Pre-production mules of the Optima reveal a fastback-inspired silhouette, a more conservative approach compared to the Sonata. Design is central to Kia for a few years now, and given the dwindling sales of sedans, the automaker from Seoul is pulling every trick in the book in regard to styling.
ETNEWS reports the Optima and Sonata will feature an electric coupling for their all-wheel drive. This piece of technology distributes the power between the front and rear axles of the mid-size sedan, and the publication also talks about driving modes such as Eco and Sport.
Kia’s latest venture in all-wheel-drive technologies is D-AWD in the Stinger GTS. Revealed at the 2019 New York International Auto Show with a sticker price of $46,500, the special edition “sends up to 100 percent of the power to the rear wheels.” Hyundai is reviewing all-wheel drive for the U.S. and Canada as well, which means trouble for the Altima.
Nissan made a bit of a fuss about all-wheel drive in the mid-size sedan, but the optional drivetrain isn’t available with the VC-Turbo engine. Only the 2.5-liter can be paired to Intelligent All-Wheel Drive, and over in Canada, this combo comes standard.
Given the 2020 Subaru Legacy, it won’t be easy for Hyundai and Kia to make a splash in North America with AWD in the Sonata and Optima. On the other hand, it is believed that pricing will favor the two automakers over Subaru and Nissan. Better still, South Korea offers a good ol’ automatic while the Japanese can’t get enough of their continuously variable transmissions.