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Over 200 people are killed each year when backed over by motor vehicles. The Cadenza Limited has standard Reverse Parking Collision Avoidance that uses rear sensors to monitor and automatically apply the brakes to prevent a rear collision. The S5 Sportback doesn’t offer backup collision prevention brakes.
The Cadenza’s driver alert monitor detects an inattentive driver then sounds a warning and suggests a break. According to the NHTSA, drivers who fall asleep cause about 100,000 crashes and 1500 deaths a year. The S5 Sportback doesn’t offer a driver alert monitor.
Both the Cadenza and the S5 Sportback have standard driver and passenger frontal airbags, front side-impact airbags, driver knee airbags, side-impact head airbags, front seatbelt pretensioners, height-adjustable front shoulder belts, four-wheel antilock brakes, traction control, electronic stability systems to prevent skidding, collision warning systems, daytime running lights, rearview cameras, available crash mitigating brakes and around view monitors.
The Cadenza comes with a full 5-year/60,000-mile basic warranty, which covers the entire car and includes 24-hour roadside assistance. The S5 Sportback’s 4-year/50,000-mile basic warranty expires 1 year and 10,000 miles sooner.
Kia’s powertrain warranty covers the Cadenza 6 years and 50,000 miles longer than Audi covers the S5 Sportback. Any repair needed on the engine, transmission, axles, joints or driveshafts is fully covered for 10 years or 100,000 miles. Coverage on the S5 Sportback ends after only 4 years or 50,000 miles.
There are almost 3 times as many Kia dealers as there are Audi dealers, which makes it much easier should you ever need service under the Cadenza’s warranty.
To reliably power the ignition and other systems and to recharge the battery, the Cadenza has a standard 180-amp alternator. The S5 Sportback’s standard 110-amp alternator and largest (optional) 150-amp alternator aren’t as powerful.
To reliably start during all conditions and help handle large electrical loads, the Cadenza has a standard 800-amp battery. The S5 Sportback’s 420-amp battery isn’t as powerful.
J.D. Power and Associates’ 2019 Initial Quality Study of new car owners surveyed provide the statistics that show that Kia vehicles are better in initial quality than Audi vehicles. J.D. Power ranks Kia second in initial quality, above the industry average. With 36 more problems per 100 vehicles, Audi is ranked 22nd, below the industry average.
From surveys of all its subscribers, Consumer Reports’ December 2019 Auto Issue reports that Kia vehicles are more reliable than Audi vehicles. Consumer Reports ranks Kia 5 places higher in reliability than Audi.
On the EPA test cycle the Cadenza gets better highway fuel mileage than the S5 Sportback (20 city/28 hwy vs. 20 city/27 hwy).
To lower fuel costs and make buying fuel easier, the Kia Cadenza uses regular unleaded gasoline. The S5 Sportback requires premium for maximum efficiency, which can cost 20 to 55 cents more per gallon.
The Cadenza has 3.2 gallons more fuel capacity than the S5 Sportback (18.5 vs. 15.3 gallons), for longer range between fill-ups.
For a smoother ride and more stable handling, the Cadenza’s wheelbase is 1.2 inches longer than on the S5 Sportback (112.4 inches vs. 111.2 inches).
For better handling and stability, the average track (width between the wheels) on the Cadenza is .7 inches wider in the front and 1.8 inches wider in the rear than the track on the S5 Sportback.
For better maneuverability, the Cadenza’s turning circle is 1.2 feet tighter than the S5 Sportback’s (37.2 feet vs. 38.4 feet).
The Kia Cadenza may be more efficient, handle and accelerate better because it weighs about 150 to 300 pounds less than the Audi S5 Sportback.
The design of the Kia Cadenza amounts to more than styling. The Cadenza has an aerodynamic coefficient of drag of .28 Cd. That is lower than the S5 Sportback (.3) and many sports cars. A more efficient exterior helps keep the interior quieter and helps the Cadenza get better fuel mileage.
The Cadenza has .8 inches more front headroom, 4.2 inches more front legroom, 2.6 inches more front shoulder room, .6 inches more rear headroom, 2.1 inches more rear legroom and 2 inches more rear shoulder room than the S5 Sportback.
The Cadenza has a standard remote vehicle starting system, so the vehicle can be started from inside the driver's house. This allows the driver to comfortably warm up the engine before going out to the vehicle. The climate system will also automatically heat or cool the interior. The S5 Sportback doesn’t offer a remote starting system.
The Cadenza Limited’s standard easy entry system raises the steering wheel and glides the driver’s seat back when the door is unlocked or the ignition is switched off, making it easier for the driver to get in and out. The S5 Sportback doesn’t offer an easy entry system.
The Cadenza’s power window, power lock, power mirror and cruise control switches are lit from behind, making them plainly visible and easier to operate at night. The S5 Sportback’s cruise control switches are unlit, making them difficult to find at night and operate safely.
To quickly and conveniently keep personal devices charged without cables tangling and wearing out, the Kia Cadenza has a standard wireless phone charging system (Qi) in the center console. Only the S5 Sportback Premium Plus/Prestige offers wireless charging.
Insurance will cost less for the Cadenza owner. The Complete Car Cost Guide estimates that insurance for the Cadenza will cost $2230 to $5835 less than the S5 Sportback over a five-year period.
IntelliChoice estimates that five-year ownership costs (depreciation, financing, insurance, fuel, fees, repairs and maintenance) for the Kia Cadenza will be $13060 to $17715 less than for the Audi S5 Sportback.
Consumer Reports® recommends the Kia Cadenza, based on reliability, safety and performance.
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