A plug-in hybrid goes above and beyond a standard hybrid through the use of a larger battery pack that allows for a limited amount of pure electric driving. In theory, those with a short commute could get to work and back without ever needing to engage the gas-powered engine. And once the batteries are spent, it functions just like a typical hybrid.
The Kia Optima Plug-In Hybrid combines those attributes with the ones that have made the standard Optima such a strong player in the midsize sedan game. Those likable qualities include handsome styling, a smooth and quiet ride, and plenty of standard and optional features, including the latest high-tech infotainment and safety features.
Current Kia Optima Plug-in Hybrid
The Kia Optima Plug-In Hybrid midsize sedan debuted for 2017 and comes in a single, loaded EX trim level. Standard feature highlights include keyless entry and ignition, a navigation system, a rearview camera, leather upholstery and heated front seats.
For propulsion, the Optima Plug-In Hybrid uses a 2.0-liter four cylinder gas engine teamed up with an electric motor and a six-speed automatic transmission. That power team generates a total of 202 horsepower. In full EV mode, it can travel 29 miles, after which point it switches to conventional hybrid operation. While in the latter mode, the Optima Plug-In Hybrid earns a combined fuel economy estimate of 40 mpg. Yes, it trails its more fuel frugal rivals, but that's still an impressive figure for a roomy midsize sedan with respectable performance that comes loaded with luxury features.
Although we haven't yet driven the redesigned Kia Optima Plug-In Hybrid, we have driven its corporate cousin, the similarly powered Hyundai Sonata Plug-In Hybrid. As such, we'd expect the Optima Hybrid to provide smooth, if not class-leading, performance; a comfortable and quiet ride; and respectable, if not exciting, handling. Those who plan on regularly carrying taller passengers in back should note that the Optima's sleekly sweeping roofline cuts down on rear headroom.
Read the most recent 2018 Kia Optima Plug-In Hybrid review.
If you are looking for older years, visit our used Kia Optima Plug-In Hybrid page.