New Seat Design for 2012 - 2011 Kia Optima SX Turbo Long-Term Road Test

2011 Kia Optima Long-Term Road Test

2011 Kia Optima SX Turbo: New Seat Design for 2012

November 23, 2011


At the LA Auto Show last week I ran into Michael Sprague, Kia's VP of marketing and public relations. Michael's fun to talk to and is part of the team engineering the current success of Kia.

Eventually the conversation wandered to our long-term Optima SX Turbo. I expressed our affinity for the car, but told Michael we felt it needed better tires. His expression told me he had heard that criticism before. But then he told me that the Optima was getting a long list of improvements for 2012.

Sadly new tires aren't coming, but the entry-level LX trim will come with standard chrome-accented exterior door handles, foglights, heated outside mirrors and automatic headlights. The EX model will get standard LED taillights as well. Silver wheel caps replace the black caps on all 16- and 17-inch wheels.

Inside, the Optima receives a revised center fascia finish, and the EX sedan gets new wood and metal trim. Kia has also removed the Infinity audio system from the Technology package, and will include the eight-speaker Infinity system, the Uvo in-car hands-free entertainment and communication system package, HD radio and power-folding outside mirrors in the Premium package instead.

Sprague also told me that the seats have been redesigned for 2012 to respond to customer feedback. They'll have a little more shape and a softer foam. I've never had issue with the seats in our 2011 Optima, but we'll sample the 2012 seats soon and report our impressions.

Scott Oldham, Editor in Chief

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