NEW YORK, March 30 — Considering how the Optima is the car that really kick-started the almost complete reinvention of the Kia brand in 2011 with the launch of its third generation, the unveiling of a refreshed version of the fourth-generation model at the New York Auto Show has gone a little under the radar.
It could be because the headlines were dominated by the all-new second-generation Kia K900 luxury sedan that was also unveiled at the show, but the Optima is the one that's going to put more on the South Korean automaker's bottom line.
Kia's best-selling midsize sedan was unveiled to reveal new design cues both inside and out, expanded ADAS technology, a new UVO infotainment strategy, and some available red and black two-tone sport leather-trimmed seats with a distinct European design influence.
Further enhancements that will soon be available for the Optima include some optional new alloy wheel designs, ambient LED interior lighting, and a Passion Red exterior color that's new to the car.
Orth Hedrick, the vice president of product planning at Kia Motors America (KMA) says of the refreshed Optima: "The Optima continues to be one of our best-sellers for good reason; its stand-out design sets it apart from other cars in the midsize segment.
“The 2019 refresh sharpens the overall design inside and out and we are making a number of ADAS technologies standard across the entire Optima line, which underlies the tremendous value Optima offers.
“A new approach to our award-winning telematics system, UVO, will make it easier for buyers to understand its features and UVO link includes an embedded modem. The new two-tone sport seats are for those looking to differentiate their Optima with unique European-inspired design cues.”
As well as the refreshed Optima on display at the show, Kia was also showcasing a refreshed version of the Sedona for the 2019 model year. The enhancements to the Kia minivan were facelifts for the exterior and the interior as well as an updated infotainment system and more advanced safety features.
The K900 was the only all-new model on the Kia stand, and the only thing that seems to have carried over from the first-generation of the luxury sedan is the name.
Whether this new model will win more buyers over from the likes of Lexus, Mercedes, Audi and BMW than its predecessor remains to be seen, but in the meantime the Optima will probably continue to sell in good numbers. — AFP-Relaxnews