PARIS 2010: Kia Optima makes European debut
The model is expected to significantly grow the company’s market share in the D-segment thanks to its stand-out looks, low CO2 emission levels, high performance and high-tech premium options.
Kia is keen to stress that the Optima is an all-new car from the ground up, and that it's longer, lower, wider and with a longer wheelbase than any previous D-segment offering from Kia.
Although the model has already been launched in Korea, Kia has said that the Optima’s specification over here will be tailored to European tastes, with buyers offered a choice of either petrol or diesel engines.
The engine line-up will comprise either a new 1.7-litre VGT diesel engine which produces 136PS and is said to offer best-in-class emissions (113g/km when fitted with Kia’s ISG Start/Stop system) or an all-new 2.0-litre CVVL (continuously variable valve lift) petrol engine producing 170PS. In all markets, the all-new Kia Optima will be offered with either a six-speed manual or six-speed automatic transmission. The new model is also said to offer a dynamic and responsive driving experience, combined with a high standard specification and a range of optional high-tech features usually associated with premium brand vehicles.
Benny Oeyen, vice president marketing, Kia Motors Europe, said: 'In spite of the ongoing global economic uncertainties, Kia’s market research indicates that demand for D-segment saloons in many countries will grow steadily over the next three years. We anticipate segment sales rising by 23% from 4.3 million last year to 5.3 million in 2013. While we expect the segment to shrink in Western Europe, Kia wants to gain a bigger share of this sector.
As with all Kia models sold in Europe, the Optima will be offered with the manufacturer’s 7-Year / 100,000 mile warranty, which is fully transferable to subsequent owners.