2020 Kia Optima vs. 2019 Honda Accord

Detailed Review, Specifications & Comparison

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Safety

© 1999 - 2019 Advanta-STAR Automotive Research. All rights reserved. This vehicle comparison and all of the content in it are provided only by license from Advanta-STAR Automotive Research Corporation of America. If you are not a legally licensed user of this vehicle comparison, it is against federal law to access it, copy it, forward it or use it in any manner whatsoever. Any unauthorized use of this vehicle comparison is a violation of U.S. and international law and is punishable criminally and civilly. 6IUEX-0KENZ 45.55.47.189 2019/10/23

The Optima has standard Active Headrests, which use a specially designed headrest to protect the driver and front passenger from whiplash. During a rear-end collision, the Active Headrests system moves the headrests forward to prevent neck and spine injuries. The Accord doesn’t offer a whiplash protection system.

Both the Optima and the Accord have standard driver and passenger frontal airbags, front side-impact airbags, driver knee airbags, side-impact head airbags, front seatbelt pretensioners, front wheel drive, height adjustable front shoulder belts, plastic fuel tanks, four-wheel antilock brakes, traction control, electronic stability systems to prevent skidding, crash mitigating brakes, daytime running lights, lane departure warning systems, rearview cameras and driver alert monitors.

The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration does 35 MPH front crash tests on new vehicles. In this test, results indicate that the Kia Optima is safer than the Honda Accord:

Optima

Accord

Driver

STARS

5 Stars

5 Stars

HIC

185

261

Neck Injury Risk

22%

23%

Neck Compression

55 lbs.

74 lbs.

Leg Forces (l/r)

114/300 lbs.

231/338 lbs.

New test not comparable to pre-2011 test results. More stars = Better. Lower test results = Better.

The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration does side impact tests on new vehicles. In this test, which crashes the vehicle into a flat barrier at 38.5 MPH and into a post at 20 MPH, results indicate that the Kia Optima is safer than the Honda Accord:

Optima

Accord

Front Seat

STARS

5 Stars

5 Stars

HIC

111

140

Chest Movement

.8 inches

.8 inches

Hip Force

306 lbs.

431 lbs.

Rear Seat

STARS

5 Stars

5 Stars

HIC

319

386

Into Pole

STARS

5 Stars

5 Stars

Max Damage Depth

13 inches

13 inches

HIC

196

242

Hip Force

585 lbs.

756 lbs.

New test not comparable to pre-2011 test results. More stars = Better. Lower test results = Better.

For its top level performance in IIHS driver and passenger-side small overlap frontal, moderate overlap frontal, side impact, roof strength and head restraint tests, with its optional front crash prevention system, and its headlight’s “Good” rating, the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety grants the Optima its highest rating: “Top Pick Plus” for 2019, a rating granted to only 46 vehicles tested by the IIHS. The Accord is only a standard “Top Pick” for 2019.

Warranty

© 1999 - 2019 Advanta-STAR Automotive Research. All rights reserved. This vehicle comparison and all of the content in it are provided only by license from Advanta-STAR Automotive Research Corporation of America. If you are not a legally licensed user of this vehicle comparison, it is against federal law to access it, copy it, forward it or use it in any manner whatsoever. Any unauthorized use of this vehicle comparison is a violation of U.S. and international law and is punishable criminally and civilly. 6IUEX-0KENZ 45.55.47.189 2019/10/23

The Optima comes with a full 5-year/60,000-mile basic warranty, which covers the entire car and includes 24-hour roadside assistance. The Accord’s 3-year/36,000-mile basic warranty expires 2 years and 24,000 miles sooner.

Kia’s powertrain warranty covers the Optima 5 years and 40,000 miles longer than Honda covers the Accord. Any repair needed on the engine, transmission, axles, joints or driveshafts is fully covered for 10 years or 100,000 miles. Coverage on the Accord ends after only 5 years or 60,000 miles.

Reliability

© 1999 - 2019 Advanta-STAR Automotive Research. All rights reserved. This vehicle comparison and all of the content in it are provided only by license from Advanta-STAR Automotive Research Corporation of America. If you are not a legally licensed user of this vehicle comparison, it is against federal law to access it, copy it, forward it or use it in any manner whatsoever. Any unauthorized use of this vehicle comparison is a violation of U.S. and international law and is punishable criminally and civilly. 6IUEX-0KENZ 45.55.47.189 2019/10/23

A reliable vehicle saves its owner time, money and trouble. Nobody wants to be stranded or have to be without a vehicle while it’s being repaired. Consumer Reports rates the Optima’s reliability 22 points higher than the Accord.

J.D. Power and Associates rated the Optima third among midsize cars in their 2019 Initial Quality Study. The Accord isn’t in the top three.

J.D. Power and Associates’ 2019 Initial Quality Study of new car owners surveyed provide the statistics that show that Kia vehicles are better in initial quality than Honda vehicles. J.D. Power ranks Kia second in initial quality, above the industry average. With 28 more problems per 100 vehicles, Honda is ranked 16th, below the industry average.

J.D. Power and Associates’ 2019 survey of the owners of three-year-old vehicles provides the long-term dependability statistics that show that Kia vehicles are more reliable than Honda vehicles. J.D. Power ranks Kia 10th in reliability, above the industry average. With 20 more problems per 100 vehicles, Honda is ranked 16th.

From surveys of all its subscribers, Consumer Reports’ December 2018 Auto Issue reports that Kia vehicles are more reliable than Honda vehicles. Consumer Reports ranks Kia 10 places higher in reliability than Honda.

Engine

© 1999 - 2019 Advanta-STAR Automotive Research. All rights reserved. This vehicle comparison and all of the content in it are provided only by license from Advanta-STAR Automotive Research Corporation of America. If you are not a legally licensed user of this vehicle comparison, it is against federal law to access it, copy it, forward it or use it in any manner whatsoever. Any unauthorized use of this vehicle comparison is a violation of U.S. and international law and is punishable criminally and civilly. 6IUEX-0KENZ 45.55.47.189 2019/10/23

As tested in Motor Trend the Optima EX 1.6 turbo 4 cyl. is faster than the Honda Accord 1.5 turbo 4 cyl. (automatics tested):

Optima

Accord

Zero to 60 MPH

7.5 sec

7.6 sec

Quarter Mile

15.8 sec

15.9 sec

Speed in 1/4 Mile

90.1 MPH

89.3 MPH

Fuel Economy and Range

© 1999 - 2019 Advanta-STAR Automotive Research. All rights reserved. This vehicle comparison and all of the content in it are provided only by license from Advanta-STAR Automotive Research Corporation of America. If you are not a legally licensed user of this vehicle comparison, it is against federal law to access it, copy it, forward it or use it in any manner whatsoever. Any unauthorized use of this vehicle comparison is a violation of U.S. and international law and is punishable criminally and civilly. 6IUEX-0KENZ 45.55.47.189 2019/10/23

The Optima has 3.7 gallons more fuel capacity than the Accord (18.5 vs. 14.8 gallons), for longer range between fill-ups.

Transmission

© 1999 - 2019 Advanta-STAR Automotive Research. All rights reserved. This vehicle comparison and all of the content in it are provided only by license from Advanta-STAR Automotive Research Corporation of America. If you are not a legally licensed user of this vehicle comparison, it is against federal law to access it, copy it, forward it or use it in any manner whatsoever. Any unauthorized use of this vehicle comparison is a violation of U.S. and international law and is punishable criminally and civilly. 6IUEX-0KENZ 45.55.47.189 2019/10/23

The Optima offers an available sequential manual gearbox (SMG). With no clutch pedal to worry about and a fully automatic mode, an SMG is much more efficient than a conventional automatic but just as easy to drive. The Accord doesn’t offer an SMG.

Brakes and Stopping

© 1999 - 2019 Advanta-STAR Automotive Research. All rights reserved. This vehicle comparison and all of the content in it are provided only by license from Advanta-STAR Automotive Research Corporation of America. If you are not a legally licensed user of this vehicle comparison, it is against federal law to access it, copy it, forward it or use it in any manner whatsoever. Any unauthorized use of this vehicle comparison is a violation of U.S. and international law and is punishable criminally and civilly. 6IUEX-0KENZ 45.55.47.189 2019/10/23

For better stopping power the Optima’s brake rotors are larger than those on the Accord:

Optima LX/S

Optima EX/SX

Accord

Accord 2.0T/Sport/Touring

Front Rotors

12 inches

12.6 inches

11.5 inches

12.3 inches

Rear Rotors

11.2 inches

11.2 inches

11.1 inches

11.1 inches

The Optima stops much shorter than the Accord:

Optima

Accord

60 to 0 MPH

118 feet

135 feet

Motor Trend

60 to 0 MPH (Wet)

140 feet

142 feet

Consumer Reports

Suspension and Handling

© 1999 - 2019 Advanta-STAR Automotive Research. All rights reserved. This vehicle comparison and all of the content in it are provided only by license from Advanta-STAR Automotive Research Corporation of America. If you are not a legally licensed user of this vehicle comparison, it is against federal law to access it, copy it, forward it or use it in any manner whatsoever. Any unauthorized use of this vehicle comparison is a violation of U.S. and international law and is punishable criminally and civilly. 6IUEX-0KENZ 45.55.47.189 2019/10/23

The Optima SX handles at .83 G’s, while the Accord EX pulls only .81 G’s of cornering force in a Motor Trend skidpad test.

For better maneuverability, the Optima’s turning circle is 2.3 feet tighter than the Accord’s (35.8 feet vs. 38.1 feet). The Optima’s turning circle is 3.6 feet tighter than the Accord Sport Manual/2.0T’s (35.8 feet vs. 39.4 feet).

Passenger Space

© 1999 - 2019 Advanta-STAR Automotive Research. All rights reserved. This vehicle comparison and all of the content in it are provided only by license from Advanta-STAR Automotive Research Corporation of America. If you are not a legally licensed user of this vehicle comparison, it is against federal law to access it, copy it, forward it or use it in any manner whatsoever. Any unauthorized use of this vehicle comparison is a violation of U.S. and international law and is punishable criminally and civilly. 6IUEX-0KENZ 45.55.47.189 2019/10/23

The Optima has .3 inches more front headroom, 3.2 inches more front legroom, .7 inches more front hip room, .5 inches more rear headroom and 1 inch more rear hip room than the Accord.

The front step up height for the Optima is 1.5 inches lower than the Accord (15” vs. 16.5”).

Cargo Capacity

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The Optima’s standard folding rear seats are split to accommodate bulky cargo. The Accord LX’s standard single piece folding rear seat is not as flexible; long cargo and a passenger can’t share the rear seat.

To make loading groceries and cargo easier when your hands are full, the Optima S/EX/SX’s trunk can be opened just by waiting momentarily behind the back bumper, leaving your hands completely free. The Accord doesn’t offer a hands-free gesture to open its trunk, forcing you to put cargo down if your hands are full.

Servicing Ease

© 1999 - 2019 Advanta-STAR Automotive Research. All rights reserved. This vehicle comparison and all of the content in it are provided only by license from Advanta-STAR Automotive Research Corporation of America. If you are not a legally licensed user of this vehicle comparison, it is against federal law to access it, copy it, forward it or use it in any manner whatsoever. Any unauthorized use of this vehicle comparison is a violation of U.S. and international law and is punishable criminally and civilly. 6IUEX-0KENZ 45.55.47.189 2019/10/23

The Optima uses gas struts to support the hood for easier service access. The Accord uses a prop rod to support its heavy hood. It takes two hands to open the hood and set the prop rod, the prop rod gets in the way during maintenance and service, and the prop rod could be knocked out, causing the heavy hood to fall on the person maintaining or servicing the car.

Ergonomics

© 1999 - 2019 Advanta-STAR Automotive Research. All rights reserved. This vehicle comparison and all of the content in it are provided only by license from Advanta-STAR Automotive Research Corporation of America. If you are not a legally licensed user of this vehicle comparison, it is against federal law to access it, copy it, forward it or use it in any manner whatsoever. Any unauthorized use of this vehicle comparison is a violation of U.S. and international law and is punishable criminally and civilly. 6IUEX-0KENZ 45.55.47.189 2019/10/23

The power windows standard on both the Optima and the Accord have locks to prevent small children from operating them. When the lock on the Optima is engaged the driver can still operate all of the windows, for instance to close one opened by a child. The Accord prevents the driver from operating the other windows just as it does the other passengers.

The Optima’s power window, power lock, power mirror and cruise control switches are lit from behind, making them plainly visible and easier to operate at night. The Accord’s power window (except driver window), power lock and power mirror switches are unlit, making them difficult to find at night and operate safely.

The Insurance Institute for Highway Safety (IIHS) conducts detailed tests on headlights for their range both straight ahead and in curves and to be certain they don’t exceed acceptable amounts of glare to oncoming drivers. The Optima’s available headlights were rated “Good” by the IIHS, while the Accord’s headlights are rated “Acceptable” to “Marginal.”

To help drivers see further while navigating curves, the Optima SX has standard adaptive headlights to illuminate around corners automatically by reading vehicle speed and steering wheel angle. The Accord doesn’t offer cornering lights.

The Optima’s standard outside mirrors include heating elements to clear off the mirrors for better visibility. Honda only offers heated mirrors on the Accord Sport 2.0T/EX/EX-L/Touring.

On extremely cold winter days, the Optima EX Premium/SX’s standard heated steering wheel provides comfort, allowing the driver to steer safely and comfortably before the car heater warms up. The Accord doesn’t offer a heated steering wheel.

Economic Advantages

© 1999 - 2019 Advanta-STAR Automotive Research. All rights reserved. This vehicle comparison and all of the content in it are provided only by license from Advanta-STAR Automotive Research Corporation of America. If you are not a legally licensed user of this vehicle comparison, it is against federal law to access it, copy it, forward it or use it in any manner whatsoever. Any unauthorized use of this vehicle comparison is a violation of U.S. and international law and is punishable criminally and civilly. 6IUEX-0KENZ 45.55.47.189 2019/10/23

Insurance will cost less for the Optima owner. The Car Book by Jack Gillis rates the Optima with a number “1” insurance rate while the Accord is rated higher at a number “8” rate.

According to The Car Book by Jack Gillis, the Optima is less expensive to operate than the Accord because typical repairs cost much less on the Optima than the Accord, including $69 less for a water pump, $139 less for a muffler, $307 less for a starter, $218 less for fuel injection, $259 less for a fuel pump, $98 less for front struts and $468 less for a power steering pump.

Recommendations

© 1999 - 2019 Advanta-STAR Automotive Research. All rights reserved. This vehicle comparison and all of the content in it are provided only by license from Advanta-STAR Automotive Research Corporation of America. If you are not a legally licensed user of this vehicle comparison, it is against federal law to access it, copy it, forward it or use it in any manner whatsoever. Any unauthorized use of this vehicle comparison is a violation of U.S. and international law and is punishable criminally and civilly. 6IUEX-0KENZ 45.55.47.189 2019/10/23

Consumer Reports® recommends both the Kia Optima and the Honda Accord, based on reliability, safety and performance.

© 1991-2018 Advanta-STAR Automotive Research. All rights reserved.

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