Highlight: The Optima is being built in West Point, Georgia.
Test Vehicles MSRP: $32,915 (Base Model: $23,915)
Seating Capacity: 5
Standard Safety Features: ABS; airbags; a hill start control system; a tire mobility kit; a rearview camera; a blind spot collision warning system; a rear cross traffic collision warning system; a forward collision warning system; a forward collision avoidance assist system; a lane change assist system; a lane keep assist system; and a lane departure warning system
Standard Equipment (Base LX Model): 16-inch tires; a 6-speed automatic transmission system; a manual operated tilt and telescopic steering wheel; cloth seats; a power driver’s seat; a rear center armrest with cupholders; a/c; an- 8-inch infotainment screen; and driving modes: comfort, economy and sport
Standard Equipment (SX Model): 18-inch tires; a 2.0-liter engine; 245-horsepower; a sport tuned suspension system; steering wheel mounted paddle shifters; a temporary spare tire; a panoramic sunroof with sunshade; a rear spoiler; leather seats with red stitching; power front seats; memory setting; ventilated front seats; a dual zone automatic climate control system; a smart trunk power operated release; a radar-activated cruise control system; a push button ignition system; a leather wrapped steering wheel; heated front seats; a heated steering wheel; SiriusXM; a 10-speaker Harman/Kardon audio system; and a navigation system
Standard Audio On Test Vehicle: a 4-speaker AM/FM
AppleCar Play/Android: Yes
Bluetooth Connectivity: Yes
USB Connectivity: Yes
Bumper-to-Bumper Warranty: 5 years or 60,000 miles
Powertrain Warranty: 10 years or 100,000 miles
Standard Engine/Horsepower: 2.4-liter, 4-cylinder turbo/185-hp
Recommended Fuel: Regular
Standard Fuel Mileage:
What’s New: The brand’s family sedan has been refreshed for the 2019 model year. The big news is that the product planning team at Kia has made an array of driver safety advancement systems standard on the Optima. The safety aids range from a blind spot collision warning system to a lane departure warning system.
Why: With the slightly refreshed Optima and consumers shift toward trucks, crossovers and SUVs, Kia has managed to make this a great value package.
The seemingly well-built contemporary styled Optima, with its muscular side profiles, is available in four trims. A variety of powertrains are available. One can even opt for a hybrid or a hybrid plug-in.
We spent time behind the wheel of the top of the line SX trim. When compared to its competitors, it was definitely a best buy package. While there was no 6-cylinder engine to be found in the vehicle, we did find the four-cylinder to be more than adequate, pushing out 245-horsepower.
Inside the vehicle, Kia has revised its UVO telematics system. The system is now compatible with both Apple and android smartphones.
The SX trim also adds some lively colors to the interior. The higher end trim now includes dual coordinated, European designed red trimmed leather seats, a panoramic roof, heated and ventilated front seats, a navigation system, a premium 10-speaker audio system and sporty 18-inch wheels. All of these features were standard, at price point of $33,000.
Kia’s pricing team does give buyers the option to trim out the vehicle with Nappa quilted leather, a 360-degree surround camera, chrome accented wheels, folding power mirrors, and rear side-window sunshades. However, unless it’s a must have feature, tacking on these luxury-like features drive the price up an extra $4,000.
Cost conscious buyers seeking a stylish, well-equipped vehicle should ride with the SX package.
Moreover, for 2019, Kia has made a number of safety driving aid features standard across all Optima trims. Consumers can expect everything from a forward collision braking system to a lane keep assist system, which should aid in the reduction of an accident (or a major accident).
Overall the Optima features and functions are easy to use and does not require hours of one’s time to master the vehicle.
But: There are a few competitors offering 6-cylinder powertains and all-wheel drive configurations.
Verdict: While the vehicle shares a platform with its sibling the Hyundai Sonata, the Optima is the most stylish of the two. The Optima continues to be a great value package. The family sedan is available in a variety of powertrains, offers great gas mileage, all of the latest safety driving aids and a few near luxury features, too.
Competition: Chevy Malibu; Ford Fusion; Honda Accord; Hyundai Sonata; Mazdza6; Nissan Altima and Toyota Camry
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