Kia K5 for 2025: Engine Swaps and Increased Displacement

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Kia K5
Kia K5 (Credits: Autoweek)

Formerly branded as the Optima, the Kia K5 is undergoing updates for the 2025 model year. This fifth-generation sedan is receiving significant changes, including a switch in its base powertrain from a 1.6-liter turbocharged engine to a naturally aspirated 2.5-liter I4.

Alongside this powertrain revision, the vehicle will showcase refreshed styling, an upgraded interior, and enhanced technological features.

The 2025 Kia K5 will now be powered by a base 2.5-liter naturally aspirated four-cylinder engine, generating 191 horsepower and 181 lb-ft of torque, mated to an eight-speed automatic transmission.

Kia K5
Kia K5 (Credits: Autoweek)

Power can be directed to either the front wheels or all four wheels, as per the configuration. Although the previous 1.6-liter turbo I4 has been discontinued, the turbocharged 2.5-liter four-cylinder remains available in the more potent K5 GT, maintaining its output of 290 horsepower and 311 lb-ft of torque.

In terms of design, the 2025 K5 sedan undergoes a makeover. Updates include standard LED headlamps, a redesigned front fascia, new taillights, and a revised rear bumper cover.

Inside the cabin, the 2025 Kia K5 boasts a standard 12.3-inch touchscreen media system, complemented by an available 12-inch digital instrument cluster, both housed behind a single curved pane of glass.

Standard features include Apple CarPlay and Android Auto integration, with updates to the center console such as larger cupholders and USB-C charging ports.

The 2025 Kia K5 also incorporates several driver-assistance features, with Smart Cruise Control featuring stop-and-go functionality as standard across all trims. Base LXS-trim K5 sedans additionally come equipped with parking distance warning in forward and reverse.

Moving up the trim levels, the EX and GT-Line variants offer standard navigation-based smart cruise control and highway driving assist. At the top end, the Kia K5 GT includes features such as a digital key, standard blind-spot monitor, and 19-inch alloy wheels.

In terms of sales performance, the Kia K5 delivered 64,772 units in the US in 2023, placing it behind the Toyota Camry, Honda Accord, Chevy Malibu, and Nissan Altima in terms of sales volume. However, it still outperforms its Hyundai Sonata platform counterpart, along with other competitors in the segment.

While pricing for the updated K5 has yet to be disclosed by Kia, the inclusion of additional standard equipment may lead to a slight increase in price. Currently, the Kia K5 sedan starts at $26,745, and with the enhancements, it wouldn’t be surprising to see the 2025 model priced around $28,000 when it arrives at dealerships.

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