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2013 Kia Optima EX Review By Michael Bernstein

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2013 Kia Optima

By Michael Bernstein
Michigan Bureau
THe Auto Channel


What’s in a line, well it depends on the situation, circumstance or where you happen to be standing. Take for example a single guy; a good line might be the difference between a lonely night and an awkward morning. For an actor, an entire career can be spent in the pursuit of the perfect one.

For a car, the line defines its profile and creates the eye-pleasing appeal designers search for while they create the drawings, models and mock ups used to create a modern automobile and if it happens to be the competition they will be getting in line behind KIA.

For the 2013 KIA Optima, the line is smooth, dynamic, following and results in a sedan that projects a sleek and stylish look that features bold accents and polished trim finishes.

From flared wheel hubs that conceal 17 inch tires, to the sculpted metal trim that arches over the doors and body panels artfully separating them from the roofline, the exterior of the Kia Optima is rather eye catching. The cut outs for the rear lights become a seamless transition from the quarter panel to the vehicle’s rear decking and serve as the defining element that creates the Optima’s unique look that has no bad side.

The roofline peaks at the front doors before ebbing toward the rear window of the car. The contrasting and complementing angles used for the door panels where the front features straight lines balanced against the more angular and bold lines of the rear is complemented and the look continued through the windows’ size differences.

Once inside the spacious cabin’s interior this simplicity and straight forward design is continued. The design is basic, uncluttered and practical, but it is not without a certain style that is appealing and functional.

All of the vehicle’s controls, gages and displays are presented in a tight array on the center dash that consists of driver’s IP and individual control panels for the audio and climate control systems. Each one of these panels feature hard button controls and red LED readouts that are akin to the displays on the first TI calculators, 7-7-3-4 no he didn’t, but this throwback feature in no way limits their effectiveness.

The center console merges with the dash at the deep craves that houses the car’s connectivity/data hub. An arm rest, storage bin, cup holders and the gear shift are also located here.

The driver’s IP display is updated by using a series of three interlocking oval gages to monitor your speed and other critical vehicle information. The center core display of the larger center continues the Seventies vibe of the other displays, but the others are illuminated in white. The entire interior is upholstered with rich fabrics that include perforated leather that extends to the door panels and seats of the Optima.

On the road the Optima toed the line around town and held the line around the corner with an ease and confidence that was created by the traction control, electronic stability control and vehicle stability management systems working to interpret driving commands into road handling realities.

The Optima comes equipped with a 2.4L, GDI 4-cyl. engine that is combined with a 6-speed automatic transmission that earned the Optima a respectable 28 mpg combined fuel economy and that generates enough power to meet most driver’s expectations for a vehicle in this class.

The 2013 KIA Optima EX has the features, styling and the peace of mind that is generated by the 10 year, 100,000 mile powertrain warranty and of course the $24,524 bottom line!

KIA, the Korean auto giant, combined the best of German efficiency, Scandinavian design and good old fashion American luxury, blended them together and created an attractive sedan that is stylish, practical and affordable.