Kia Motors Unveils First-Ever Hybrid For U.S. Market At Los Angeles Auto Show

Posted on 17. Nov, 2010 by in Kia Canada


2011 Kia Optima Hybrid Will Offer Class-Leading Estimated 40 mpg Highway Fuel Economy Blended with Technology, Efficiency and Design

  • New Optima iteration utilizes state-of-the art lithium polymer battery for increasing fuel efficiency
  • Addition of hybrid indication continues Kia’s thespian code transformation

IRVINE, Calif., Nov 17, 2010 – As a latest indication in Kia’s design-led transformation, a all-new 2011 Optima midsize sedan lineup stretched currently with Kia Motors America’s (KMA) introduction of a all-new Optima Hybrid during a Los Angeles Auto Show. With a overwhelming design, ample interior, and an estimated 40 mpg class-leading fuel efficiency, Kia’s first-ever hybrid in a U.S. will attract those looking for a distinguished and well-equipped sedan that does not scapegoat style, comfort, opening or value for fuel efficiency. Set to strike showrooms early subsequent year, a Optima Hybrid employs a Kia-developed powertrain that includes several innovations that capacitate it to yield well-developed hybrid opening and efficiency.

“Kia Motors is aggressively expanding a immature automobile investments and RD in many a same approach we committed ourselves to a peculiarity and pattern innovations over a final decade that have fueled a thespian code transformation,” pronounced Michael Sprague, clamp president, selling communications, KMA. “By adding a first-ever hybrid in a U.S. to a Optima lineup we are providing consumers with 3 absolute and fuel-efficient powertrain choices, and stability Kia’s truth of charity stylish, value-packed vehicles with superb fuel efficiency.”

The 2011 Optima Hybrid uses a full together hybrid complement and can be driven in 0 emission, full-electric expostulate mode during speeds adult to 62 miles per hour or in blended gas-electric mode during any speed. When a automobile comes to a stop and a electrical bucket is low, a engine shuts off to totally discharge idle fuel expenditure and emissions.

Durable Lithium Polymer Battery

The 2011 Optima Hybrid’s superb potency is due in vast partial to a use of a lithium polymer battery, that was grown in South Korea with partner LG Chem. The appetite and appetite firmness of this new battery form authorised Kia engineers to emanate a lighter and some-more compress battery pack, with a 30 kilowatt battery container weighing usually 95.9 pounds 28 pounds reduction than a 2011 Toyota Camry Hybrid’s nickel steel hydride container that aids fuel economy and also helps to maximize Optima’s bucket space.

The Optima Hybrid’s battery will reason a assign adult to 25 percent longer than variety with nickel steel hydride batteries, so a battery is some-more expected to have serviceable appetite accessible even if it has not been in use. Both fuel expenditure and emissions are cut, permitting some-more electric starts and drive-aways. With that softened efficiency, some-more of a recovered kinetic appetite and charging appetite from a engine is accessible to pierce a automobile as necessary, that allows a car to yield electric pushing support some-more mostly and for a longer period. Lithium polymer also has reduction of a self-discharge evil found in many rechargeable batteries.

Unique Hybrid Architecture

Unlike many stream systems on a market, a Optima Hybrid powertrain is configured with a singular architecture. Compared to a power-split hybrid systems found on vehicles from Toyota or Ford, a Optima Hybrid uses a Transmission-Mounted-Electric-Drive (TMED) blueprint with a electric engine distant from a delivery gear-set. Offering several advantages, this modular blueprint includes some-more fit powertrain packaging, use of many “off-the-shelf” components such as a existent six-speed involuntary delivery found on a 2.4-liter GDI Optima, and reduced engineering investment. This also allows for other probable destiny combinations including a focus of some-more absolute motors and aloft ability batteries.

The Optima Hybrid also is among a initial full hybrid systems on a marketplace to use a customary step-ratio involuntary transmission. The intensely compress six-speed involuntary that debuted on a 2011 Kia Sorento CUV is carried over to a hybrid mostly unchanged. An outmost electrically-driven oil siphon also has been total to yield a hydraulic liquid vigour indispensable to keep a clutches intent when a car is in idle stop mode.

The Optima Hybrid’s electric engine is hard-coupled to a submit of a delivery and versed with a permanent magnet synchronous electric traction engine that produces 40.2 horsepower (30 kilowatt) and 151.2 pound-feet of torque when electric only, and an considerable 206.2 horsepower and 195.4 pound-feet of torque when in hybrid mode. This replaces a torque converter, with a multi-disc squeeze is propitious between a engine and motor, enabling a gasoling engine to be de-coupled from a powertrain for idle stop and electric expostulate modes. Employing this blueprint allows a whole package, including a torsional damper, to fit probably within a same area as a normal torque converter.

Another singular member of a Optima Hybrid is a Hybrid-Starter-Generator (HSG). This 8.5 kilowatt starter motor-generator is belt-driven off a Theta II engine and operates during a same 270 volts as a electric traction engine and a lithium polymer battery, though does not yield any tractive bid to a vehicle. In a place, a HSG is used usually to start a engine and afterwards to assign a hybrid battery.

One of a categorical advantages of a hybrid electric powertrain provides is a capability to redeem appetite mislaid during braking and store it for use during acceleration and cruising, so when a stop pedal is applied, a engine is decoupled from a traction engine and gives no drag on a vehicle. The engine is afterwards used as a generator to recharge a hybrid battery. Converting a kinetic appetite into electrical appetite rather than thermal appetite by a attrition brakes also reduces a wear on a stop linings so they final longer. When conditions need puncture interlude or pushing on hills, a additional faith on regenerative braking allows for a brakes to be some-more effective.

The Optima Hybrid uses an electronically tranquil stop complement to establish a driver’s braking needs formed on a grade of pedal application, that is afterwards converted to a sum stop torque requirement. The hybrid complement control afterwards detects a stream turn of battery charge, car speed and other conditions to establish how many regenerative braking is probable underneath stream circumstances. The stop control complement afterwards receives a limit regenerative braking turn to conduct a attrition braking torque so that sum net torque is equal to a driver’s needs.

Like all other 2011 Optimas, a hybrid uses an Electric Power Assist Steering (EPAS) complement that now provides boost and usually when it is indispensable during steering maneuvers. Reducing a additional weight compared to an engine-driven hydraulic assist, a EPAS is eccentric of a engine and also provides assistance when a engine is not running, such as during idle stop or electric expostulate mode.

The Optima Hybrid also comforts an electrically-driven atmosphere conditioning compressor so that meridian control can be confirmed even when a engine is off. Like electric appetite steering, a electrically-driven atmosphere conditioning compressor allows for some-more accurate on-demand control shortening a altogether bucket on a powertrain, slicing fuel consumption.

Taking advantage of a present and invariably accessible torque from a electric motor, Kia engineers mutated a renouned 2.4-liter Theta II engine to work on an Atkinson cycle, lifting a application ratio by 20 percent to maximize a potency and achieving a 10-percent fuel saving over a unchanging Theta engine. This cycle generates a small reduction torque, though a electric engine compensates for any detriment and consequently, a Optima Hybrid’s altogether appetite and torque outputs are larger than a unchanging model.

With a Optima also weighing in as one of a lightest cars in a segment, high opening and superb fuel potency are a healthy result. The lightweight pattern of a new Optima platform, total with a lightweight lithium polymer battery pack, brings a Optima Hybrid in during usually 3,490 pounds, 230 pounds lighter than a 2011 Ford Fusion Hybrid.

Beyond a Optima Hybrid’s innovative powertrain, Kia’s engineers addressed all aspects of car potency including aerodynamics and rolling resistance. The Optima Hybrid comforts singular extraneous aero refinements, a revoke float height, an active atmosphere strap system, revoke drag wheels, and underbody aero tuning to revoke drag, while low rolling insurgency tires also assistance boost efficiency. The Optima Hybrid’s drag fellow is an unusually low 0.26, among a best in a world.

The finish outcome of a Optima Hybrid’s highly-efficient powertrain, low-rolling insurgency tires, and purify aerodynamic signature is truly well-developed highway fuel efficiency, a best of any mid-size hybrid sedan in a market.

In serve to charity consumers class-leading fuel economy, a 2011 Optima Hybrid also delivers high turn of style, comfort and refinement. Ensuring Kia’s newest serve stands out from a crowd, a hybrid indication has singular comforts to it, including front grille design, 16-inch amalgamate circle design, headlamp design, haze lamps, exhilarated outward mirrors, chrome accents on extraneous doorway handles, front and back revoke bumpers and side sills, LED tail flare pattern and a back mouth spoiler.

In serve to a endless list of customary preference comforts and stylish appointments found on a well-equipped Optima LX A/T trim, consumers opting for a Hybrid will suffer additional customary features, including, eight-way appetite tractable driver’s seat, twin section involuntary heat control with back vents, push-button start with intelligent key, leather-wrapped steering circle and change knob, involuntary up/down on front windows, chrome interior doorway handles, glove box illumination, back reading lamps, and bound back seats with ski pass-through. Virtual Engine Sound System (VESS), customary on a Optima Hybrid, plays a pre-recorded engine sound during electric-only operation to forewarn people outward a car that it is approaching.

The 2011 Optima Hybrid also offers a Premium Technology Package, pivotal comforts embody a breathtaking sunroof, singular 17-inch amalgamate circle design, four-way appetite tractable front passenger’s seat, driver’s chair memory, exhilarated and cooled front seats, exhilarated back seats and steering wheel, HID headlamps with involuntary leveling, leatherette-wrapped core fascia, auto-dimming rear-view counterpart with Homelink and compass, a navigation complement with fill-in camera and SIRIUS Traffic1, and an eight-speaker Infinity2 audio system.


The 2011 Optima Hybrid is versed with a high turn of customary reserve features, as is a rest of a whole Kia line-up. This includes 6 airbags3 (dual modernized front and front-seat mounted side as good as full-length side curtain), front active headrests, side-impact doorway beams, height-adjustable front seatbelts with pre-tensioners, three-point seatbelts for all seating positions, Lower Anchors and Tethers for Children (LATCH) and a Tire Pressure Monitoring System (TPMS). Four-wheel antilock brakes (ABS), Electronic Stability Control (ESC), a Traction Control System (TCS), a Brake Assist System (BAS) and Hill Assist Control (HAC) also are standard.

Competitive Warranty

The whole 2011 Optima lineup is lonesome by KMA’s guaranty program, that offers rare consumer protection. Included in this module are a 10-year/100,000-mile singular powertrain warranty, a five-year/60,000-mile singular simple guaranty and a five-year/100,000-mile anti-perforation warranty. A five-year/60,000-mile roadside assistance devise also is partial of a car coverage.

Kia Motors America in 2010

Kia Motors is in a midst of a dramatic, design-led transformation, that has been delivering boldly styled vehicles in several critical segments during accurately a right time, contributing to a brand’s continued gains in U.S. marketplace share. With 3 new car introductions and several other pivotal initiatives designed for 2010, Kia is staid to continue a movement and will continue to build a code by pattern innovation, quality, value, reserve comforts and with new record such as a soon-to-come UVO powered by Microsoft4 modernized hands-free in-car communication and party system. The launches of a all-new 2011 Sorento CUV, a initial car to be assembled* during Kia’s initial U.S.-based production comforts in West Point, Georgia, and all-new 2011 Sportage compress CUV, serve raise a lineup, and are both accessible in sell showrooms.

About Kia Motors America

Kia Motors America (KMA) is a selling and placement arm of Kia Motors Corporation formed in Seoul, South Korea. KMA offers a finish line of vehicles by some-more than 725 dealers via a United States. For 2009, KMA accessible a 15th uninterrupted year of increasing U.S. marketplace share and recently achieved a best entertain of sales ever in 2010. Kia Motors subscribes to a truth of building high value, high quality, protected and energetic vehicles. Kia Motors prides itself on producing vehicles that are sparkling and enabling and elicit a Kia tagline “The Power to Surprise.”

Kia Motors America is a “Official Automotive Partner of a NBA.” Information about Kia Motors America and a full car choice is accessible during a Web site For media information, including photography, revisit

1 SIRIUS Traffic requires a subscription, sole alone after three-month hearing subscription enclosed with car purchase.
2 Infinity is a purebred heading of Harman International Industries, Incorporated.
3 For limit protection, always wear your chair belt.
4 Microsoft is a purebred heading of Microsoft Corporation in a United States and/or other countries.
*The 2011 Sorento is fabricated during a Kia U.S. plant (Kia Motors Manufacturing Georgia, Inc.) with U.S. and globally sourced parts.

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