The Optima didn't receive much praise when Kia launched the midsize sedan in 2000. Built as a cheap alternative to Japanese imports, it wasn't refined or reliable, and it didn't hold its value well.
In the past few years, however, Kia has made astonishing strides with sharp design, increased reliability and high-quality materials. Now in its third generation, the Optima has become a viable alternative to Japanese heavyweights like the Toyota Camry and Honda Accord. The Kia Optima has earned a spot on any family's shopping list.