Impressive Warranty

Hyundai is Kia's corporate parent, so the Optima gets Hyundai's impressive warranty; it includes 10-year/100,000-mile powertrain protection and 5-year/60,000-mile roadside assistance.

Kia is putting more marketing muscle behind the new Optima. Its predecessor received little marketing support, and most folks wanting a Kia sedan brushed past it in showrooms and headed for the automaker's Spectra model.

The front-wheel-drive Optima has quick steering and a decent ride, but the softness of an older Buick and thus just average handling. The brake pedal has a linear action to help provide smooth stops.

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