Kia’s long awaited family-size Optima saloon will arrive here next week. The sister model of the Hyundai i40, the Optima has won numerous design awards worldwide.
It is longer, wider and with an extended wheelbase compared to previous D-segment unremarkable offerings from Kia. But the lower sitting Optima is an all-new car from the ground up, a new saloon that embodies what Kia’s chief design officer, Peter Schreyer, calls “a bold, athletic and visual sporting energy”.
The entry level EX model has a price tag of €26,995 ex-works, and is powered by a 1.7 litre diesel engine, and emits CO2 of 133 g/km. It slots into Band B for road tax.
Kia bullishly tells us that the product concept behind the creation of this newcomer focuses on four key areas. The first is stand out styling, with a unique exterior with a driver-orientated interior. The second is claimed class leading performance delivered by a powerful and efficient engine with six-speed transmissions. The third is what they describe as superior styling built on a new, longer wheelbase platform. And finally, advanced features as well as high-tech premium options.
“Having being largely absent in recent years from this important segment of the market, we are delighted to be back with this very attractive saloon,” Kia Motors Ireland MD, James Brooks told the Advertiser. “We realise that this is an extremely competitive sector, but we are confident that given the dynamic design and engineering of this model that Optima will soon emulate the success we have enjoyed in the A,B,C, and Cross-over segments with our Picanto, Rio, cee’d and Sportage models.”
In Ireland the Optima will be offered in two trim levels, both powered by a 134 bhp 1.7D engine. The aforementioned entry level EX comes with a generous level of specification that includes 16-inch alloy wheels, cruise control, voice activated Bluetooth, power lumbar support on the driver’s seat, steering wheel audio controls, electric folding wing mirrors, a cooled glove box, LED daytime running and cornering lights, and full size spare wheel.
The second level Platinum model at €28,995 comes with a luxurious spec that includes all from the EX but has 17-inch alloys, dual automatic air conditioning, panoramic sunroof, leather upholstery with heated front seats, reversing camera and sensors, driver memory seat, UV reducing glass, rain sensing front wipers, LED rear lights, and an automatic dimming rear view mirror. The Platinum model is also available in Automatic at €32,695 or with 18-inch alloy wheels at €29,495.
Both trims come with a good level of passive and active safety equipment. The new Optima features an all-new body shell incorporating a large percentage of ultra high-tensile steel and advanced structural engineering techniques that enabled it to achieve a five star safety rating in Euro NCAP crash tests. And all Optima models have four-wheel disc braking system supported by ABS, ESC (electronic stability control ) and VSM (vehicle stability management ) systems as standard. It also has hill start assist control system (HAC ) as standard.
To alert other motorists to emergency braking manoeuvres ESS (emergency stop system ) is also fitted and all Optima models are fitted with front, side and curtain airbags, plus front seat ‘active’ head restraints to minimize whiplash injuries.
As with all Kia cars sold in Europe, the Optima comes with a manufacturer’s seven-year / 150,000 km warranty, which is fully transferrable to subsequent owners.
Check out the new stylish Optima family-size car at a Kia dealer from next week. You will be pleasantly surprised.