2023 Kia K5

2023 Kia K5
2023 Kia K5 Rear View Driving 1
2023 Kia K5 Dashboard 1
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2023 Kia K5 Review: Stylish Sedan Still Impresses

by Martin Pretorius

Mid-sized sedans aren't the hot property they once were, but that doesn't keep manufacturers from offering ever-improving products with more style, technology, and features than ever before. The Kia K5 is a good case in point, racking up steady sales figures in the USA. Despite the fact that its sales volumes can't match those of the evergreen Toyota Camry or Honda Accord, the K5 still puts up a strong showing in this shrinking market segment. Built on the same Hyundai-Kia N3 platform as the Hyundai Sonata, the 2023 Kia K5 continues to offer two drivetrain options. The range opens with four variants powered by a 1.6-liter turbocharged four-cylinder, good for 180 horsepower and 195 lb-ft of torque.

The range-topping GT model features a 2.5-liter turbo four-cylinder producing 290 hp and 311 lb-ft of torque and standard FWD. It's quite strange that the top performer in the range has to make do with FWD when a lower-tier model offers an AWD option, though. Either way, the K5 looks handsome, has an attractive cabin, is nicely trimmed in high-quality materials, and includes a lot of features for the money, regardless of the selected trim level.

Read in this review:

9.1
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2023 Kia K5 Changes: What’s The Difference vs The 2022 K5?

For 2023, the Kia K5 remains unchanged, bar a slight range realignment and minor equipment updates. The LX entry-level variant is dropped for 2023, and the previously-available LXS trim with AWD is now only available with FWD. We're still crossing fingers for an AWD GT variant.

The mid-level GT-Line trim receives an optional panoramic roof as part of a package that also includes gloss-black exterior trimmings, while the GT-Line with AWD receives a standard heated steering wheel. Finally, all K5 models except the LXS now have acoustic glass for the front side windows for further refinement improvements. The rest of the K5's well-rounded standard equipment list remains unchanged.

Pros and Cons

  • Distinctive and handsome styling
  • High standard specification
  • GT provides plenty of speed
  • Comfortable cabin
  • Good value for money
  • GT model struggles to relay its 290 hp to the asphalt
  • Sportier models with larger wheels can have a choppy ride quality
  • Driving dynamics don't really match the performance on offer
  • No AWD available for the GT trim

What's the Price of the 2023 Kia K5?

Not only has Kia built a stunning midsize sedan in the new K5, but it has been priced appealingly, too. The base LXS begins at an MSRP of $25,090, undercutting the Honda Accord and the Toyota Camry. The GT-Line costs $26,490 in FWD spec or $28,190 with AWD. The EX goes for $28,990. Topping the range is the GT at $31,490, which is several thousand dollars less than the fully loaded Accord or Camry costs. All of these prices exclude tax, licensing, registration costs, and Kia's $1,095 destination fee.

Best Deals on 2023 Kia K5

2023 Kia K5 Trims

See trim levels and configurations:

Trim Engine Transmission Drivetrain Price (MSRP)
LXS
1.6L Turbo Inline-4 Gas
8-Speed Automatic
Front-Wheel Drive
$25,290
GT-Line
1.6L Turbo Inline-4 Gas
8-Speed Automatic
Front-Wheel Drive
All-Wheel Drive
$26,690
EX
1.6L Turbo Inline-4 Gas
8-Speed Automatic
Front-Wheel Drive
$29,190
GT
2.5L Turbo Inline-4 Gas
8-Speed Automatic
Front-Wheel Drive
$31,690
See All 2023 Kia K5 Trims and Specs

2023 K5 Exterior

2023 Kia K5 Front View KIA 2023 Kia K5 Forward View KIA 2023 Kia K5 View Out Back KIA
2023 Kia K5 Front View
2023 Kia K5 Forward View
2023 Kia K5 View Out Back
See All 2023 Kia K5 Exterior Photos

Dimensions

  • Length 193.1 in
  • Wheelbase 112.2 in
  • Height 56.9 in
  • Max Width 73.2 in
  • Front Width 64.3 in
  • Rear Width 64.6 in
  • Curb Weight 3,148.0 lbs

Exterior Colors

  • Glacial White Pearl +$445
  • Passion Red +$445
  • Wolf Gray +$445
  • Sapphire Blue
  • Ebony Black
  • Everlasting Silver
  • Gravity Gray

2023 K5 Performance

2023 Kia K5 Top View Driving KIA 2023 Kia K5 Rear View Driving KIA 2023 Kia K5 Taillight KIA
2023 Kia K5 Top View Driving
2023 Kia K5 Rear View Driving
2023 Kia K5 Taillight

Engine and Transmission

  • Engines
    1.6L Turbo Inline-4 Gas, 2.5L Turbo Inline-4 Gas
  • Transmission
    8-Speed Automatic
  • Drivetrains
    AWD, FWD

2023 Kia K5 Handling and Driving Impressions

With a commendably low curb weight ,even the 180-hp engine has no trouble getting the Kia K5 moving with reasonable alacrity. Don't imagine any four-cylinder K5 to win many drag races, but a respectable 0-60 mph sprint in around 7.8 seconds is about par for this class. 195 lb-ft of torque should ensure reasonable overtaking performance and effortless cruising as well, thanks in part to the eight-speed gearbox offering a suitable ratio for most conditions.

The top-spec GT is a different matter, because it can run the 0-60 mph dash in a class-leading 5.4 seconds - provided those P245/40R19 all-weather tires can find sufficient traction. In ideal conditions, the Kia K5 GT is really quick, thanks to its 290 hp and a hearty torque output of 311 lb-ft, but loose or wet surfaces will set the front tires spinning without even trying. This raises the question why Kia didn't make AWD available for this model, because that kind of power is only usable if it can make it to the asphalt. Once on the move, however, the generous helping of torque and eight-speed dual-clutch automatic give the range-topping K5 real pace, and turns it into a consummate long-distance cruiser.

Handling-wise, the 2023 Kia K5 has an average level of dynamic abilities for its class. While the suspension is independent all round, the Kia K5 is not as sure-footed as a Honda Accord, but can't match a Toyota Camry for comfort, either. But, apart from its vague steering feel, the Kia K5 is competent in corners, if not engaging or necessarily enjoyable. At the limits of grip, safe understeer is the name of the game. It's just a pity that the firm suspension doesn't translate into sparkling handling in this case, and merely serves to make the ride quality somewhat stiff-legged.

2023 K5 Interior

2023 Kia K5 Dashboard KIA 2023 Kia K5 Sunroof KIA 2023 Kia K5 Infotainment System KIA
2023 Kia K5 Dashboard
2023 Kia K5 Sunroof
2023 Kia K5 Infotainment System
See All 2023 Kia K5 Interior Photos

Seating and Interior Space

  • Seating capacity
    5-seater
  • Front Leg Room 46.1 in
  • Front Head Room 40.2 in
  • Rear Leg Room 35.2 in
  • Rear Head Room 37.8 in

2023 K5 Trunk and Cargo Space

2023 Kia K5 Armrest KIA 2023 Kia K5 Back Seats KIA 2023 Kia K5 Trunk Space with Seat Folded KIA
2023 Kia K5 Armrest
2023 Kia K5 Back Seats
2023 Kia K5 Trunk Space with Seat Folded
  • Trunk Volume
    16 ft³

2023 K5 Safety and Reliability

Warranty

  • Basic:
    5 Years \ 60,000 Miles
  • Drivetrain:
    10 Years \ 100,000 Miles
  • Corrosion:
    5 Years \ 100,000 Miles
  • Roadside Assistance:
    5 Years \ 60,000 Miles

US NHTSA Crash Test Result

NHTSA safety ratings are not available at this time.

Verdict: Is The 2023 Kia K5 A Good car?

With its appealing styling, available high-performance engine, and comprehensive standard features list, the Kia K5 is class-competitive. In a class where there are no bad cars, that's quite an achievement. However, it falls short of being a class leader on account of its slightly confused powertrain options, so-so driving dynamics, and compromised rear-seat accommodations.

The Toyota Camry offers more rear-seat space and a more-powerful base engine, while the Honda Accord has more-enjoyable driving dynamics to go with its base model's power advantage over the K5. In most aspects, the Kia K5 is just average in ability relative to its competitors, but its striking styling and comprehensive standard equipment list may be enough to elevate it in the eyes of potential buyers.

What 2023 Kia K5 Model Should I Buy?

In our opinion, the GT-Line feels like the most well-rounded trim level to buy, starting at just $26,490. This trim level rolls in sporty bodywork, black 18-inch alloy wheels, cloth and synthetic leather trim, and a power driver's seat, among other features. We'd then add the two GT-Line Premium Package for a combined $1,800, which adds a panoramic roof, LED headlights, auto braking, highway driving assist, and smart cruise control. With these packages equipped, you'll pay just $29,385 for a K5 GT-Line with FWD.

The EX trim adds nice options, but we'd spare the savings and stick with the GT-Line, which looks sporty and covers most of the bases. Spring for the GT if performance is your thing, however.

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