Kia Corp has gone through some amazing changes in the last few months, and it seems like there is no stopping this automaker. Winning awards and topping the charts, Kia Corp is the highest ranked mass-market automaker, according to the 2020 J.D. Power Initial Quality Study. Keyword: mass-market. Well, that is until now. Kia Corp is growing and expanding its range, slowly entering the luxury segment and pushing competitors aside while still offering a better price. Kia Corp is everywhere these days. We’re not saying the automaker is going to dominate the auto industry, but I for one welcome our new automotive overlords.
It’s kind of like Google at this point – Kia Corp has its hands in a lot of pockets, and the luxury car segment is in its crosshairs. Earlier this year, in March 2021, Kia revealed the Kia K8, a luxury sport sedan. We got a look at the interior and the exterior of the Kia K8, and we’re pretty impressed. The new signature frameless ‘tiger nose’ grille of the front fascia gives Kia models a new look, and an astronomical theme has entered the design. The front lamp turn signals resemble a nebula dust cloud, and this theme finds its way into the interior cabin with ‘Star Cloud’ lighting that projects glittering and interactive ambient lighting.
The most recent new model revealed on a global scale from Kia Corp is the 2022 Kia Carnival MPV. That’s “MPV” for “Multi-purpose Vehicle”. The Kia Carnival wasn’t designed to only serve the purpose of a minivan, although this model heavily leans towards that vehicle segment. Powered by a 3.5-liter V6 engine capable of generating a best-in-class 290 horsepower and 262 lb.-ft. torque isn’t incredibly powerful, and there are many features built into the vehicle with families in mind. Able to seat eight passengers, reaching the third row is easier than ever with the Slide-Flex seating system.
Technology and safety are always improving on Kia vehicles. The standard in the 2022 Kia Carnival MPV is an 8-inch touchscreen display with wireless Apple CarPlay and Android Auto. Consumers can upgrade to a Bose Premium sound system and a sound system with 12 high-performance speakers for better beats, and with UVO link, Smart Speaker Integration with Amazon-Alexa and/or Google-Assistant functionality are also added. Kia Corp has also introduced a Rear Passenger View Camera, Rear Occupant Alert (ROA), a Safe Exit Assist (SEA) features, and a new blind spot feature on the Kia Carnival MPV.
As we mentioned, Kia Corp is heading into luxury vehicle territory, and the Kia K8 is not alone. The 2022 Kia Carnival MPV can be set up for only seven passengers. This allows for a more luxurious approach with heated and ventilated second row paradise with VIP Lounge Seating, power controls, wing-out headrests, and leg extensions, plus Passenger Voice Recognition for in-vehicle functions by multiple passengers and Passenger Talk with a new cabin intercom system. It’s like a whole new vehicle, top of the line. But there’s more.
The 2022 Kia Carnival MPV is currently sporting new features in its home market, South Korea. A slightly larger version offers luxurious Hi-Limousine model specs, made for up to four people with a lot of space for the rear passengers. To keep passengers comfortable, the Carnival cabin comes with an air purifier, a cooler for beverages, storage options for devices, and a 21.5-inch display mounted on a high roof raised ceiling. Built with heated/cooled cup holders, pleated curtains for privacy, LED ambient lighting, the coup de grâce is a foot massager. Now that’s the kind of model we’d like to see in the US if Kia Corp is planning to win over the luxury segment.Of course, this limousine-fashioned Kia Carnival will cost more than the regular model. With a starting MSRP of about $77,000 compared to base price of the 2022 Kia Carnival MPV at $32,100 (plus destination fee) and going as high as $46,100 (plus destination fee) as the starting MSRP for the high-end SX Prestige trim. Already available, you can look for the 2022 Kia Carnival MPV at Miami Lakes Automall.