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Kia Optima plug-in hybrid due in 2016

Set to be unveiled at the Frankfurt Motor Show next month, the Optima is longer, wider and roomier inside than its predecessor and will include an estate next year – the first time Kia has offered two bodystyles in this segment.

Although unconfirmed yet, Kia could utilise the drivetrain from the Hyundai Sonata Plug-in Hybrid, which comprises a 154bhp 2.0-litre direct-injection petrol engine and 50kW electric motor.

This offers a range of 24 miles on the North American homologation cycle, which is typically lower than the figures achieved on the New European Drive Cycle for plug-in hybrids. It's likely that this will enable the Optima to be eligible for incentives at the point of purchase, as well as low BiK and exemption from the London Congestion Charge.

Michael Cole, Chief Operating Officer of Kia Motors Europe, said: “The all-new Optima retains the unique personality of its predecessor, and improvements to every aspect of the car will make it an even more compelling proposition to buyers – private and fleet – across Europe. It truly offers motorists something fresh, in a segment that’s typically among the most conservative.”

Alex Grant

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