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2014 Kia Optima Preview

Pros: For value-oriented buyers, the Optima is the handsome choice. And with a variety of trims, consumers can find a blend of economy, luxury, and sportiness not found in other mid-size sedans.

Cons: The Optima, even with its top-trim turbo powerplant, is only available with an automatic transmission. Also, the suspension is a bit on the firm side and there’s no all-wheel drive option.

Kia Optima
Photo: Kia

2014 Kia Optima Pricing: The Optima starts at $24,695 for the well-equipped LX model. EX models add leather/leatherette trim pieces, UVO infotainment, power folding mirrors, and many other options for $27,395. Navigation, blind spot detection, and parking sensors come standard on the EX Luxury model for $32,995. SX models go sporty with larger wheels, larger front brakes, sport-tuned suspension, and sport seats for $33,095. Top-trim SX Turbo models receive Kia’s 2.0-litre turbocharged GDI engine and integrated driving mode system for $34,795. All are equipped with a six-speed automatic.

2014 Kia Optima Economy: Equipped with a new, more powerful 2.4-litre four-cylinder engine, the Optima is rated at 8.9/5.7L (city/highway) per 100 km. Turbo 2.0-litre models are rated at 10.3 /6.4L per 100 km.

Improvements and Changes: The Optima receives revised engines and a host of other changes for 2014. Spare tires are chucked for tire mobility kits on most trims. EX models receive power folding mirrors and LED daytime running lights. EX Luxury models feature new safety equipment (blind spot detection and rear parking sensors). The panoramic sunroof has been deleted from Optima SX models, however they do get larger front brakes and LED fog lights. Top-trim SX Turbo models get a flat-bottom steering wheel, an integrated driving mode system, and a temporary spare tire.

Don’t Miss: The Optima has a firm ride, even firmer in SX models. Give the different trims a test drive to see if you can live with the firmer ride if you want the sportier options. Also, if you want paddle shifters, say goodbye to your heated steering wheel.

2014 Kia Optima Powertrain: The Optima’s engines have been updated for 2014. A 2.4-litre four-cylinder is the base engine, producing 192 hp and 181 lb-ft of torque. SX Turbo models are equipped with a 2.0-litre turbocharged engine with 274 hp and 269 lb-ft of torque. Only a six-speed automatic is available, but some trims come with paddle shifters.

Safety: The Kia Optima comes standard with six airbags (front, front seat-mounted side, and side curtain). Vehicle Stability Management, Electronic Stability Control and Traction Control systems come standard on all trims as well.

Comparables: The Kia Optima competes with the Chrysler 200, Dodge Avenger, Ford Fusion, Chevrolet Malibu, Honda Accord, Hyundai Sonata, Mazda6, Nissan Altima, Subaru Legacy, Toyota Camry, and Volkswagen Passat.