LOS ANGELES -- Kia Motors America has priced its redesigned 2011 Optima sedan at $19,690, including shipping.
The base model Optima LX is powered by a 2.4-liter gasoline direct-injection four-cylinder engine generating 200 hp, mated to a six-speed manual transmission. Standard equipment on the base model includes an AM/FM/CD stereo system with a three-month subscription to Sirius satellite radio, USB ports, Bluetooth wireless connectivity, a cooling glovebox and power windows and door locks.
The midlevel Optima EX trim starts at $23,190 including shipping and adds 17-inch alloy wheels, leather-trimmed seats, dual-zone climate control and push-button ignition, along with other upgrades. The EX also offers an optional 2.0-liter, turbocharged GDI engine producing 274 hp. The EX turbo starts at $25,190, including shipping.
Enthusiasts may be disappointed, though, as Kia offers only an automatic transmission with the turbo engine.
The high-line Optima SX starts at $26,690 including shipping. The SX comes standard with the 2.0-liter turbo-four and adds 18-inch alloy wheels, high-intensity headlights and black leather seat trim.
Kia hopes the new Optima will make the brand a more relevant player among mid-sized sedans. Currently, the brand occupies just a sliver of the roughly 1.7 million-unit mid-sized sedan segment with its current Optima, selling only about 25,000 annually in the United States.
Kia sold 22,852 Optimas in the first 10 months of 2010, down 33 percent from the same period last year. Optima sales account for only about 8 percent of the brand’s total U.S. sales over the same period.
Rounding out the Optima lineup will be a hybrid version to go on sale in the United States early next year. The 2011 Optima Hybrid makes its global debut this week at the Los Angeles Auto Show.