The South Korean brand's new luxury sedan, a production version of its KND-5 concept car, is suffering from the same fate as the recently-unveiled Venga — left-hand drive only for now.
Kia Australia national public relations manager Jonathan Fletcher says the Cadenza is purely a left-hand drive proposition at this stage. "It's bigger than Magentis and is left-hand drive only, though that's not where the conversation ends," he says.
The Cadenza will be sold in the large car segment against the likes of Commodore, Falcon, Aurion, Maxima and Camry among others — and Kia's Australian arm doesn't see a pressing need to compete in a shrinking market segment.
Fletcher says Kia Australia will need other major right-hand drive markets to ask for the Cadenza before it is likely to be built in a form that could be sold here. The Cadenza is also a step up in size from the Magentis and is not seen as a replacement for the slow-selling (in Australia) sedan.
Kia is expecting to get a new Magentis mid-2010, having opted out of receiving a mild face-lifted model that would have only been on sale for 12 months before the new car.
It says Cadenza is "an all-new sedan designed to satisfy drivers’ desire for refinement, safety and emotional satisfaction by creating ideal driving conditions."
The luxury sedan will debut at the Saudi Arabia, Kuwait and Dubai international motor shows, later this year. The Cadenza — derived from an Italian musical term used to describe an elaborate, ornamental flourish for a concerto or aria, according to the carmaker — symbolizes the sedan's design philosophy and image.
The Cadenza has a new-look headlight with LED surrounds — a strong snout, following the new Kia design direction.
Kia says the interior is dominated by a floating dashboard, interior ‘mood’ strip lighting along the dash and door trims, with a features list including a heated steering wheel and power-adjustable seats (with extending seat cushions for extra thigh support.
Overseas marketing group director for Kia, Soon-Nam Lee, says the new Cadenza will showcase the continuing evolution in Kia's striking design language. "It will also present a new concept in luxury sedans in terms of performance and technology," he says.