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Kia Optima 2006 and earlier



  • According to auto123 (canada), the Optima is a TAD bit smaller than the Sonata.

    4,735 mm length
    1,805 mm width
    1,480 mm

    4,800 mm
    width of 1,832 mm
    height of 1,475

    So.. not much of a different. A couple of mm's. But the Sonata IS larger.

    I was under the impression that the Sonata is already shorter than the Accord and Camry, yet wider.

    I'm loving the Optima. I think I even prefer it over the Sonata. The rear of the Optima seems very Acura-ish.
  • iluvmysephia1iluvmysephia1 Posts: 5,663
    cool...your Spectra EX has a spoiler. There's a discussion going on on Edmunds right now about spoilers on cars and what do we all feel about their value, etc. I tend to like certain spoilers on certain cars. Kia has added the spoiler on your 2004 1/2 Kia Spectra EX so that it looks like it belongs there. Kia just plain "has it" in the body design department, IMHO. Nobody can touch them, Mercedes, Rolls, Audi, Bentley, you name the maker and I'll tell you that Kia designs the bodies of their Kia-mobiles in a superior manner, considering the entire stable. I'm talking the entire stable of Kia's holds their own very well against anybody else's entire stable of cars. I'll take it one step further and say they beat anybody at it. Anybody.

    Now, this new Kia Optima looks awesome, yes it does. I think it just barely nudges out the 2006 Hyundai Sonata in the looks department, just barely. They both look awesome.

    spectraman-what do ya know about this 2005 or 2006 Kia Spectra SX? Is it a 4-door Spectra sedan like yours with the spoiler, etc. and several racing extra's like metal pedals, extra bodykit valances, etc. like the Spectra5, yet on a Spectra 4-door sedan? I can't find a whole lot on the Kia America website but I did find an article on there from May that slipped by me in May. I have now had a chance to read that article and it sounds quite interesting. I may be interested in, say, a 2006 Kia Spectra SX sedan, in a cool color of my choice. What'd'ya'all know? ;)

    2008 Mitsubishi Lancer GTS

  • gy563gy563 Posts: 44
    Next generation kia optima (Kia Magetitis in European models)


  • Just a small item: it's actually Kia Magentis rather than Magetitis. I know -- it's a weird font.

    (Pssst... you may want to check out post #445 ;) Thanks for posting, though!)

    Take care,
  • spectramanspectraman Posts: 255

    Thanks for the kind words about my Spectra. I'm not a fan of body cladding or other plastic gimmickry that looks tacked on, BUT I do think that this particular spoiler adds a bit of panache to the basic Spectra body shape.

    As far as the Spectra SX goes, I understand it to be basically all of the goodies that KIA put on the Spectra5, but only on the sedan body style.

    All of the suspension and interior trim bits are brought over, plus the SX has additional Spectra5-like lower body cladding.

    I wouldn't mind having the metal petals and the leather wheel in my car, but as I mentioned above, I'm not a fan of the boy-racer cladding. That's why I have an '88 Mustang LX 5.0, and not the GT. It has the same drivetrain of the GT, but without the body doo-dads.

    I'm addressing the lack of a leather wheel in my EX by recently ordering a two tone Euro-perf wheel cover from WheelSkins. It is going to be a light sand color top and bottom, and a dark brown on the sides. This matches my car's interior colors. I also am having only the upper and lower sand colored sections perfed. I've read alot of good things about WheelSkins online, so I'm eager to see how it looks in my car. They claim that the cover will be custom fit to my wheel, so we'll see. I'll post a close-up pic of it on my website after I've installed it.

    On the performance side of things, hopefully Hyun-KIA can spare some development dollars for some performance bits on the motor once they get done rolling out their next several car lines. The sooner the better! A nice turbo or supercharged version would be cool!

    Look out Cobalt SS and Neon SRT! (chuckle)

  • I need to find any information that I can on Brake Failures on the Kia Optima (04 & 05 Model Years). The Failures are from a DESIGN DEFECT in the Brake Master Cylinder and it appears that Kia is trying to deny this exists while VERY QUIETLY taking care of any problems that occur. One major problem for them is gonna be me. I was driving a 2005 Kia Optima SE with only 3000 miles on it at 30mph and went to stop suddenly and had a total braking failure and slammed into a Chevy Blazer in front of me. Insurance examiner found a defective Master Cylinder that Kia is not disputing. Strange issue is, my neighbor across the street has the exact same model with only 1700 miles on it and last Friday the same thing happened to his and his wife also wrecked into another car's rear-end. Anyone else have a similar experience? I would be VERY interested in finding out. Thanks
  • SM and others

    As I was severely injured in the crash of the Optima due to the brake failure (BTW this was a rental from Enterprise Rentals), my attorney has reported it to both KIA and the NHTSA. KIA's response was VERY curious, as they didn't even want to inspect the wrecked car to confirm the brake failure but instead ACCEPTED the report from Allstate Insurance Co.'s certified mechanics and immediately referred the issue to the Legal Depatment......VERY CURIOUS don't you all think?

  • Bill:

    You and your neighbor's problem(s) sound serious!

    Here's the NHTSA website where you and your neighbor can and SHOULD
    file a complaint:

    Faulty brake systems are nothing for a manufacturer to take lightly. I
    searched the currently filed complaints for the 2004-2005 Optima, and
    couldn't find any that matched your description(s) above.

    Let us know how it goes!

  • The site does not take into account the 2001 kia optima 2.4L 4cyl engines with automatic transmittions. I do not know if this limits the TSB Search or not, but the search is incorrect. Rather it does not have all the Optima TSB's. I know of 4 that are missing, and need to know of others that may be missing.
    1. window runchannels.(something about them warping I belive)
    2. Window Power regulators (replaced all 4 under a "TSB")
    3. Alternator (Stock 80AMP insufficent to maintain voltage while idle - replaced with 110AMP)
    4. Rear Drum Brakes (new hardware to prevent brakes from wearing too quickly)

    I know of those 4 as they have all been replaced on mine... are there any other important ones I need to watch out for?
  • I'm planning on buying, tonight, a 4 cyl. Optima. I know the 4 cyl is better on gas than the 6 cyl. but is there anything else I should know? Its a 2005 with 15,000 miles. Thanks for the help.
  • backybacky Twin CitiesPosts: 18,623
    I haven't seen this posted here yet. It looks like Kia is going to pull another Spectra-type trick on buyers with the new Optima. Take a look at:

    Scroll down to where you will see:

    2006 Kia New Optima 4-DR w/SAB (PC/Me)
    2006 Kia Optima 4-DR w/SAB (PC/Me)

    Why do they confuse us like this??
  • I've been looking at an 01 Optima; 58000 miles; $6,900. I talked with the owner and he said he replaced the two front window regulators and replaced the front brakes about 5000 miles ago.

    What can I expect to start going wrong if I buy this car? It's got less than 2000 miles left on the warranty and a friend said to insist on an extended warranty but I'm not sure what to ask for.

    Thanks in advance!
  • I have a 2001 Optima.
    Yesterday it suddenly died while driving.
    It cranks fine, lights work etc but will not start.
    All fuses are ok
    Is this a common problem? Any suggestions
  • patpat Posts: 10,421
    You might want to also ask in the "No Start" Problems discussion. Good luck - hope we can help.
  • Hi,

    My girlfriend was recently in an accident where she damaged the passenger-side headlamp on her 2004 Optima. He headlamp itself was undamaged but the forward-most plastic part was shattered. To replace the entire headlamp housing through the dealer would be around $400. I found the OEM replacement online for about $250. Really, this should only be a matter of finding the replacement plastic part and then sealing it back onto the rest of the housing. I've done this before on my Honda, but its a lot easier to find parts for my car than hers. Does anyone have any info on websites, part numbers, or just general advice that might help my situation?

  • The "lense only" replacement usually doesnt work unlessit's a glass lense, because the whole assembly has to be properly sealed to prevent condensation. The bulb socket itself has a special gasket to prevent water penetration. You might try to find "aftermarket lamps" online not made by KIA. However with the limited production numbers ov these vehicles, chances aren't great. I remember NU-PARTS was a distributor that sold through wrecking yards (now auto recyclers). You might call a local bone yard and get like-new used parts!
  • Chuck, I also have a 2001 Optima. I was driving along one day and my car just died in the middle of the road. Turns out it was the crankshaft position sensor(?). I have had nothing but trouble with my KIA from the time I bought it. The car has been towed 9 times. A few months after I purchased the car, my rear tires were as bald as Mr. Clean's head. Turns out the left rear control arm was slightly dented. They blamed it on me. I had to replace the tires at that time, plus pay for the control arm, etc. I think it was dented when they took the car off the semi at the dealership. I've had to replace the alternator. The battery had to be replaced x 2. The windshield washer pump had to be replaced. Wiring had to be replaced at the headlamp. The crankshaft positon sensor was replaced. I had to replace a window runner and 3 window regulators. I had to have the headliner taken off to find out why the door locks, antenna, and interior lights weren't working. It was a shorted wire. I've changed the oil approximately every 3,000 to 5,000 miles. I've had the transmission flushed. I replaced the timing belt prior to 60,000, just like they recommended. I had a major tune-up at 83,000. I changed the oil at 83,000, 88,000 and 92,000 and on Christmas Eve, it spun a rod and a bearing. Now, get this, Chuck, KIA wants me to produce receipts from over 3 years ago showing where I changed the oil. They will not replace the engine, even though they advertise a 100,000 mile warranty on the engine, until I can come up with the receipts from over three years ago. Do you want to know what I think about KIA? :lemon:

    I'm urging anyone with a KIA to save all receipts for everything done to the car. If you change the oil yourself, save the receipt of oil and oil filter and document with the mileage on it. If you replace something as simple as a windshield wiper, keep the receipt.
  • For some reason I have to replace my bulbs in my headlights every 3 to 6 months. Has anyone else ever heard of this problem? I'm taking it to the dealership today(1-6-05), and I'm hoping they don't take me for a ride.
  • haefrhaefr Posts: 600
    "They will not replace the engine, even though they advertise a 100,000 mile warranty on the engine, until I can come up with the receipts from over three years ago."

    This is all covered in your warranty booklet. Aggravating perhaps, but KIA and their agent (the take-yer-money-ship) are fully within their rights to inspect documentation substantiating that required service was performed at the owner's manual-indicated time/mileage intervals. You'd have found the same warranty stipulations with any other make. Toyota, for instance, had some serious oil sludging issues with I4 and V6 Camry engines from the mid-nineties to the very early two-thousand models. Once they'd established that the problem was an engineering flaw, Toyota extended the warranty to eight years, unlimited mileage. BUT, owners were still obligated to present receipts for service or materials and a log if owner-maintained as supporting evidence that the engine oil and filter changes were carried out no later than 7,500 miles or six months in order to qualify for replacement engines. I do my own servicing, but I can see the attraction of take-yer-money-ship servicing - there's no question about when and the extent of the work done - it's on the national database no matter where you happen to be in the U.S. (maybe Canada, too) if trouble arises. Best of luck.
  • I presume you've already solved your problem. We own two Optimas...a 2002 V6 and a 2003 4-cylinder. Interesting that within a month (about September of last year) we had that same problem on BOTH vehicles. The '02 had about 50k miles and the '03 had about 18k. In both cases it was a bad battery. The REAL problem is that you can't find an after-market battery for this must go to Kia.
    Other than that, we've had no significant problems with the vehicles and we love them.
    I do have a SERIOUS problem with service at the local dealer in Memphis. Took the '02 in for some work a few months ago. I actually dropped it off a day early. On the day they were supposed to do the work (I was having a problem with the electronic door locks) they never got around to my car and didn't call me to tell me. When I called to see if the car was ready (about 3:30 p.m.) they said they had gotten busy on another vehicle. Now that puts me in a position of having to drive 100 miles to Tupelo, Mississippi for service. However, I don't mind. I love the car.
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