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    2016 Chevrolet Volt Gets Rated By the EPA


    • The Numbers Are In for the 2016 Chevrolet Volt and They Are Impressive


    Today, Chevrolet and the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) have released the numbers for the 2016 Volt and they are noticeably better than the outgoing model.

     

    The EPA rates the Volt at 106 Miles Per Gallon Equivalent (MPGe) combined when operating solely on electricity, and 42 MPG combined when the gas engine is running. To put this into perspective, the current Volt gets 98 MPGe when running on electricity and 39 MPG combined when the gas engine is running.

     

    Overall electric range has seen a big jump as well with the 2016 Volt. The EPA says the model will deliver 53 Miles of range on electric power alone. That is a huge increase compared to the 39 Miles of total electric range on the current Volt.

     

    “We listened to our customers. They were very clear when they told us that they wanted more range, and a fun driving experience behind the wheel. We are confident that the 2016 Volt delivers both,” said Andrew Farah, vehicle chief engineer for the Volt.

     

    Source: Chevrolet

     

    Press Release is on Page 2


     

    The Results Are In: More Range for the 2016 Volt

    • EPA-estimated pure electric range is 53 miles


    DETROIT – The 2016 Volt is engineered to offer customers more of what they want: range, range and more range.
    The Volt’s all-new second-generation Voltec extended-range electric propulsion system delivers 53 miles of pure EV range, based on EPA testing. That is nearly a 40-percent improvement over the first-generation Volt.
    Chevrolet expects many next-generation Volt owners will use power solely from their batteries for more than 90 percent of trips. Today, Volt owners use battery power on 80 percent of their trips.
    This means the average Volt owner could expect to travel well over 1,000 miles between gas fill ups, if they charge regularly.
    For the first 53 miles, the Volt can drive gas and tailpipe-emissions free using a full charge of electricity stored in its new 18.4-kWh lithium-ion battery, rated at a combined 106 MPGe, or gasoline equivalent. When the Volt’s battery runs low, a gas-powered generator seamlessly operates to extend the driving range for a total of 420 miles on a full tank.
    “We listened to our customers,” said Andrew Farah, vehicle chief engineer, “They were very clear when they told us that they wanted more range, and a fun driving experience behind the wheel. We are confident that the 2016 Volt delivers both.”
    The next-generation Volt’s new 1.5L range-extender, designed to use regular unleaded fuel, offers a combined EPA-estimated fuel efficiency of 42 MPG.
    Data shows that drivers of the first-generation Volt achieved, and often exceeded, the published EPA-estimated mileage. Chevrolet expects the same label-exceeding result with the next-generation Volt.

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    53 miles of electric range then 42mpg after.. As long as it's priced right that sounds like one winning hybrid.

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    42 mpg on gas isn't particularly impressive, but it's important to note that first gen owners actually GOT the rated efficiency. A lot of hybrids advertising 45+ mpg can't say that. 53 miles on battery charge is quite nice, though.

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    42 mpg on gas isn't particularly impressive, but it's important to note that first gen owners actually GOT the rated efficiency. A lot of hybrids advertising 45+ mpg can't say that. 53 miles on battery charge is quite nice, though.

    42mpg combined is what the writeup says. At least I took that as City/Highway/Combined - and the 42 was the "combined".

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    42 mpg on gas isn't particularly impressive, but it's important to note that first gen owners actually GOT the rated efficiency. A lot of hybrids advertising 45+ mpg can't say that. 53 miles on battery charge is quite nice, though.

    42mpg combined is what the writeup says. At least I took that as City/Highway/Combined - and the 42 was the "combined".

     

     

    I know it's 42 combined. A lot of hybrids, especially dedicated ones like the Prius, are higher than that.

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    42 mpg on gas isn't particularly impressive, but it's important to note that first gen owners actually GOT the rated efficiency. A lot of hybrids advertising 45+ mpg can't say that. 53 miles on battery charge is quite nice, though.

    42mpg combined is what the writeup says. At least I took that as City/Highway/Combined - and the 42 was the "combined".

     

     

    I know it's 42 combined. A lot of hybrids, especially dedicated ones like the Prius, are higher than that.

     

    Oh I gotcha I gotcha..

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    Future will be cars like the VOLT and BOLT as the Gov pushes to do away with Petrol auto's. I saw a VOLT gen 1 that had the generator motor converted to run CNG, so pretty clean for an alternative Hybrid.

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    a good friend who owns a Volt says he gets 45 mpg on gas on his right now, and that is on long highway trip with 4 ppl inside.  actually he says the mileage is pretty much 40+ no matter what when just running on gas.  If the new one is better.....

     

    I actually looked at a used 2013 Volt a couple weeks ago, and test drove it, it got sold (it was a screaming deal) but one thing that was in my mind is should a person wait till the range and mpg get even better yet.  I really think a cruze diesel, or a volt, or even the new Malibu hybrid will all be good ways to drive with less fuel / elec.  The used volt was getting really cheap.........

     

    i would be all go on a current Cruze diesel but the 2017 has the chance to get better mpg yet.  For me the question i ask myself is whether i really want every day to have to plug the thing in (PITA) and how the volt ultimately does in winter.

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    Over in CF we used to have a Volt owner who lived in Toronto. He loved the thing.

    Edited by El Kabong
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    Over in CF we used to have a Volt owner who lived in Toronto. He loved the thing.

    My dad would have bought one, closer to when they came out, for my mom. The concept is fantastic. He doesn't want full electric and the range issue, my mom lives 3 miles from her job(never even use gas), but they drive to my sister's in Iowa every couple of months(6hrs one way) or visit my brother at school(2+hrs one way). The only thing that kept him from buying one was the price. He's a very practical man and ran the numbers and it didn't logically make sense with the vehicle price so high still and the unknown of the brand new vehicle. They ended up with a '12 Fusion with the 2.5l.Nice car but I wish they would have held off till the '13's came out.

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    42 mpg on gas isn't particularly impressive, but it's important to note that first gen owners actually GOT the rated efficiency. A lot of hybrids advertising 45+ mpg can't say that. 53 miles on battery charge is quite nice, though.

     

    MPG in the Volt is a lot more "your mileage may vary" than standard gas cars.   It greatly depends on the terrain and driving style.   Heading east bound on the Penna TPK end to end, you can get into the 70+mpg range.  Heading westbound you'll just get EPA rating.   Why?  Because the Volt can effectively re-fuel on the downhill stretches and use that for the uphill.  Eastbound there is more downhill than uphill, so the Volt spends a lot more time regenerating its batteries via the car's inertia rather than the gas engine.  

     

    Because it has more battery capacity and power than a regular hybrid, the Volt gets to take greater advantage of the downward momentum.   Regular hybrids like the Fusion or Pruis can have their batteries recharged rather quickly on the downhill sections, and once those batteries are full, the excess energy is wasted as heat. 

     

    The 42mpg EPA rating is actually a bit of a disservice to the Volt since the actual results can vary so widely.... it needs to be more of a range of efficiency rather than a single number. 

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    a good friend who owns a Volt says he gets 45 mpg on gas on his right now, and that is on long highway trip with 4 ppl inside.  actually he says the mileage is pretty much 40+ no matter what when just running on gas.  If the new one is better.....

     

    I actually looked at a used 2013 Volt a couple weeks ago, and test drove it, it got sold (it was a screaming deal) but one thing that was in my mind is should a person wait till the range and mpg get even better yet.  I really think a cruze diesel, or a volt, or even the new Malibu hybrid will all be good ways to drive with less fuel / elec.  The used volt was getting really cheap.........

     

    i would be all go on a current Cruze diesel but the 2017 has the chance to get better mpg yet.  For me the question i ask myself is whether i really want every day to have to plug the thing in (PITA) and how the volt ultimately does in winter.

     

    My test with the Volt was in winter time and it was fantastic.  Just schlepping around town and plugging it in at night I got something like 700mpg since I never used the gas.   I have a garage, so plugging it in wasn't an issue... pull in, close the door, pop the plug cover, plug it in, go inside.

     

    The great thing (possibly my favorite thing) about the Volt was the ability to turn it on remotely and have it pre-heat itself off of house current even with the garage door closed.

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    a good friend who owns a Volt says he gets 45 mpg on gas on his right now, and that is on long highway trip with 4 ppl inside.  actually he says the mileage is pretty much 40+ no matter what when just running on gas.  If the new one is better.....

     

    I actually looked at a used 2013 Volt a couple weeks ago, and test drove it, it got sold (it was a screaming deal) but one thing that was in my mind is should a person wait till the range and mpg get even better yet.  I really think a cruze diesel, or a volt, or even the new Malibu hybrid will all be good ways to drive with less fuel / elec.  The used volt was getting really cheap.........

     

    i would be all go on a current Cruze diesel but the 2017 has the chance to get better mpg yet.  For me the question i ask myself is whether i really want every day to have to plug the thing in (PITA) and how the volt ultimately does in winter.

     

    My test with the Volt was in winter time and it was fantastic.  Just schlepping around town and plugging it in at night I got something like 700mpg since I never used the gas.   I have a garage, so plugging it in wasn't an issue... pull in, close the door, pop the plug cover, plug it in, go inside.

     

    The great thing (possibly my favorite thing) about the Volt was the ability to turn it on remotely and have it pre-heat itself off of house current even with the garage door closed.

     

    Whoa. That's awesome.

     

    I really like the idea of te plug-in hybrid design. I like it more than any other hybrid drivetrain out there, as of now at least.

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    42 mpg on gas isn't particularly impressive, but it's important to note that first gen owners actually GOT the rated efficiency. A lot of hybrids advertising 45+ mpg can't say that. 53 miles on battery charge is quite nice, though.

     

     

     

    The 42mpg EPA rating is actually a bit of a disservice to the Volt since the actual results can vary so widely.... it needs to be more of a range of efficiency rather than a single number. 

     

     

     

    The rating was done on a conservative side because since day one, everything pertaining to this car has been a political maelstrom to disservice GM. In the current Volt I have friends and colleagues that see 50MPG regularly when the EV is done. I'm betting smart money that this one is gonna beat that number by at least 10 in tests.

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    42 mpg on gas isn't particularly impressive, but it's important to note that first gen owners actually GOT the rated efficiency. A lot of hybrids advertising 45+ mpg can't say that. 53 miles on battery charge is quite nice, though.

     

     

     

    The 42mpg EPA rating is actually a bit of a disservice to the Volt since the actual results can vary so widely.... it needs to be more of a range of efficiency rather than a single number. 

     

     

     

    The rating was done on a conservative side because since day one, everything pertaining to this car has been a political maelstrom to disservice GM. In the current Volt I have friends and colleagues that see 50MPG regularly when the EV is done. I'm betting smart money that this one is gonna beat that number by at least 10 in tests.

     

     

    I have friends that have a Volt and only fill up 3 times a year, but still do 15,000 miles a year.  They're just in the perfect part of the segment with 30 mile round trip commutes.

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    With my 24 mile round trip commute, five days a week, the Volt is the perfect kind of car for a guy like me. Would save me so much money in the long run.

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    With my 24 mile round trip commute, five days a week, the Volt is the perfect kind of car for a guy like me. Would save me so much money in the long run.

     

    If you don't mind leasing, the deals on the Volt really would save you money.

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    With my 24 mile round trip commute, five days a week, the Volt is the perfect kind of car for a guy like me. Would save me so much money in the long run.

     

    If you don't mind leasing, the deals on the Volt really would save you money.

     

    Very true but I tend to keep my cars for more than a few years these days so financing one is not a big deal for me.

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    With my 24 mile round trip commute, five days a week, the Volt is the perfect kind of car for a guy like me. Would save me so much money in the long run.

     

    If you don't mind leasing, the deals on the Volt really would save you money.

     

    Very true but I tend to keep my cars for more than a few years these days so financing one is not a big deal for me.

     

     

    True, but run the numbers.  You usually get the full force of the tax credit built right in and GM likes leasing them. 

     

    My friends ended up leasing theirs so cheap, the savings in fuel costs each month (they came from an old Pathfiner or 4Runner) completely covered the monthly leasing costs.  It also only increased their electric bill about $35 a month.

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    42 mpg on gas isn't particularly impressive, but it's important to note that first gen owners actually GOT the rated efficiency. A lot of hybrids advertising 45+ mpg can't say that. 53 miles on battery charge is quite nice, though.

     

     

     

    The 42mpg EPA rating is actually a bit of a disservice to the Volt since the actual results can vary so widely.... it needs to be more of a range of efficiency rather than a single number.

     

     

    The rating was done on a conservative side because since day one, everything pertaining to this car has been a political maelstrom to disservice GM. In the current Volt I have friends and colleagues that see 50MPG regularly when the EV is done. I'm betting smart money that this one is gonna beat that number by at least 10 in tests.

    And THIS is why you don't try and squeeze every last molecule of fuel in a quest for paper mpg numbers and then shout it from the rafters. This car is a technological marvel, but we can't discount the fact that GM's conservative approach has helped the car punch above its weight mileage-wise.

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    42 mpg on gas isn't particularly impressive, but it's important to note that first gen owners actually GOT the rated efficiency. A lot of hybrids advertising 45+ mpg can't say that. 53 miles on battery charge is quite nice, though.

     

    MPG in the Volt is a lot more "your mileage may vary" than standard gas cars.   It greatly depends on the terrain and driving style.   Heading east bound on the Penna TPK end to end, you can get into the 70+mpg range.  Heading westbound you'll just get EPA rating.   Why?  Because the Volt can effectively re-fuel on the downhill stretches and use that for the uphill.  Eastbound there is more downhill than uphill, so the Volt spends a lot more time regenerating its batteries via the car's inertia rather than the gas engine.  

     

    Because it has more battery capacity and power than a regular hybrid, the Volt gets to take greater advantage of the downward momentum.   Regular hybrids like the Fusion or Pruis can have their batteries recharged rather quickly on the downhill sections, and once those batteries are full, the excess energy is wasted as heat. 

     

    The 42mpg EPA rating is actually a bit of a disservice to the Volt since the actual results can vary so widely.... it needs to be more of a range of efficiency rather than a single number. 

     

    that is a good explanation telling how sophisticated it is 

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    a good friend who owns a Volt says he gets 45 mpg on gas on his right now, and that is on long highway trip with 4 ppl inside.  actually he says the mileage is pretty much 40+ no matter what when just running on gas.  If the new one is better.....

     

    I actually looked at a used 2013 Volt a couple weeks ago, and test drove it, it got sold (it was a screaming deal) but one thing that was in my mind is should a person wait till the range and mpg get even better yet.  I really think a cruze diesel, or a volt, or even the new Malibu hybrid will all be good ways to drive with less fuel / elec.  The used volt was getting really cheap.........

     

    i would be all go on a current Cruze diesel but the 2017 has the chance to get better mpg yet.  For me the question i ask myself is whether i really want every day to have to plug the thing in (PITA) and how the volt ultimately does in winter.

     

    My test with the Volt was in winter time and it was fantastic.  Just schlepping around town and plugging it in at night I got something like 700mpg since I never used the gas.   I have a garage, so plugging it in wasn't an issue... pull in, close the door, pop the plug cover, plug it in, go inside.

     

    The great thing (possibly my favorite thing) about the Volt was the ability to turn it on remotely and have it pre-heat itself off of house current even with the garage door closed.

     

    now that is EXTREMELY appealing, is there a safeguard in place so that under no condition the gas engine will start in that scenario?

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    a good friend who owns a Volt says he gets 45 mpg on gas on his right now, and that is on long highway trip with 4 ppl inside.  actually he says the mileage is pretty much 40+ no matter what when just running on gas.  If the new one is better.....

     

    I actually looked at a used 2013 Volt a couple weeks ago, and test drove it, it got sold (it was a screaming deal) but one thing that was in my mind is should a person wait till the range and mpg get even better yet.  I really think a cruze diesel, or a volt, or even the new Malibu hybrid will all be good ways to drive with less fuel / elec.  The used volt was getting really cheap.........

     

    i would be all go on a current Cruze diesel but the 2017 has the chance to get better mpg yet.  For me the question i ask myself is whether i really want every day to have to plug the thing in (PITA) and how the volt ultimately does in winter.

     

    My test with the Volt was in winter time and it was fantastic.  Just schlepping around town and plugging it in at night I got something like 700mpg since I never used the gas.   I have a garage, so plugging it in wasn't an issue... pull in, close the door, pop the plug cover, plug it in, go inside.

     

    The great thing (possibly my favorite thing) about the Volt was the ability to turn it on remotely and have it pre-heat itself off of house current even with the garage door closed.

     

    now that is EXTREMELY appealing, is there a safeguard in place so that under no condition the gas engine will start in that scenario?

     

     

    When it is plugged in, the gas engine will not start.  The only issue is if you forgot to plug in the car, then the gas motor could start, but due to a recall, it will now shut off after 10 minutes of no activity.  

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    With my 24 mile round trip commute, five days a week, the Volt is the perfect kind of car for a guy like me. Would save me so much money in the long run.

     

    If you don't mind leasing, the deals on the Volt really would save you money.

     

    Very true but I tend to keep my cars for more than a few years these days so financing one is not a big deal for me.

     

     

    True, but run the numbers.  You usually get the full force of the tax credit built right in and GM likes leasing them. 

     

    My friends ended up leasing theirs so cheap, the savings in fuel costs each month (they came from an old Pathfiner or 4Runner) completely covered the monthly leasing costs.  It also only increased their electric bill about $35 a month.

     

    That's always good to know. Thanks.

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    42 mpg on gas isn't particularly impressive, but it's important to note that first gen owners actually GOT the rated efficiency. A lot of hybrids advertising 45+ mpg can't say that. 53 miles on battery charge is quite nice, though.

     

     

     

    The 42mpg EPA rating is actually a bit of a disservice to the Volt since the actual results can vary so widely.... it needs to be more of a range of efficiency rather than a single number.

     

     

    The rating was done on a conservative side because since day one, everything pertaining to this car has been a political maelstrom to disservice GM. In the current Volt I have friends and colleagues that see 50MPG regularly when the EV is done. I'm betting smart money that this one is gonna beat that number by at least 10 in tests.

    And THIS is why you don't try and squeeze every last molecule of fuel in a quest for paper mpg numbers and then shout it from the rafters. This car is a technological marvel, but we can't discount the fact that GM's conservative approach has helped the car punch above its weight mileage-wise.

     

     

     

    Well I'm also sure they saw the out and out LYING of Hyundai on most of their POS line-up and Ford's Cmax and Fusion and said "no sir... tell the truth.. IN FACT.. under rate it." They did the same thing I think on ATS-V, CTS-V, Z06, Corvette, and Camaro performance numbers. Notice all of those vehicles are beating their manufacturer claims?

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      Sierra and Canyon were up 14 percent and 43 percent, respectively. Acadia, Yukon and Yukon XL were up 4 percent, 22 percent and 19 percent, respectively. Brand ATP was at $43,887, the highest November on record. Highest November ever for Denali penetration, at 27.8 percent. Best November ever for Canyon and ninth month of year over year increases. Yukon and Yukon XL had their best November since 2007. Buick
      Regal and Encore were up 41 percent and 35 percent, respectively. 68 percent of sales were crossovers. Best year to date retail performance since 2005. Cadillac
      Escalade was up 24 percent and had its best month of the year. Escalade had its best November since 2007. XT5 had its best month since launch with sales up 12 percent over last month and up 27 percent over the SRX last November, the vehicle it replaced. Year to date ATP was $53,690, the highest ever in Cadillac history Average Transaction Prices (ATP)/Incentives (based on JD Power PIN estimates)
      GM’s ATPs, which reflect retail transaction prices after sales incentives, were $35,767 in November, more than $4,000 above the industry average. In November, GM’s incentive spending as a percent of ATP was 13.7 percent, above the industry average of 12.4 percent. However, year to date, GM’s incentive spending was 11.7 percent, slightly above the industry average of 11.4 percent and well below the incentive spending of its domestic competitors and many of its global competitors. Fleet and Commercial
      Automotive Fleet magazine named Malibu “Fleet Car of the Year”. GM Fleet sales were up 19 percent versus last November. Fleet sales were 22 percent of GM’s sales for the month. Commercial deliveries were up 11 percent for the month and it was the best November Commercial sales since 2008. Malibu Commercial deliveries were up 170 percent versus last November. Small Business deliveries were up 15 percent for the month versus last November, driven by large vans, which were up 93 percent and large pickups, which were up 16 percent versus last November. Federal government sales were up 9 percent versus last November. Rental sales were up 27 percent versus last November but are down 25 percent CYTD, according to plan. GM’s outlook on its daily rental sales mix remains in the 11 percent range of total U.S. sales for 2016 and daily rental sales for the year are expected to be down about 75,000 vehicles. Industry Sales
      GM estimates that the seasonally adjusted annual selling rate (SAAR) for light vehicles in November was approximately 17.9 million units. On a calendar year-to-date basis, GM estimates the light-vehicle SAAR was 17.5 million units.
    • By William Maley
      When I go back and look at the various Kia Optimas I have driven for Cheers & Gears, there has been one variant that I haven’t driven, the 2.0L turbo-four. But this changed back over the summer when a 2016 Kia Optima SXL came into the Cheers & Gears’ Detroit bureau for a week-long evaluation. The SXL serves as the Optima’s flagship trim with more premium materials and the turbo-four.
      As I mentioned in my Optima EX review from earlier this year, the redesigned Optima looks familiar to the previous model. But that isn’t a bad thing per say. It is still as sharp looking as the previous model and the changes done such as a new trunk lid, LED taillights, a smaller grille, and reshaped headlights. The SXL takes it a step further with a set of 18-inch alloy wheels, Turbo badging on the fender vents, and a little bit more chrome. Finished in a dark blue, the Optima SXL is damn good looking midsize sedan. You won’t find many differences in the SXL’s interior compared to other Optima’s. The key one is the seats being wrapped Nappa leather with a quilted pattern. If I am being honest, I can’t really tell difference between the Nappa leather and the standard leather used on other Kia models.  But what I can tell the difference with is the materials used in the SXL’s interior. Kia swaps the soft-touch plastic used on the dash and door panels for stitched leatherette. This is to give the impression that you’re in something more expensive and it works very well. The Optima SXL’s backseat is slightly tighter than the one found in the Optima EX. Why? The SXL comes with a panoramic sunroof as standard, which eats into headroom. Let’s talk about the engine. The SXL features a 2.0L turbocharged four-cylinder with 245 horsepower and 260 pound-feet of torque. This is paired with a six-speed automatic. Leaving a stop, it takes a moment for the engine to fully wake up and you can’t help but wonder where is the power. At first, I thought this new 2.0L developed a bad case of turbo-lag. But I soon realized that it was a lazy throttle that was causing this issue. This is something we have been noticing in recent Hyundai and Kia models equipped with the turbo engine. Once you get over the lazy throttle, the engine moves the Optima with some authority. Merging onto a freeway or making a pass is no problem as the turbo quickly spools up and gives the necessary thrust. It doesn’t hurt the engine is very refined. EPA fuel economy figures stand at 22 City/32 Highway/25 Combined. I achieved a not too shabby 26.1 mpg average for the week. One of my biggest complaints about the last Optima I drove was the uncomfortable ride. The tuning on the EX model let in more bumps and road imperfections inside than what I was expecting. To my surprise, the SXL featured a more comfortable ride. Despite featuring larger wheels, the SXL was able to iron out most bumps and imperfections. I can’t explain why there is a vast difference in terms of ride quality between the two trims at this time. The SXL does retain the sharp handling that we liked in the Optima EX. Body motions are kept in check and the steering provides a nice heft when turning. Some will lament that the steering doesn’t have the same feel as something like the Mazda6, but this has to be Kia’s best effort yet.  The Optima SXL begins at $35,790 and that includes every option available on the Optima as standard equipment - 18-inch alloy wheels, dual-zone climate control, heated and ventilated front seats, a Harman/Kardon audio system, navigation, blind-spot monitoring, adaptive cruise control, surround view camera system, and much more. Some might balk at the price. But considering what the SXL brings to the table, along with its improved ride quality, it is very much worth the price. Plus, you might be able to work out a deal to where you’ll be able to cut the price. We’ve seen dealers cutting about $2,000 to $4,000 off Optima SXLs in an effort improve sales of the midsize sedan. Who knows, you might be able to get one of best equipped and decent driving midsize sedans at a surprising price. Disclaimer: Kia Provided the Optima SXL, Insurance, and One Tank of Gas
      Year: 2016
      Make: Kia
      Model: Optima
      Trim: SXL
      Engine: Turbocharged 2.0L DOHC Four-Cylinder
      Driveline: Six-Speed Automatic, Front-Wheel Drive
      Horsepower @ RPM: 245 @ 6,000
      Torque @ RPM: 260 @ 1,350-4,000 
      Fuel Economy: City/Highway/Combined - 22/32/25
      Curb Weight: 3,594 lbs
      Location of Manufacture: West Point, Georgia
      Base Price: $35,790
      As Tested Price: $36,615 (Includes $825.00 Destination Charge)
      Options:
      N/A

      View full article
    • By William Maley
      When I go back and look at the various Kia Optimas I have driven for Cheers & Gears, there has been one variant that I haven’t driven, the 2.0L turbo-four. But this changed back over the summer when a 2016 Kia Optima SXL came into the Cheers & Gears’ Detroit bureau for a week-long evaluation. The SXL serves as the Optima’s flagship trim with more premium materials and the turbo-four.
      As I mentioned in my Optima EX review from earlier this year, the redesigned Optima looks familiar to the previous model. But that isn’t a bad thing per say. It is still as sharp looking as the previous model and the changes done such as a new trunk lid, LED taillights, a smaller grille, and reshaped headlights. The SXL takes it a step further with a set of 18-inch alloy wheels, Turbo badging on the fender vents, and a little bit more chrome. Finished in a dark blue, the Optima SXL is damn good looking midsize sedan. You won’t find many differences in the SXL’s interior compared to other Optima’s. The key one is the seats being wrapped Nappa leather with a quilted pattern. If I am being honest, I can’t really tell difference between the Nappa leather and the standard leather used on other Kia models.  But what I can tell the difference with is the materials used in the SXL’s interior. Kia swaps the soft-touch plastic used on the dash and door panels for stitched leatherette. This is to give the impression that you’re in something more expensive and it works very well. The Optima SXL’s backseat is slightly tighter than the one found in the Optima EX. Why? The SXL comes with a panoramic sunroof as standard, which eats into headroom. Let’s talk about the engine. The SXL features a 2.0L turbocharged four-cylinder with 245 horsepower and 260 pound-feet of torque. This is paired with a six-speed automatic. Leaving a stop, it takes a moment for the engine to fully wake up and you can’t help but wonder where is the power. At first, I thought this new 2.0L developed a bad case of turbo-lag. But I soon realized that it was a lazy throttle that was causing this issue. This is something we have been noticing in recent Hyundai and Kia models equipped with the turbo engine. Once you get over the lazy throttle, the engine moves the Optima with some authority. Merging onto a freeway or making a pass is no problem as the turbo quickly spools up and gives the necessary thrust. It doesn’t hurt the engine is very refined. EPA fuel economy figures stand at 22 City/32 Highway/25 Combined. I achieved a not too shabby 26.1 mpg average for the week. One of my biggest complaints about the last Optima I drove was the uncomfortable ride. The tuning on the EX model let in more bumps and road imperfections inside than what I was expecting. To my surprise, the SXL featured a more comfortable ride. Despite featuring larger wheels, the SXL was able to iron out most bumps and imperfections. I can’t explain why there is a vast difference in terms of ride quality between the two trims at this time. The SXL does retain the sharp handling that we liked in the Optima EX. Body motions are kept in check and the steering provides a nice heft when turning. Some will lament that the steering doesn’t have the same feel as something like the Mazda6, but this has to be Kia’s best effort yet.  The Optima SXL begins at $35,790 and that includes every option available on the Optima as standard equipment - 18-inch alloy wheels, dual-zone climate control, heated and ventilated front seats, a Harman/Kardon audio system, navigation, blind-spot monitoring, adaptive cruise control, surround view camera system, and much more. Some might balk at the price. But considering what the SXL brings to the table, along with its improved ride quality, it is very much worth the price. Plus, you might be able to work out a deal to where you’ll be able to cut the price. We’ve seen dealers cutting about $2,000 to $4,000 off Optima SXLs in an effort improve sales of the midsize sedan. Who knows, you might be able to get one of best equipped and decent driving midsize sedans at a surprising price. Disclaimer: Kia Provided the Optima SXL, Insurance, and One Tank of Gas
      Year: 2016
      Make: Kia
      Model: Optima
      Trim: SXL
      Engine: Turbocharged 2.0L DOHC Four-Cylinder
      Driveline: Six-Speed Automatic, Front-Wheel Drive
      Horsepower @ RPM: 245 @ 6,000
      Torque @ RPM: 260 @ 1,350-4,000 
      Fuel Economy: City/Highway/Combined - 22/32/25
      Curb Weight: 3,594 lbs
      Location of Manufacture: West Point, Georgia
      Base Price: $35,790
      As Tested Price: $36,615 (Includes $825.00 Destination Charge)
      Options:
      N/A
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