2020 Volkswagen Arteon vs. 2020 Kia Optima

Detailed Review, Specifications & Comparison

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Safety

© 1999 - 2020 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 2020/04/07

The Arteon has a standard Automatic Post-Collision Braking System, which automatically applies the brakes in the event of a crash to help prevent secondary collisions and prevent further injuries. The Optima doesn’t offer a post collision braking system: in the event of a collision that triggers the airbags, more collisions are possible without the protection of airbags that may have already deployed.

Over 200 people are killed each year when backed over by motor vehicles. The Arteon offers optional Maneuver Braking that uses rear sensors to monitor and automatically apply the brakes to prevent a rear collision. The Optima doesn’t offer backup collision prevention brakes.

The Arteon offers all-wheel drive to maximize traction under poor conditions, especially in ice and snow. The Optima doesn’t offer all-wheel drive.

The Arteon offers an optional Overhead View Camera to allow the driver to see objects all around the vehicle on a screen. The Optima only offers a rear monitor and rear parking sensors that beep or flash a light. That doesn’t help with obstacles to the front or sides.

Both the Arteon and the Optima 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, blind spot warning systems, rearview cameras, rear cross-path warning and available lane departure warning systems.

Warranty

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The Arteon’s corrosion warranty is 2 years longer than the Optima’s (7/100,000 vs. 5/100,000).

Volkswagen pays for scheduled maintenance on the Arteon for 2 years and 20,000 miles. Volkswagen will pay for oil changes, lubrication and any other required maintenance. Kia doesn’t pay scheduled maintenance for the Optima.

Reliability

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The Volkswagen Arteon’s engine uses a cast iron block for durability, while the Optima’s engines use an aluminum block. Aluminum engine blocks are much more prone to warp and crack at high temperatures than cast iron.

Engine

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The Arteon’s 2.0 turbo 4-cylinder produces 90 more horsepower (268 vs. 178) and 63 lbs.-ft. more torque (258 vs. 195) than the Optima EX’s standard 1.6 turbo 4-cylinder. The Arteon’s 2.0 turbo 4-cylinder produces 83 more horsepower (268 vs. 185) and 80 lbs.-ft. more torque (258 vs. 178) than the Optima’s standard 2.4 DOHC 4-cylinder. The Arteon’s 2.0 turbo 4-cylinder produces 23 more horsepower (268 vs. 245) than the Optima SX’s standard 2.0 turbo 4-cylinder.

As tested in Car and Driver the Volkswagen Arteon is faster than the Optima EX 1.6 turbo 4-cylinder:

Arteon

Optima

Zero to 60 MPH

6 sec

7.3 sec

Zero to 100 MPH

15.4 sec

19.1 sec

5 to 60 MPH Rolling Start

7.4 sec

7.6 sec

Quarter Mile

14.5 sec

15.8 sec

Speed in 1/4 Mile

97 MPH

92 MPH

Fuel Economy and Range

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In heavy traffic or at stoplights the Arteon’s engine automatically turns off when the vehicle is stopped, saving fuel and reducing pollution. The engine is automatically restarted when the driver gets ready to move again. (Start/Stop isn’t accounted in present EPA fuel mileage tests.) The Optima doesn’t offer an automatic engine start/stop system.

Transmission

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An eight-speed automatic is standard on the Volkswagen Arteon, for better acceleration and lower engine speed on the highway. Only a seven-speed automatic is available for the Optima.

Brakes and Stopping

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

Arteon

Optima LX/S

Optima EX/SX

Front Rotors

13.4 inches

12 inches

12.6 inches

Rear Rotors

12.2 inches

11.2 inches

11.2 inches

The Arteon stops much shorter than the Optima:

Arteon

Optima

70 to 0 MPH

171 feet

185 feet

Car and Driver

60 to 0 MPH

114 feet

123 feet

Motor Trend

60 to 0 MPH (Wet)

129 feet

140 feet

Consumer Reports

Tires and Wheels

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For better traction, the Arteon has larger tires than the Optima (245/45R18 vs. 205/65R16). The Arteon’s tires are larger than the largest tires available on the Optima (245/45R18 vs. 235/45R18).

The Arteon’s standard tires provide better handling because they have a lower 45 series profile (height to width ratio) that provides a stiffer sidewall than the Optima LX’s standard 65 series tires. The Arteon’s optional tires have a lower 35 series profile than the Optima S/SX’s 45 series tires.

For better ride, handling and brake cooling the Arteon has standard 18-inch wheels. Smaller 16-inch wheels are standard on the Optima LX. The Arteon’s optional 20-inch wheels are larger than the 18-inch wheels on the Optima S/SX.

Suspension and Handling

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The Arteon has a standard driver-adjustable suspension system. It allows the driver to choose between an extra-supple ride, reducing fatigue on long trips, or a sport setting, which allows maximum control for tricky roads. The Optima’s suspension doesn’t offer adjustable shock absorbers.

For a smoother ride and more stable handling, the Arteon’s wheelbase is 1.5 inches longer than on the Optima (111.9 inches vs. 110.4 inches).

The Arteon SE 4Motion handles at .89 G’s, while the Optima pulls only .83 G’s of cornering force in a Car and Driver skidpad test.

The Arteon SEL Premium R-Line 4Motion executes Motor Trend’s “Figure Eight” maneuver 1.1 seconds quicker than the Optima (26.7 seconds @ .64 average G’s vs. 27.8 seconds @ .62 average G’s).

Cargo Capacity

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To allow full utilization of available cargo room, the Arteon’s hatch uses gas strut supported hinges that don’t intrude into the cargo area. The Optima’s useful trunk space is reduced by its intrusive beam hinge.

A standard locking glovebox keeps your small valuables safer in the Arteon. The Optima doesn’t offer locking storage for small valuables.

To make loading and unloading groceries and cargo easier, especially for short adults, the Arteon SEL Premium has a standard power liftgate, which opens and closes automatically by pressing a button or just by kicking your foot under the back bumper, completely leaving your hands free. The Optima doesn’t offer a power trunk, so its trunk has to be closed manually.

Towing

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The Arteon has a 4850 lbs. towing capacity. The Optima has no towing capacity.

Ergonomics

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The Arteon’s power parking brake sets with one touch and releases with one touch or automatically. The Optima’s parking brake has to released manually.

The Arteon’s front and rear power windows all open or close fully with one touch of the switches, making it more convenient at drive-up windows and toll booths, or when talking with someone outside the car. The Optima’s standard power window switches have to be held the entire time to close them fully. Only its driver’s window opens automatically. With the Optima S/EX/SX’s power windows, only the front windows open or close automatically.

The Arteon’s rain-sensitive wipers adjust their speed and turn on and off automatically based on the amount of rainfall on the windshield. This allows the driver to concentrate on driving without constantly adjusting the wipers. The Optima’s manually variable intermittent wipers have to be constantly adjusted.

Consumer Reports rated the Arteon’s headlight performance “Good,” a higher rating than the Optima’s headlights, which were rated “Fair.”

The Arteon’s standard rear view mirror and optional side view mirrors have an automatic dimming feature. These mirrors can be set to automatically darken quickly when headlights shine on them, keeping following vehicles from blinding or distracting the driver. The Optima offers an automatic rear view mirror, but its side mirrors don’t dim.

The Arteon has standard heated front seats. Heated front seats are only available on the Optima EX/SX. The Arteon SEL Premium also has standard heated rear seats to keep those passengers extremely comfortable in the winter. Heated rear seats aren’t available in the Optima.

The Arteon SEL Premium has standard massaging front seats in order to maximize comfort and eliminate fatigue on long trips. Massaging seats aren’t available in the Optima.

The Arteon has a standard dual zone air conditioning allows the driver and front passenger to choose two completely different temperatures so people with different temperature preferences won’t have to compromise. This makes both the driver and front passenger as comfortable as possible. Dual zone air conditioning is only available on the Optima EX/SX.

Both the Arteon and the Optima offer rear vents. For greater rear passenger comfort, the Arteon has standard rear air conditioning vents to keep rear occupants cool in summer or warm in winter. The Optima doesn’t offer rear air conditioning vents, only heat vents.

The Arteon’s optional Park Assist can parallel park or back into a parking spot by itself, with the driver only controlling speed with the brake pedal. The Optima doesn’t offer an automated parking system.

Recommendations

© 1999 - 2020 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 2020/04/07

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

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

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