2020 Kia K900

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2020
The Car Connection
2020
The Car Connection

The Car Connection Expert Review

Brian León Brian León Contributing Writer
February 12, 2020

Buying tip

Kia steeply discounts the K900; it’s a relative bargain in its luxury-sedan class, even before you negotiate your best price.

The 2020 Kia K900 piles luxurious fittings and features into a stylish sedan body, and tops it with an excellent warranty.

The 2020 Kia K900 has all the luxury-sedan charms a four-door can muster—but it’s still a relative unknown. Perhaps the only reason it’s not immensely popular with buyers is the three-letter badge on the hood. With its top-notch quality, amply strong powertrain, and relative value, we give it 7.4 out of 10 overall. (Read more about how we rate cars.)

Sharing both a platform and engine with other large luxury cars in the Kia and Hyundai family, the 2020 K900 fuses them together in a svelte sedan that could have any number of luxury badges adorned and wouldn’t look out of place. The interior is as high-quality as Korean cars get, which these days is competitive with any other mainstream automaker—and better than many old-school luxury nameplates.

A 3.3-liter twin-turbo V-6 is the only engine option and borrowed from the sporty Stinger liftback. It makes 365 horsepower and 376 pound-feet of torque, plenty for daily use but not quite enough to go toe-to-toe with Germany’s fastest. All-wheel drive is standard, and 60 mph is achieved in around 5.7 seconds. The K900 is geared for comfort overall and excels at it, but an improved chassis and suspension makes it more capable than ever in the corners.

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For the K900, value is the name of the game, so all models get 12-way power seats, nappa leather upholstery, automatic climate control, open-pore wood trim, heated and cooled front seats, a 7.0-inch gauge cluster digital display and a 12.3-inch touchscreen infotainment system with navigation, Apple CarPlay and Android Auto, and Bluetooth. A smartphone app is also standard which allows drivers to use remote start, find the K900 in a parking lot, adjust the cabin temperature, and book maintenance or repairs through the dealership. Coupled with a 5-year/60,000-mile warranty (10 years/100,000 miles for the powertrain), the K900 goes toe-to-toe with any large luxury car for just over $60,000. A $4,400 VIP package adds a bigger gauge display, 17-speaker premium audio, a head-up display, power-adjustable rear seats, wireless smartphone charging, three-zone climate control, and a synthetic suede headliner.

No crash test data exists, but the K900 does come standard with active safety features including automatic emergency braking, adaptive cruise control with full-speed stop and go, active lane control, blind-spot monitors with a side-view camera, a surround-view camera system, and a door warning for the driver and passenger that can detect cyclists and other traffic.

Perhaps the one feature that isn’t impressive about the K900 is its fuel economy, which is just 21 mpg combined. That’s on par with similarly-powered sedans.

7

2020 Kia K900

Styling

The 2020 Kia K900 is sleek, stylish, and utterly convincing as a large luxury sedan… minus its badge, of course.

The 2020 Kia K900 looks like a Mercedes-Benz S-Class, and that’s a very good thing for it. We give it 7 out of 10 here for its impressive style, inside and out. 

While you’re not likely to pick the K900 out of a lineup of luxury sedans, you may be likely to mistake it for something with a much more prestigious badge, and that’s exactly what Kia wants. Long, sleek, and featuring impressive details like the grille design and swoopy LED headlights and taillights, the K900 is a bona-fide full-size luxury sedan, and doesn’t look out of place in even the swankiest country club parking lots.

The interior is a similar story, featuring impressive standard design features like open-pore wood, metal trim around the buttons and dials, and fine nappa leather on the seats, doors, and dash. The VIP package even adds a suede-effect headliner, something normally reserved for true luxury brands. Consider us convinced, and very impressed.

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7

2020 Kia K900

Performance

The 2020 Kia K900 is a comfortable and competent cruiser but gets confused in the corners.

The 2020 Kia K900 can’t quite decide what type of large luxury sedan it would like to be. Neither sporty or sumptuous, it fits firmly in the middle, warranting 7 out of 10 here. 

While a gutsy V-8 did the heavy lifting in the old K900, that thirsty powertrain has been ditched for the 3.3-liter twin-turbo V-6 that underpins its sporty counterpart, the Stinger. With an 8-speed automatic, standard all-wheel drive, and an impressive 365 hp and 376 lb-ft of torque, the K900 certainly has no problem getting out of its own way, hustling its 4,700-pound heft to 60 mph in just 5.7 seconds. That’s not AMG-level, but it’s quick enough for daily use.

An advanced suspension design makes the K900 more capable in the corners on paper, but in practice it feels uneasy under hard cornering. Instead, the ride is relatively smooth and composed over long, straight stretches, making this a capable cruiser, but not as cushy as other luxury vehicles.

The electrically assisted steering is direct enough but offers minimal feedback, and the transmission provides smooth shifts but gets flustered when worked harder. If you opt for a K900, don’t expect it to be a particularly rewarding driver’s car.

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10

2020 Kia K900

Comfort & Quality

The 2020 Kia K900 is not only the nicest and most comfortable Kia, it’s on par with many more expensive sedans.

The 2020 Kia K900 is the biggest and most luxurious vehicle the brand sells, at least in sedan form. With its impressive material quality, acres of space, and attention to detail, it gets a perfect 10 out of 10 here. 

The seats are trimmed with nappa leather, and the front seats come with heating and cooling. With ample room, adjustment up to 20 ways for the driver and 12 ways for the passenger, they’re some of our favorite front seats in any non-luxury brand car. The rear seats are similarly comfortable and supportive, and with the optional VIP package, can be adjusted multiple ways as well as heated and cooled.

Small item storage is good for a sedan, and the trunk swallows 15.3 cubic feet worth of stuff, with a pass-through hatch for skis and longer items.

Perhaps the most impressive thing about the K900’s interior is the attention to detail. Normally when mainstream brands aspire to make a luxurious vehicle, it’s clear where costs were cut or parts from the bin were used. The K900 exhibits none of this, with impressive soft-touch materials, open-pore wood, and smooth, soft leather all as standard. It’s worthy of a luxury badge, let alone the Kia emblem.

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2020 Kia K900

Safety

The 2020 Kia K900 lacks crash test scores but does include a full suite of active safety technology.

The 2020 Kia K900 lacks crash test data for its relatively low sales volume, so we’re unable to give it a score here. 

Thankfully, Kia has thrown in all of its active safety tech as standard on the K900, including automatic emergency braking, adaptive cruise control with stop-and-go, active lane control, blind-spot monitors, and a warning system that alerts the driver and passenger of cyclists and other oncoming cars.

In our experience, while it’s generally preferable to have these features, they’re imperfect in their execution on the K900. The active lane control system seems to bounce between lane markers, requiring attention behind the wheel. Long story short: use them when you want, but remain alert.

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9

2020 Kia K900

Features

The 2020 Kia K900 is incredibly well-equipped, and still costs tens of thousands less than rival luxury cars.

With just one trim level and additional package, the 2020 Kia K900 is less customizable than any other luxury sedan. That’s not a bad thing though, as the relative value is second to none, warranting 9 out of 10 here.

At $60,935 including a mandatory destination charge, the K900 is more expensive to start than in years past. Thankfully, its standard feature list is lengthy and impressive, including 20-way power driver and 12-way power passenger seats, nappa leather upholstery, open-pore wood, a 7.0-inch gauge cluster display, and a 12.3-inch touchscreen infotainment system with Apple CarPlay, Android Auto, Bluetooth, and satellite navigation.

Kia also includes its smartphone app, which lets drivers set the climate control system, start the vehicle, find it in a parking lot, and even order roadside assistance or scheduled maintenance remotely. With a 5-year/60,000-mile bumper-to-bumper warranty, the K900 has better coverage than most luxury vehicles, and the powertrain is covered for 10 years or 100,000 miles.

Only one option exists in the form of a $4,400 VIP package, which adds power adjustment and heating and cooling to the rear seats, a 17-speaker premium audio system, and a 12.3-inch fully digital gauge cluster display, as well as wireless smartphone charging, an additional zone of automatic climate control, and a faux suede headliner.

At just over $65,000 fully loaded, the K900 is a serious discount over other full-size luxury sedans, most of which run tens of thousands more for a more prestigious badge and similar features.

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4

2020 Kia K900

Fuel Economy

The 2020 Kia K900 is only moderately efficient at 21 combined mpg.

The 2020 Kia K900 is only average in terms of efficiency, which is fine for most luxury sedan buyers but could be better in our books. We give it 4 out of 10 here. 

With its single twin-turbo powertrain and all-wheel-drive, the K900 makes 18 mpg city, 25 highway, 21 combined. That’s about average for its power output and size, but we’d appreciate a more efficient model too, perhaps a plug-in hybrid to give it a more unique selling proposition.

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$59,900
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7.4
Overall
Expert Rating
Rating breakdown on a scale of 1 to 10?
Styling 7
Performance 7
Comfort & Quality 10
Safety N/A
Features 9
Fuel Economy 4
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