Kia confirms 110g/km for new Optima
25 August 2015
Author: Daniel Puddicombe
Kia has confirmed its fourth-generation Optima upper medium vehicle is due to go on sale in the UK by the end of the year.
It is powered by a 141hp 1.7-litre diesel, which emits from 110g/km of CO2 ], however a Kia spokesman confirmed the firm will be launching hybrid and plug-in hybrid versions from next year.
An estate version of the Optima is also due by the middle of next year. Kia previously showed an American version of the Optima saloon at the New York motor show in April.
Inside, Kia claims the new Optima has an increase in soft-touch materials compared to before, while the dashboard has been split into an upper 'display' zone and a lower 'control' zone, meaning drivers won't need to take their eyes off the road to see information.
Passenger space has also increased, with rear legroom growing by 25mm compared to the outgoing model partially, thanks to a 10mm growth in the car's wheelbase length. Cargo space has also increased, by five litres to 510 litres.
Paul Philpott, Kia UK president and chief executive, told BusinessCar at the Geneva motor show in March that the Optima would not compete with German premium manufacturers with large corporate deals, but it would help to increase the brand's SME sales.
Kia is still a retail-focused brand, with 45% of sales going to corporate customers, and new fleet models such as the Optima will see it increase towards a 50/50 split.
The company saw fleet volumes increase by 4.4% last year to 34,575 units, but dropped behind market growth and a place down to 13th in the sales tables behind Skoda, which enjoyed success on the back of a full year of new Octavia sales. Philpott is expecting less growth in the UK market this year and as a result is expecting true fleet sales to increase by 5%.
UK pricing and specification details are due to be announced nearer to the launch date.