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2017 Kia Optima Hybrid and Plug-In Hybrid: Chicago Auto Show

What Is It?

The 2017 Kia Optima Hybrid and Plug-In Hybrid are the latest models to join the recently redesigned Kia Optima’s lineup. The hybrid should come as no surprise to most industry observers, as it’s merely an updated version of the outgoing Optima Hybrid. It touts an improved powertrain that should increase fuel economy by around 10 percent — meaning that the sedan will likely crest 40 miles per gallon in combined city and highway driving.

Meanwhile, the Optima Plug-In Hybrid is all-new. Though it boasts the same 154-horsepower output as the standard Optima Hybrid, the plug-in hybrid model also touts a fully electric driving mode in addition to the gasoline engine. The result is a completely electric driving range of up to 27 miles, resulting in an impressive 600 miles of overall range.

Aside from their fuel-efficient new powertrains, both new Optima models largely share the same benefits as the standard Optima, including a slew of the latest high-tech safety and convenience features. The two models also tout a few different styling cues to distinguish them over a traditional gas-powered Optima.

How Much?

Although Kia hasn’t yet announced pricing, we suspect the Hybrid will start close to the base price of the outgoing Optima Hybrid (around $27,000). The Plug-In Hybrid will likely start above $30,000.

When Can You Get It?

Later this year

Add It to Your Shopping List Because…

In the world of fuel-efficient family sedans, the 2017 Kia Optima Hybrid and Plug-In Hybrid combine impressive gas mileage with bold styling and a long list of available features and equipment. And then there’s Kia’s excellent warranty, which touts 5 years or 60,000 miles of bumper-to-bumper coverage and 10 years or 100,000 miles of powertrain protection. Put simply, if you’re considering a Camry Hybrid or an Accord Hybrid, you should also be considering an Optima Hybrid.

Other Cars to Consider

2016 Chevrolet Malibu Hybrid — While there’s no plug-in version, the Chevy Malibu Hybrid touts an exceptional 48 mpg, which is likely more than the Optima will be able to offer. It also boasts handsome looks and a wide array of the latest technology.

2015 Honda Accord Hybrid — The Accord Hybrid is among the most fuel-efficient models on the market, touting an amazing 50 mpg in the city and 45 mpg on the highway. But it isn’t quite as sharp to drive as the Optima Hybrid.

2016 Toyota Camry Hybrid — Routinely the most popular hybrid-powered midsize sedan, the Camry Hybrid was recently updated with new features and bold new styling. However, there’s no plug-in version.

Used Infiniti Q50 Hybrid — If you want a little performance to go with your fuel economy, check out the luxurious and sporty Infiniti Q50 Hybrid. While it only returns around 33 mpg in combined driving, it boasts an exceptional 354 hp. Prices are high, though, so you may have to consider a used model.

See 2016 Chicago Auto Show articles

Doug Demuro
Doug DeMuro writes articles and makes videos, mainly about cars. Doug was born in Denver, Colorado, and received an economics degree from Emory University in Atlanta. After graduation, Doug spent three years working for Porsche Cars North America. Eventually, he quit his job to become a writer, largely because it meant that he no longer had to wear pants. Doug’s work has been featured in a... Read More

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