Resuscitated: The All-New 2020 Kia Cadenza


2020 Kia Cadenza
2020 Kia Cadenza. Credit: Kia
Every year since I reviewed the Kia Cadenza in 2013, the rumors have swirled that the stylish sedan was being killed off. It looks like Kia has a new one headed our way. It’s a beauty, and it has always been one of my favorite cars.

The refreshed 2020 Kia Cadenza premium sedan made its debut at the Chicago Auto Show earlier this week. Brimming with new design elements, technology and available convenience features, the 2020 Cadenza remains true to its mission of offering luxurious interior surroundings combined with a quiet and composed ride. Significant interior enhancements for 2020 improve ergonomics and a number of newly standard Kia Drive Wise driver-assist technologies make time behind the wheel of the Cadenza more pleasant than ever.

“The Cadenza continues to introduce new and luxury-minded customers to the Kia brand,” said Michael Cole, president, Kia Motors America. “We recognize there are many customers who don’t want or need an SUV, but still desire a vehicle with plentiful interior room and a large trunk. The Cadenza is the perfect choice for these people and the refreshed 2020 model is well-suited to their needs.”

When it goes on sale later this year, the 2020 Cadenza will be available in two trims: Technology and Limited, while last year’s Premium trim has been eliminated. Pricing will be announced closer to the vehicle’s on-sale date.

Kia Cadenza
Credit: Newspress USA

Exterior Enhancements


  • Redesigned hood and grille with deeper vertical waterfall fascia
  • Standard multi-lens LED headlights with redesigned LED DRL lamps
  • New lower front fascia with integrated turn signals
  • Redesigned rear bumper and trunk lid
  • New LED combination rear taillights

Redesigned 18-inch (standard) and 19-inch wheels (available)

While the exterior design is the first thing many will notice, it’s on the inside that the 2020 Cadenza sees the most change. Interior design changes include:

  • Completely redesigned dash and instrument cluster with relocated audio controls above the climate switchgear
  • Standard 4.2-inch TFT color screen in the instrument panel
  • New 12.3-inch touchscreen with multi-device Bluetooth® connectivity is standard
  • New available multi-color ambient LED mood lighting (Limited only)
  • Two new nappa leather-trimmed seating colors: Saddle Brown and Gray, with Limited models offering quilted seat bolsters
  • Three additional USB charging ports (one in the front passenger area, two in the rear seat)
  • Enhanced 10-watt wireless fast-charging phone charger
  • New standard Smart Key with remote Engine Start


Kia Cadenza
Credit: Newspress USA

For 2020, Drive Wise, Kia’s advanced suite of driver-assisted technology, sees a number of significant enhancements to the Cadenza. New standard features include:

  • New standard “Sensor Fusion” combines Forward Collision Warning, Forward Collision-Avoidance Assist with pedestrian/cyclist detection, Smart Cruise Control with Stop & Go and High Beam Assist
  • Lane Following Assist follows visible lane markings or a preceding vehicle and provides steering inputs to maintain the vehicle’s position in the lane
  • Blind Spot Collision Avoidance Assist – Rear with Lane Change Assist
  • Highway Driving Assist uses federal highway speed limit information to automatically adjust vehicle speed to be within the posted speed limit
  • Navigation-based Smart Cruise Control – Curve uses navigation data to lower the vehicle’s speed proactively before upcoming curves
  • Safe Exit Assist alerts the driver or passenger opening their door to not exit the vehicle when approaching traffic is detected

Powered by the same smooth 3.3-liter V6 from last year, the all-aluminum engine delivers 290 horsepower to the front wheels through an 8-speed electronically controlled Sportmatic transmission. Improvements for 2020 include reinforced rear sub-frame cross members and resonator wheels (19-inch only) that help to reduce road noise entering the cabin. Redesigned shock valves reduce vibration and larger rear dampers improve rebound over rough surfaces.

Kia Cadenza
Kia Cadenza
Kia Cadenza
Kia Cadenza
Kia Cadenza
Kia Cadenza
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