Competes with: BMW 7 Series, Genesis G90, Mercedes-Benz S-Class
Looks like: A big, bejeweled grille, subtle curves and chrome aplenty give the K900 a more premium look.
Drivetrain: It’s expected to be based on the Genesis G90; if that’s the case, it’ll likely use that model’s powertrain options: a twin-turbo 3.3-liter V-6 or 5.0-liter V-8 with rear- or all-wheel drive.
Hits dealerships: Late 2018
Big sedans are on a downward sales swing, but Kia is doubling down on its model and plans to unveil a redesigned 2019 K900 at the 2018 New York International Auto Show next week.
The 2019 Kia K900 wears more premium styling, gets additional cabin room and should also get a powertrain upgrade over the outgoing model.
Kia says the redesigned K900 rides on a new platform, likely shared with the related Genesis G90 from Hyundai’s luxury brand, making it longer and wider than its predecessor. This also increases interior and cargo room, according to the manufacturer, though specs were not immediately available.
The biggest changes are in front, where the K900 wears a bigger, bejeweled grille containing 176 jewel-like cells in the shape of a wider, plumped-out version of the brand’s tiger-nose grille. Kia calls its new design a “quadric pattern,” and the K900 is the first to wear what will eventually be used across the brand.
Flanking that are LED headlamps with a “duplex” design, which essentially looks like multiple rings in the light housing; overall, it wears a more dynamic face. More pronounced bodyside lines also contribute to the premium vibe; they flow from the grille, over the hood and then sweep through to the back.
Kia didn’t release photos of the interior, but did say the K900’s cabin uses more-premium materials, such as genuine wood and high-grade leather, as well as a new analog clock developed with Swiss luxury watch brand Maurice Lacroix.
The new K900 will get a 12.3-inch widescreen multimedia display, front and center in the cabin. It’s similar to the one in the Genesis G90 and uses a controller knob, which sits on the center console between the front seats, for most functions. The screen also features intelligent lighting control with proximity sensors, only illuminating the dashboard when it detects the driver’s hand reaching for a switch.
Also new this year is a customizable cabin mood-lighting system, developed in partnership with the Pantone Color Institute. Occupants can choose between seven colors and 64 light-level display settings throughout the car.
Under the Hood
Kia says the new K900 will use a completely new platform; we expect it will share a platform with the Genesis G90. If that’s the case, it could come with the G90’s twin-turbocharged 3.3-liter V-6 and naturally aspirated 5.0-liter V-8 in rear- and all-wheel-drive configurations.
The new K900 will go on sale across the globe starting in late 2018. We’ll be able to get a closer look at the redesigned sedan during its world debut in New York on March 28.
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