2004 Kia Amanti Review

Pros & Cons

  • Class-leading amenities, spacious interior, unique exterior styling.
  • Some may find the exterior styling odd, 195 horsepower is not much in this class.
Other years
Kia Amanti for Sale
List Price Estimate
$1,588 - $3,685

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Edmunds' Expert Review

Kia's first large sedan could prove appealing to value-minded shoppers who don't mind its odd proportions.

2004 Highlights

The Amanti is an all-new full-size sedan from Kia geared to compete head-on with the likes of Toyota's Avalon and the Buick LeSabre.

Consumer reviews

Read what other owners think about the Used 2004 Kia Amanti.

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Most helpful consumer reviews

Love my 2004 Amanti & KIA 2017 Sportage
4dr Sedan (3.5L 6cyl 5A)
I purchased my Amanti new in 2004. It now has 210,000 miles on it and runs great. It has been a wonderful car. Regular maintenance has kept it running perfectly. Taking it to the shop 5/2/16 to replace an engine mount - cheaper than a new car! I wish KIA was still making this car! Been looking for used Amanti with low mileage to run for another 10 years. *Since my last review, I did purchase a used Amanti with only 35,000 on it. GREAT! Such luxury! Just drove down I-95 from PA to Palm Beach - floated on the interstate! I needed to take the used KIA in for PA yearly state inspection, Went to my KIA dealership and got a loaner - A 2016 Optima - It is "junk" compared to the Amanti, What was KIA thinking by getting rid of the Amanti - They replaced it with the Cadenza, but it is way over priced and feels like the cheaper Optima. So, I have two, 2004 KIA Amanti's - 1 is GOLD and 1 is SILVER in my garage! They are simply wonderful cars! My son has a 2013 KIA Forte - My daughter has a 2014 KIA Sportage - but everyone still loves my Amantis! Update: 11/30/16 - Just returned from Palm Beach FL - drove I-95 from PA - in my "Silver" '04 Amanti has 60,000 miles on it and drives like it is brand new. Still LOVE the drive, feel, luxury, & sound system. My "Gold" '04 Amanti is used for short trips to the grocery store and shopping - 225,000 miles and still drives great on country roads and the interstate! LOVE my Amantis'! Update: 10/31/17 - Still love my Amantis'! I need to the headlights cleaned up, but that is all! The miles are adding up on the SILVER Amanti, as we drive it on long trips. The GOLD Amanti is still running great! Regular oil changes keeps these cars going and going! Update 10/31/2020 - Still have my Silver Amanti. The Gold Amanti began having some problems with the AC and the transmission at 240,000 miles. We decided to let it go and replaced it with a 2017 Kia Sportage. Purchased it for $16,000 at our local Lancaster, PA Kia dealer. It had 24,000 miles on it. So far, there's been a bit of a learning curve in learning how to drive it as it is so very different from my Amanti. The Silver Amanti now has 85,000 miles and is still running like it is brand new. It will be our back-up. My family is still all KIA.
First Day
4dr Sedan (3.5L 6cyl 5A)
I purchased a Used 2004 Kia Amanti in Oct 2012. I will write reviews at inspection, six months, and after one year of driving. I test drove 3 2004 Amanti cars. One with 146000 miles; One with 118000 miles; and One with 155000 miles. The base model drove like it needed an alignment-had it inspected for $100 by a kia dealership. Yes, it needed alignment, valve cover gaskets, and timing belt changed. No I didn't buy it. The 118000 miles car drove like it was on its last leg-so I didn't get it. The 155000 mile Amanti drove like it was just coming off the showroom floor. I drove it home today - 120 miles. So far it is wonderful! I love the design and comfort of this car.
After Inspection
4dr Sedan (3.5L 6cyl 5A)
Okay, I had the Amanti go through a full used car inspection at the Kia dealership. Cost $104.00. Three items needed attention - Left and Right valve cover gaskets need replacing, and the rear main seal needs replacing. Total cost for repairs by the dealership will be $1010.00. Do I still love the car - Yes! The leak must be a very small one because you cannot tell it has a leak by driving it and have not noticed oil leaking. Will I get it fixed - Yes when income taxes come in next year. Can it wait til then - they said it could as long as I keep an eye on the oil level. I paid $5000.00 for the car and NADA shows its value a little over $6000.00 so with the repair it will meet value.
Amazing Car. Every One Thinks I'm Driving A Jaguar
4dr Sedan (3.5L 6cyl 5A)
I have no Negatives about The 2004 Amanti Kia. I love the car. It's the perfect size easy in an out. Lots of trunk space. It drives like a luxury car. Every one that has seen my car really thinks it's a Jaguar. My Friend from choir rehearsal saw my drive up an when I got out the car the first thing she said to me was, Girl what's that you rolling in. She said is that a Mercedes or a Jag. I start smiling I never said yes or no. I kept her in suspense. Until people see the back of my car that's what they think I'm Rolling in a Jag. or Mercedes. Then when they find out it's a Kia, they still don't believe it. I would Definately Recommend This Car. It's elagant stylish, you will get a lot of compliments. Keep the maintenance up to date. You got yourself a great car. Trust Me.


NHTSA Overall Rating

The National Highway Transportation Safety Administration offers independent analysis.
  • Frontal Barrier Crash Rating
    OverallNot Rated
    DriverNot Rated
    PassengerNot Rated
  • Side Crash Rating
    OverallNot Rated
  • Side Barrier Rating
    OverallNot Rated
    DriverNot Rated
    PassengerNot Rated
  • Combined Side Barrier & Pole Ratings
    Front SeatNot Rated
    Back SeatNot Rated
  • Rollover
    Rollover4 / 5
    Dynamic Test ResultNo Tip
    Risk Of RolloverNot Rated
IIHS Rating
The Insurance Institute of Highway Safety uses extensive crash tests to determine car safety.
  • Side Impact Test
    Not Tested
  • Roof Strength Test
    Not Tested
  • Rear Crash Protection / Head Restraint
    Not Tested
  • IIHS Small Overlap Front Test
    Not Tested
  • Moderate Overlap Front Test

More about the 2004 Kia Amanti
More About This Model

Kia is launching an unexpected car here in the U.S. Believe it or not, the new Kia Amanti is aimed at a slightly more upscale crowd than usual; that's right, a luxurious Kia that offers a value-minded alternative to, say, a loaded Toyota Camry. To experience the Amanti, we flew to the car's home turf in South Korea (where it is already on sale as the Kia Opirus), and experienced the Amanti on beautiful Jeju Island.

The island is located at the very tip of Korea and is about an hour south of Seoul by jet. Many refer to Jeju Island as the Korean Hawaii, and locals know it is the destination for Korean honeymooners. It's not just the honeymoon business that gives Jeju Island its "Korean Hawaii" status; the place is simply beautiful. Lava rock and sandy beaches stretch for miles, while the water lapping at those beaches is so blue and clear you'd swear you were in the real Hawaii — in short, a great place to take a new near-luxury car for a little test-drive.

Generally associated with small, inexpensive cars in the U.S., Kia (and parent company Hyundai) is nothing less than the South Korean equivalent of a company like Ford here in America. Kia makes large trucks, huge passenger buses and, of course, normal passenger cars. And Kia cars are all over the place — Koreans seem to favor their own domestic cars and of those Hyundai and Kia dominate the market, at least from a casual observer's point of view. Kia's passenger cars range in size from ultrasmall economy cars to full-size luxury cars. It does take time to get used to seeing a Kia logo on the back of a car that is easily the size of a Buick Park Avenue or Cadillac DeVille.

So while many U.S. buyers may find it odd that Kia is now selling a large near-luxury car on our shores, a quick visit to the company's home market reveals that the Amanti is not revolutionary, but just the next logical step in a long-term growth plan. Normally, what's true in a certain manufacturer's home market — be it Japan, or Germany or South Korea — is not necessarily relevant to those here in the U.S. who simply want the best car at the best price. But it does bear mentioning that Kia has been building luxury cars for quite a while and that Korean customers have many choices when it comes to buying new cars.

American consumers have many choices as well, and the real question is, can Kia compete in an arena that is already dominated by the likes of Buick, Honda and Toyota? When looking at it in terms of the car itself, the answer is yes. Where the Amanti could fail is in the peripheral details — dealership experience, service, marketing, advertising budgets and public perception. But the car alone is a worthy competitor and a choice worth adding to your shopping list should you be in the market for a car like a Buick LeSabre, Honda Accord EX V6 or Toyota Camry XLE V6.

The first thing one notices about the Amanti is the interior. The materials are first-rate and almost all switchgear looks and feels durable. Buttons like the climate control functions and stereo operation lack the cheap hard plastic feel that still plagues some midpriced American cars. It's obvious Kia paid a lot of attention to the inside of this car. In fact, my first thought upon sitting in the Amanti was "they've copied Toyota." Like many Toyotas, the Amanti has optional leather seats, and the quality, look and feel of that leather is top-notch. As I said earlier, the Kia Amanti is sold in Korea under the name Opirus, and that car has cool-looking electroluminescent gauges similar to those found in Lexus vehicles. In the U.S., Kia is looking to keep the price down and give the Amanti a bit of a sporty flair by using normal backlit gauges trimmed with faux stainless steel rings. All the displays are well-laid-out and easy to read, but the instrument panel lacks any real pizzazz.

The Amanti has a deceptively small look from the outside, but compared to Kia's midsize Optima it's considerably bigger in all dimensions. About the same size as a Buick LeSabre, the Amanti offers more legroom and headroom than a Toyota Camry. The size is noticeable once you get inside — especially in the backseat. With two adults in the rear seat, the Amanti feels a little narrow but offers more legroom than some other cars in the same segment. A quick check of the specs page reveals that the Amanti is wider and longer than the Accord, Altima, Camry and Passat and about the same size as the Ford Taurus and Toyota Avalon. Overall, the backseat offers more than adequate comfort for two, and has a fold-down armrest with a storage area, power point and cupholders. One obvious oversight is the lack of a fold-down feature for the rear seat — instead, a small ski pass-through opening is offered.

"Yes, but how does it drive?" you may be asking. The Amanti uses the same 3.5-liter V6 that is available on a number of Kia vehicles including the Sedona and Sorento as well as the Hyundai XG350. This engine has a cast-iron block and does not use advanced valve timing or multicam technology. Therefore, the Amanti's V6 is good for just 195 hp. That doesn't sound like much when you consider even the Buick LeSabre offers 205 hp and the Toyota Avalon delivers 210 hp and both from similar-size V6 engines. Ten or 15 horsepower is one thing, but when a car like the Honda Accord or Nissan Altima offers as much as an extra 50 hp, you've got to seriously consider what you're buying and what features are important to you.

Thankfully, the Amanti is equipped with a five-speed automatic, so the car feels adequately powered in most driving situations. From a dead stop, the Amanti offers satisfactory acceleration, and only as the revs climb does the engine begin to feel taxed. The bottom line is that the current 3.5-liter V6 has served Kia well, but it's carried the company as far as it can. It's time to develop a new, more sophisticated power plant if Kia is to successfully compete with the likes of Honda, Nissan or Toyota.

In this segment, power is certainly important, but the smoothness with which that power is delivered is much more important. At first the refinement of the Amanti is surprising, but anyone who's driven a Hyundai XG350 or Kia Sorento can vouch for just how smooth and quiet the 3.5-liter V6 is. Under heavy acceleration, the Amanti's 3.5-liter engine makes a bit of a growl, but the cabin remains quiet. Even as the rpm climb, the V6 shows no sign of making excess noise or vibration. Overall it's a very composed engine that offers an appropriate level of quiet and refinement for a near-luxury car.

Handling is not quite as impressive, but the Amanti is not even pretending to have sporting inclinations. This Kia feels heavy and that weight makes itself known when cornering even slightly aggressively. In fact, the car weighs in at a little more than 4,100 pounds. The ride is not sloppy, but there is a good deal of body roll when rounding a bend at speed. The trade-off is that the suspension soaks up most bumps, ruts and potholes without transmitting any unpleasantness into the cabin. The Amanti's ride and handling sort of mimic the Buick LeSabre and Toyota Avalon and Camry in both good and bad ways — smooth and pleasant in a straight line, but too much lean in the corners. No driving enthusiast would really have any fun in the Amanti, but a soft ride is not an unwelcome quality if you're looking for a comfy cruiser.

Still skeptical about Kia's near-luxury claim? Consider that in addition to a smooth V6, five-speed automatic transmission and plush interior accommodations, the Amanti offers plenty of comfort features. Ever heard of a Kia with one-touch up-and-down power windows with an anti-pinch feature? The Amanti has them, as well as 16-inch wheels, optional stability and traction control, four-wheel antilock disc brakes, dual-zone automatic climate control, a 270-watt Infinity sound system with an in-dash CD changer, steering wheel-mounted audio controls, an eight-way power driver seat and an optional display screen that features a trip computer, digital clock and temperature readouts. For safety's sake, the Amanti offers side airbags for front occupants and full-length head curtain airbags as standard items.

These features might be nothing special if you're looking at a Toyota Avalon or a loaded Camry, but take into account the Amanti's base price of just $25,000, and the Amanti stacks up nicely against the competition. Now consider the stellar 5-year/60,000-mile bumper-to-bumper warranty and 10-year/100,000-mile powertrain warranty, and it's obvious the big Kia has a lot to offer those looking for a little luxury at an affordable price. The Amanti is a decent car that offers plenty of desirable features for a reasonable price — say, isn't this how Toyota got started?

Used 2004 Kia Amanti Overview

The Used 2004 Kia Amanti is offered in the following submodels: Amanti Sedan. Available styles include 4dr Sedan (3.5L 6cyl 5A). The Used 2004 Kia Amanti comes with front wheel drive. Available transmissions include: 5-speed shiftable automatic. The Used 2004 Kia Amanti comes with a 5 yr./ 60000 mi. basic warranty, a 5 yr./ unlimited mi. roadside warranty, and a 10 yr./ 100000 mi. powertrain warranty.

What's a good price on a Used 2004 Kia Amanti?

Shop with Edmunds for perks and special offers on used cars, trucks, and SUVs near Ashburn, VA. Doing so could save you hundreds or thousands of dollars. Edmunds also provides consumer-driven dealership sales and service reviews to help you make informed decisions about what cars to buy and where to buy them.

Which used 2004 Kia Amantis are available in my area?

Shop Edmunds' car, SUV, and truck listings of over 6 million vehicles to find a cheap new, used, or certified pre-owned (CPO) 2004 Kia Amanti for sale near. Simply research the type of car you're interested in and then select a used car from our massive database to find cheap prew-owned vehicles for sale near you. Once you have identified a used vehicle you're interested in, check the AutoCheck vehicle history reports, read dealer reviews, and find out what other owners paid for the Used 2004 Kia Amanti.

Can't find a used 2004 Kia Amantis you want in your area? Consider a broader search.

Find a used Kia Amanti for sale - 4 great deals out of 22 listings starting at $15,179.

Find a used Kia for sale - 6 great deals out of 9 listings starting at $21,477.

Find a used certified pre-owned Kia Amanti for sale - 2 great deals out of 5 listings starting at $22,523.

Find a used certified pre-owned Kia for sale - 4 great deals out of 9 listings starting at $14,640.

Should I lease or buy a 2004 Kia Amanti?

Is it better to lease or buy a car? Ask most people and they'll probably tell you that car buying is the way to go. And from a financial perspective, it's true, provided you're willing to make higher monthly payments, pay off the loan in full and keep the car for a few years. Leasing, on the other hand, can be a less expensive option on a month-to-month basis. It's also good if you're someone who likes to drive a new car every three years or so.

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