2016 Kia Optima: Monthly Update for November 2016
Kelly Hellwig, Managing Editor
Where Did We Drive It?
November started quietly enough. Our 2016 Kia Optima passed from editor to editor, connecting the dots in a series of around-town errands, until BAM! In the middle of the month, Photo Editor Kurt Niebuhr and the Optima were en route to Edmunds HQ when the Kia was rear-ended.
More on that below.
"It's bound to happen, right? I mean, you drive a few hundred thousand miles over nine years in press vehicles without an accident...and then you get in two. In the same day. One hour apart."
"No doubt the hit-and-run report I filled out at a CHP substation (thanks, guy in the black W204 Benz who backed DOWN the on-ramp and booked it after smacking the rear of our Optima like it insulted his vape pen) had yet to hit the 'who cares?' basket when I became the lead car in a four-car, chain-reaction accident on the 405 freeway."
"Thankfully for our accountants and our insurance, the second smack was nothing compared to the first, and it was absorbed by the already mangled rear bumper. Still, I pulled over with everyone else, exchanged information, made sure everyone was all right (to my surprise, no one seemed the least bit concerned to have just been in an accident), and then got to work and the hell out of that car as fast as I could." — Kurt Niebuhr, Photo Editor
Maintenance and Upkeep
Due to Double Accident Day, our Kia Optima is currently in the body shop. The initial estimate was written at $3,500 for the significant rear-end damage. We'll post a separate update later with details of the repair.
"The Kia Optima continues to be a comfortable and impressive sedan. I generally enjoy my time in this vehicle every time I'm in it. My one gripe is a hesitation in the throttle response when switching from the brake pedal to the gas pedal. It seems to hesitate and almost sputter, which makes for a slight annoyance in stop-and-go traffic." — Michael Massey, Vehicle Testing Assistant
"I now call our Kia Optima 'old reliable.' And it's not because of its lack of problems over its short career in our fleet (although that's nice too). To me, it's reliably likable every time I drive it. It has a no-nonsense interior design, comfortable seats and solid performance. It's a well-executed midsize sedan that rarely gives you a reason to dislike it. Not a bad version of reliable in my book." — Ed Hellwig, Executive Editor