Kia Optima History
Kia Optima History
The Kia Optima was first released in the year 2000, only to a lukewarm response from the masses. Over the years, the model launched with several restyles and interesting features, which made this mid-size sedan incredibly popular.
Early Days (2000-2005)
The first generation of the Kia Optima saw minor alterations limited to the wheels and engine. The first generation was suited for urban driving and close commutes but lacked some of the more important safety features. The 2002 iteration featured keyless entry and a V6 engine that gave 178 horsepower. Over the next few years, the body style was redesigned, and the wheel size increased to 16 inches. The turning signal lenses were also updated.
Second Generation (2006-2010)
The second generation of Kia Optima saw more technology-oriented modifications. Antilock brakes and stability control were introduced as standard. The interiors were also revamped to complement the updated body style that came out in 2007. The Optima was released in three trim levels: base, EX, and SX. All the trims were equipped with a standard 2.4L 4-cylinder engine that gave 175 horsepower. The EX and SX could be updated to a 2.7L V6 that churned 194 horsepower. The automatic LX was later introduced with air-conditioning, power accessories, front and side seat airbags, and full-length side curtain airbags.
Third Generation (2011-2015)
The 2011 model of the Kia Optima saw significant upgrades, which gained the Optima significant prevalence amongst the public. The third generation witnessed the introduction of remote start technology, which became a standard on all the trims. The exteriors were completely renewed with stylish new accents. The car was launched after the recession, which made it a solid mid-range investment for families. A technology update saw the addition of the UVO voice command system, a new touchscreen, rear parking sensors, and a blind spot monitoring system. The front seats were also redesigned to provide more comfort and ease-of-use. With regards to the trim levels, the EX Turbo was discontinued to make way for the SX limited trim option.
Fourth Generation (2016)
The fourth generation Kia Optima was introduced with additional headroom and legroom, making it more spacious without being bulky. The car was introduced with five trim options, with three engine choices and different powertrains to choose from.