Just debuting, the South Korean’s manufacturer large sedan manages to best the former standard-bearer in the segment, the gasoline-powered version of Toyota Motor Corp’s Avalon.
The Toyota Avalon ranked third among 12 large sedans rated by the influential publication, which has more than 8 million subscribers. At the top of the Consumer Reports list was the 2014 Chevrolet Impala, made by General Motors.
“The Cadenza banishes any lingering thoughts that Kia is just a manufacturer of cheap, unrefined cars,” said Jake Fisher, director of automotive testing for Consumer Reports.
“Kia and Hyundai have really risen up in our testing,” the magazine’s automotive editor, Rik Paul, said in an interview. “Americans, too, are following suit. The Japanese are not nearly as dominant as they once were.”
In 2007, the last time the magazine ranked large sedans, the gas-powered Avalon topped the list. That American and Korean models have supplanted the Avalon reflects how industry went in the he last six years.
Toyota’s hybrid Avalon sedan did, however, tie for second with the Cadenza because fuel economy is given more weight in the rankings. Also, the magazine revealed last month the Impala was the best-rated sedan of any size.