SEOUL, SOUTH KOREA - Kia has released the first actual images of its new K5 sports sedan, which will also likely be sold as the new Optima in certain global markets.

Sadly, Kia South Africa has confirmed to us that the K5 is currently not under consideration for our market, although it is interesting to note that the newcomer showcases Kia’s new design direction, so other products that are on our horizon will no doubt have some of the styling flavour that you see here.

Measuring 4905mm in length and 1860mm in width, the new K5 is longer and wider than its predecessor, while a fastback silhouette, prominent creases and frameless windows lend it a more sporting presence.

At the front end we see what Kia calls the ‘Tiger Nose Evolution’, which takes the form of a wide 3D design that “integrates the grille and headlamps more organically than previous iterations”, Kia says. The grille is made with a matrix of interlocking details, and its texture is inspired by shark skin, while the swoopy daytime running light shape emulates a heartbeat monitor.

Kia has not mentioned any of the technical specifics as yet, but it is believed that this vehicle will share its front-drive architecture with the latest Sonata, with most models powered by the latter’s 132kW 2.5-litre normally aspirated engine. The company’s 2-litre turbopetrol engine is also a likely candidate for more performance oriented versions, which would have the go to match the show.

The previous-generation K5 was sold in South Africa as the Optima from 2012 onwards, but was discontinued due to slow demand for large sedans.

IOL Motoring