Kia's midsize sedan, built from the same design as the Hyundai Sonata, is a lower-priced, lesser-equipped alternative to its Korean cousin and mainstays such as the Toyota Camry and Honda Accord. A four-cylinder engine is standard, while a V-6 is optional.
New for 2010
Push-button start with a smart key is now standard on the sporty SX, V-6 models have a new blacked-out lower rear bumpers and an overhead interior light is standard on all trim levels.
Optima received a new face last year that seems derivative of a lot of cars — the headlights look like a Camry's, while the interplay between the grille and lights recalls a similar pattern on the Accord.
- Sixteen-inch steel wheels come standard
- Optional 16-inch alloy wheels or 17-inchers
- Optional sport-tuned suspension, darker headlights, and turn signals integrated into the side mirrors
Optima's gauges are framed inside three binnacles instead of a one-piece display. The stereo has an auxiliary jack for MP3 players, and a navigation system is optional.
- Standard cloth seats
- Optional leather seats
- Optional push-button start
- Custom leather seats and trim for SX models
Under the Hood
Both the Optima's engines were upgraded last year. The 2.4-liter four-cylinder makes 175 horsepower (13 more than previously), and the 2.7-liter V-6 makes 194 hp (a gain of nine).
- Standard five-speed manual transmission
- Optional five-speed automatic transmission
Safety features include:
- Active head restraints
- Side-impact airbags
- Side curtain airbags for both rows
- Standard antilock brakes
- Standard electronic stability system
- Standard traction control
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