|Kia K8 sedan / Courtesy of Kia Corp.|
By Kim Hyun-bin
Kia Corp. launched the luxury K8 sedan two weeks ago under its new corporate name, introducing the vehicle's sleek interior and exterior design and features functions through its YouTube channel, Thursday.
Kia decided to rebrand its image by changing the company name from Kia Motors to Kia Corp.
The new K8 has been a hit so far, racking in over 24,000 preorders ― 30 percent of the company's goal of selling 80,000 this year. On March 23, the first day of preorders, Kia signed 18,015 contracts breaking a company record for the most sedans sold on the first day of orders.
The K8 has a sleek design with the front of the vehicle featuring the new Kia emblem and two radiator grilles. Some innovative functions include the Star Cloud Lighting which function as daytime running lights, a blinkers system and the Dynamic Welcome Light that utilizes 10 lamps to greet the driver when locking or unlocking the vehicle.
|Kia K* interior / Courtesy of Kia Corp.|
The interior was inspired by an aircraft's first-class seating, providing a comfortable and luxurious design. It is equipped with a 12.3-inch dashboard that smoothly links to a panoramic curved infotainment system; and also features a 12-inch heads-up display.
England's premium audio system brand Meridian Audio provides a top-notch surround sound system, while ambient lighting is installed throughout the interior. The K8 comes in three engine formats ― a 2.5L gasoline, 3.5L gasoline and 3.5L LPI ― with plans to launch a 1.6 gasoline turbo hybrid model next month.
The 2.5 gasoline has a maximum horsepower of 198PS and a torque of 25.3kgf.m, and is capable of running at 12km per liter. The 3.5L gasoline and 3.5LPI operate on a two-chamber torque converter equipped with an 8-gear automatic transmission to reduce shock when switching gears while enhancing fuel efficiency.
The models all come equipped with state-of-the-art driver safety assistant systems including highway driving assist 2 (HDA 2) forward collision avoidance assist (FCA), smart cruise control (SCC) and navigation smart cruise control (NSCC).
The lowest price range starts from 32.79 million won ($29,300) for the 2.5L gasoline model and runs up to 45.26 million won for the 3.5L gasoline "Platinum" model.
"The new K8 breaks from the previous models paradigm to provide an innovative and luxurious design," a Kia official said. "The vehicle not only provides comfortable transportation means but the space also gives inspiration to customers to enhance their daily lives."