Kia Cadenza-04

Kia Motors America (KMA) introduced the 2014 Kia Cadenza sedan for the North American market at the 2013 NAIAS in Detroit. The Cadenza will be KMA’s flagship in the US, but in Kia’s complete range, it sits between the Optima K5 and Quoris K9 limo.

The brand is heading upmarket, far from its roots as a budget brand, but KMA says that there’s demand for such a car. “Since the introduction of the range-topping Optima SXL last year, we have seen an increasing number of customers in our retail outlets looking for a sedan with even more upscale amenities and technology,” said Michael Sprague, KMA’s executive vice president of marketing & communications.

The US market Cadenza is powered by Kia’s most powerful V6 engine ever, a 3.3 litre GDI unit with 293 hp at 6,400 rpm and 345 Nm of torque at 5,200 rpm. The all-aluminum engine features Dual CVVT, a maintenance-free timing chain and a three-step variable induction system for enhanced torque. Power is transferred to the front wheels via a six-speed automatic transmission with shift paddles.

Expected to arrive in Kia showrooms in the second quarter of 2013, the Cadenza can be had with toys such as Advanced Smart Cruise Control (ASCC), Blind Spot Detection (BSD) and Lane-Departure Warning System (LDWS).

Inside, you’ll find SiriusXM Traffic and UVO eServices displayed on a high res eight-inch touch screen, a back-up camera, 550-watt Infinity 12-speaker ICE system and a full-length panoramic sunroof, among other things.