I’ve spent the last two days in the Big Apple as it plays hosts to a slew of shiny new cars at the New York International Auto Show, most notably the newly redesigned 2017 Kia Cadenza. Already a beautiful specimen of craftsmanship geared towards even the most discerning buyer, the 2017 model is like a rolling “How To” for the way a car should debut it’s improved upon elements; a precisely crafted cabin, cutting edge technology for connectivity and driver assistance, a stronger body structure, and powertrain enhancements for a more premium experience behind the wheel.
Step 1: Give it a facelift
Like a nice tailored suit, the details are what makes the 2017 Kia Cadenza come alive. The front fascia of the Cadenza was redesigned evolving the signature Tiger Nose grille into a new hexagonal shape.
The grille now features a concave form, curving toward the engine giving it a more chiseled appearance. The Cadenza will now offer two different grilles. Lower trim models will come with the “Diamond Butterfly” front grille that features the same three-dimensional pattern as several siblings within the Kia lineup. While higher trim models will come with the “Intaglio” grille, featuring vertically oriented, faceted blades.
Continuity with attention to detail creates an unmistakable identity for the Cadenza, for instance, the eye catching Z design in the headlamps can also be found on the rear, rounding out the look.
Step 2: Do some interior redesign
Visually, the Cadenza’s interior appears wider thanks to a wraparound dashboard. Mean while the driver’s seat has been lowered for a sportier look and engineers extended the seat cushion with a sliding and rotating system that makes it easier for you to find that sweet spot – just keep your spouse from messing with it! And after two days of frigid New York temps I can even more fully appreciate the reengineered seat warmers that provide more evenly distributed warmth and a new smart feature that automatically lowers the heater operating mode after a certain period of time.
New to the 2017 Cadenza is the Head Up Display, which shows key driver information such as speed and turn-by-turn navigation directions on the windshield directly in the driver’s line of sight. The Surround View Monitor has also been updated to give the driver a clearer birds-eye view of the area around the vehicle AND reverse guidelines offering confidence when backing into confined spaces.
Step 3: Make it smarter
The first Kia to be sold in the U.S. under the DRIVE WISE sub-brand, the Cadenza offers cutting-edge driver assistance features including:
- Advanced Smart Cruise Control with stop-and-go functionality
- Forward Collision Warning
- Autonomous Emergency Braking
- and Lane Departure Warning
Another Kia first is the Smart Blind Spot Detection System which senses unintentional drifting toward an adjacent vehicle and automatically brakes the opposite side front wheel to help maintain the vehicle’s intended course. Other features new to the Cadenza include the Smart Trunk, which conveniently opens the trunk lid if the sensor detects the key fob for more than three seconds, and a wireless smartphone charger.
Step 4: Make it safer
With the new 2017 Cadenza engineers were targeting an overall 5 Start rating from the National Highway Traffic and Safety Administration and a Top Safety Pick+ designation from the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety. With this in mind the 2017 Cadenza is built upon a strong foundation with a body structure composed of more than 50 percent Advanced High Strength Steel (AHSS) — more than twice the amount used in the outgoing model. A driver’s knee airbag helps in this regard and brings the total number of airbags in the vehicle to nine.
Step 5: Make it customizable
In today’s world of endless possibilities buyers want customization. In 2017 the Cadenza offers greater opportunity to customize, with a new dark brown interior color debuts here at NYIAS, bringing the total number of color combinations to four. Like the outgoing model, the White Package remains an option, but it has been upgraded with a new black wood-grain-style trim finished with a pearlescent sheen.
An interesting blend of sport and luxury with nice simple, handsome styling, the 2017 Kia Cadenza is yet another step in the luxury direction for us – Kia Design Team
Thank you, Kia for providing travel to attend NYIAS. All opinions remain my own.