2018 Kia Optima

Research, photos, specs, and expertise
6 photos

Kia Optima highlights

Customer rating


  • Contemporary interior features
  • Intuitive infotainment interface
  • Comfortable, smooth ride


  • Rear visibility is lacking
  • Limited rear headroom
  • Base engine lacks power

Mileage (EPA estimate)

22 city, 31 highway, 25 combined

Pricing for current inventory

(no current inventory)

6 photos

All Kia Optima years

What is new for the 2018 Kia Optima?

  • The Optima is available in a new trim called the S.
  • The SXL trim has been discontinued for 2018.
  • Optima trims have been upgraded with Panoramic Sunroof and Leatherette & Cloth as standard equipment this year.
  • The LX trim now comes with Parking Sensors, Blind Spot Monitor, Android Auto, Apple CarPlay, and Power Seat(s) as standard equipment.
  • The EX trim now comes with Parking Sensors and Blind Spot Monitor as standard equipment.
  • The SX trim now comes with A/C Seat(s), Parking Sensors, Blind Spot Monitor, and Sunroof(s) as standard equipment.

2018 Kia Optima trims

Curious how Kia Optima trims differ? Use our side-by-side vehicle comparison to see the differences and similarities


  • 185-hp, 178-lb-ft of torque 2.4L
  • 178-hp, 195-lb-ft of torque 1.6L
  • Rear Defroster
  • Cruise Control
  • Cloth Seats
  • Power Mirrors
  • Traction Control
  • Side Airbags
  • Overhead Airbags
  • Rear View Camera




  • Includes all features available on the EX
  • 245-hp, 260-lb-ft of torque 2.0L
  • Panoramic Sunroof
  • A/C Seats
  • Sunroofs
  • Rear Sunshade
  • Turbo Charged Engine
  • View our Kia Optima SX inventory

Kia Optima photos

5 reasons to buy the 2018 Kia Optima

1. Turbocharged engine options

The 2018 Kia Optima is available with a number of engine configurations to suit your driving needs, starting with a 2.4L four-cylinder (185 hp) that's standard on its base LX trim. Meanwhile, a turbocharged 1.6L four-cylinder at 178 hp comes equipped on the LX 1.6T trim, and an even more powerful turbocharged 2.0L four-cylinder at 245 hp is outfitted on the range-topping SX trim. Regardless of engine configuration, every 2018 Optima comes with front-wheel drive.

2. Spacious and comfortable design

Even on the base LX trim, the 2018 Optima offers a comfortable ride for front- and rear-seat occupants alike. Even on the base LX trim, height-adjustable front seats (with two-way lumbar adjustment for the driver's seat) are standard, which provides added comfort on longer road trips. Meanwhile, stepping up to the midrange EX adds dual-zone climate control for more customized temperature settings. In addition to the comfortable and spacious cabin, the 2018 Optima boasts a roomy 15.9 cu-ft. trunk for hauling groceries, luggage, and other essentials.

3. A trim for every driver

The 2018 Kia Optima is available in five trim options, so most drivers will be able to find a model that suits their tastes. Trim configurations include the base LX, turbocharged LX 1.6T, sporty S, luxurious EX, and the range-topping SX. Standard equipment on the base LX is generous and includes Bluetooth® connectivity, smartphone integration, a seven-inch touchscreen display, and a booming six-speaker sound system.

4. Plenty of driver aids

The 2018 Optima doesn't skimp on driver-assistance features—and you don't even have to pay extra for them. Standard equipment in this category includes a rearview camera, blind-spot monitoring system with rear cross-traffic alert, and rear parking sensors. Looking for a model with adaptive cruise control? Check out the range-topping SX trim for this and a lane-departure warning system with automatic emergency braking.

5. Sporty performance features

The 2018 Optima is a great choice if you're looking for a midsize sedan that has a second life as a sports car. This is especially true on the SX trim, where you'll find such performance features as a sport-tuned suspension, steering wheel paddle shifters, a rear spoiler, and dual exhaust tips.

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Ratings & reliability

Customer ratings

The 2018 Kia Optima is spacious, has great gas mileage and is a quiet ride, according to CarMax customers.

RepairPal gave the Kia Optima an overall reliability rating of 4 out of 5 stars, which RepairPal describes as Excellent. This rating ranks Kia Optima 8th out of 28 among Midsize Cars.

View RepairPal's full rating of the Kia Optima

Kia Optima features and specs

S 2WD 4D Sedan

Standard Features

  • ABS Brakes
  • Air Conditioning
  • Alloy Wheels
  • AM/FM Stereo
  • Android Auto
  • Apple CarPlay
  • Automatic Transmission
  • Auxiliary Audio Input
  • Blind Spot Monitor
  • Bluetooth Technology
  • Cruise Control
  • Leatherette & Cloth
  • Overhead Airbags
  • Parking Sensors
  • Power Locks
  • Power Mirrors
  • Power Seat(s)
  • Power Windows
  • Rear Defroster
  • Rear Spoiler
  • Rear View Camera
  • Satellite Radio Ready
  • Side Airbags
  • Traction Control
  • Alloy Wheels
  • Automated Cruise Control
  • Cloth Seats
  • Harman Kardon Sound
  • Lane Departure Warning
  • Navigation System
  • Panoramic Sunroof

Drive Wheels

Front Wheel Drive (2WD)

Engine size




Torque (ft-lbs)


Engine type


Fuel capacity




Overall length






Leg room

F 45.5"/R 35.6"

Head room

F 39.8"/R 37.8"

Front tires


Rear tires


Seating capacity




2018 Kia Optima FAQ

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