Last post on Sep 20, 2011 at 10:45 AM
You are in the Kia Optima
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Kia Optima, Sedan
#336 of 609 The wait is over... Edmunds Shows the 2003 Optima!
Oct 24, 2002 (6:53 pm)
Amazing that Edmunds is the first to show what the new Optima will look like, and has pricing! Even KIA's own web-site is still showing the 2002 model.
I own an '02 SE and am very happy with it. In fact I think I like the looks of the '02 better than the '03. The '03 looks like KIA mated the '02 Optima with a Hyundai XG350 and Sonata. Not that these aren't beautiful cars in their own right, but I liked it that the Optima was unique.
Can't wait to read the reviews... Then again, the press is still anti-KIA that they'll barely give it a fair rating. When will the press compare the Optima against the domestic competition (ie. Ford Taurus, Chrysler Sebring, Saturn SC2 etc). The Optima is far superior to anything Detroit is building in this segment.
#337 of 609 So now we know who's front end that is...
Oct 24, 2002 (7:27 pm)
This is on KIA's Korean website:
Is this the front of the 2003 Optima?
#338 of 609 xcmdx In SC the initial
Oct 24, 2002 (7:44 pm)
reviews for the OPTIMA were outstanding.It was compared quite favorably with the ACCORD and CAMRY -the problem was the price was listed as around $19,000 (AS TESTED)with no mention of the equipment on the base model or discounts that were available.This presented a picture of a car that"might"be comparable to the Japanese sedans at a price that"WAS" the SAME.This perception left little reason to gamble on the KIA.
KIA needs to loose the cute ads and get serious with their marketing.Pepsi made huge strides by mentioning Coke in their ads.KIA needs to get people thinking of their cars as the EQUAL of the competition to succeed in the mid-size market.So far the warranty advantage has worked fairly well for their compact sedans ,but this will not do the trick by itself against the Japanese in the mid-size market-esp for KIA(people tend to think of Hyundai
in regards to the Long Haul warranty).
I think KIA's best strategy would be to stress the OPTIMA name more-and down play the KIA name in the mid-size arena.Also a sportier suspension and manual gearbox(pref 6-speed)should be an option with the 6 cyl.A turbo would be nice ,but a simple intake mode and hi-perf exhaust might do the trick to increase hp enough to separate this model from the standard model-OPTIMA MAXIMO or OPTIMA RS.16 in or even 17 in wheels and a price tag under $20.000 and who knows what could happen?
#339 of 609 Optima Refresh
Oct 25, 2002 (6:02 pm)
In the Edmunds pictures, it doesn't look that bad. I agree with others that Kia NEEDED to keep the front end, but the rear end is VERY WELCOME. I LOVE the new interior restyle, even if it was only the center stack, it now differs from the Hyundai Sonata.
OK, now would someone please tell me that Kia did the interior, or did Hyundai do it? I hope Kia did it, it blends with the rest of the lineup, slightly.
Oct 26, 2002 (6:34 am)
I saw the new front end two weeks ago in Car and Driver (ad).
#341 of 609 What is the best deal to take?
Oct 28, 2002 (9:52 am)
I'd be interested in hearing others opinions on what is the best of the 4 offers KIA has made, regarding the extension of the warranty (because of the HP issue).
I'm leaning towards the Power Train extension, simply because it'll keep me under warranty the longest. But would extended the bumper to bumper be better? I drive ~25k miles annually, nearly all highway...
#342 of 609 To buy or not to buy
Nov 01, 2002 (4:06 am)
Hello all. I currently own a '99 Daewoo Leganza. I am shopping for a new car due only to the lack of parts/service (it's been a great car) and I'm considering the Optima. I have to admit to being "once bitten twice shy" when it comes to buying another Korean car. Given your ownership experiances.... if you could go back and do it again, would you still purchase an Optima?
#343 of 609 I would buy again
Nov 01, 2002 (9:51 am)
I've put 18k on my 2002 Optima this year, and it has been a pleasure to drive. There have been a few little things that needed fixing, which were taken care of easily enough.
The Optima makes a terrific commuting vehicle, which is what I use it for. I'd buy another one again for this purpose. However if my driving changed (no longer a long commute), I'd probably look for something more fun to drive. I love small performance cars, like the new Mini Cooper, and the BMW Z4. But for sitting in a comfortable seat for a good chunk of the day, it is hard to look passed the Optima.