Kia has a new mid-size sedan with a new name – the 2021 K5. Replacing the aging Optima, the stylish four-door goes on sale later this month with a starting price of $23,490 and up to 32 miles per gallon combined, depending on how you spec it. Of course, the EPA gave us an idea of the K5's fuel economy figures back in May, but now the Kia has made it official.
The base Kia K5 LX with front-wheel-drive and the standard turbocharged 1.6-liter engine is the most efficient of the group, returning 29 mpg city, 38 highway, and 32 combined. Next-best are the front-drive LXS and GT-Line models, which get 27 mpg city, 37 highway, and 31 combined. All-wheel-drive versions drop the overall figure, obviously, but the K5 still gets up to 29 mpg combined with power at all four wheels.
|K5 LX (FWD)||29 MPG||38 MPG||32 MPG|
|K5 LXS (FWD)||27 MPG||37 MPG||31 MPG|
|K5 LXS (AWD)||26 MPG||36 MPG||29 MPG|
|K5 GT-Line (FWD)||27 MPG||37 MPG||31 MPG|
|K5 GT-Line (AWD)||26 MPG||34 MPG||29 MPG|
|K5 EX (FWD)||27 MPG||37 MPG||31 MPG|
|K5 GT (AWD)||TBD||TBD||TBD|
The front-wheel-drive K5 isn't the most efficient car in the mid-size class – both the Toyota Camry (34 combined) and Honda Accord (33 combined) are better. And the all-wheel-drive K5 gets one mpg less than the Subaru Legacy (30 combined). But the Kia does match the Nissan Altima (32 combined) and its sibling the Hyundai Sonata (32 combined). We also expect a hybrid K5 model sometime in the near future.
As far as performance goes, the standard Kia K5 – with its turbocharged 1.6-liter engine – produces 180 horsepower (134 kilowatts) and 195 pound-feet (264 newton-meters) of torque. The range-topping K5 GT, though, gets a powerful turbocharged 2.5-liter engine good for 290 hp (216 kW) and 311 lb-ft (422 Nm). Unfortunately, the company doesn't have fuel economy figures for the GT model just yet.