Review Of Kia Optima 2016 - Kia has done an amazing job of making a name for itself in almost every segment in the UK – there’s the likes of the Picanto city car, the Rio supermini, the cee’d hatchback and of course the Sportage crossover. But what about this, the Kia Optima saloon, well drove one, and apart from that it has flown very much under the radar, but Kia hopes that will change with a new fourth-generation Kia Optima for 2016, which is longer, wider and has a new grille. The question is, can Kia replicate its rapidly improving formula with its saloon? Well it’s going to have to if it wants to compete with the likes of the Ford Mondeo and Skoda Superb. Well, first things first, the Optima definitely feels like an upmarket saloon inside, with this smart-looking fascia spliced into distinctive, easy to digest sections. The leading feature though is this touchscreen system, which comes in 7-inch as well as a new 8-inch size – and as with many other Kias, this system is snappy and incredibly responsive. Standard kit is impressive across the range with reversing sensors and camera, sat-nav and dual automatic air-con all thrown in – you’ve also got business driver favourites like cruise control and Bluetooth. On the quality front the Optima is well screwed together, has a comfortable driving position with plenty of seating adjustment and the materials used all-around are nice to the touch and look the part as well.
Practicality in the rear is one of the Optima’s trump cards as there is loads of leg room and plenty of head room – reminds me a lot of the Superb actually. There’s also a convenient arm rest with cup holders in the middle. Boot practicality is a bit different though. Now usually you fold the seats down manually with a lever or pull a handle in the boot and they fall down. The Optima however requires both, which okay is only a small thing, but you do notice it. And although boot space stands at over 500 litres, the actual boot opening is quite narrow. The first thing I look for when driving a Kia is steering feel – because it used to be the case that this was underwhelming and let its cars down a bit. Thankfully though Kia has improved its steering across its range. The Kia Optima’s steering doesn’t feel quite as natural as the new Sportage, but its speed-sensitive power steering responds fairly well and weights up when you pick-up speed and head into a corner, although it is a little too light when plodding around the city. A 1.7-litre 139bhp diesel is the sole engine option which delivers a fairly nippy zero to 60 sprint time of 9.7 seconds and has 340Nm of torque on tap for swift motorway overtaking. As part of its new-generation comes a huge improvement in CO2 emissions, which now stands at 110g/km for this six-speed manual and 116g for the seven-speed twin-clutch. And fuel economy is quoted at an average of 67.3mpg – expect around 50mpg in day-to-day driving though. From a composure point of view, Kia has actually retuned the chassis in order to improve handling and ride quality.
Now, the Optima is comfy enough, even over pot holes in fact, but in terms of offering the fun-factor, you’ll want to look elsewhere. Now this bit may shock you. Price wise the Optima is more expensive than the Vauxhall Insignia, Skoda Superb, Hyundai i40 and Ford Mondeo, starting from £21,895. But let’s not get too carried away, Kia are well known for its well-equipped interiors and the quality of kit you get in the standard Optima could cost you a few hundred or even a few thousand pound more in one of its competitors. Plus the Optima looks totally unique to anything on the market and it comes with a seven-year warranty. In terms of offering a comfy, gadget-packed saloon cruiser, you couldn’t really ask for much more, okay a fun drive would be nice, but hopefully that will come with time. And there’s actually an estate and hybrid version of the Optima on its way too, so you might want to keep your eyes peeled for that. Thanks for visit Review Of Kia Optima 2016.