2011 Kia Optima EX (853)


This week we’re looking at the 2011 Korean made Kia Optima EX, and with only minor differences the computer has done a great job of cloning our car market. And although they do all look similar, there are subtle differences that give some a more pleasing look. This Kia has some quality of style that elicited some thumbs up on the freeway and observers in parking areas. The range of ages were varied as well. I was pleased that others felt the same way I do.

I continue to be impressed with cars from Korea, and as an aside, back in the 1960’s our family took a chance on a car from a new car maker from Japan. Datsun was the brand and buying a Japanese car turned out to be a good decision and we never regretted it. I believe that to be the case with the newest of car makers to evolve, and in this case it is from South Korea.

If you use cruise control you know how irritating it is to be following a driver who slows and speeds up and slows again as he goes in and out of consciousness. Reminds me of a nursing baby who needs to be nudged to stay awake long enough to feed.
But it will be you who gets the ticket for passing those inconsiderate drivers. It reminds me of being a kid and playing cowboys and Indians or cops and robbers (in today’s world the latter two are the same), because you can bet when you pass that sleepy driver you will surely be the one who gets the $200 to $1,000 ticket. Obscene is what that kind of taxation has turned into. My constant reminder is to tell you to slow down and avoid them. When they can’t write tickets they will be forced into real jobs when the government can no longer afford to pay them.
Handling & Performance:
Good power but when you put the pedal to the metal it sounds like it is straining more than it should. The ride is comfortable and general handling is stable and solid. Of course all the advanced control features make that possible. Thus cars can have softer rides and still be in control.


Lots of thumbs up from the lookers. It is a very nice classy looking car. It is roomy inside and has a nice size trunk.

Fit and Finish:
Quite good in class.


Very competitive in this midsize segment of the market.

Conveniences and comfort:
Cool cooling glove box, and the seats heat and cool as well. For 200 horsepower this is a very energetic quick car, but the gas pedal is annoyingly touchy.

Consumer Recommendation:

The thumbs up speaks volumes of how this Kia looks and coming from young and older alike it will stay in favor.

Let’s face it, Korean cars are gaining favor much faster than other countries brands and thus it helps to remove the ‘fear’ of buying from newer entrants into the car market. This is a MUST drive inclusion in your search. I think you’ll be impressed overall. Cars like this have helped to launch South Korea into the 21st Century and out of the category of a third world country. North Korea is another story all together.

Recognized Competition:

Kia Optima $18-24,000, Buick LaCrosse $25-31,000, Chevrolet Impala $23-28,000, Chevrolet Malibu $20-25,000, Chrysler 200 $19,000, Chrysler Sebring $20,000, Dodge Avenger $20,000, Ford Fusion $18-26,000, Ford Taurus $23-34,000, Honda Accord $19-28,000, Honda Accord Crosstour $30,000, Hyundai Sonata $18-25,000, Mazda6 $20,000, Mercury Milan $22,000, Mitsubishi Galant $20-23,000, Nissan Altima $19-27,000, Pontiac G6 $19,000, Saturn Aura $23,000, Subaru Legacy $18-28,000, Suzuki Kizashi $19,000, Toyota Camry $18-26,000, Volkswagen GLI $25,000, Volkswagen Jetta $14-24,000, Volvo S40 $28,000.

Good News:

Great pricing segment of the midsize market and Kia is a player with features found on more expensive cars.

Bad News:

Sensitive accelerator pedal,
Standard Equipment:

2.4 liter 4-cylinder 200 horsepower engine, 6-speed auto trans with front wheel drive, power steering, 17” alloy wheels, front, side and side curtain airbags, LATCH child seat system, anti lock brake system, traction and stability controls, hill start and down hill brake assist control, tire pressure monitor, climate control, audio with CD/MP3 and 6 speakers, satellite radio, USB & Auxiliary outlets/ input, Bluetooth, leather seating & steering wheel, power driver seat, power windows & locks, power heated mirrors with turn signal indicators, fog lights, solar glass, push button start with smart key, cruise control, cooling glove box.

Gas Stats:

$3.41/ Gal avg. Feb. 15, 2011
for more information.

24 City and 34 Highway MPG


MSRP $22,495.

Your comments are welcomed. My e-mail is joe@autolove.com
Copyright © 2011 – An Automotive Love Affair



Your comments are welcomed. My e-mail is joe@autolove.com
Copyright © 2014 – An Automotive Love Affair.

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