Skip to main content

2025 Kia K5 Packs an Even Sportier Look and a New Engine

Bolstered with additional horsepower and sportier looks, the K5 is bringing even more value to the table

2025 Kia K5
  • The K5 is refreshed inside and out for 2025.
  • It debuts an upgraded 2.5-liter engine for all grades but the GT.
  • It features updates to the design and a new standard 12.3-inch touchscreen navigation unit.

In a somewhat stale sedan segment, the K5 already stands out in its class. This successor to the Kia Optima impresses with a quiet ride, comfortable seats and sporty styling, and the refresh for 2025 enhances the family-friendly midsize even further. 

The 2025 K5 exterior features a new honeycomb grille and updated appearance at the front, with red LED lights highlighting the new trunklid and now-standard rear spoiler. Kia refers to its new LED front daytime running lights as “eyebrows” intended to give the K5 a more aggressive look.

What's under the K5's hood?

Kia replaced the 180-horsepower turbocharged 1.6-liter four-cylinder engine with a new-for-K5 non-turbocharged 2.5-liter powerplant. As a result, the K5 gains 11 horsepower for a total of 191 hp, but torque falls from 195 lb-ft to 181 lb-ft. The LXS, EX and GT-Line trims that use this engine continue to come standard with front-wheel drive, with all-wheel drive remaining optional on the GT-Line. The range-topping GT variant is unchanged, bringing 290 horsepower and 311 lb-ft of torque to the table from its turbocharged four-cylinder.

2025 Kia K5 front interior

How's the K5's interior?

Intuitively laid out, with thoughtful spaces for odds and ends, the K5's interior is a comfortable space for drivers and passengers. New for 2025 is an updated haptic instrument panel that allows you to toggle the buttons to control the climate and audio systems, adjusted by knobs on either side. The toggle idea makes sense in terms of space and simplicity, but we’ll reserve judgment until we test it to see if it’s prone to slip-ups. 

Kia’s audio control setup has been excellent in the past, so we’re hoping it doesn’t lose its ease of access. The center console got a makeover for this model, including larger cupholders (with the Stanley cup craze, that makes sense) and a now-standard wireless charging pad flanked by USB-C charge ports. Two more USB-C charge ports are found in the second row.

How's the K5's tech?

Kia equipped the current K5 with an impressive set of features, and the 2025 list is even better. Wireless Apple CarPlay and Android Auto are now standard across the lineup, and a new 12.3-inch touchscreen holds court in the center as part of an available single-pane curved display. Critically, Kia is adding over-the-air capability, which makes it easier for owners to update their car when new software is available or changes need to be made. Kia specifies that OTA updates “may require an additional cost and may vary by model, model year, and trim level” — stand by for more information. 

There are more standard advanced driving systems too, like front and rear parking sensors and adaptive cruise control. But it isn't just the base LXS model that gets some love. Kia also paid attention to the luxury-themed EX trim, which now comes standard with many of the features from last year's EX Premium package. A heated steering wheel, Bose premium audio system and phone-as-key function are among the highlights.

2025 Kia K5 rear

Edmunds says

Kia shows its intentions to lead the midsize sedan segment with the refreshed K5. The automaker does an excellent job staying ahead on the technology front, and adding features on both the safety and infotainment side enhances the value of this car.