Cadenza vs. Optima SXL my experience and thoughts
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Thread: Cadenza vs. Optima SXL my experience and thoughts

  1. #1
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    Cadenza vs. Optima SXL my experience and thoughts

    I brought my SXL in for its second oil change and basic service. I pointed out a burned area on the heat shield behind the engine near the turbo. A plastic hose clamp on the turbo melted so they ordered the new part and heat shield. I was provided a loaner 2014 white Cadenza with luxury package. I had the Cadenza for 3 days. My comparison and experience goes like this.

    In short the Cadenza is larger inside and more of a smooth luxury ride compared to the sportier looking and driving Optima.

    Exterior looks- SXL
    Interior looks- SXL
    Seating, comfort for a tall guy- Cadenza, Cadenza has great comfortable seats with that extender on the drivers seat.
    Head room, leg room front and back- Cadenza
    Navigation, touchscreen size, modern graphics, UVO- Cadenza
    Acceleration- SXL. Someone has stated that an SX owner might be embarrassed by a Cadenza, I dont feel that way. The numbers show they are very close but the Optima feels much more powerful and the engine doesn't get as loud under hard acceleration.
    Gas mileage- SXL even though the Cadenza is new and has a V6, the power and mileage even when new is better on the SXL
    Infinity stereo- SXL. The Cadenza has 12 speakers and is louder but not as deep or nice sounding with surround sound on or off in XM mode only.
    Ride and handling- SXL Hugs the curves better feels more secure, Cadenza has a nice smooth quiet ride. Tie
    Braking- SXL by far. just better stronger stopping power.
    Fun to drive- SXL due to the above mentioned torque feel and braking.
    LED lighting front and back-SXL. Prefer the individual bulbs look.

    Even though I am excited to be back in my SXL the Cadenza is a nicely done vehicle, feels great and is very roomy without taking up any more space in my garage. Many thoughtful touches including the auto fold mirrors when you walk up the mirrors unfold or fold, key lock for glove box, three settings for seat cooler, covered storage areas.
    Just wanted to share my experience, I know others have as well.
    Apologies pics are sideways, they uploaded that way and I dont see how I can rotate them.
    Attached Thumbnails Attached Thumbnails Cadenza vs. Optima SXL my experience and thoughts-photo-27-.jpg   Cadenza vs. Optima SXL my experience and thoughts-photo-22-.jpg   Cadenza vs. Optima SXL my experience and thoughts-photo-25-.jpg   Cadenza vs. Optima SXL my experience and thoughts-photo-26-.jpg   Cadenza vs. Optima SXL my experience and thoughts-photo-24-.jpg  

    Cadenza vs. Optima SXL my experience and thoughts-photo-28-.jpg  
    Last edited by PatMir; 06-01-2013 at 06:28 PM. Reason: spacing disappeared for some reason

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  3. #2
    Vendor Will@KarbonKoncepts's Avatar
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    Thanks for providing your feedback. As an owner of both, I concur with a lot of your points. I do disagree about the sound system however...

    My only other question I have though is why people keep comparing the two cars to each other?
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  4. #3
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    Quote Originally Posted by Will@KarbonKoncepts View Post
    Thanks for providing your feedback. As an owner of both, I concur with a lot of your points. I do disagree about the sound system however...

    My only other question I have though is why people keep comparing the two cars to each other?
    I was surprised about the sound system myself. I only tested the XM portion but I did set the bass, mid and treble the same in both cars and think the Optima has a richer sound that hurt my ears less at a high volume.

    Why compare the two? Easy. These two vehicles are Kias flagship sedans (arguably as the Cadenza truly is flagship) one being smaller and sportier and a little less costly, they both have pano roofs, similar engine power, nappa leather, same sound system for the most part, similar size, front wheel drive, price fairly close if comparing SXL to luxury package. Also if one is considering a 30-40k kia they should test drive and consider both of these as different things will appeal to different buyers. They even look similar to most people, almost everyone thought it was the Optima in white instead of titanium.

  5. #4
    Veteran Master Tech fondupot's Avatar
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    good god that was hard to read.
    No more Optima. Back in a truck. Its been real...DIY Catch Can | DIY Rear Seat Removal | DIY Spring Swap

  6. #5
    OptimaForums Veteran NewKiaSXOwner's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Will@KarbonKoncepts View Post
    Thanks for providing your feedback. As an owner of both, I concur with a lot of your points. I do disagree about the sound system however...

    My only other question I have though is why people keep comparing the two cars to each other?
    agreed.. two totally different cars. Both should not be a comparison to one another
    2012 Kia Optima SX-SWP Build date 1-11-12 Link to Mods. NewKiaSxOwner's Garage


  7. #6
    Learner's Permit apwrx's Avatar
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    Why not compare them ? I compared various cars when I was shopping and had the cadenza been out I would of compared the two. It's seems logical to me. Thanks for the write up Pat

  8. #7
    Vendor Will@KarbonKoncepts's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by apwrx View Post
    Why not compare them ? I compared various cars when I was shopping and had the cadenza been out I would of compared the two. It's seems logical to me. Thanks for the write up Pat
    I totally agree with you in regards to comparison shopping. But comparing them to determine which car is "better" overall doesn't make sense. These cars are for different purposes, so comparing them directly is like stating that Kia meant for these two cars to go head to head with each other. Like they offered two different mid-size sport sedans....
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  9. #8
    Learner's Permit apwrx's Avatar
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    Gotcha, I will say though that manufacturers thoughts and consumer reality are different.They will get compared and cross shopped. What have you got done to yours? Great looking cars can't wait to see one modded.

  10. #9
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    The only reason they are compared is for someone that might be interested in upgrading or curious about what the next best offering from kia is since as mentioned they have many things in common. They are not totally different cars by any means.

  11. #10
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    No problem apwrx just wanted to share with others in case like me they were wondering if they should move up to the next model in the lineup.

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