Welcome the Kia K5 to North County Kia

For two decades, the Optima reigned in the Escondido area as Kia's midsize sedan offering. That changed in the 2021 model year with the debut of the K5. It is Kia's sportiest-looking vehicle yet, with lots of tech features and a strong turbocharged engine choice. The 2021 K5 is split into LX, LXS, GT-Line, EX, and GT trim levels.

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The base engine on the Kia K5 is a turbocharged 1.6-liter inline four-cylinder (I4) with 180 horsepower and 195 pound-feet of torque. This engine has idle-stop technology to eliminate unnecessary fuel consumption when at a complete stop, and it comes paired with an eight-speed automatic transmission for smooth shifts. This powertrain provides the K5's peak fuel economy numbers: at 29 mpg in the city and 38 mpg on the highway.

For better acceleration, go with the top-level GT, which is headed by a 2.5-liter turbo I4 strapped to an eight-speed dual-clutch automatic transmission with steering-wheel-mounted paddle shifters. This engine outputs 290 horsepower and 311 pound-feet of torque.

Front-wheel drive is standard, although you can go with all-wheel-drive instead on the LXS or GT-Line for maximum tire engagement with the roads of Carlsbad. The GT model comes with standard all-wheel drive.


The Kia K5 provides two rows of cloth-trimmed seats for up to five people. The GT-Line gains cloth-and-synthetic leather upholstery, leather wrapping on the steering wheel, and 10-way power adjustability with two-way power lumbar support on the driver's seat. The EX earns its near-luxury status with synthetic leather upholstery and front-seat heating and cooling.

Although the sport-optimized GT loses the front-seat cooling, it gains sport bucket front seats to hug occupants during the tightest or most sudden of corners and turns. In addition, the GT joins the GT-Line in getting a flat-bottom design for its steering wheel to highlight the sporty interior.


With remote keyless entry, you can enter the K5 by just pressing the corresponding key fob button. The driver and front passenger get automatic climate controls to adjust their heating and cooling preferences. A 4.2-inch TFT LCD display provides the driver with vital driving information.

For infotainment, the K5 combines a six-speaker AM/FM stereo system, an HD radio receiver, Bluetooth hands-free phone calling and audio streaming, Android Auto and Apple CarPlay smartphone integration, two USB ports in the center console (one for data, the other for charging), and an 8-inch touchscreen.

The LXS receives an upgrade to a smart key system so that you can simply have the key fob on you to unlock the doors, remote start the engine, a push button next to the steering wheel to start the engine without an ignition key, and a trunk that can be opened automatically by standing behind the vehicle with your smart key on you.

The GT-Line gains two USB charging-only ports in the rear console. The EX gains a wireless phone charger, a panoramic sunroof, a third USB port in the center console (for charging), complimentary SiriusXM satellite radio service, and UVO link remote connectivity.


The Kia K5 is loaded with driver-assistance tech that many of our San Diego drivers appreciate. Standard active safety aids include forward collision warning with pedestrian detection, lane departure warning, lane-keeping assist, lane following assist, driver attention warning with leading vehicle departure alert, high beam assists, and a rearview monitor with dynamic parking distance.

If a crash occurs, the K5 can deploy any of seven airbags, consisting of a driver's knee airbag, two frontal impact airbags, two side impact airbags, and two side curtain airbags. A blind-spot monitoring system with rear cross-traffic alert is added on the LXS trim and higher. The EX gains reverse parking distance warning.

Learn More Today

If you are in the Escondido area, call us today at North County Kia to set up an appointment with one of our Carlsbad-area specialists.

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