Kia Amanti Model History and Photos
Crafting a luxury or executive car is about creating an experience for the driver and passengers. Unlike performance models, or family wagons, luxury vehicles are built on the idea of captivating the attention and emotion of potential drivers with entrancing design and sensual experiences.
It means practically anybody can join the fun, provided they employ compelling design and amenities to win over prospective drivers.
It’s no secret cover-up that Kia has a long history of providing sensible vehicles. Former models like the Rondo, Kia Pride and even older Optima renditions prized safety, reliability and efficiency above passion. Barring a few experiments in wild design, like the Kia Brisa, Kia’s history has only recently been one of seeking to evoke some kind of emotion from potential drivers.
It should come as no surprise that, for a long time, Kia’s flagship model was the Optima. They didn’t offer a luxury or executive sedan for those drivers hoping to enjoy Kia reliability and safety with a premium interior experience and performance to match.
That changed with the Amanti.
Kia Amanti Model History
Introduced in 2003, the Kia Amanti was a declaration from the South Korean automobile manufacturer of a new future. With names like the Kia Oprius in other markets, the Amanti carried a vision of the future that saw Kia expand to make cars that were more than just reliable.
A wheelbase of over 110 inches made the Kia Amanti the largest Kia sedan offered. The Amanti’s interior was striking, a bold center stack console featured a CD changer, dual-zone automatic climate control (a luxury feature at the time) and wood grain elements.
Above the center stack, a large LCD screen provided temperature data, trip-o-meter readout, and a large clock. Mounted on the wood-trimmed steering wheel, audio and cruise control buttons sat in front of the luxurious and wide gauge cluster.
The exterior saw Kia turn their narrow grille into a luxury piece by mounting it between circular isolated headlights and DRMs, the latter of which sat to the outside of the front fascia and were larger. The lines between the two lights carried back to the windshield along the hood.
Chrome silver accents were present in both lateral side panel trim and around the windows. It was a beautiful car from a manufacturer who hadn’t focused their attention on making anything interesting, much less attractive.
Luxury and executive car enthusiasts know that performance needs to be at an elevated level in their first-class drivers, and the Kia Amanti did not disappoint. Introduced with a 3.5L V6 engine, the Amanti placed a high priority on driver engagement. The engine, shared with the Hyundai Azera XG, saw the Amanti get a cool 200-horsepower for highway passing and thrilling acceleration.
Three years before the final Amanti rolled off Kia’s production line, the engine saw an upgrade to a 3.8L V6 in 2007. This upgraded engine, shared with the Hyundai Azera, pushed the Amanti to its limits with 263-horsepower.
As good parents are inclined to want, the Amanti was able to see its successor take the brand’s luxury car status to the next level with two models that followed its end – the Kia Cadenza and the Kia K900.
Kia Amanti Photos
If you’ve been around our blog and, specifically, the Throwback Thursday section before, you know that we always close out these posts with some great photos we were able to dig up from social media.
As is tradition, we must warn you that clicking through to the original posts is encouraged, but also that Instagram may miss inappropriate or objectionable content by its users. Please browse at your own risk. Remember, you can’t delete the search history from your eyes.
Kia Amanti Legacy
The Legacy of the Kia Amanti can be found in the Kia Cadenza, Kia’s incredibly-designed next-level executive sedan. Redesigned for 2017, the current Cadenza model features a striking exterior and interior aesthetic that make doubly-priced competitors from German giants double-take.
For more information on Kia luxury, or to schedule a test drive with the Cadenza, contact us today!