$21,499 - $29,007

2018 Kia Cadenza Interior Review

Note: This interior review was created when the 2018 Kia Cadenza was new.

Scorecard

Interior: 8.7

The 2018 Kia Cadenza features an attractive and upscale cabin that rivals the look and feel of many luxury vehicles. The seats are spacious and comfortable, though rear-seat headroom will be tight for some. There are lots of features, including many driver assistance options. The trunk is smaller than some rivals’ trunks, but it still offers a decent amount of space.

  • "The door panels, arm rests, seat and dash are all covered in soft-touch materials and complemented by good-looking fake wood and chrome. It isn't quite up to par with Mercedes-Benz's open-grain veneers, but it looks as good as nearly anything from Lexus or Acura." -- Autoweek (2017)
  • "Kia is quick to celebrate the airy and open cockpit of the Cadenza, and we can't help but agree – it's a pleasant place to be, very similar to that of a modern Audi, maybe minus the plastics quality." -- Autoblog (2017)
  • "Inside the 2017 Cadenza continues the theme of evolution rather than revolution. The dash is a clean design with straight lines and clear influences from the latest Optima. It won't set any hearts on fire, but it's a good looking design that's well laid out." -- Left Lane News (2017)

Seating

The Kia Cadenza seats five and comes standard with leather upholstery, a leather-wrapped steering wheel, a 10-way power-adjustable driver’s seat with two-way lumbar support, and an eight-way power-adjustable passenger seat.

Plenty of seating features are available, including Nappa leather upholstery, a 14-way power-adjustable driver’s seat, a 10-way power-adjustable passenger seat, a heated steering wheel, and heated rear seats.

The front seats are roomy and supportive. They also offer plenty of adjustability so the driver can find a good driving position. The rear seats have a good amount of legroom, but headroom is limited for taller passengers. The cabin is quiet, though you can hear some outside noise at high speeds.

The Cadenza has two full sets of LATCH connectors for installing car seats. The tether anchors are easy to find and identify, but the lower anchors are set deep in the seat and tough to maneuver around.

  • Both front and rear seats are comfortable, with plenty of legroom for rear passengers; however, the sleek top profile cuts into rear-seat headspace. Not bad for most, but anyone 6 feet or taller may have to fight for a front seat." -- Autoweek (2017)
  • "Seats are as comfortable as you'd expect from a vehicle in this class, with excellent adjustability for the driver. Front-seat passengers are also pampered with power adjustments. … Although the Cadenza's front seats provide plenty of space and comfort, the sedan's rear seats are where you really want to be for long trips. The Cadenza's rear bench provides limo-like leg room and plenty of head room for those a few inches north of the six-foot mark." -- Left Lane News (2017)
  • "Inside, the Cadenza is very quiet until you reach highway speeds, when you barely hear the external world whistling by. And at certain speeds, it does whistle. Wind noise is noticeable around the side view mirrors at speeds of 65 mph and up." -- Motor Trend (2017)

Interior Features

The Cadenza comes standard with a rearview camera, dual-zone automatic climate control, a proximity key, and Kia’s UVO infotainment system, which features an eight-speaker audio system, a 7-inch touch screen, Apple CarPlay, Android Auto, USB and auxiliary ports, satellite radio, HD Radio, and Bluetooth.

Available features include a panoramic sunroof, navigation with an 8-inch touch screen, a 12-speaker Harmon Kardon audio system, wireless device charging, and a head-up display.

Optional advanced safety features include rear cross traffic alert, blind spot monitoring, forward collision warning with automatic braking, lane departure warning, adaptive cruise control, and a 360-degree camera with parking sensors.

The Cadenza features the UVO infotainment system, which is a bit of a mixed bag. Its touch screen occasionally responds slowly to inputs, and the controls are a long reach from the driver’s seat. But the controls are clearly labeled, and the interface is intuitive.

Beyond UVO, the Cadenza has a lengthy list of standard and available features. It comes standard with plenty of connectivity technology, and there are several optional driver assistance features. Overall, the Cadenza's features list is closer to what you might expect from some luxury cars.

See 2018 Kia Cadenza specs »
  • Kia's controls are easy to understand, and clear. They are well labeled with legible fonts. Most functions are operated by logically arranged switches and knobs. It's refreshing to have dedicated climate and audio controls, though a minor complaint is some controls, like … the audio tune knob on the right, are a far reach. Also, climate display status only appears on the optional 8-inch touch screen when changing a mode or temperature setting." -- Consumer Reports
  • "Where the Cadenza stands out against … some of the luxe Japanese sedans -- the Acura TLX, and Infiniti Q50 -- is that it doesn't feel like an entry-level luxury car. With the soft touch materials and gobs of features, Kia hopes to sway older buyers away from those higher-priced pseudo-luxury badges." -- Autoweek (2017)
  • "Although the Cadenza is quiet, the interior's center stack of controls is a little button-heavy, and in our tester with the upgraded eight-inch touchscreen, the updated UVO system was slow to respond to touch and clunky to use when we tried to find our hotel by inputting its name and the city it was in. Kia has also locked out navigation input once the car is moving, rendering the passenger useless if they need to change a destination." -- Motor Trend (2017)

Cargo

The Cadenza has a 16-cubic-foot trunk, which is smaller than some class rivals’ trunks. It also has a small opening, making it tricky to load larger items. However, it does have a smart trunk release, which automatically opens the trunk when the proximity key is close to the back of the car for three seconds. The cabin provides a good amount of small-item storage.

  • "All trims come equipped with a hands-free trunk opening feature. Just walk up behind the car with the keyfob in your pocket, wait approximately three seconds, and the trunk will open. Although convenient, that response time can be longer than your patience. The trunk itself is nicely finished, and the lid's hinges retract into their own storage pockets so they won't crush your luggage." -- Consumer Reports
  • "The downside of the roofline, however, is that it makes the trunk opening smaller and less convenient, despite the power lid and its no-touch operation on the test car." -- Cars.com (2017)
  • "The Cadenza's interior, which Kia claims boasts the most passenger room of its segment at 107.8 cubic feet, receives a sophisticated redesign with higher quality materials, soft-touch surfaces and useable storage spaces throughout." -- New York Daily News (2017)

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