• (4.8) 24 reviews
  • Inventory Prices: $2,676–$10,244
  • Body Style: Sedan
  • Combined MPG: 24-27
  • Engine: 175-hp, 2.4-liter I-4 (regular gas)
  • Drivetrain: Front-wheel Drive
  • Transmission: 5-speed automatic w/OD and auto-manual
2009 Kia Optima

Our Take on the Latest Model 2009 Kia Optima

What We Don't Like

  • Not as much V-6 power as many competitors
  • Derivative styling
  • ABS not standard

Notable Features

  • Freshened for 2009
  • New sport-tuned SX trim
  • Four-cylinder or V-6
  • Manual or automatic
  • Available navigation system

2009 Kia Optima Reviews

Vehicle Overview
Kia says the update of its 2009 Optima was an effort to spice up the car's styling. To that end, the midsize sedan's face has been thoroughly freshened, though its tail remains much the same. Revised engines add some power, but it remains to be seen whether these changes will help the Optima go head-to-head with a Toyota Camry or Honda Accord.

The Optima hits dealerships in late 2008; trim levels include the base LX, uplevel EX and sporty SX. A four-cylinder engine is standard, while a V-6 is optional.

The Optima's new face seems derivative of a lot of other cars — the headlights look like a Toyota Camry's, while the interplay between the grille and lights recalls a similar pattern on the new Honda Accord.

Overall length is up a couple inches over last year's model, and most of it has been added to the car's front overhang. Sixteen-inch steel wheels come on the four-cylinder Optima LX, while other trims have 16-inch alloys. The Optima SX has 17-inchers, along with a sport-tuned suspension, darker headlights, and turn signals integrated into the side mirrors.

Kia didn't alter the Optima's interior as much as it did the exterior; the most notable change is probably the gauges, now 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 for the first time.

The Optima LX comes with cloth seats, while the EX steps up to leather. SX trims have electroluminescent gauges, custom leather seats and metallic trim.

Under the Hood
Both the Optima's engines have been upgraded, and Kia says gas mileage stays about the same. The 2.4-liter four-cylinder makes 175 horsepower, up from 162 hp last year; the 2.7-liter V-6 is up to 190 hp from 185 hp last year. A five-speed manual transmission is standard with the four-cylinder, while a five-speed automatic is optional. The V-6 gets only the automatic.

Active head restraints, side-impact airbags for the front seats and side curtain airbags for both rows are standard. Unfortunately, antilock brakes, an electronic stability system and traction control are grouped together in an option package; the Accord and Sonata include those features standard.

Consumer Reviews


Average based on 24 reviews

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Ride away today

by Best leasing in kcmo from Kcmo on September 18, 2017

Very great car no problems at all I love their customer service as well. Best car company in the US.

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5 Trims Available

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Wondering which configuration is right for you?
Our 2009 Kia Optima trim comparison will help you decide.

Kia Optima Articles

2009 Kia Optima Safety Ratings

Crash-Test Reports


There are currently 2 recalls for this car.

Safety defects and recalls are relatively common. Stay informed and know what to do ahead of time.

Safety defects and recalls explained

Service & Repair

Estimated Service & Repair cost: $4,100 per year.

Save on maintenance costs and do your own repairs.

Warranty Coverage





Roadside Assistance Coverage


What you should get in your warranty can be confusing. Make sure you are informed.

Learn More About Warranties

Warranties Explained


Often called a basic warranty or new-vehicle warranty, a bumper-to-bumper policy covers components like air conditioning, audio systems, vehicle sensors, fuel systems and major electrical components. Most policies exclude regular maintenance like fluid top offs and oil changes, but a few brands have separate free-maintenance provisions, and those that do offer them is slowly rising. Bumper-to-bumper warranties typically expire faster than powertrain warranties.


Don't be misled a 10-year or 100,000-mile powertrain warranty doesn't promise a decade of free repairs for your car. It typically covers just the engine and transmission, along with any other moving parts that lead to the wheels, like the driveshaft and constant velocity joints. Some automakers also bundle seat belts and airbags into their powertrain warranties. With a few exceptions, powertrain warranties don't cover regular maintenance like engine tuneups and tire rotations.

Roadside Assistance

Some automakers include roadside assistance with their bumper-to-bumper or powertrain warranties, while others have separate policies. These programs cover anything from flat-tire changes and locksmith services to jump-starts and towing. Few reimburse incidental costs like motel rooms (if you have to wait for repairs).

Free Scheduled Maintenance

Some automakers include free scheduled maintenance for items such as oil changes, air filters and tire rotations. Some include consumables including brake pads and windshield wipers; others do not. They are typically for the first couple of years of ownership of a new car.

Other Years