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.
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.
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.
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.
All Trim Levels: 24 mpg city/34 mpg highway
- Updated styling
- Robust engines
- Sporty SX trim level
- Luxury interior
- Lack of manual transmission on SX trim level
Steps up to more luxury and a bigger, bolder presence
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- Honda Accord
- Toyota Camry
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