The 2024 Kia K5 and 2024 Subaru Legacy are midsize sedans with room for five and optional turbocharged engines to give each an extra jolt of performance. 

Of the two, the K5 stands out thanks to bold exterior styling that mimics some aggressive design cues in the now-discontinued Stinger sport sedan. Front-wheel drive is standard, and under the hood of the K5 is a turbocharged 180-horsepower 4-cylinder engine coupled to an 8-speed automatic transmission.

While it doesn’t have the same degree of design bravado, the Legacy is conservatively handsome and has the added appeal of standard all-wheel drive (AWD). You can get AWD on the K5, but it costs you extra. The base powertrain in the Legacy is a 182-hp 4-cylinder that works in conjunction with a continuously variable automatic transmission (CVT). 

This lays out the basic blueprint of these two sedans. But how do they compare in terms of driving dynamics, comfort levels, and tech features?

To find out, let’s look at some highlights of the Kia K5 and Subaru Legacy.

2024 Kia K5

The 2024 Kia K5 is available in four primary trims: LXS, GT-Line, EX, and GT. Except for the range-topping GT model, every K5 comes with the aforementioned 180-horsepower 1.6-liter turbocharged 4-cylinder powertrain. All-wheel drive can be optioned, but solely on the GT-Line. Prices start at $26,745, including factory-to-dealer destination fees.

Kia K5 Highlights

Available AWD: Having all-wheel drive on the option sheet gives the K5 extra appeal for car shoppers who prefer knowing they have added road grip in case their voyage turns slippery with ice, rain, or snow. Granted, we wouldn’t mind seeing AWD offered on more than just the GT-Line or with the punchier turbo engine used in the GT. 

Sporty GT model: The K5 GT is a relatively understated, speedy sedan that accelerates from a standstill to 60 mph in less than 6 seconds. Credit goes to the GT’s energetic 290-hp 2.5-liter turbo 4-cylinder engine. This powertrain upgrade gives the K5 the zesty driving dynamics to match its sleek exterior. 

Aggressive style: Once again, we have a convenient segue to discuss another highlight of the K5. In this case, the swept-back shape provides a coupe-like profile to this otherwise sensible, family-friendly sedan. Kia must think midsize sedan shoppers prefer not to fade into the background because the K5 is definitely not what we’d call an introvert.

Check this week’s Fair Purchase Price or see the K5 models for sale near you. 

2024 Subaru Legacy

2024 Subaru Legacy in blue parked on the street.

The Subaru Legacy is available in five trims: Base, Premium, Limited, Sport, and Touring XT. Pricing starts at $26,015, slightly lower than the K5 and other rivals like the Honda Accord and Toyota Camry. You get all-wheel drive standard across the entire range. 

The Sport and Touring models benefit from a 260-hp turbo 2.4-liter 4-cylinder engine. Similar to the K5, this bump in horsepower is greatly appreciated in all types of driving scenarios, especially when quick passing maneuvers are on the menu.  

Subaru Legacy Highlights 

Standard AWD: Unlike all of its main competitors, the Legacy stands alone in having AWD standard. This is one key reason why this Subaru sedan is popular in places where quick changes in the weather can make roads slick and hazardous. 

Roomy rear seats: Rear passengers enjoy 39.5 inches of legroom when perched in the Legacy’s backseat. This is among the best in its class and about 4 inches more than the rear legroom afforded by the K5. 

Optional turbocharged engine: Many Legacy shoppers will be fine with the price, power, and fuel mileage provided by the standard 182-hp 4-cylinder engine. However, we would suggest at least taking a test drive of the more potent turbo engine used in the Sport and Touring XT. It comes at a premium, but the stronger acceleration it provides makes it a tempting choice, in our opinion. 

Check this week’s Fair Purchase Price or see the Legacy models for sale near you. 


The Kia K5 and Subaru Legacy are eminently practical sedans with nearly identical fuel economy, adult-friendly cabins, reasonably large trunks, and a solid roster of driver aids like lane-keep assist and automatic high-beam headlights. All-wheel drive is a common link, too, even if it’s ubiquitous on the Legacy. Each also has a wild side courtesy of an optional turbocharged engine in racier upper trims.


The K5 and Legacy are very evenly matched in several ways. They both come with a wide range of comfort and convenience features, including available wireless Apple CarPlay and Android Auto, navigation, heated seats, and larger available infotainment touchscreens. 

We love some of the perks provided by the Legacy, such as standard AWD and more rear legroom. Yet the K5 impresses with its more refined base engine and sharper design inside and out. Helping to seal the deal is a class-leading warranty that includes powertrain coverage of 10 years/100,000 miles, whichever comes first.   

  2024 Kia K5  2024 Subaru Legacy
Starting Price  $26,745 $26,015
Popular Powertrains      
Engine  Turbo 1.6-liter 4-cylinder 2.5-liter 4-cylinder
Horsepower  180 hp @ 5,500 rpm 182 hp @ 5,800 rpm
Torque  195 lb-ft  @ 1,500 rpm 176 lb-ft @ 4,400 rpm
Transmission  8-speed automatic   CVT 
Fuel economy 27 mpg city/37 mpg highway/31 mpg  combined 27 mpg city/35 mpg highway/30 mpg combined 
Also Available  Turbo 2.5-liter 4-cylinder, AWD Turbo 2.4-liter 4-cylinder
Basic Warranty  5 years/60,000 miles  3 years/36,000 miles 
Powertrain Warranty  10 years/100,000 miles  5 years/60,000 miles 
NHTSA Overall Safety  5 stars  5 stars
Max Seating Capacity 
Wheelbase  112.2inches  108.3 inches 
Overall Length  193.1 inches  191.1 inches 
Width  73.2 inches  72.4 inches 
Height  56.9 inches  59.1 inches 
Turning Diameter  36.0 feet  36.8 feet 
Headroom, Front  40.2 inches 39.4 inches 
Headroom, 2nd Row  37.8 inches  37.2 inches 
Legroom, Front  46.1 inches  42.8 inches 
Legroom, 2nd Row  35.2 inches  39.5 inches
Shoulder Room, Front  58.0 inches  58.1 inches 
Shoulder Room, 2nd Row  56.1 inches 57.4 inches
Cargo Volume  16.0 cubic feet   15.1 cubic feet 

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