2017 Kia Optima Sportswagon PHEV review - verdict

The Kia Optima Sportswagon PHEV is a plug-in hybrid version of Kia's estate. Does its promise of impressive fuel economy, a 38-mile electric-only range and low company car tax make it a good buy?

Words ByDoug Revolta

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Kia Optima Sportswagon PHEV

In the equivalent regular Optima Sportswagon, the amount of equipment you get for for the price – around Β£26,000 – is pretty good value. However, the premium that this PHEV version commands sends that price soaring to more than Β£30,000 (or Β£100 per month more on Kia’s contract hire deal), making it difficult to recommend when compared with conventional fuel-powered estates, which will also achieve similar real-world fuel economy.

A well-specced diesel Skoda Superb Estate, for example, can be had for the same money and is more spacious, better to drive and no less economical.

However, if you’re set on the low company car tax bills that hybrid cars offer and you have easy access to charging points, the Optima Sportswagon PHEV makes more sense. Even then, the Volkswagen Passat GTE, although more expensive, has a nicer interior and is better to drive. If you can afford it, it's worth the extra.


What Car? says...

Rated 3 out of 5


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Rivals:

Volkswagen Passat GTE

Mitsubishi Outlander PHEV


Kia Optima Sportswagon PHEV

Price Β£32,645 (after Β£2500 government grant)

Engine 4cyl, 1999cc, petrol

Battery 11.26kWh

Claimed pure electric range 38 miles

Power 154bhp @ 6000rpm

Torque 189lb ft @ 5000rpm

Gearbox 6-spd automatic

0-60mph 9.4sec

Top speed 119mph

Official economy 201.8mpg

CO2, tax band 33g/km, 9%

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