The Kia Optima Hybrid is nearly the same price as the Hyundai Sonata Hybrid and offers almost exactly the same fuel efficiency. Both are good choices, but the Kia appears to edge out the Sonata on several fronts. An Optima Hybrid review in The Wall Street Journal declares this car the best sub-$35,000 sedan for commuters. The reviewer also calls the Optima Hybrid the best-looking car in its class and notes the copious legroom. The car's drawbacks, according his review, are its slow acceleration and stiffness when switching between gas and electric power.
An expert at The Car Connection raves about the stylish design in an Optima Hybrid review and considers the car an excellent value. The cabin is quiet, he says, and the car delivers a firm, comfortable ride. The Car Connection reviewer does complain about some juddering when the car flips between gas and electric power, as do the experts at Edmunds. The auto information site notes the Optima's respectable 0-to-60-mph time of 8.4 seconds.
This four-cylinder, front-wheel-drive hybrid has a comfortable amount of room for up to five passengers, at 102.17 cubic feet, but less cargo room than the Toyota Camry and Hyundai Sonata hybrids. With a combined 206 horsepower between the gas engine and electric motor, the Optima is more powerful than many hybrid sedans. Its 35 mpg city/40 mpg highway fuel efficiency lags behind several other hybrids but is still respectable. The Optima Hybrid has plenty of standard features to crow about, including dual climate control, cruise control, remote keyless entry, power locks and windows, and heated power mirrors.
J.D. Power & Associates rates the Kia Optima Hybrid among the best in overall performance and design. The Optima nicely balances performance and fuel efficiency and earns kudos from many corners for its comfort and value.