New interview confirms performance chief fettled with Korean 7 Series rival.
Kia’s K900 is about to hit the North American market, and the company has revealed customers can expect a little more athleticism from its largest sedan courtesy of Albert Biermann – the Hyundai Motor Group’s executive vice president for high-performance development.
Speaking with industry journal Automotive News, Kia spokesperson James Bell confirmed the former BMW M boss’s involvement in the development of the new K900 to improve the dynamics.
“The current K900 had some issues from a dynamics perspective,” Bell said. “We’re not going to have any of those problems with this car. There is going to be more than a value story here.”
“We call it the ‘Biermann Effect’. He has translated that DNA into a lot of our cars.”
According to Bell, Biermann helped make revisions to the suspension to give the K900 better handling and response. Further to those changes, Kia’s North American division will only offer the new model with the twin-turbo 3.3-litre V6 from several models like the smaller Stinger, along with the Genesis line-up – though a 3.8-litre V6 and 5.0-litre V8 will be offered in other markets.
“If you put some nice summer tires on it, you can discover some nice driving talent,” Albert Biermann told the publication.
“As a driver’s car, customers will be satisfied.”
Revealed at the New York motor show in March, the new-generation Kia K900 received a comprehensive overhaul including a redesigned exterior and interior, along with the company’s latest in driver assistance and infotainment technologies.
Available features include a new 12.3-inch digital instrument cluster, a 12.3-inch central infotainment system, blind-spot monitoring with live video feeds courtesy of the 360-degree camera system, Safe Exit Assist – which alerts the driver if it detects potential hazards when opening any door to get out of the vehicle – and Lane Follow Assist, combining the adaptive cruise control and lane assist functions for semi-autonomous highway driving capability.
Under the skin, Kia has upped the use of structural adhesives to increase rigidity, with torsional stiffness claimed to be 33 per cent higher than the outgoing model. There’s four times the hot-stamped parts in this generation, and 676 feet (206m) of structural adhesives – compared to 279 feet (85m) in its predecessor.
“The all-new 2019 K900 is much more than a generational redesign, as it takes on a whole new look, feel and character over its predecessor. Only its name – K900 – is carried over,” Orth Hedrick, vice president for product planning at Kia Motors America, said at the new model’s reveal.
Kia’s local division has ruled out the K900 for our market, as it did with the previous model. The closest thing we’ll get to the new K900 will likely be the updated Genesis G80 (nee Hyundai Genesis), scheduled to launch locally in the fourth quarter – though after several delays, it could be pushed back again.
Would you consider a K900 over a 7 Series or LS500 if it came to Australia?
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