$31,015 - $39,445

2016 Kia K900 Performance Review

Note: This performance review was created when the 2016 Kia K900 was new.

Scorecard

Performance: 7.4

Test drivers say the 2016 Kia K900 is great for road trips and delivers the relaxed driving experience that a luxury car should. The base V6 engine has sufficient power, and the optional V8 is strong, though the engines in some rival luxury cars are stronger. The K900's ride is generally smooth. However, many competitors are more agile than the K900, which often feels heavy when cornering and exhibits a fair amount of body lean around turns.

  • "Ride quality and handling finesse can't quite match German rivals, and the V8 engine is rather thirsty." -- Consumer Guide
  • "Kia isn't as adept at tuning a suspension as it is at designing an exterior or outfitting an interior, but the K900 drives the way a luxury sedan should. It feels solid, almost vaultlike from behind the wheel. It's very quiet on the road, and the suspension insulates passengers from road irregularities." -- MSN Autos (2015)
  • "We dutifully pushed the K900 on winding roads for brief stretches over a couple days' driving, but each time, we quickly dialed things back before the Hankook Optimo all-season rubber protested too much. It was simply easier and more pleasant to revert to the golf-shirt-and-khakis driving style this car favors. That might sound like a slam, but it's not meant to be - unruffled travel in the lap of luxury is its own reward, and the K900 comes across as an excellent road trip car." -- Autoblog (2015)
  • "The K900 is best suited for a relaxing cruise to the country club, which is probably just fine for the car's intended target audience." -- Left Lane News (2015)

Acceleration and Power

The 2016 K900 comes standard with a 3.8-liter V6 engine that puts out 311 horsepower. A 5.0-liter V8 that produces 420 horsepower is available in the V8 Luxury trim. An eight-speed automatic transmission is standard. With the V6 engine, the K900 gets an EPA-estimated 17/26 mpg city/highway, which is below average for the class.

The K900's V6 engine delivers adequate acceleration. The V8 has plenty of power, though some class rivals still offer stronger engines. The eight-speed automatic transmission delivers silky gear changes and downshifts willingly when the situation calls for it.

  • "You'll likely be surprised by the amount of thrust on tap when you stab the right pedal. The K900 loves to go, making it easy to trigger traction control when accelerating from a standstill. Equally impressive are the seamless shifts from the 8-speed transmission, which make the power flow as if there's an endless supply of torque from the engine." -- AutoTrader
  • Neither of the 2016 Kia K900's available engines will blow you away with a rush of power. For the respective six-cylinder and eight-cylinder classes of elite luxury sedans, the K900 is below par in terms of acceleration. That said, acceleration is certainly sufficient." -- Edmunds
  • "Kia made the V8 available for testing, and this smooth, strong engine is perfect for a luxury car. It delivers effortless power and works well with Kia's smooth-shifting automatic transmission, providing quick downshifts for extra passing power when needed. The engine barely makes a peep until the throttle is mashed. Even then, it emits a subdued growl that is appropriate for a luxury car." -- MSN Autos (2015)
  • "One trait that luxury customers like regardless of their driving style is an abundance of power underfoot, and the K900 delivers thanks to its direct-injected 5.0-liter V8's 420 horsepower and 376-pound-feet of torque. That power is routed exclusively to the rear wheels via a silky-smooth version of ZF's ubiquitous eight-speed automatic transmission ­– no all-wheel drive system is offered." -- Autoblog (2015)

Handling and Braking

Rear-wheel drive is standard on the K900. The cabin is well-isolated from outside noise, and the ride is mostly smooth. However, the K900 lacks the adaptive suspension option found in some rivals, which makes it less stable over rough roads and contributes to its heavy feel and noticeable body roll when cornering. The K900's steering could also be sharper.

  • Unlike many luxury pretenders, the K900's cabin feels blissfully devoid of wind or moving noise at highway speeds. Similarly, there's excellent suspension damping over rough surfaces, revealing an impressively adaptable suspension. When it comes to pitching the K900 into corners, this sedan comes across as bigger and heftier, making it feel more like an early Cadillac or Lexus and less like a modern BMW or Mercedes-Benz." -- AutoTrader
  • "On choppy pavement, however, the ride is a little on the busy side compared to other large luxury sedans … which are also usually available with an adaptive suspension that adds further comfort and control to the ride. Such a suspension would also help shore up the K900's handling. As it is, the K900 perpetually feels heavy and ponderous. Pricier rivals do a much better job of hiding their size for the driver while still delivering a limo-like cruising experience for passengers." -- Edmunds
  • We're not enamored of all the K900's dynamic qualities, though. The steering is fairly direct but numb and too light for our tastes. And while the K900 is certainly pleasant to drive, it is no sport sedan. There is a bit of lean in turns, and the car isn't as agile as the BMW 5-Series and Lexus GS it counts among its competitors." -- MSN Autos (2015)
  • "It doesn't so much cut through the road's waves and ride atop them. The steering is so devoid of feedback that it feels like a rudder stirring in a vat of oatmeal. This is an amazingly quiet machine, but a remote one. The K900 needs an injection of racing skiff DNA." -- Popular Mechanics (2015)

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