Electric Ladies: Kia Optima Electric & Hybrid Review

WHAT A WHIRLWIND! AM I YELLING? YOU BET I’M YELLING! Right now, I’m sitting in an airport in San Diego, California fresh off of a press trip to see all of the great eco-vehicles that Kia Motors is rolling out, and let me tell ya, Kia is a force to be reckoned with. As you may know, I’m not a Kia driver, but we may be adding a Kia vehicle to our fleet because of the lengths they have gone to, to make sure that fuel economy and aesthetics rock out. 

We were hosted at the great Hard Rock Hotel in the historic Gaslamp Quarter in San Diego, and couldn’t have been a better spot for us to rock out for a rockstar car manufacturer. Before heading out to our ride & drive we had an hour long brand immersion session where we were given little known facts about Kia. Like the fact that they were introduced to the US market in 1994 with two cars. The Kia Sephia (which reminded me a LOT of the Geo Metro *shudder*) and the Kia Sportage, which is still going strong. Of course aesthetic and performance have gotten a LOT better which is why they are ranking at the top of their class 

The last time I was this impressed with seeing a fleet of vehicles this large was when I was the recipient of one of the Oprah cars in 2005. As SOON as we turned the corner after heading in from the airport, I was licking my chops to figure out which car I wanted to take for a spin first. 


You may remember a post I did about the Kia Optima back in October of last year, and how much I loved it. I had it for a short time, and drove it to Davenport Iowa for a Corn Board tour that I was taking part in, and I can tell you that the single feature that I loved so hard was the navigation system. I love that they show you how the freeway looks, and what the exit looks like before you get off instead of having just a slight *ding* go off to alert you to your travel directions. This also helps those of us who may like to listen to Bruno Mars at levels higher than she allows in the house. Ahem. 

I hunkered down with a morning of driving with Lashawn, Schnelle, and Maria (click on their names to go to their blogs) and we chose the Kia Optima EcoHybrid and I’m still in love with it. It fit all of our wonderfully curvy hips and thighs, and we had room to boot. We are REAL women, and  REAL CUTE women if I do say so myself. I may also be a bit happy to be out of the heat and humidity of Chicago and in weather where I can actually enjoy jeans and shoes. Everyone else has great behavior, meanwhile, I’m that child of yours that will NEVER pose properly.

Here are some special specs about the Optima: 

  • It’s been completely redesigned for the 2017 model year
  • Active aerodynamic grill
  • Repackaged battery allows more cargo room in the trunk with 60/40 split folding rear seat
  • Extensive use of premium soft touch leather
  • 39 mpg city/ 46 mgp highway/ 42 mpg combined
  • Price – $29,995-$30,990+ $895 destination

For the first leg of our drive, we wound our way through the mountains and took in the scenery of the rock formations and fog that nestled neatly on top of the mountains. It was a sight to behold, and we enjoyed talking and talking blog strategy as we became comfortable with the ins and outs of the car. The leather interior was comfortable, and roomy enough for our tallest passenger to sit in the backseat with no problem. 

I will be writing more about the entire experience of #TheNewKia that we had in San Diego, but I did want to get more information out about the Optima Hybrid that we got to check out just yesterday. A great price point for a mid-sized vehicle, and enough room for five. I know that we still have one more in our family than the Optima can fit, but it would make a GREAT second vehicle for us. Of that, I’m certain. 

Tune in later to see what other fun I had with Kia! 

*all photos courtesy of Cielo Roth Photography

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  • Reply
    June 9, 2017 at 8:34 am

    Wow, awesome view of the cars! I like the design of it. I like the fact that it’s roomy as well. Can’t wait to hear about your entire experience with it. Thanks for sharing!

  • Reply
    EG III
    June 9, 2017 at 11:30 am

    I have long been a fan of the KIA Hybrids. It’s just amazing to see how far they’ve come since the car was first introduced to the world. Looking forward to hearing more!

  • Reply
    June 9, 2017 at 12:26 pm

    I have always been wondering about KIA. They have really upped their design game. It looks great and I love how spacious it is as well. I’m definitely going to give them a look when I need a new car.

  • Reply
    June 9, 2017 at 12:56 pm

    I just got home from San Diego today as well! I heard a bunch of bloggers got invited to Kia! Congrats but that flight back south is no joke

  • Reply
    June 11, 2017 at 11:26 am

    Kia has really stepped up their game! I love how sleek this car looks. I could see myself rolling in this!

  • Reply
    Kirstin Fuller
    June 11, 2017 at 6:34 pm

    Kia really has done a fabulous job with the new lineup. I love the Kia Optima. I test drove a Kia Optima turbo last year and it was awesome!

  • Reply
    Jocelyn @ Hip Mama's Place
    June 11, 2017 at 7:36 pm

    Looks like KIA has been leveling up their game with this new ride! I think it’s great that they’re improving their hybrids. I’ve been thinking about getting a hybrid for some time now and this sounds like a great choice.

  • Reply
    June 11, 2017 at 9:51 pm

    Wow, This car is really nice. I love how Kia evolved and made nicer cars that can compete with big names but still keep their prices reasonable. And now they even have hybrids.

  • Reply
    June 11, 2017 at 10:10 pm

    I almost went with Kia on my last car purchase, but went with a more fuel friendly Mazda SUV, but with them stepping up their game I think they will be my next purchase. I love Kia and their designs and the features they include for an affordable price!

  • Reply
    robin rue
    June 12, 2017 at 6:23 am

    That sounds like an AWESOME car. I have always heard such great things about Kias.

  • Reply
    June 12, 2017 at 6:55 am

    I refuse to make payments on vehicles, so I’ve been saving up for a hybrid. I’m normally not at all a fan of Kia’s, but maybe I’ll have to give this one a test drive chance when I’m out car shopping.

  • Reply
    Elle (CleverlyChanging)
    June 12, 2017 at 7:47 am

    Kia has always given bloggers a wonderful experience. Other automotive brands should follow Kia’s lead. So exciting all around.

  • Reply
    Denay DeGuzman
    June 12, 2017 at 9:10 am

    Natasha, what incredible experiences you’ve had trying out various automobiles! You’re so lucky. My daughter has been thinking about purchasing an electric car to save money on gas during her long weekday commutes. Thank you so much for sharing this very informative and helpful review of the Kia Optima. I’ll share it with my daughter.

  • Reply
    June 12, 2017 at 10:13 am

    I like Kias. They have nice cars and every time I have driven one I have enjoyed it.

  • Reply
    June 12, 2017 at 10:26 am

    This trip looks like it was a blast. I love the videos you guys did. They should hire you for a commercial.

  • Reply
    Corinne & Kirsty
    June 12, 2017 at 12:48 pm

    Great review. i never got to drive a Kia so I wouldn’t be able to tell; But sounds like a great car! xx corinne

  • Reply
    Amber Myers
    June 12, 2017 at 1:25 pm

    This looks like a fabulous car. I’ve heard great things about Kia. I currently have a hybrid car, but it’s not electric.

  • Reply
    Matt J
    June 12, 2017 at 2:26 pm

    Those cars look gorgeous! Unfortunately, those that are better for the environment are a little steep in price… My dream is to have an electric car at some point, but hopefully the market delivers some more options in the near future. Loved a look at the new models!

  • Reply
    Diane Hoffmaster
    June 12, 2017 at 2:28 pm

    I have my eye out for a new car soon and a hybrid is definitely top on my list. I will have to check this out!

  • Reply
    Jennifer Soltys
    June 12, 2017 at 4:40 pm

    Hybrids have come a long way! That car is SHARP!!!

  • Reply
    Jaclyn Anne
    June 12, 2017 at 6:14 pm

    I have actually never driven a Kia – but after seeing how sweet this Optima is I think I need to give one a test drive!

  • Reply
    Tracey Crockett
    June 12, 2017 at 6:46 pm

    How friggin’ cool is this…goal my dear! Love the excitement in your post…makes me wanna checl out a Kia!

  • Reply
    Felecia Monique
    June 12, 2017 at 7:37 pm

    That car is so dope. I had no clue Kia had something like this!

  • Reply
    June 12, 2017 at 8:14 pm

    That is a nice looking car there! How fun to test drive for a while and check out all the features.

    And, no judgment about cranking up awesome music.

  • Reply
    Tiffany Stuart
    June 12, 2017 at 10:29 pm

    I’m hearing a lot of great things about these Kias. I might have to check it out for sure

  • Reply
    Claudia Krusch
    June 12, 2017 at 10:57 pm

    A KIA Hybrid would be amazing for my next car. We have been thinking of getting a replacement vehicle this summer. I think a test drive is in order.

  • Reply
    Ophelia Tang
    June 13, 2017 at 12:33 am

    The car looks great. I would definitely check this car out when I am purchasing my next car. Thank you for sharing.
    XOXO //SINCERELY OPHELIA | NYC Petite Fashion Blogger

  • Reply
    Ana De- Jesus
    June 13, 2017 at 5:22 am

    I think hybrids are great cars and Kia has always been on my car brand watch. How amazing that you got to test drive these babies out! Isn’t that nice of them? x

  • Reply
    Tatanisha W
    June 13, 2017 at 7:23 am

    You are funny! Glad you guys had a great time. Yes, Kia has come a LONG ways and now ranking as some of the best cars out there! The Kia Optima is a fun car to drive. I remember driving it and had to check my speed. It can get from 0-60 VERY quickly!! Love San Diego too, just a beautiful city with a ton of things to do!

  • Reply
    Carol Cassara
    June 13, 2017 at 9:17 am

    Can I just say that I love your energy in the pictures! I think the hybrid is pretty amazing and it’s so nice to see Kia upgrading and improving their carts!

  • Reply
    June 13, 2017 at 5:52 pm

    Wow, This car is really nice. Sounds great. How fun to test drive for a while and check out all the features.

  • Reply
    Amanda Tento
    June 13, 2017 at 11:42 pm

    We have a lot of these financed through the credit union I work for. They are super popular!

  • Reply
    June 14, 2017 at 1:56 am

    This sounds great. I love KIA and I love everything about this model.

  • Reply
    The Brainy Mama
    June 14, 2017 at 1:52 pm

    I’m not a big fan of Kia but I must say that Kia Optima is a game changer. I love it!

  • Reply
    Cynthia Nicoletti
    June 14, 2017 at 3:18 pm

    This car sounds really nice. My sister in law has a KIA and they love it.

  • Reply
    June 15, 2017 at 9:41 am

    I loved the Kia optima the time we rented one. I would love to try this one out.

  • Reply
    Aziel Morte
    June 15, 2017 at 9:31 pm

    Wow, It really sounds like a great car my hubby want to have a new car our car was too old and I will tell him about KIA

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