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2017 Kia Cadenza is cushier and more competent the second time around

While the Cadenza hasn't been a runaway sales success for Kia, a successor was warranted because the entry-luxury sedan has brought new upscale customers to the brand. This second-gen model aims to win more buyers with improved tech, refinement and even sleeker looks.

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Jon Wong

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A more tech-rich and refined second-generation Kia Cadenza goes on sale at the end of October.

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The new car moves onto an enlarged version of the Optima platform built from 51 percent high-strength steel, which is more than double the amount found in the outgoing car.

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To further improve rigidity, the new Cadenza's chassis uses six-and-a-half-times more structural adhesives, and triple the amount of hot-stamped steel parts.

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To quiet the interior, the new Cadenza gets a laminated windshield and front windows, plus added sound insulation and full underbody covers.

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With 107.8 cubic-feet of interior space, Kia says the new Cadenza features more interior space than key competitors like the Toyota Avalon, Ford Taurus and Chevrolet Impala.

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A revised 3.3-liter V6 powers the new Cadenza with 290 horsepower and 253 pound-feet of torque. Also new is an automatic transmission with eight speeds, two more than before.

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The new drivetrain receives an EPA fuel economy rating of 20 mpg city and 28 mpg highway.

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Kia's UVO infotainment system comes standard on all Cadenza models, and it's both Apple CarPlay and Android Auto capable.

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Available safety technology features include blind-spot monitoring, rear cross-traffic alert, lane-change assist, rear parking assist, forward collision warning with automatic emergency braking and lane-departure warning.

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A rocking 12-speaker Harman Kardon premium audio system is standard on the range-topping SX Limited.

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While exact pricing isn't available yet, Kia says the 2017 Cadenza will start below $32,000.

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