2018 Kia Optima Plug-in Hybrid
The 2018 Kia Optima Plug-in Hybrid, also known as a plug-in hybrid electric vehicle (PHEV), is the third iteration of the Kia Optima. The first model was just a regular vehicle with an internal combustion engine, but it was roomy, tech-savvy, and fun to drive. Kia Motors knew it was onto something and decided to test the alternative fuel route with an Optima Hybrid. When that did well, they soon after released the Kia Optima PHEV, a lot like they did with the Kia Niro hybrid crossover. Only one trim, and affordable, say hello to going green with the 2018 Kia Optima PHEV.
Electric Driving Range Potential
Full Parallel Hybrid System
Avail. Engine Type
Total Driving Range
Full Parallel Hybrid System
Making up the 2018 Kia Optima Plug-in Hybrid lineup is a single trim, EX, and the vehicle is powered by a full parallel hybrid system. This system is made up of two parts - an internal combustion engine and an electric motor. The engine portion is a 2.0-liter DOHC inline four-cylinder engine optimized with continuously variable valve timing (CVVT) technology and gasoline direct injection. Including the Double Overhead Camshaft (DOHC) design, these three systems allow the gasoline engine to reach its full potential of 154 horsepower and 140 lb-ft of torque.
On the other end is an interior-permanent magnet synchronous electric motor, powered by a 9.8 kWh lithium polymer battery. The electric motor is able to generate 66 horsepower and 151 lb-ft of torque. Together, the full parallel hybrid system can generate up to 210 horsepower and 291 lb-ft of torque.
Fuel Economy and Charging
Because it is a plug-in hybrid, the 2018 Kia Optima PHEV has two forms of fuel economy. There is the fuel economy based on just the gasoline engine, 38 mpg in the city and 43 mpg on the highway, and the fuel economy based on the gasoline engine and motor - 103 MPGe, or “miles per gallon equivalent” when considering the use of energy produced by the electric motor. Because this is a plug-in hybrid, consumers may drive solely on electricity with zero tailpipe emissions for anywhere between 0-29 miles based on the electric charge; the vehicle may travel further with regenerative braking in mind. If driving with both, a full tank and completely charged battery, the Kia Optima PHEV can travel up to 610 miles.
The Kia Optima plug-in hybrid has four ways to recharge its battery. There’s the usual three - charging in nine hours with a standard household electrical outlet; recharging in three hours with a 240V power outlet, available for home installation; and charging up at a public charging station. The fourth and ingenious way is a take on regenerative braking, but instead of relying on regenerative braking to recharge the battery a little bit with every break while expending electricity, the Kia Optima PHEV has a Charging Mode that allows the driver to fully recharge the battery without expending its stored energy.
At just a glance, the 2018 Kia Optima PHEV may look just like the regular Optima. Being that there’s only one trim, basically everything is a standard feature, aside from several optional add-ons. The standard features include heated outside mirrors, a smart welcome, solar control glass, sound-absorbing front door windows, a smart trunk, automatic on/off headlights, heated rear glass, LEDs for the positioning lights and rear combination lamps, and more aesthetic bits. Optional features to add on consist of a panoramic sunroof with a power sunshade, LED projector beam headlights with auto-leveling, dynamic bending headlights, high beam assist, and the option of Aurora Black Premium or Snow White Pearl Premium body paint. The 2018 Kia Optima Plug-in rides on 17-inch alloy wheels.
Like the exterior, many features can be found standard in the 2018 Kia Optima PHEV, including leather upholstery for the seats, a 12-way power adjustable drivers seat, heated front seats, and a leather-wrapped heated steering wheel. For convenience, the Optima PHEV comes with a smart key with push-button start and engine immobilizer, dual-zone automatic temperature control, an electronic parking brake, an auto-dimming rearview mirror, rear reading lamps, carpeted floor mats, and more convenient features. For additional options, consumers may opt-in for a 10-way power adjustable passenger front seat, ventilated front seats, heated rear seats, rear side-window sunshades, and LED interior lighting.
The 2018 Kia Optima PHEV comes with UVO eco with voice-command navigation on an 8-inch touchscreen display with SiriusXM Traffic and HD Radio. This system also comes with Android Auto and Apple CarPlay capabilities and a rear-camera display. A Harman/Kardon QuantumLogic™ Premium Surround Sound w/ Clari-Fi™ makes up the ten-speaker sound system. Bluetooth wireless technology with hands-free connectivity, dual USB power outlets, steering-wheel-mounted audio and hands-free phone controls, and an active eco system are all included.
Safety Features and Warranty
No vehicle is complete without great safety features. Found throughout the 2018 Kia Optima PHEV are dual-stage front advanced airbags, dual front-seat mounted side airbags, full-length side curtain airbags, a driver’s side knee airbag, vehicle stability and traction control systems, a rear-camera display, front and rear crumple zones, and the LATCH anchor system for child seats. There are of course advanced systems available too, such as a rear parking assist system, blind-spot detection, rear cross traffic alert, advanced smart cruise control, lane departure warning, lane change assist, forward collision warning, and autonomous emergency braking. Get it all, and the driver will barely have to worry about a thing on the road.
All Kia vehicles are covered by a new warranty program that consists of a 10-year/100,000 mile limited powertrain warranty, 5-year/60,000 mile limited basic warranty, a 5-year/100,000 mile limited anti-perforation warranty, and a 5-year/60,000 mile roadside assistance plan. Being a PHEV, the battery is protected for two years and may be replaced and installed at no cost to the consumer while under warranty.