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Best Bets get above-average mpg, class-average or better reliability, class-average or better crash-test ratings, and our recommendation.
By Cars.com Staff
October 14, 2009
Vehicle Overview 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.
Exterior 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
Interior 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 Safety features include:
Active head restraints
Side curtain airbags for both rows
Standard antilock brakes
Standard electronic stability system
Standard traction control
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