aristurtle

      Well, they need to start sometime, or else they’ll be making Excels forever. As long as their strategic plan expects to lose money on the first couple of generations of this flagship sedan, they’ll probably be okay.

      • 0 avatar
        DeadWeight

        This vehicle is idiotic, and the price point is even more so.

        The Cadenza is pushing the envelope for a KIA as it is, in terms of pricing, currently.

        Not only that, but this just creates more confusion between Hyundai, which should be the upscale marque to KIA, especially when the K9 is an Equus, and even Hyundai doesn’t have a logical, consistent game plan in terms of high end customer buying experiences of treatment after the sale.

        The whole “5 series price for a 7 series-esque product” meme is very stale, too, with every automaker aspiring to steal sales from BMW with this strategy failing thus far.

    • 0 avatar
      bd2

      The Equus sells decently for not having been developed for the US/world market and for not having AWD.

      Last month, sales of the refreshed Equus were in line with that of the Audi A8 and Jaguar XJ.

      However, the Equus probably won’t see any significant increase in sales until the next gen model which will get more striking sheetmetal, a more luxurious interior and available AWD.

      Don’t see what all the brouhaha is over the pricing of the K900.

      The V6 model will likely start in the low-mid $50k range, just a bit more than where the next gen Genesis R-Spec will likely be priced (around $49-50k).

      And the top trim V8 K900 will likely be priced under the Equus Ultimate which currently has an MSRP of $68k.

      So 5k sales/yr seems entirely doable.

      Eventually, Kia will have a lower-priced luxury offering in the production version of the GT concept (should be around the $35-40k range) so that would make for a good 1-2 punch for Kia (meanwhile Hyundai will have a 3 luxury sedan lineup with the upcoming RK compact sedan slotting underneath the Genesis).

  • avatar
    jmo

    Hum, I have a pet theory to explain all the B&B hate for this car.

    Any review of a BMW/Audi/Mercedes will involve comments containing some combination of the following words and phrases: status seeker, soccer mom, lease, fool and his money, electrical gremlins, etc.

    I get the impression that some are comfortable thinking it’s all silly people buying (or leasing) luxury cars. But, the idea that someone is buying a $70k car because they appreciate a big luxurious car and could care less about impressing anyone…that unsettles some people.

    • 0 avatar
      28-Cars-Later

      I think you’ve got a great point, I certainly find it a little unsettling. Hummer below shares some of my thoughts.

      • 0 avatar
        jmo

        A little unsettling? You mentioned that the other day – what do you mean?

        • 0 avatar
          28-Cars-Later

          Well personally I don’t think I’d ever spend that amount of money on a car that wasn’t in some way rare or special (i.e. restored, unique, etc). But if I place myself in the mind of say an executive with company money to burn, I feel a need to get some kind of snob status for my money. Right or wrong I’m going to run with the Joneses, and I’m going to poke fun at those who don’t play along. Now if say I’m just a regular person and I’m looking for an ultra premium car, maybe this would appeal to me, but there are a number of nice cars I can get for less money, is RWD that important to me (and if so, why not a Chevy SS)?. I think in most people’s minds half the fun of blowing a huge amount of money for an automobile is showing it off, maybe KIA well prove us wrong and demonstrate quite the opposite.

          • 0 avatar
            jmo

            in most people’s minds half the fun of blowing a huge amount of money for an automobile is showing it off

            Most, but not all. To be wildly successful they only need to convince 0.03% of new car buyers to go with the Kia.

          • 0 avatar
            CelticPete

            TTAC is like some strange universe where people think and post about cars but deny any difference between them out of snob appeal.

            So you are correct people are upset because any sales of Kia would show that people buy cars because you know they LIKE how they look, drive, sound or feel..

            The real truth is rich people aren’t really as stupid as this blog collectively thinks. The reason say BMW has so much snob appeal is that for years they made cars that drive great, sound good and look decent.

            On this blog though alot of people get it backwards. They think people are so stupid that they buy BMWS because they are expensive. In reality people buy them because they can afford to be single minded in their car picking goals.

          • 0 avatar
            Pch101

            “To be wildly successful they only need to convince 0.03% of new car buyers to go with the Kia.”

            That’s a lot harder than it sounds. Many a business venture has failed because it was assumed that getting (only) a tiny percentage of market share wouldn’t be difficult.

            Equus sales are currently a fraction of those of the S-class and 7-series. The Kia will probably cannibalize some of those Equus sales, which won’t help the parent company.

            The problem is that many of those who can’t afford the K-whatever will regard it as an overpriced Kia, while those who can afford it will regard it as an inadequate substitute for a BMW, one which is beneath their station. As a result, almost no one ends up happy.

          • 0 avatar
            jmo

            Pch101,

            If they already went to the trouble to designing the car, building the factory and they are selling well enough in Asia and the Middle East – how much are they risking to bring the car to the US?

            It’s not like the success or failure of the car hinges on immediate North American sales.

          • 0 avatar
            28-Cars-Later

            I defer to PCH’s excellent comments on the matter.

          • 0 avatar
            jmo

            “Equus sales are currently a fraction of those of the S-class and 7-series.”

            If the car already exists and sells decently in Asia and the Middle East – how much is at risk from bringing it to the US?

            Also, do you expect them to instantly dethrone the S-class – that would take time, no matter how good the car is.

          • 0 avatar
            Pch101

            “If the car already exists and sells decently in Asia and the Middle East – how much is at risk from bringing it to the US?”

            It wastes money to bring over a losing car.

            It consumes resources that could be better deployed elsewhere to support the losing car.

            Its primary competitor will be the Equus. I would hope that the GM debacle alone has illustrated clearly what’s wrong with cannibalization. (To borrow from a 19th century battle cry: Remember the Phaeton!)

            Americans demand that their luxury cars carry a luxury badge. H-K ignores this reality at its peril. This effort to be all things to all people more closely resembles Peugeot-Citroen than it does Toyota-Lexus.

          • 0 avatar
            bd2

            1st off, the Equus sells plenty in Korea – so sales in the NA market is gravy.

            2nd, the refreshed Equus sold about as well as the Audi A8 and Jaguar XJ and the Equus doesn’t have available AWD which constitutes 40-50% of sales.

            3rd, the more expensive Kia Cadenza sells about twice as well as the Hyundai Azera w/o there being much of a decline in Azera sales (granted, Azera sales were not that great to begin with).

            4th, Hyundai sells tons of the Azera in Korea (the 2nd best selling car) and sells a lot more of the Equus than Kia does the K9/Quoris/K900, so Kia making inroads into the US market will benefit them more.

            5th, the K900 has more modern sheetmetal which would make it more enticing than the conservatively shod Equus in the US market, whereas in the Korean market, the opposite is true, where the rather bland Equus is more popular.

    • 0 avatar
      Landcrusher

      Spot on.

    • 0 avatar
      wsn

      @jmo “Any review of a BMW/Audi/Mercedes will involve comments containing some combination of the following words and phrases: status seeker, soccer mom, lease, fool and his money, electrical gremlins, etc.”

      Those were facts, and didn’t apply to the Lexus LS ;)

      I aspire to the LS and will buy one new when I have more purchasing power.

    • 0 avatar
      WaftableTorque

      I’ll add that every Asian luxury car review will include the words reliable, no soul, no pedigree, derivative styling, aspirational wannabe’s, and poseur. That’s why I don’t bother to comment as much as I used to on TTAC, because most of the B&B comments are predictable and anything of value gets lost in the noise.

      I did get a chuckle from Quentin’s previous comments about the K900 buyers probably being the same ones who want a minimal square footage home with granite countertops; that pretty much nails my buying habits.

    • 0 avatar
      Russycle

      “they appreciate a big luxurious car and could care less about impressing anyone…”

      So….people who used to buy Panthers? *ducks*

  • avatar
    Hummer

    Is the world ready for a $70,000 Kia?

    Hell I’m not ready for a 30k pickemup truck, who am I to ask?

  • avatar
    Landcrusher

    I predict most sell for under 50 which is where they should have aimed to start. Lexus did it right. Sell a car close to an S for less than an E to start, then raise your prices so much your initial buyers are having negative depreciation. Boom, you are top dog.

    • 0 avatar
      krhodes1

      Except Lexus has never been top dog, and they certainly aren’t now.

      They make a mighty nice Buick though.

      As usual, folks are fixating on the price of the very top spec model with all the options boxes ticked. I doubt very many of these KIAs will go for $70K. I can see my buddy with the Optima stepping up to one of these someday. He pretty much does buy cars by the pound, wants a big, fat, loaded with toys car on the cheap. Doesn’t really care how it drives, or what the neighbors think.

      • 0 avatar
        Landcrusher

        Except really? Did you miss the point entirely or do you just like to rain on Lexus?

        The strategy worked! They are way ahead of Acura and Infiniti. People cross shop them with all the top brands. They may choose European cars, but they don’t do it because Lexus doesn’t make a good enough car. It’s about style choices.

        Buick is not in the same league. Comparisons to Buick have a ring to them, but the reality is they don’t compare. They just share a lack of panache or refinement or some other words that I just can’t come up with right now, but everyone with any sense knows what I mean.

        • 0 avatar
          krhodes1

          A Lexus is a nicer Toyota, just like a Buick is a nicer Chevrolet. There certainly is a good market for nicer Toyotas, but it sure doesn’t make them anything special, nor any sort of standard by which anything else is judged. Whether Lexus is doing better than the other Japanese luxury car marques is irrelevant – THEY are in no way standard setters either.

          The original LS 400 was an interesting attempt, but that was a LONG time ago. What has Lexus done lately?

          • 0 avatar
            Landcrusher

            Fine, noted, not the subject for this thread.

            The more mediocre you think the product actually it is, the better the strategy apparently worked.

            I stand by my post. The strategy was wildly successful. Kia should announce much lower actual prices or the guys crying Phaeton will surely be proved correct.

          • 0 avatar
            Quentin

            Where is my less nice Toyota IS350?

    • 0 avatar
      bd2

      Lexus sold gobs of the LS400 b/c of the ridiculously low MSRP of $35k.

      As the price of the LS has escalated, sales of the LS have gone way down from the 35k it used to sell.

      But the LS460 still sells relatively well within its segment, but at the same time is still priced a good bit below the 7 Series and S Class (about $20k cheaper than the S Class).

      That’s why Toyota has more success with sales of the LS460 than it does with the GS or IS (which while still undercutting the Germans, aren’t quite the value the LS460 is in comparison).

      • 0 avatar

        Also, $35k back in 1989 has the same buying power as $66k in 2013. This isn’t far from $70k MSRP that Kia is asking for k-900.

        • 0 avatar
          DeadWeight

          Yet the LS400 was/is 3x more refined, durable, reliable, and designed to a standard rather than a typical KIA hologram, than this K900.

          Even if the LS400 were to debut today, with the exception of the electronic accessories that have become part & parcel of the “luxury car mandate,” it’d be the better car in every way, and it was first designed and fabricated 14 years ago.

          For all the talking how the Koreans have caught the competition at any given price point or respective segment, the deficiencies in the design of their suspension systems are reason enough to give pause, and this is more true in the luxury segment than anywhere else.

          Drive a Genesis Sedan and a Chrysler 300 back to back, and the 300, even when in a trim level that allows for a significant discount off the MSRP of the Genesis, will feel twice as sophisticated and refined as the Genesis.

          • 0 avatar
            bd2

            But evidently things haven’t gotten that much better.

            The Equus, which was never developed for the world market, BEAT the LS460 in Car & Driver’s comparison.

            As for suspensions – Toyota has widely gotten criticized for the suspension tuning in the Avalon, much less the ES.

            The Kia Cadenza, a 5 year old model, has been noted to have a better ride than either.

  • avatar

    The headline is a little disingenuous – it’s not a $70k starting price. Using similar logic, I can get a Boxster to $130,000, but they probably don’t sell too many at this price.

  • avatar
    sirwired

    Call it the “Kia Phaeton” and everyone will know everything they need to about the car.

  • avatar
    rpm773

    10 years ago, in a stronger economy, no one bought a $70K VW.

    How are the Eqqqquuuusssses selling? Perhaps that would serve as a hint on how these Kias will roll out of the showroom.

    • 0 avatar
      bd2

      Last month, about as well as the Audi A8 and that’s w/o AWD.

      In fact, VW is looking to bring back the next gen Phaeton to the US market in part b/c of how Hyundai has done with the Equus.

      But this time, VW isn’t going to make the same mistake, making the next gen Phaeton more of a value play then just being a few grand cheaper than the Audi A8.

      • 0 avatar

        That still doesn’t mean much. Back in Phaeton days, the economy was booming. If anything the A8/Equus sales comparison should be compared to a decade ago in the same class. People might want more value now, hence Hyundai sales being up.

        • 0 avatar
          bd2

          If you hadn’t noticed, times are good for the wealthy.

          For instance, E Class sales are better than ever and at the ultra-high end, Rolls and Bentley can’t make enough of their models.

          Mercedes stated that the “sky’s the limit” for S Class sales in the US, but will simply be hampered by lack of supply, now that Stuttgart has to supply the Asian market as well as Europe, NA and the Middle East.

          • 0 avatar

            Noticed the E-Class is selling like crazy since the face-lift, but not everything else. Not the right area for it, I guess, and I’m not a sales-chart junky.

          • 0 avatar
            bd2

            The Germans are having a tough time meeting demand; esp. since they can only allocate so many flagship sedans to the US market when they have to meet the needs of the growing Chinese and Middle Eastern markets.

            And the E Class was selling like crazy (its best sales years) when the current generation was launched.

  • avatar
    schmitt trigger

    As much as I don’t like the vehicle, I understand Kia’s business strategy…they don’t want to be boxed forever making low cost, appliance vehicles.
    It is a loooong stretch, but without attempting it, one never knows if one could be succesful.

    They have the money to do it, so they are “testing the waters” so to speak, even if the project never makes a profit. Even as a failure, the valuable experience they acquire, may be used in later ventures.

    One thing that Far East Corporations have got, is the willpower and persistence to develop a long term project.
    Don’t discount them yet.

  • avatar
    Ryoku75

    I refuse to pay anything moire than $1000 for any Korean car, let along one as derivative as this. For $70 I’d at least like some identity in the styling.

  • avatar
    andyinatl

    I don’t have a problem with Kia making a big and expensive sedan just because it’s not considered a luxury brand (VW did it, and though it was a failure, if they got the money to do it, i don’t really care). My problem is that unlike VW before it, Kia does not have “know-how” to produce a really good car yet. They manage to hang in there, with latest Optima, but it’s still not up to par with Accords and Camrys when it comes to the details (like rear door metal not popping when the door is closed, because someone designed a monstrous rear door and didn’t bother to think about reinforcing the metal). Plus at that price, why not just get a Lexus LS? Sure, $70K is cheaper than S-Class or 750IL, but it’ll do nice LS460.

    • 0 avatar
      jmo

      “Plus at that price, why not just get a Lexus LS?”

      The Kia tops out at 70k, the LS starts at $71,990.

    • 0 avatar
      bd2

      Give me a break, the Optima, despite being older, is still ahead of the Camry (and the refreshed Optima will just increase the gap).

      That’s why Kia is offering a $37k SX-L trim on the Optima whereas the Camry has a lower average transaction price than the Chrysler 200.

      Many auto publications have dubbed the Cadenza to be better than the Avalon and the Cadenza is a 5 year old model (and many think the Avalon is better than the Lexus ES).

      And Kia, like Hyundai, Toyota, Nissan and other Japanese makes are FULL-line automakers.

      Lexus and Infiniti are just separate SALES channels for Toyota and Infiniti.

      Until Toyota launched Lexus in Japan, the GS and LS were sold as Toyotas and Toyota still has a separate luxury lineup with the Crown series.

      And the flagship for Toyota Corp. is not the LS460 but the Toyota Century.

      There is no Infiniti brand in Japan and the departed Q45 was never the flagship (that being the Nissan President).

  • avatar
    Kyree S. Williams

    Kia and Hyundai’s mainstream vehicles have put other automakers on notice. The Sonata, Optima, Soul, Elantra, Forte…it’s been one hit after another. The luxury vehicles? Not so much. The Genesis, despite a 2012 refresh, feels older than it is and the Equus just got a badly-needed facelift. It seems like the Korean siblings’ luxury cars merely echo what the European big-names are doing, but in a cheaper fashion. In order to really stand out, Kia’s Quoris (or K9 or whatever it’s called) should *set* standards of design and luxury, not copy them.

    Still, if Kia can make a bona-fide luxury car, it will certainly have a positive effect on the company’s reputation.

  • avatar
    SCE to AUX

    I guess it doesn’t bother all the Hyundai/Kia haters that Chevy brings you everything from the $12k Sonic to the $70k Suburban and $100k Corvette.

    Explain why that’s OK.

    • 0 avatar
      28-Cars-Later

      In short, its not.

      • 0 avatar
        SCE to AUX

        That was short. But you know Chevy’s been successfully selling lowly cars next to high-end cars for decades.

        The value of brand equity is in the eye of the beholder. The premise of this article is that “Kia” means “cheap, junky car”, and – if they know what’s good for them – they should keep it that way. TTAC is that Kia left behind that stereotype a long time ago.

    • 0 avatar

      And lets not forget where the Sonic ($15k to start) and Spark ($13,000– you confused the names) come from: South Korea.

    • 0 avatar
      bd2

      A much more apropos example would be the Japanese brands – Toyota and Nissan.

      Toyota used to sell the LS as the Toyota Celsior (before they launched Lexus in Japan) and Toyota has another luxury sedan lineup with the Crown Series (topped by the Crown Majesta – which Toyota sees as another S Class competitor).

      And the LS is NOT the flagship sedan – that would be the Toyota Century.

      Same applies to Nissan where the Q was sold as the Nissan Cima and the flagship being the Nissan President.

  • avatar

    Everyone conveniently forgets there was a time when the only thing standing between BMW and bankruptcy was a copycat motorscooter-based minicar. Most of the cars they produced in the 1960′s were forgettable and certainly a long way from the pretend glory days of the 328. Their ascendance to their current near-legendary status has nothing whatsoever to do with the cars they built in the 1930′s – the house of BMW is built on the 1600/2002 and onward. They dared to challenge Daimler Benz and now occupy a slot defining prestige.

    Similarly, Audi may wish to connect with the Auto Union brand who built formula one cars in the 1930′s, but the modern Audi has not always been an engineering marvel, and only since they started re-badging VW’s did they begin to build some designer pastiche. And you have to love VW for building the VW Phaeton in the UK and styling it as a Bentley.

    By the way Derek, I wasn’t criticizing your headline, just pointing out that you’d have aroused some serious head scratching if you’d written a Boxster piece entitled “Boxster could top $130,000 in U.S. as sales slump in Germany…”

  • avatar
    el scotto

    OK, it needs all AWD to be serious player. It’ll still hold four guys, fours sets of golf clubs, and a cooler of beverages. See, you don’t need to cool/heat the cargo space like an SUV. Comfortable air temperature quicker. Is it flashy? No. You don’t need to “show your ass” with everything. GM needs a Buick like this.

  • avatar
    wmba

    Afraid these comments are just a lot of noise.

    The wife will decide in a great majority of cases, and those women I know are 100% sure of their fashion and social sense, while eying men pityingly at their gormless lack of taste.

    For $50 to $70K find a bunch of women who say, “woooo, a Kia? Darling what a great choice!”

    My sister in law forbade my brother from considering Kia or Hyundai CUV last week. She imperiously drove the rest. The Mazda CX-5GT is being delivered this Wednesday.

    As I said before, exactly zero Americans are sitting on the edge of their seats in anticipation of owning a K900. I’ll add: to make them disappear from dealer lots, thousands of small helium balloons may be attached at appropriate structural points, above the line of cheap plastic flags, and the $399/mo no down payment placard.

    • 0 avatar
      CelticPete

      So because you are whipped you don’t think Kia can sell any cars? LMAO. I’d like to see that discussion in the Kia boardroom..

      Kia exec 1:”I’d like to bring over our Quoris. Our dealers don’t have a big luxury car and we think it could add to our brand reputation over in the US.”

      Kia exec 2:”Screw that – I read on a message board that all american men are whipped an only buy what wife wants. And wives all want BMWs. Lets go home with our tail between our legs.”

      Come on dude. If you knew anything about far eastern culture you would know that the Koreans dislike the Japanese and consider them lazy. The desperately want to show them up. They don’t like the idea that Lexus is kinda successful and will eat some dollars to cut them down to size.

      Even with some pro ‘cross culture’ exchange that’s going on now – its still at the very least a Boston/New York kind of rivalry. It’s pretty interesting really – these guys don’t even really look at the Germans or Americans for the most part, IMHO.

      • 0 avatar
        Pch101

        “these guys don’t even really look at the Germans or Americans for the most part, IMHO”

        Peter Schreyer was hired away from Audi to head up the design.

        Christopher Chapman was hired away from BMW to run Hyundai’s design studio in California.

        The Genesis sedan has some fairly blatant design inspiration from Mercedes, while Schreyer’s stated goal with Kia’s “tiger nose” grille is to have a recognizable face ala BMW and Mercedes.

        It’s pretty clear from their hiring choices and their designs that they’re targeting the Japanese for the mainstream cars and the Germans for the upper-tier. The latter serves their ambitions in both the US and Europe — H-K wants to build share in Europe.

    • 0 avatar
      bd2

      And yet 1,500-1,600 Cadenzas disappear from Kia lots monthly and the Cadenza starts at $35k and goes into the low $40k.

      • 0 avatar
        Pch101

        So now Kia gets bragging rights because the Cadenza is selling almost as well as the Chevy Volt, and at volumes well below the poorly selling Ford Taurus?

        I really do wish that you’d disclose your connection to H-K or its affiliates. Do you work for the company or at a dealership?

        • 0 avatar
          bd2

          Sure, why not – when there were those doubting Kia would sell 500 of them monthly?

          If Kia offered the Cadenza in a base (high volume) trim and had a hybrid version (which is key in this segment), Kia could probably double its volume.

  • avatar
    Big Al from Oz

    People already talk as if the vehicle is dead in the water.

    What if the pimply college grad, school leaver, whatever buys a Kia for their first car and love it. My brother in NJ has a Kia Soul and I think it is much better than my mothers Focus. Actually light years in front.

    It’s finish, interior material quality, paint job is all superior. And it drives live a dream. The Focus is like driving a bag of $hit, Camryesque.

    The Kia is fun to drive and is a drivers car in comparison. It was over a grand cheaper than the Ford Focus as well and has superior FE.

    Now, these kids will become dentist, doctors, engineers, business owners etc.

    Will they consider a flash Kia? Why not? Not everyone is like the multitude of biased people who blog on this site.

    I love German vehicle engineering. I consider it the best overall.

    But why can’t Korea step up and take them on at their own game.

    I’m mean what country does the recent head designer from Kia come from? Look at the interior of the Sorento and the other recent Kia’s. They look very German.

    I wish Kia luck.

  • avatar
    CoreyDL

    -I really feel they should’ve kept the Quoris name instead of the K900.

    -In the SK home market it’s called the K9, guess that wouldn’t have gone over well here.

    -Once again, not a new design – it’s why it looks dated already.

    -It’s really REALLY conservative, even more than an Avalon (which is much cheaper).

    -Will undoubtedly share buttons/bits with lesser Kia models, like the Cadenza door handles, Rio clock, etc.

    -Will undoubtedly not be as well-made as a comparably priced A8/Phaeton/etc. Will not hold value as well either.

    -Probably has cheapo black plastic covering everything, making for a dark, non-premium interior.

    And finally, Kia isn’t a luxury marque. Why have this over the LS, and have nobody perceive you as well-heeled or intelligent? Want reliability, have the LS. Want flash, get an XJ. Need AWD, get an A8.

  • avatar

    In summary, Hyundai/Kia will be better off creating a separate entity to house Genesis, Equus & K-9 from the get-go. There is a reason why Lexus exist in lieu of Toyota.

    • 0 avatar
      28-Cars-Later

      I very much agree, but then there is the matter of creating a brand and/or dealer network only to see it fail or fall into redundancy. Look at Toyota and Scion, was creating Scion really a wise move in hindsight? GM had something like ten brands, many of whom put strain on the company and some argue at least partially led to its eventual demise (Saturn, Opel). Did having so many brands really help GM in the last fifteen years? If Hyundai was going to go in the new brand direction, they should have killed KIA after acquiring it and reshaped the dealer network into this brand. Keeping Hyundai, KIA, and a creating a brand to be named seems too much.

    • 0 avatar
      bd2

      And there’s a reason why Toyota almost killed off the GS sedan and why Nissan almost did away with Infiniti altogether.

  • avatar
    RHD

    The Canine Double Zero? Okay… maybe this dog has aspirations to guard the back yard for James Bond?


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  • Marcelo De Vasconcellos, Brazil
  • Matthias Gasnier, Australia
  • Tycho de Feyter, China
  • W. Christian 'Mental' Ward, Abu Dhabi
  • Mark Stevenson, Canada
  • Faisal Ali Khan, India