Comfort and Quality » 9
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QUALITY | 9 out of 10
The K900 is a virtual sensory-deprivation chamber on four wheels; closer to an old-school Cadillac than any new Cadillac outside of the XTS.
Car and Driver
Inside the cabin, courtesy and accent lighting create warmth, which counterbalances the leather upholstery’s disappointing lack of leathery aroma.
The K900 delivers a bona fide luxury cabin experience, with loads of comfort and space, leather and wood, and easy, intuitive navigation and multimedia control.
The sumptuous interior is plush and well put together. Its suede trim feels luxurious, and the leather, stitching, and plastics look good, but the ambience still seems a bit austere.
Kia apparently believes there’s an underserved U.S. market hungry for the cushy, plush, and undemanding.
The 2015 Kia K900 is easy to enter and exit, with the 16-way power adjustment on the driver’s seat of the VIP model offering comfortable positions for two quite differently shaped adults during our day-long test drive. (Standard models have 12-way driver’s seat adjustment.) The cabin is fairly bright, with a full-length tinted glass sunroof standard on V-8 models.
The driver and front passenger accommodations are adequate but not expansive: A tall front-seat passenger found that even with the front seat moved as far back as it could go, the glove-box lid hit his knees when opened. The saving grace is that the Kia K900 provides a lot of space and a very comfortable rear seat for passengers riding in the back. The V-8 VIP model we tested included rear-seat climate control, adjustable heated individual seats with lower cushions that slides forward as the seat backs recline, and adjustable winged headrests. The VIP model also includes the ability to reposition the front passenger seat from a control console built into the wide fold-down armrest.
From the driver’s seat, the dashboard is logically laid out, and we’re particularly fond of Kia’s crisp, clear digital graphics, which are among the easiest to discern of any car we’ve tested. Kia also gets credit for providing large rotating knobs for things like audio volume to supplement both steering-wheel controls and the touchscreen/pointer-control knob combination. The Nappa leather feels good, and wood is used on top-end models both on the console and parts of the steering-wheel rim—though not on the dashboard itself.
Certain interior trim elements of the interior, however, speak “premium” rather than “luxury”. Large swathes of the dash are piano black plastic—a material that no longer signifies elegance, given its use in compact crossover utility vehicles among others—and the instrument-binnacle sides are made of plain black plastic rather than matte silver as on German models. A round analog clock in the center of the dash is particularly unfortunate, with molded plastic fins clearly visible through the plastic glass. In the trunk, the handle to lift up the cargo floor looks like chrome, but turns out to be lightweight chrome-surface plastic, rather than the metal found in some other luxury sedans. They’re little touches, but they’re important in cars costing $60,000 or more.
The K900 is quiet and comfortable on most road surfaces, courtesy of any number of noise-reduction measures that include underbody trays to reduce air noise (and improve aerodynamics) and laminated front and side windows. Again, it falls in the middle of the segment. It has neither the removed feel of the cushiest luxury sedans nor the sports-car handling of the best German models. It’s a comfortable car that toes the line without a hint of passion either for extravagant luxury or high-performance travel. And in that, perhaps it mirrors the taste of many middle-aged Americans who want comfort and quiet along with predictability.
The 2015 Kia K900 is comfortable and quiet to ride in, with a spacious rear compartment and seemingly good build quality.