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2019 Kia Optima

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$9,979 - $19,999
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2019 LX 4dr Sedan
most popular
Price:   -  From $22,990
2019 S 4dr Sedan Price:   -  From $24,990
2019 EX 4dr Sedan Price:   -  From $26,890
2019 SX Turbo 4dr Sedan Price:   -  From $31,990
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Our expert ratings are based on seven comprehensive criteria: quality, safety, comfort, performance, fuel economy, reliability history and value.

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: Good vehicle. Decent, but not quite the best. Often affordable, but lacking key features found in vehicles of the same class.

: Below average vehicle. Not recommended, and lacking attributes a car buyer would come to expect for the price.

: Poor vehicle. Simply does not deserve to be on the road.

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Ever since Kia rolled out with the fourth-generation Optima for the 2016 model year, the mid-size sedan has further built upon the South Korean brand's transition to building value-packed machine with handsome styling. Changes have been made to give the 2019 Kia Optima a corporate look that's inspired by the Kia Stinger and to make the sedan safer than before with even more high-tech safety features. With even more value than before, the Optima is a stronger contender in the mid-size segment than ever before.

What's New for 2019

Kia has given the Optima a redesign for 2019. The sedan gets an exterior design that's inspired by the sporty Stinger thanks to new front and rear fascias, updated front fog lights, and sportier wheels. In addition to the new exterior look, the Optima benefits from more standard safety features. Blind-spot monitoring, rear parking detection warning, rear cross-traffic alert, lane change assist, lane keeping assist, forward collision warning, automatic emergency braking, lane departure warning, high beam assist, and a driver attention warning system are standard. Changes have also been made to the Optima's UVO infotainment system to make it easier to use.

Kia Optima

Choosing Your Kia Optima

Just like last year, the Optima continues to have three engines to explore. The base motor is a 2.4-liter inline-four that produces 185 horsepower and 178 pound-feet of torque. A six-speed automatic transmission is standard for the base engine. The LX trim continues to be the fuel-efficient choice thanks to its turbocharged 1.6-liter four-cylinder engine that's rated to make 178 hp and 195 lb-ft of torque. The motor is paired with a seven-speed dual-clutch automatic transmission.

The turbocharged 2.0-liter four-cylinder returns and, once again, brings a sporty character to the Optima. It generates 245 hp and 260 lb-ft of torque and is paired to the six-sped automatic gearbox. Front-wheel drive is standard across the lineup. When properly equipped, the Optima is an efficient sedan, capable of getting up to 27 miles per gallon city, 37 mpg highway, and 31 combined, according to the EPA.

The 2019 Kia Optima is offered in four trims:

Kia Optima


The most-affordable Optima LX starts at $23,820 (all prices include the $920 destination fee). The trim comes with 16-inch wheels, LED daytime running lights, automatic headlights, and power-adjustable heated exterior mirrors as standard exterior features. On the inside, the LX features cloth seats, six-way adjustable front seats, air conditioning, an eight-inch touchscreen, Apple CarPlay and Android Auto compatibility, a 3.5-inch LCD display, and a six-speaker audio system are standard.

The LX Premium Package ($2,000) is the only major option for the LX trim. It adds a panoramic sunroof, dual-zone automatic temperature control, 17-inch wheels, UVO link, a 10-way power-adjustable driver's seat, an auto-dimming rearview mirror, LED interior lighting, and a leather-wrapped steering wheel and shift knob.

Kia Optima


The S trim carries a starting price tag of $25,820 and comes with 18-inch wheels, a 10-way power adjustable-driver's seat, sport black cloth seats, fog lights, LED combination lights, smart key with push-button start, and SiriusXM Satellite Radio as standard. The only available package for the S trim is the S Panoramic Sunroof Package ($1,000) that brings a panoramic sunroof and LED interior lighting.

Kia Optima


Moving up to the EX brings the 178-hp turbocharged 1.6-liter four-cylinder engine and the seven-speed automatic transmission. Pricing for the EX starts at $27,720 and adds adaptive cruise control with stop and go, an electronic parking brake, power front windows with one-touch auto up/down, leather seats, and heated front seats.

The EX trim can be fitted with the EX Premium Package ($3,100) that includes a panoramic sunroof, a voice-command navigation system, UVO link, a Harman/Kardon premium surround sound system, 12-way power-adjustable driver's seat, a 10-way power-adjustable front passenger's seat, a memory system for the driver's seat, ventilated front seats, a heated steering wheel, ambient lighting, and LED interior lighting.

Kia Optima


The range-topping SX trim starts at $32,820 and adds some luxury features as standard, including the 2.0-liter turbocharged four-cylinder engine, LED headlights with dynamic bending light, a panoramic sunroof, LED interior lighting, heated and ventilated front seats, and a Harman/Kardon surround sound audio system.

The only available package for the SX trim is the SX Limited Package ($3,800) that adds quilted Nappa leather seats, a surround-view monitor, 18-inch alloy wheels, power-folding exterior mirrors, heated rear seats, rear side-window sunshades, as well as a leatherette instrument panel and door trim.

CarsDirect Tip

With the extra punch from the larger, turbocharged engine, the 2019 Kia Optima SX is the one we enjoyed the most. The SX trim brings nearly premium touches, but comes at a nearly-premium price. For consumers on a budget, the entry-level LX trim is an attractive choice, especially since it comes with all of the latest safety features as standard at an affordable price. The EX trim, though, is the obvious choice if you want a well equipped mid-size sedan with good fuel economy figures.

Get your price on a Kia Optima »

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Automotive Editor
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Expert Review

Expert Rating

Our expert ratings are based on seven comprehensive criteria: quality, safety, comfort, performance, fuel economy, reliability history and value.

You can interpret our ratings in the following way:

: Outstanding vehicle. Only the most exceptional vehicles achieve this rating.

: Very Good vehicle. Very good and close to being the best vehicle in its class.

: Good vehicle. Decent, but not quite the best. Often affordable, but lacking key features found in vehicles of the same class.

: Below average vehicle. Not recommended, and lacking attributes a car buyer would come to expect for the price.

: Poor vehicle. Simply does not deserve to be on the road.

author image
Automotive Editor

With a refresh that includes a sportier, more athletic design and a healthy dose of high-tech safety features, the 2019 Kia Optima continues to be a value-packed choice that offers near-luxury touches. While it may not be as enjoyable to drive as some, the Optima is a strong contender, as it’s capable of wearing multiple hats, ranging from being a fuel-efficient car to a near-luxury rival.

Best Value

Continuing its ethos of being a value-packed option in the mid-size segment, prices for the 2019 Kia Optima start at $23,820 for an entry level LX trim and can reach $37,115 for a SX with Snow White Pearl with Aubergine Nappa leather and the SX Limited Package.

Despite its new athletic design that’s inspired by the Stinger, the trim that sticks out the most to us is the fuel-efficient EX. It’s powered by a turbocharged 1.6-liter four-cylinder engine that makes 178 horsepower and 195 pound-feet of torque. The engine is paired to a bespoke seven-speed dual-clutch transmission. With the powertrain, the EX trim is the most frugal option with an EPA fuel economy rating of 27 miles per gallon in the city, 37 mpg on the highway, and 31 combined.

The EX trim comes with leather-trimmed seats, heated front seats, adaptive cruise control, LED daytime running lights, 17-inch wheels, an eight-inch touchscreen, and dual-zone automatic temperature control as standard.

  • Model: 2019 Kia Optima EX
  • Engine: 1.6-liter turbocharged four-cylinder
  • Output: 178 hp / 195 lb-ft
  • Transmission: Seven-speed dual-clutch automatic
  • Drivetrain:Front-wheel drive
  • MPG: 27 City / 37 Hwy
  • Options: EX Premium Package ($3,100, a panoramic sunroof, UVO link, voice-command navigation, a Harman/Kardon surround sound system, a 12-way power-adjustable driver’s seat, four-way power lumbar support for the driver’s seat, a memory system for the driver’s seat, ventilated front seats, a heated steering wheel, ambient lighting, LED interior lighting)
  • Base Price:$27,720 (including a $920 destination charge)
  • Best Value Price:$30,820


Kia Optima

The Optima may not have the most powerful lineup of engines, but the mid-size sedan impresses with above average handling and a smooth ride. And it’s not like the engines are underpowered either. The base 2.4-liter four-cylinder is paired to a six-speed automatic transmission and is a fine engine, producing 185 hp. While the turbocharged 1.6-liter four-cylinder is geared toward fuel economy, it’s 178 hp is nothing to sneer at. For maximum performance, the SX’s bespoke turbocharged 2.0-liter four-cylinder is the best bet, generating 245 hp. Despite being the most powerful motor in the lineup, the engine doesn’t require a lot of compromise at the pumps, capable of getting up to 21/30/24 mpg (city/highway/combined).

Sure, the Optima has a more aggressive look for 2019, but don’t expect to get into the vehicle and be treated to a sporty ride. The sedan still errs toward being a comfortable daily-driver, which isn’t a bad thing – it’s just that the more athletic exterior design makes you yearn for a sportier ride. Every Optima comes with a drive select mode that lets you choose between Comfort, Eco, or Sport, but that mainly alters the powertrain and steering feel. The ride remains comfortable regardless of what mode you’re in.

Handling is better than the majority of other mid-size sedans, as the Optima, especially in the range-topping SX trim, exhibits minimal body roll and a decent amount of feedback through the steering wheel. The transmissions also help the Optima’s case, as both gearboxes offer quick shifts. Opting for the EX brings the seven-speed dual-clutch automatic, which has some tendencies to hesitate at low speeds.


With new styling that’s inspired by the racy Stinger, the Optima could fool some onlookers into believing it’s a performance vehicle. The sedan has gone from classic and safe to sporty and aggressive, which is something that’s made it even more attractive in our eyes. It’s not a complete overhaul, but new front and rear fascias have added a youthful touch to the Optima. That’s not to say that the sedan has completely ditched its clean, upscale lines from before, though. Think of the refresh as an actor slimming down and getting a nip-and-tuck to play a new role.

The Optima’s cabin remains the same from last year, which is to say high-end and handsome. If you squint hard enough, you might even make the mistake of thinking that you’re in something much more luxurious. Fit and finish is, once again, above average for the segment with upscale materials and little hard plastics. We also got to experience the Optima from the back seats with a full car of adults and were treated to a copious amount of space. While we didn’t have any issues with rear head room, consumers over six feet may have some problems because of the sloping roofline.

The Best and Worst Things

The addition of all of the latest safety features as standard is a major step up for the 2019 Optima, as last year’s model required you to move up to one of the higher trim levels and shell out some more money for an expensive package. That’s not the case for the new Optima. And when you combine that with the sedan’s upscale interior and more athletic look, you have a complete package that makes a strong case for itself in the segment – even with the mass adoption of crossovers and SUVs over sedans.

Our gripes with the Optima boil down to fuel economy and performance. Even opting for the most fuel-efficient EX trim brings fuel economy that’s not on par with some competitors. The 2019 Toyota Camry can get up 29/41/34 mpg, while the 2018 Honda Accord is rated to get up to 30/38/33 mpg. Both are better than the 2019 Optima’s ratings of up to 27/37/31 mpg.

Then there’s the matter of performance. The peppiest Optima has a 245-hp turbocharged 2.0-liter four-cylinder. While that’s enough to get down the road in a hurry, the Accord has an available 252-hp turbocharged 2.0-liter four-cylinder, while Toyota offers the Camry with 301-hp 3.5-liter V6. With the more aggressive look, some more power would be a great addition for the Optima.

Right For? Wrong For?

Kia Optima

Consumers that are looking to get into an affordable sedan with near-luxury touches. Seriously, the Optima is a comfortable, good-looking sedan that’s also not terrible around corners. The fact that it comes with a healthy list of standard features is a generous cherry on top of a generous package.

If performance or fuel economy is high up on your list, other options are better choices.

The Bottom Line

The 2019 Kia Optima remains a strong option in the mid-size segment because it continues to offer excellent bang for your buck. It’s reasonably priced and comes with everything you could ever want in a car. The 2019 model year adds a distinctive design and more standard safety features to the mix, which makes the sedan more attractive than before.

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Specs & Features

Overall Crash Safety Rating
Engine - Cylinders/Horsepower/Torque
2.4L I-4 / 185 HP / 178 ft.lbs.
6-spd Sportmatic w/OD
Drive Type
Fuel Economy - City/Highway/Combined
24 / 33 / 28 Mpg
Passenger Capacity
Bumper to Bumper Warranty
60 Months / 60,000 Miles
Mechanical Specs
Engine - Cylinders/Horsepower/Torque
2.4L I-4 / 185 HP / 178 ft.lbs.
Drive Type
Fuel Economy - City/Hwy/Combined
24 / 33 / 28 Mpg
4-wheel Disc
Front Suspension
Rear Suspension
Independent Multi-link
Spare Tire And Wheel
Fuel Tank
18.5 Gal.
Recommended Fuel Type
Regular Unleaded
Average Cost To Fill Tank
Dimensions & Capabilities
Maximum Cargo Volume
15.9 Cu.ft.
Passenger Volume
121 Cu.ft.
Exterior Length
191.1 "
Exterior Width
73.2 "
Exterior Height
57.7 "
Front Headroom
39.8 "
Rear Headroom
37.8 "
Front Legroom
45.5 "
Rear Legroom
35.6 "
Front Shoulder Room
58.1 "
Rear Shoulder Room
56.4 "
Front Hip Room
Rear Hip Room
Curb Weight
3,230 Lbs.
Wheel Base
110 "
Turning Radius
Exterior Features
Door Count
4 Doors
16.0 " Silver Aluminum / 17.0 " Silver Aluminum
Clearcoat Monotone / Pearlcoat Monotone / Monotone / Metallic Monotone
Exterior Mirrors
Dual Power Remote Heated
Grille Moldings
Rear Spoiler
Stainless Steel With Chrome Tailpipe Finish
Interior Features
Passenger Capacity
Seat Trim
Premium Cloth
Front Seat Type
Heated Front Seats
Front Driver Seat Direction Controls
6-way / (8-way Power)
Front Passenger Seat Direction Controls
Front Armrests
6-way / (8-way Power)
Rear Armrests
Rear Seats
60-40 Bench
Radio & Infotainment
Am/fm Stereo, Clock, Seek-scan / Clock
Radio Steering Wheel Controls
Apple Car Play
Android Auto
Bluetooth w/ Hands-Free Connectivity
Convenience Features
Steering Wheel Type
Telescopic Tilt
Climate Control
Automatic Air Conditioning
Cruise Control
With Steering Wheel Controls
Sun Roof
Express Open/close
Rearview Mirror
Day-night / Auto-dimming Day-night
One Touch Open Window
Tinted Windows
Vanity Mirrors
Dual Illuminated
Remote Keyless Entry
Keyfob (all Doors)
Power Outlets
Safety Features
Overall Crash Safety Rating
Overall Front Crash Safety Rating
Overall Side Crash Safety Rating
Rollover Crash Safety Rating
Front Impact Airbags
Driver And Passenger
Driver Side Impact Airbags
Seat Mounted
Knee Airbag
Passenger Side Impact Airbag
Seat Mounted
Rear Side Airbag
Seatbelt Pretensioners
Anti-Lock Brakes
4-wheel Anti-lock Brakes (abs)
Forward Collision Warning
Forward Collision-avoidance Assist (fca) Forward Collision Mitigation
Blind Spot Sensor
Blind-spot Collision Warning Blind Spot
Lane Departure Warning
Lane Keep Assist Lane Departure
Autonomous Cruise Control
Pedestrian Detection
Pedestrian Detection Prevention
Driver Attention Alert
Driver Attention Warning (daw) Driver Attention Alert
Daytime Running Lights
Auto High Beams
High Beam Assist (hba) Auto High-beam
Adaptive Headlights
Parking Sensors
Parking Distance Warning Rear
Security Systems
Security System
Panic Alarm
Ignition Disable
Bumper To Bumper Months Miles
60 Months / 60,000 Miles
Major Components Months
120 Months / 100,000 Miles
Included Maintenance Months
Roadside Assistance Months
60 Months / 60,000 Miles
Corrosion Perforation
60 Months / 100,000 Miles
Accessories Months
60 Months / 60,000 Miles

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