2011 Kia Optima receives five-star NHTSA crash rating

2011 Kia Optima – Click above for high-res image gallery

The Kia Optima set the mark as the first Korean-built car to be officially five-star certified by the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration. The all-new Optima recieved five-star ratings in the frontal, side-impact and rollover tests.

The Optima sports six airbags, active front headrests, side-impact door bars and height adjustable three-point seat belts for each seat. This five-star rating is indeed something worthy of bragging rights, as NHTSA imposed significantly stricter testing standards for 2011 models. Follow the jump for Kia's press release.

2011 Kia Optima 2.0T
2011 Kia Optima 2.0T
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Photos copyright ©2011 Zach Bowman / AOL

[Source: Kia]
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Highest Possible Ratings for All-New Kia Midsize Sedan in Frontal, Side and Rollover Impact Crash Tests

- All-new Optima is first Korean-built vehicle to achieve the highest rating under new, more stringent government guidelines by the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA)

- High level of standard safety features contribute to Optima's overall performance and high scores in all four categories

IRVINE, Calif., March 3, 2011 /PRNewswire/ -- The all-new 2011 Kia Optima midsize sedan has achieved an overall five-star crash safety rating – the highest possible score – after attaining five stars in each of the overall ratings categories in the latest crash tests conducted by the U.S. Department of Transportation's NHTSA. Already a recipient of a "Top Safety Pick" award by the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety (IIHS), Optima offers consumers exceptional levels of standard safety equipment and technologies.

"As the most recent addition to Kia's lineup, the 2011 Optima incorporates some of Kia's most advanced safety technologies with head-turning style, performance and comfort to provide consumers with high value and peace-of-mind," said Byung Mo Ahn, group president and CEO of Kia Motors America (KMA) and Kia Motors Manufacturing Georgia (KMMG). "As the first Korean-built vehicle to be awarded a five-star crash safety rating under NHTSA's new, stricter guidelines, Optima creates a new benchmark in the segment and underscores Kia's commitment to offering consumers the highest levels of quality and safety in all of our vehicles."

In all, 24 passenger cars, 20 sport utility vehicles, two vans, and nine 2011 model year pickups were rated under the new system that not only includes tougher crash tests, but, for the first time, provides consumers with a single overall safety score per vehicle. The new testing program also provides consumers with information about new advanced crash avoidance technologies, such as lane departure and forward collision warning systems.

About the 2011 Kia Optima

Like the rest of Kia line-up, the 2011 Optima comes equipped with a high level of standard safety features, including: six airbags(1) (dual advanced front and front-seat mounted side as well as full-length side curtain), front active headrests, side-impact door beams, height-adjustable front seatbelts with pre-tensioners, three-point seatbelts for all seating positions, Lower Anchors and Tethers for Children (LATCH) and a Tire Pressure Monitoring System (TPMS). Four-wheel antilock brakes (ABS), ESC, a Traction Control System (TCS), a Brake Assist System (BAS) and Hill Assist Control (HAC) also are standard.

Available in three trims, LX, EX and SX, the 2011 Optima offers a wide array of convenience and luxury as well as impressive technology features like an AM/FM/CD/MP3/Sat audio system with SIRIUS® Satellite Radio capabilities and three months complimentary service(2), auxiliary and USB audio input jacks and standard Bluetooth®(3) wireless technology connectivity with steering wheel-mounted voice activation controls to enable hands-free operation for compatible mobile phones. Available with three all-new and fuel-efficient engines, a 2.4-liter GDI four-cylinder, a 2.0-liter GDI turbo or a 2.4-liter hybrid (available later this year), pricing for the stylish and performance-oriented midsize sedan begins at $18,995(4).

2011 Kia Motors America Product Line

Kia's model year 2011 vehicle line includes the Sorento CUV, Sportage compact CUV, Optima midsize sedan, Soul urban passenger vehicle, Forte compact sedan, Forte 5-door compact hatchback, Forte Koup two-door coupe, Rio sub-compact sedan, Rio5 sub-compact hatchback and Sedona minivan.

About Kia Motors America

Kia Motors America (KMA) is the marketing and distribution arm of Kia Motors Corporation based in Seoul, South Korea. KMA offers a complete line of vehicles through more than 730 dealers throughout the United States and serves as the "Official Automotive Partner of the NBA." In 2010, KMA recorded its best-ever U.S. sales and 16th consecutive year of increased U.S. market share. Kia is poised to continue its momentum and will continue to build the brand through design innovation, quality, value, safety features and new technologies.

Information about Kia Motors America and its full vehicle line-up is available at its Web site – www.kia.com. For media information, including photography, visit www.kiamedia.com.

About NHTSA and NCAP

Government star ratings are part of the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration's (NHTSA) New Car Assessment Program (NCAP) (www.safercar.gov). Vehicle Tested with Standard Side Airbags (SABs).

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