Kia Optima PHEV Makes Euro-Trip, Will Launch In Q4

Kia’s first ever plug-in hybrid electric vehicle, the Optima, has landed in Europe for the first time, straight from Chicago, where it was presented last month.

The “green” version of the D-segment saloon joins the Optima SW on display at the 2016 Geneva Motor Show and it employs a 2.0-liter “Nu” four-banger GDI at is core, producing 156 PS (154 HP) and 189 Nm (139lb-ft) of torque.

The internal combustion unit is coupled with a 50kW electric motor that takes its juice from a 9.8 kWh lithium-polymer battery pack, for a total system output of 205 PS (202 HP) at 6,000 rpm and 375 Nm (276lb-ft) of torque at 2,300 rpm. Kia claims that the Optima Plug-in Hybrid can travel in pure-electric mode for more than 54 km (33 miles) at speeds up to 120 km/h (75 mph).

A range of enhancements designed to improve its aerodynamic efficiency also help the PHEV differentiate itself from regular versions of the Optima. They include the re-profiled bumpersand a new active air flap grille, which reduces the drag coefficient to 0.25 Cd from the sedan’s 0.27 Cd.

Two key technologies help the car save and regenerate battery power: regenerative braking and advanced heating, ventilation and air conditioning (HVAC) system.

Kia will launch the new Optima PHEV in selected European markets from late 2016. Pricing is yet to be announced.