2011 Kia Optima Priced Lower Than Hyundai Sonata
A great bargain, since the new Optima is essentially a Sonata with different skin, the same engine, and a marginally sportier driving experience.
The entry Optima LX has the same six-speed manual transmission and 2.4-liter engine as the base Sonata. Comes standard with: audio system with USB, auxiliary, Bluetooth connections, plus satellite radio; power windows and locks; dual, chrome-tipped exhaust finishers; a cooled glove box; 16-inch steel wheels; and six airbags.
Throwing in a six-speed automatic transmission costs $21,190, and adds 16-inch alloy wheels and cruise control to the equipment list.
The next step up is the $23,190 EX trim, yielding 17-inch wheels, fog lights, leather seats with eight-way power adjustments for the driver, climate control, and keyless ignition.
As well as its Sonata sibling, the Optima LX undercuts competitors from Japan and the U.S. The cheapest Honda Accord sedan (like the Optima, it has a four-cylinder engine and manual) requires $21,930, while the entry-level Chevrolet Malibu (six-speed automatic only) rings in at $22,695.
The Optima is another much-improved Kia product that just so happens to be the cheapest in its segment.
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