2011 Kia Optima Long-Term Road Test - Cargo Space

2011 Kia Optima Long-Term Road Test

2011 Kia Optima SX Turbo: Not So Editor-Proof Rear Folding Seats

July 21, 2011

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So I'm moving yet again. And the other night I had to pick up a big load of broken-down cardboard boxes. I was driving our 2011 Kia Optima SX Turbo but figured with the backseat folded down they could fit in the trunk easy.

Unfortunately when I arrived at my destination, a quiet street in Manhattan Beach, it was dark and there weren't any street lights. The person whose house it was where the boxes were lying in front of didn't even turn on the porch lights. So I'm blaming the darkness and my unfamiliarity with our Kia for not being able to figure out how to put down the seatbacks.

I fumbled around the backseat looking for a latch to release the seatback. The seatbelt holders weren't it. There was no lever on the side of the seat. Last resort: grab the owner's manual but even then I couldn't figure it out.

The reason? Because I'm an idiot and when I panic I don't see what's right in front of me. For some reason I glossed over Step 4 (with the big ol' illustration) here:

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2011 Kia Optima: Where's The Release And Why

June 08, 2011

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I've watched every single person who uses the Optima's trunk grab and then grab again for the release. Some eventually give up and assume there isn't one. The reason is that the release is offset from center by about eight inches. My hand is on it in the photo above.

What's going on here?

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Past Long-Term Road Tests