Thanks for all the comments and the input I've got - I am thinking a lot about the features of the K-r at the moment, but was really angry about the front focus problem - up to the point to send it back.
I cooled down a bit, working with focus correction at the moment. I still get front focus, but can use at least some of my lenses to some extend. Already contacted the support and will send in the camera to fix that in the new year - the staff people are on vacation anyway at the moment
For the moment I just want to pick up two topics from your comments: price and low light performance.
#1 - price
A reminder at first: I don't take the lenses into account in my posting, just the camera and maybe a kit lens. Things change completely if you take your lens collection into account. That being said:
Compared to other brands I think, that the K-r is "affordable" in the means, that it isn't over-priced. Good bang-for-the-buck value to say so, although still expensive. Street prices are around 750 EUR in Germany, I ordered mine from an internet seller and with cashback it's roughly 500 EUR for the kit (incl. 18-55 plastic mount kit lens) plus shipping. That's without the battery cage, which is a must imho - we talk about 50 EUR including shipping here. For around 600 EUR (maybe a tad less) you can get a Nikon D90 + 18-105VR kit ... just to give an example. So the K-r is still on the high end of the price range and I expect the price to drop quite a bit in the next year with all the new camera models in that market area.
The K5 on the other hand is overpriced. 1200+ EUR for the kit from internet vendors!
I can understand Pentax as a company here - they got a great product and use it as a cash machine. It's up to the customer to buy or wait now. For reference: a Nikon D300s body is about 900 EUR, a Canon 50D/60D around 850 EUR.
Good plan, wait for a price drop if you don't need the K5 right now, 1000 USD are around 760 EUR, something in that price range would be "well within the crowd".
#2 - low light performance
Aye - the stable WB is one of the key points of success here. Very impressive, indeed. I attached another image - JPEG straight from the camera, a lil' noise reduction, resizing for forum use, no sharpening. This was done using Auto WB. Can you image? This is INSIDE with all kind of artifical light (light bulbs, candle lights) and it looks like this? ISO3200 is what the camera choosed here btw. My *istDL2 wouldn't be able to come even "near" that.
Depending on situation you get more or less grain, but especially up to ISO6400 I am very pleased with the results.
Thanks for the info regarding the K7. I struggled with the decision to buy the K7 (battery grip, weather sealing, bigger body, 2nd display...) instead of the K-r, but for my style of photography a solid high ISO performance is kind of a killer argument. And since a good wide angle lens is high on my list, too - I finally decided that K-r + wide angle lens is way better for me and my bank account than the K5 + kit lens.