With the K9 Kia is entering the premium sedan automotive market. Following the launch on the domestic market, from the fourth quarter of 2012 the model will be introduced in a number of key overseas markets, where it will have a different name.
As the engine sits further back, the A-pillar is also pushed back to create a longer hood and an impressive short front overhang.
This allowed to increase the so-called “prestige distance”, i.e. the distance between the center of the wheel and the A-pillar.
Thanks to this and the high shoulder line, the glass house sits far back and the sheet metal-to-glass ratio is significantly increased.
The pushed-back position and the small size of the glass house give occupants a “feeling of privacy and dignity”, while the nice distinctive window graphics accentuated by a chrome inlay give the car a premium feel.
Kia’s Chief Design Officer Peter Schreyer explains: “K9 is all about elegant simplicity, balanced proportions and simple surfaces.”
“The class-leading long wheelbase, the prestige distance, large wheels, sharply upright short overhangs and a long sweeping shoulder line all work together in a harmony to give K9 a sporty, athletic proportion and a confident stance quintessential to a premium large rear-wheel drive vehicle.”
“While embodying a new generation of Kia design, K9 is a clear signal of our intention and determination to compete head-to-head with the European luxury brands. And for Kia, our customers, and for me – this car is like a dream come true,” concludes Schreyer.
At launch, the K9 will be offered with a 290 hp 3.8-liter MPI V6 engine coupled with a eight-speed transmission with shift-by-wire (SBW) technology with a joystick control and rear-wheel drive system.
A 338 hp GDI engine will be joining the global engine line-up next year.
Advanced technical features will include fully adaptive all-LED headlamps, Lane Departure Warning System (LDWS), radar-based Blind-Spot Detection (BSD), an Around-View Monitor (AVM) with four cameras and the Smart Cruise Control (SCC) which adjusts the vehicle’s speed to maintain the distance from the vehicle ahead.
The infotainment system will include a 12.3-inch full size Thin Film Transistor (TFT) LCD cluster, a HUD (head-up display), twin 9.2-inch monitors for the rear seat occupants and a 17-channel, 17-speaker Lexicon (by Harman) sound system.
A special ‘VIP’ option will offer twin heated and ventilated rear seats with a reclining backrest, sliding cushion and lower leg support for the ‘nearside’ seat, together with a front passenger seat that slides forwards when unoccupied.