Ad Radar

2011 Kia Optima

  • 2011 Kia Optima EX Sedan
    • MAX MPG
      34
    • SEATS
      5
    • HP/TORQUE
      274/269
    • ENGINE
      2.0L I4
    • MSRP
      $24,700
  • 2011 Kia Optima LX Sedan
    • MAX MPG
      34
    • SEATS
      5
    • HP/TORQUE
      200/186
    • ENGINE
      2.4L I4
    • MSRP
      $20,700
  • 2011 Kia Optima SX Sedan
    • MAX MPG
      34
    • SEATS
      5
    • HP/TORQUE
      274/269
    • ENGINE
      2.0L I4
    • MSRP
      $26,200
Get A Dealer Quote

Compare Dealer Clearance Prices and SAVE

  • Road Test

  • First Look

  • Review

2011 Kia Optima Review

Steps up to more luxury and a bigger, bolder presence

Reviewed by Automotive on

In a Nutshell
The 2011 Kia Optima is a five-passenger midsize sedan with a reputation for being dependable and offering a long list of features and amenities. Powered by either a 2.4 liter four-cylinder direct-injection engine or a turbocharged 2.0 liter direct-injection four-cylinder 174 horsepower engine, the Kia Optima offers either a six-speed automatic or six-speed manual transmission.

Redesigned for 2011, the Optima became wider, longer, and lower than previous models. Offered in three different trim levels -- the LX base sedan, the trendy EX, and the sporty SX -- the Kia Optima is almost a luxury car and is packed with plenty of high-tech features. With an EPA rating in the 24 mpg city/34 mpg highway range, fuel economy is not a problem. The standard safety package is fairly comprehensive and complete.

New for 2011

The Kia Optima received a dramatic restyling in 2011 to make it more luxurious and up-to-date than its rather dowdy predecessor.

Essentials

Engines: 2.0L I-4, 2.4L I-4
Transmissions: 6-speed manual, 6-speed automatic
Body Style: Sedan
Trims: LX Sedan, SX Sedan, EX Sedan

On the Outside

The 2011 Kia Optima benefits from an all-new exterior that is smooth and sporty, while resting on a three-inch-longer wheelbase.

From the Inside

The Kia Optima hosts plenty of standard features, including a tilt/telescoping steering wheel, a six-way adjustable driver's seat, a AM/FM/CD player with three months of free satellite radio, and an auxiliary jack. Optional are a panoramic sunroof, leather seats, and heated/cooled seats.

Driving Performance

The SX trim, which is the sportiest of the trio, comes with the 274-horsepower, 2.0-liter turbo four cylinder engine and, while some miss having a manual transmission, steering-wheel-mounted paddle shifters are included. The Kia Optima received a new suspension as well, improving ride both on straight highway and on twisty curves.

Safety Equipment

Standard safety features on the Kia Optima include six airbags: dual front, front-seat-mounted side, and full-length side curtains. Also standard are four-wheel ABS, brake assist system, stability control, traction control, hill-assist control, and tire-pressure monitoring.

Gas Mileage

All Trim Levels: 24 mpg city/34 mpg highway

Plusses

  • Updated styling
  • Robust engines
  • Sporty SX trim level
  • Luxury interior

Minuses

  • Lack of manual transmission on SX trim level

Rating

Steps up to more luxury and a bigger, bolder presence

People Who Like the 2011 Kia Optima Also Like

  • Honda Accord
  • Toyota Camry
  • Nissan Altima
  • Ford Fusion
  • Mazda6

See the New 2014 Optima.

Front & Driver Side View
close