LA 2010: Kia Optima Hybrid

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Kia took the opportunity to unveil its new Optima Hybrid at the Los Angeles Auto Show, and to nobody's surprise, it's exactly the same as its corporate sibling, the Hyundai Sonata Hybrid. Not all is lost though, because fortunately for the Optima it's slightly sportier than the Hyundai, and it works to its advantage. Powering the Optima is the same 206 horsepower four-cylinder hybrid motor and standard 6-speed automatic transmission. The hybrid will also be using the Sonata's innovative lithium-polymer battery pack.

A point that differentiates the two is the more discreet styling of the Optima Hybrid, while the Sonata is substantially different looking compared to the gasoline variants. Still no word on the pricing, but it's safe to guess that it will come within a few hundred dollars of the Sonata's.

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