The number of all-new K5 preorders has set a fresh record of more than 16,000 units sold in just three weeks, Kia Motors said Thursday as it launched the third-generation of the popular sedan officially on the same day. The number of preorders the K5 received is the highest among vehicles launched under the Kia marque, the company said.
“Of all customers who preordered the K5, 53 percent of them were in their 20s and 30s, demonstrating overwhelming support and attention from younger generation,” said Lee Yong-min, head of domestic marketing. “We will revitalize the midsized sedan market by reaching the annual sales target of 70,000 units starting next year,” he said.
The launch of the K5 comes amid the growing popularity of sport utility vehicles, but the carmaker expressed confidence it would lure customers with its innovative design and the latest in-vehicle technology embedded in the new car.
Through the use of “active” interaction technology, passengers can control the air conditioner, air filtering, windows, electronic heat systems for seats and rear window via voice commands and artificial intelligence. In addition, a car-to-home system allows passengers to keep a tab on internet of things devices at home and even control the home’s temperature and lighting, in addition to gas valves and the front door while driving. The in-vehicle control system via voice command was developed by Kakao Enterprise, a spinoff unit of Korean mobile platform Kakao.
“We wish to create a future where (passengers can control parts of) the car as if they are talking to a friend or a driver through artificial intelligence,” said Kim Byeong-hak, executive vice president of Kakao Enterprise. “The vehicle will develop as a space connected to everyone, from being an isolated room.”
The vehicle also operates without an actual key and has applied near-field communication technology so registered drivers can start the car via a mobile app. It is also the first Kia car that has an air filtering system with a sensor to detect fine dust.
The fully revamped midsized sedan returning to market after four years is available in four trims: 2.0-liter gasoline, 1.6-liter turbocharged gasoline, 2.0-liter LPi and 2.0-liter gasoline hybrid engine models.
The model kept its signature “tiger nose” grille, but is redesigned to create a bold and sharp look with artistic inspiration from shark skin. A sense of boldness runs through the vehicle, the company said, embodying a fastback look.
Its safety features include lane keeping and following assist, forward collision-avoidance assist, rear cross-traffic collision-avoidance assist and blind spot collision-avoidance assist systems.
The K5’s price ranges between 24 million won ($20,200) and 34 million won, with various options given to customers.
By Cho Chung-un (firstname.lastname@example.org)