03/28/18 ID: 13778

Redesigned and Brimming with New Tech and Features, the 2019 Optima Continues its Run as a Compelling Alternative in the Midsize Sedan Segment

  • SX 2.0T infuses Optima with available European-style sport leather seating
  • More Advanced Driver Assistance System (ADAS)1 technologies now standard across Optima line
  • New UVO play, UVO link and UVO link2 with Navigation debut on 2019 Optima

NEW YORK, March 28, 2018 – The refreshed 2019 Kia Optima debuted at the New York International Auto Show today.  Kia’s best-selling midsize sedan was unveiled with new design cues inside and out, expanded ADAS technology, a new UVO infotainment strategy and available European-inspired red and black two-tone sport leather-trimmed seats.  Additional available enhancements to the Optima line include new alloy wheel choices, ambient LED interior lighting, and a new Passion Red exterior color.

“The Optima continues to be one of our best-sellers for good reason; its stand-out design sets it apart from other cars in the midsize segment,” said Orth Hedrick, vice president, product planning, Kia Motors America (KMA).  “The 2019 refresh sharpens the overall design inside and out and we are making a number of ADAS technologies standard across the entire Optima line, which underlies the tremendous value Optima offers. A new approach to our award-winning telematics system, UVO, will make it easier for buyers to understand its features and UVO link includes an embedded modem.  The new two-tone sport seats are for those looking to differentiate their Optima with unique European-inspired design cues.”

Proudly assembled* in the U.S. at Kia Motors Manufacturing Georgia (KMMG) in West Point, Georgia, the 2019 Optima will go on sale later this year and will be offered in four trim variants: LX, S, EX, and SX.  Pricing will be announced closer to the 2019 Optima’s on-sale date.

Design Enhancements

The 2019 Optima receives a number of redesigned interior and exterior elements.  The LX comes standard with Stinger-inspired LED daytime running lights, a new 16-inch alloy wheel design and matte gray-finish grill.

A long list of enhancements to the affordable S model emphasize sportiness and technology, including: new projection beam fog lamps, LED taillights, dual exhaust, sport side sills with gloss black trim, a gloss-black grill and 18-inch alloy wheels.  Standard push-button start, smart key, smart trunk and power front windows with auto up/down functionality add convenience.

The EX boasts the turbocharged 178-horsepower engine with a seven-speed dual clutch transmission with an adaptive Smart Shift drive mode.  It also adds new leather seating surfaces with front seat heaters.  A new 17-inch alloy wheel design and Smart Cruise Control with Stop-and-Go1 are standard.  Similar to the S, the EX is equipped with standard fog lamps, LED taillights and dual exhaust. Available options include new ambient multicolor interior lighting, and a heated steering wheel.

Redesigned 18-inch wheels are standard on the SX and the SX Limited (SXL) package is available with Michelin 235/45R-18 tires. New LED fog lights, ambient interior lighting, sport steering wheel and Smart Cruise Control with Stop-and-Go functionality are standard on both SX and SXL variants.  The SX features available European-styled red and black two-tone sport leather-trimmed seats, panoramic roof, a Harman Kardon®3 premium audio system with UVO link with Navigation, heated steering wheel, gloss black door pillars and side moldings, and a sport bumper with LED fog lamps.  The SXL is available with a striking new two-tone bronze and black interior with Nappa leather seating surfaces.

Advanced Driver Assistance Systems (ADAS)

Offered as standard equipment across the Optima lineup are a number of ADAS1 features, a suite of technologies designed to work in concert to potentially lessen the severity of a collision or avoid it entirely.  Under certain driving conditions, Forward Collision-Avoidance Assist (FCA)1 can automatically apply the brakes to reduce speed, which may minimize the effects of a frontal collision.  The Forward Collision Warning System (FCW)1 is designed to detect a potential collision with a vehicle it senses in front of the Optima and provides an audible warning and visual displays to alert the driver.  Driver Attention Warning (DAW)4 monitors the driver and will provide visual and audible alerts if it senses the attention level has been significantly reduced.  Lane Keep Assist (LKA)1 may apply corrective steering if it senses the vehicle drifting outside the intended lane, while the Lane Departure Warning (LDW)1 monitors the position of the Optima within its lane and warns the driver if it detects that the vehicle is deviating or about to deviate from the intended lane.

UVO Telematics and Infotainment

Since its introduction in 2013, Kia’s UVO telematics and infotainment system has made it easier than ever for owners to interact with their Kia vehicles and also stay connected.  With ever-increasing functionality and in-vehicle entertainment options, KMA is restructuring UVO into an easy-to-understand tiered system and the 2019 Optima is the first Kia to launch with this approach.

UVO play is standard on the LX.  Featuring Apple CarPlay®5 and Android Auto™6 capability, UVO play tethers the user’s compatible smartphone to the Optima’s audio system through a USB cable7.  Via voice recognition8, drivers may use their compatible Apple9 or Android10 smartphones for navigation, to make calls, send and receive messages, and listen to music all in a way that allows the driver to stay more focused on driving.

UVO link11, available as standard equipment on S, and EX models, offers an extended suite of connected-car security and convenience features.  UVO link includes Apple CarPlay5 and Android Auto6 support and adds features such as on-demand diagnostics12, maintenance alerts, vehicle alarm notifications, geo fencing and speed alerts.  Similar to the K900 luxury sedan, convenience features such as remote HVAC control (only on S, EX and SX trims)13, remote lock/unlocking, and remote activation of the horn and lights are all included in UVO link.  The top-tier UVO link with Navigation is offered optionally on the EX with Premium Package and standard on the SX and SXL.  Standard with all the features in UVO play and UVO link, UVO link with Navigation adds MY POIs and Map Care, which allows for two free map updates per year14.

About Kia Motors America

Headquartered in Irvine, California, Kia Motors America continues to top quality surveys and is recognized as one of the 100 Best Global Brands and 50 Best Global Green Brands by Interbrand.  Kia serves as the "Official Automotive Partner" of the NBA and offers a complete range of vehicles sold through a network of nearly 800 dealers in the U.S., including cars and SUVs proudly assembled in West Point, Georgia.*

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* The Sorento and Optima GDI (EX, SX & Limited and certain LX Trims only) are assembled in the United States from U.S. and globally sourced parts.

1 These features are not substitutes for safe driving, and may not detect all objects surrounding vehicle. Always drive safely and use caution.

2 Purchase/lease of a new 2019 Kia Optima vehicle with UVO link or UVO link with Navigation (“UVO”) includes a complimentary 1 year subscription starting from enrollment date.  To be eligible for a complimentary 1 year subscription, you must enroll within the first 5 years of your new vehicle retail sale/lease date as recorded by the dealer. After expiration, continued access to UVO will require a paid subscription at the then current subscription rate or your access to UVO will terminate. For applicable full terms, see the UVO Privacy Policy (available at and Terms of Service (available at

3 Harman Kardon is a registered trademark of Harman International Industries, Inc.

4 Driver Attention Warning is not a substitute for safe driving and may not detect all instances of driver fatigue or inattentive driving practices. Failure to pay attention to travel conditions and vehicle operation could result in loss of vehicle control. Always drive safely and use caution.

5 Apple CarPlay® is a registered trademark of Apple Inc.

6 Android Auto™ is a trademark of Google Inc.

7 USB cable not included with purchase of 2019 Kia Optima.

8 UVO play requires smartphone connectivity for voice recognition functionality.

9 Apple® is a registered trademark of Apple Inc.

10 Android™ is a trademark of Google, Inc.

11 Remote features require a wireless signal with good coverage to function, and normal cellular service rates may apply.

12 Vehicle Diagnostics are not a substitute for regularly scheduled maintenance.  Vehicle Diagnostics checks powertrain, chassis and air bag systems, and requires initial activation. See UVO eServices Maintenance Feature or Owner’s Manual for maintenance schedule.

13 Do not use remote climate control or remote start if vehicle is in an enclosed area (e.g., closed garage) or a partially enclosed area without ventilation. Close all doors leading from adjacent living areas to the enclosed or partially enclosed vehicle area before executing a remote climate control or remote start command.

14 Subscription required for map updates.

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Information posted in press releases on the Kia Media website was accurate at the time of posting but may be superseded by subsequent releases or other information.