Following a full redesign in 2016, Kia's mid-size Optima sedan is largely carried over from last year, but sees a few of its features shifted among its trim levels.
The most significant of those changes involves blind spot detection, rear cross traffic alert and rear parking sensors, all of which are now standard in the LX+ trim, having shuffled down from the EX. The entry-level LX loses its heated steering wheel, which is now standard in LX+ and up, and SX and SXL trims gain LED fog lights.
Trim levels total six, including LX, LX+, EX, EX Tech, SX Turbo and SXL Turbo. As the names suggest, the top two are the performers of the lot, using a 2.0L turbocharged four-cylinder engine making 245 hp and 260 lb-ft of torque, while the rest of the range gets a 2.4L four-cylinder good for 185 hp and 178 lb-ft.
Kia Canada has quietly canned an LX Eco trim that used a 1.6L turbo four-cylinder. A hybrid variant remains, and is covered in a separate buyer's guide entry.
Despite a continuing increase in demand for SUVs and crossovers among families, automakers are still putting some effort into mid-size sedans. The Optima may not be as fresh as the redesigned 2018 Honda Accord or Toyota Camry, but it's a good-looking and well-executed car that offers a lot of comfort and refinement and can be optioned with a lot of upscale equipment.
You'll find most of that in the Turbo models, which come standard with navigation, adaptive cruise, quilted Nappa leather seating with front-seat ventilation, 360-degree camera, automatic emergency braking, lane departure warning and automatic high beams.
Other niceties like a hands-free trunk, smartphone integration, seven-inch display audio, heated rear seats and 12-way power driver's seat are all standard in the EX model.
Fuel consumption estimates are 9.3/6.6 L/100 km (city/highway) in the LX model and 9.6/6.8 in the EX, while the turbo-powered SX and SXL are rated at 10.9/7.6 L/100 km.
This vehicle has not yet been reviewed