2021 K5 Is the Most Powerful Kia Mid-Size Sedan to Ever Walk This Earth

Born about a decade ago as the Optima, the K5 was unveiled this week as the carmaker’s most-powerful-mid sized sedan to ever roll off the lines wearing a Kia badge. The car is also described as “one of the biggest leaps forward between generations in recent automotive history.”
2021 Kia K5 17 photos
Photo: Kia
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Those are big words, and even more so when considering how Americans have lost their love for sedans. Sure, they seem to hate the most the sedans made by the three local giants, but still, bringing a new one in a market where SUVs and pickups are running the show is risky business.

Still, here it is: the new K5 (the name will be replacing Optima for good, at least in the States), built on a new platform, with a new design, and new powertrains to make it an alluring proposition for the local customers.

Riding on a platform called N3, the K5 is longer, wider and lower than the outgoing Optima, making for a more aggressive-looking car. It is more angular too, and depending on the trim one goes for (the car will be offered in LX, LXS, GT-Line, EX and GT guises), the visual effect is quite different.

The more aggressive look of the car is paired to a turbocharged two-engine lineup. The entry-level is the 1.6-liter unit that develops 180 horsepower and 195 lb.-ft. of torque when linked to a brand new eight-speed automatic transmission. This engine is offered on the LX, LXS, GT-Line, and EX trims.

The top engine, the one that gave the K5 the title of most powerful mid-size sedan Kia ever made, is a 2.5-liter unit that cranks out 290 horsepower and 311 lb.-ft. of torque. It works with a new 8-speed wet dual-clutch transmission and is of course offered on the GT.

The new K5 goes on sale later this summer in the U.S. Pricing for it has not yet been announced. Full details on what the new Kia K5 is all about can be found in the press release section below.
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About the author: Daniel Patrascu
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Daniel loves writing (or so he claims), and he uses this skill to offer readers a "behind the scenes" look at the automotive industry. He also enjoys talking about space exploration and robots, because in his view the only way forward for humanity is away from this planet, in metal bodies.
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