Monday, 17 April 2017
REVIEW – Kia Optima Sportswagon GT-Line S
. The plastics are nice quality. Everything feels well put together. There are no rattles, no squeaks, and no scratchy surfaces. The dashboard itself may not be leather, but there’s a stitched effect that makes it appear as though it is. The dials are simple: black background, red needles and white dials. But they are a crisp TFT display which is pleasing on the eye. The 8-inch multimedia screen is nicely integrated in the centre of the dashboard, and all the switchgear is logically laid out.
Now if you have read my review of the Optima, then you will know it is a vast and spacious car. So when you take that car and give it a gigantic boot, then you only make it more practical. If I could score it an 11 or a 12, I would. The Optima has some of the most generous rear legroom in any car you will see. The level of equipment on the GT-Line S is exhaustive. Satellite navigation, voice recognition, wireless phone charging, Smart Park Assist System (Parallel, perpendicular and departure parking assistance), 360-degree parking camera, blind spot detection and rear cross-traffic alert. The Kia feels like an everyday-man’s best friend. It’s the most luxurious, safe, well-equipped car for the family but at a fraction of the cost of its German rivals.
I have to say that my week with the Optima Sportswagon was a relatively busy one. Long-haul motorway slogs, short nips into town; I covered it all. And I have to say that the Kia was a great companion. I think the estate looks better than the saloon, and with the sporty styling it was right up my street. The engine is underpowered in some respects, but feels like a runaway train in others. I think the DCT gearbox is a big improvement, but it isn’t quite slick as the VW-Audi DSG offerings. What makes the Sportswagon desirable is the amount of technology included. This car is fully loaded, and is therefore a great car to live with. Don’t forget there’s a 7-year warranty for peace of mind. The GT-Line S DCT comes in at £30,595; reasonable when you start to consider what would be “optional” on rival cars. For more information log on to the Kia website or visit a local dealer. And if you can live with the small diesel, you’ll not regret it. If not… wait for the Stinger GT!
Total Score – 43/50