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(2004 model shown)
This entry-level luxury sedan debuted last year, and while it lacks the refinement of larger Japanese cars, it offers good interior room and comfort, with attractive styling. The Amanti comes powered by a 195-horsepower. 3.5-liter V-6 engine, and drives the front wheels via a five-speed automatic transmission that includes a manual-shift mode. Anti-lock brakes are standard, with electronic brakeforce distribution, brake assist, traction control, and electronic stability control optional. Handling is a bit less precise than with the best vehicles in this class, though the car does deliver a cushy ride. The generous interior comes with both front and rear seat-mounted side airbags and full-length side curtain airbags. Its many features include dual-zone automatic climate control, a power sunroof, eight-way power driver's seat with memory settings, and an Infinity six-channel, 270-watt sound system equipped with both a cassette deck and a six-disc in-dash CD changer. Few changes only are expected for 2005.
2004 Kia AmantiEnlarge Photo
2004 Kia Amanti by Bob Hall (12/15/2003)
A luxurious sedan marks a real departure for Korea's number two.