Driving impressions of Kia K9 Quoris - Kia K900 Forum
 
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post #1 of 4 Old 11-14-2012, 03:01 PM Thread Starter
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Default Driving impressions of Kia K9 Quoris



Price:N/A
On sale: Only in Korea and some lefthand drive countries
Tech Highlights: 3778 cc V6 24-valve petrol engine with dual CVVT, MPI, 294 ps, 358 Nm; 8-speed torque converter automatic transmission, rear-wheel drive, 5-link coil spring front and rear suspension



What is it?
Kia’s flagship model (known as K9 in Korea) which is related to the Hyundai Genesis. The name ‘Quoris’ is derived from ‘quality’ and ‘core’, according to Kia, to suggest that quality is at the core of the new flagship model. As large as a BMW 7-Series and Mercedes-Benz S-Class but Kia realistically compares its model against the 5-Series and E-Class. The Schreyer-initiated styling is taken to a new level appropriate for a luxury sedan and combines classic cues with Kia’s design language.
Though a direct-injection 334-ps engine is available in the domestic market K9, export models will initially have only a 294-ps MPI engine due to concerns about fuel quality. Kia’s engineers are not convinced that the fuel quality in other markets is high enough to run a GDI engine without long-term problems.


More powerful GDI engine is available only in Korea; export markets get MPI version due to concerns about fuel quality

What’s it like?
In pictures, the size of the Quoris is not so evident but when you get close to the car in real life, its presence is very obvious. It has a sleek profile which brings to mind the BMW 5-Series with some clever styling details. Quality-wise, it’s clear that Kia spared no effort to engineer and then build this car better than any other model it has ever made.
Getting into the back seat first, I was quite impressed by the amount of space allocated to the rear occupants. You get to stretch out nicely and the seat height and backrest rakes were just right to provide a very comfortable position. A fellow journalist remarked that it didn’t have the ‘luxury smell’ and if that is taken to be the smell of leather, then it’s not a big deal to me as I am not particularly fond of leather anyway.
From the rear seat, the view forward is quite expansive and thankfully, the dashboard designs of Korean cars are no longer ‘different’ for the sake of being different. In their earlier years, perhaps to differentiate themselves from Japanese models, there seemed to be a deliberate effort to ‘re-invent the wheel’ and switches would have strange shapes. Today, Kia, in trying to appeal especially to the Europeans, has adopted a more universal approach with minimal ‘Korean-ness’. But it’s hard not to feel like there was some influence from BMW in the layout and design and critics have already suggested as much.






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post #2 of 4 Old 11-14-2012, 03:02 PM Thread Starter
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HUD colour display provides more than just speed information, legible even in bright light

On the open road, the engine surges forward from low speeds but only feels assertive enough when the tachometer has crossed the 3000 rpm mark. We couldn’t push it hard with the warnings about strict police enforcement and what can be said about the acceleration is that it provided effortless overtaking whenever needed.
One of the things about the transmission which puzzled me at first was that it would, in certain conditions, start off in second gear. I thought ‘Winter mode’ had been in use but was told that it was programmed into the logic control to provide a smoother take-off.
There are four driving modes available and I had it in Sport mode most of the time, this giving a more enjoyable driving experience as everything was taut and responsive. The ‘aggressiveness’ of the Eco mode in prioritizing fuel-saving became quite apparent when I switched to it as the fuel level ran very low. Throttle response lost a bit of sharpness and it seemed that the transmission went up a ratio higher than what I would have liked.





The smooth and well maintained Korean roads made any assessment of ride comfort virtually impossible but because we deviated into smaller rural roads (due to the GPS giving wrong directions after resetting itself), there was an unplanned opportunity to see how it would cope with rougher surfaces. Not surprisingly, it was fine on most surfaces but over sharp speedbumps, the shock would come through noticeably as if the damping was limited.
Sound insulation was excellent, comparable to Lexus levels at most speeds but I noticed some whistling occasionally near the large mirrors. Not sure if it was due to unusual crosswind conditions, early-production issues or an inherent airflow flaw.
While we did not use the built-in navigation system as the testcar was a Middle East version (we were provided a standalone navigation unit), it was interesting to find that when the fuel warning light came on, a message flashed on the screen asking: “Would you like to locate the nearest location to refuel?” Thinking this was a wonderful ‘life-saver’, I pressed ‘YES’ and the locations that appeared in the screen were in Saudi Arabia!




Should you buy one?
Overall, the Quoris is a notable first effort into the premium segment. The earlier Korean limousines, like the early Japanese ones, were big ostentatious cruisers akin to the Detroit ‘aircraft carriers’ and could only be appreciated in their domestic market. The Quoris shows a seriousness in being a global product (apart from the fact that Kia is not making a RHD variant) with contemporary styling, thanks of course to Peter Schreyer.
Technically, the Quoris is right up there with the obvious rivals but Kia accepts that its brand image is still not close enough yet so they’re satisfied if they can get a fair comparison. In that context, their flagship is certainly worth considering as an alternative for those who want something different.
If you want one in Malaysia, you can’t get it because Kia doesn’t make a righthand drive variant and there is no indication if they will do one because the potential volume doesn’t justify it.



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post #3 of 4 Old 11-23-2012, 05:47 PM
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Kia’s engineers are not convinced that the fuel quality in other markets is high enough to run a GDI engine without long-term problems.

KIA is right. In America we get some shitty quality gas.
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post #4 of 4 Old 11-24-2012, 12:04 AM
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Quote:
One of the things about the transmission which puzzled me at first was that it would, in certain conditions, start off in second gear. I thought ‘Winter mode’ had been in use but was told that it was programmed into the logic control to provide a smoother take-off.
Interesting....that right their is a good gas saver and awesome for winters so you won't get a ton of wheel spin.
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