Kia Optima saloon (2016-2019) - Interior & comfort
The Kia Optima is a spacious and comfortable car
The Kia Optima is a big step up for Kia, as the company has worked hard to make the car as quiet as possible, fitting plenty of sound-deadening material to ensure that wind and road noise disturb you as little as possible. The diesel engine is quiet enough once it’s settled down on a motorway cruise and the Optima is a pleasant place to spend time in on longer journeys.
Kia Optima dashboard
The Kia Optima has a well built dashboard with plenty of soft-touch plastics, even if the overall design is less appealing than the Volkswagen Passat’s. Everything is laid out sensibly and works intuitively, though, and it’s a big step up from the previous Optima.
Whichever of the four models you choose, equipment is generous. All cars come with alloy wheels, sat nav, air-conditioning, DAB radio, Bluetooth connectivity, a reversing camera and all-round electric windows.
Upgrading to the Optima 3 costs about £2,000 and brings a larger eight-inch touchscreen, xenon headlights, bigger alloy wheels, lane keeping assistance and an upgraded Harman Kardon 10-speaker stereo system.
The top-spec GT-Line S trim costs about £8,000 more than the Optima 2. It includes keyless entry and go, a panoramic sunroof, auto-dipping headlights and a wireless phone charger. The Optima GT-Line S also comes with a host of additional safety equipment including blind spot assistance, autonomous emergency braking and a 360-degree parking camera. A six-speed manual gearbox is standard, with a seven-speed automatic optional on higher-spec cars.
The hybrid model gets its own trim level, which leaves you wanting for very little indeed. Highlights include part-cloth, part (faux) leather seats, Apple CarPlay and Android Auto smartphone interfaces, cruise control, sat nav, a bird’s-eye parking camera, 17-inch alloy wheels and a series of aerodynamic and aesthetic tweaks.
When the Optima GT becomes available, this is likely to feature a similar set of aesthetic tweaks to the Optima SW GT. Subtly redesigned bumpers, twin exhaust pipes and more supportive seats mark the SW GT out as a performance model, but it remains based on the GT-Line S specification, so the overall effect is subtle rather than ostentatious.