Consumer Reviews Summary
23 of 31 (74%) customers said they would recommend this vehicle to a friend.
2012 Kia Optima Hybrid Overview
After its 2011 debut, the Kia Optima Hybrid returns in 2012 with only a few minor changes to its uncomplicated this-or-that model strategy.
Kia keeps things simple with the Optima Hybrid; only one trim is available with extra features consolidated into the Premium Technology Packages. The 2012 Kia Optima Hybrid gets high marks for a sharp appearance, inviting interior, strong safety features, and 40 mpg highway fuel economy.
The Optima Hybrid packs a wealth of standard equipment, including power windows, an eight-way power adjustable driver seat, leather-wrapped steering wheel, 16-inch aluminum wheels, tilt and telescopic steering column, automatic dual-zone climate controls, Bluetooth® connectivity, and a tech-friendly stereo with satellite radio, USB port, and iPod integration.
The Premium Technology package adds 17-inch alloy wheels, a sunroof, heated and cooled leather trimmed seats, heated rear seats, heated steering wheel, power-folding outside mirrors, and an eight-speaker Infinity audio system.
Possessing a sleek, almost piercing exterior design, the Optima Hybrid has a number of aerodynamic elements to reduce drag and improve airflow around and under the car. Lightweight materials not found on other Optima models also help improve fuel economy, but it’s the hybrid powertrain that gets most of the credit for the EPA estimated fuel economy of 35 mpg in the city and 40 mpg on the highway. The 166-horsepower, 2.4-liter gas engine is teamed with a 40-horsepower electric motor, and both are mated to a six-speed automatic transmission. Opting for a six-speed transmission as opposed to a CVT like you’ll find in many hybrids gives the Optima Hybrid a more traditional feel to its driving experience.
This is a full parallel hybrid system that can operate in pure electric mode at speeds of up to 62 mpg. Keep in mind that the motor’s battery pack is mounted in the trunk area, which reduces cargo volume to just less than 10 cubic feet. Even with the hybrid system’s extra complexity, the Optima Hybrid is covered by the 10-year/100,000-mile limited powertrain warranty.
Earning a full five stars from the NHTSA, the Optima Hybrid is fully equipped with six airbags, front active headrests, four-wheel anti-lock disc brakes, electronic stability and traction control, and a brake-assist system. There’s also an advanced management system that cuts all power from the battery pack if any abnormality is detected and an engine-sound warning to alert pedestrians during electric-only operation.
While it doesn’t boast the most aggressive hybrid powertrain on the market, the 2012 Kia Optima Hybrid may offer a more satisfying driving experience with an abundance of standard features, sophisticated interior ambience, and excellent safety marks.