IRVINE, Calif., Nov. 18, 2015 /PRNewswire/ -- In conjunction with the 2015 Los Angeles Auto Show, Road & Travel Magazine (RTM) has named the 2016 Kia Optima as its International Car of the Year. RTM jurors praised the all-new edition of Kia's perennial best-seller for its aggressive design, long list of available features, impressive powertrain options and great value. RTM also named the 2016 Sorento its International SUV of the Year. The Sorento garnered acclaim for its combination of premium interior amenities, extensive safety features and all-wheel drive capability. Together, the awards propelled Kia to an extraordinary fourth consecutive win of the prestigious ICOTY brand award. The ICOTY jurors honored Kia's K900 luxury sedan in 2015, the Cadenza premium sedan in 2014, and the previous-generation Optima in 2013.
"The Optima and Sorento are two of Kia's best-selling vehicles and both were instrumental in the transformation of the brand," said Michael Sprague, chief operating officer and EVP, KMA. "To win the prestigious ICOTY award four years in a row, with two models winning their categories this year, is a clear indication that our products continue to offer a world-class balance of design, amenities, craftsmanship, safety and value for today's savvy consumers."
2015 marks the 20th anniversary for RTM's annual "Of the Year" judging, which includes three awards: International Car, International SUV, and International Family Vehicle of the Year. In addition to product attributes such as style, comfort and performance, award criteria also factor in how well each brand connects emotionally with consumers through its marketing efforts. The winner is chosen by the ICOTY jury, which consists of nationally renowned automotive journalists from respected publications such as Consumer Guide® Automotive, MSN Autos, New Car News Syndicate and RTM.
"We've never had one brand win this award four years in a row, but Kia has done it. It goes to show just how exceptional the new Kia models are, providing clear direction of where the Kia brand is headed," said Courtney Caldwell, editor-in-chief of Road & Travel Magazine. "We are near speechless at the level of progress the Kia brand has made in spite of the stiff competition. It is without a doubt the brand that gets the most 'wows' from our staff and is truly an industry success story that we can relate to in many ways."
About the 2016 Kia Sorento
The completely redesigned 2016 Sorento CUV, which raises the bar in the segment with its refinement and first-class amenities, is larger and more capable than ever with more room for passengers and cargo. Copious standard features and luxurious amenities span the line of five trim levels, and the Sorento is now offered with three engine choices, including a 240-hp 2.0L turbo-charged inline-4. The Sorento is built at the brand's U.S. manufacturing plant – Kia Motors Manufacturing Georgia – in West Point, Georgia.*
About the 2016 Kia Optima
The all-new 2016 Optima is passionately designed and obsessively crafted with European styling, a refined premium interior and significant ride and handling improvements. Kia's best-selling nameplate challenges the midsize sedan segment with three engine choices, including a new 1.6-liter turbocharged four-cylinder that's mated to a seven-speed Dual Clutch Transmission (DCT), making the Optima more confident on the road than ever before. The roomier, more luxurious cabin features an impressive level of craftsmanship that comes standard across five trim levels. The all-new Optima is built at Kia's plant in West Point, Georgia.*
About Kia Motors America
Kia Motors America (KMA) is the marketing and distribution arm of Kia Motors Corporation based in Seoul, South Korea. KMA proudly serves as the "Official Automotive Partner" of the NBA and LPGA and set an all-time annual sales record in 2014, surpassing the 500,000 unit mark for the third consecutive year. KMA offers a complete line of vehicles, including the rear-drive K9001 flagship sedan, Cadenza premium sedan, Sorento CUV, Soul urban passenger vehicle, Soul Electric Vehicle2, Sportage compact CUV, Optima midsize sedan, Optima Hybrid, the Forte compact sedan, Forte5 and Forte Koup, Rio and Rio 5-door subcompacts and the Sedona midsize multi-purpose vehicle, through a network of more than 765 dealers across the United States. Kia's U.S. manufacturing plant in West Point, Georgia, builds the Optima* and Sorento* and is responsible for the creation of more than 15,000 plant and supplier jobs.
Information about KMA and its full vehicle line-up is available at www.kia.com. For media information, including photography, visit www.kiamedia.com. To receive custom email notifications for press releases the moment they are published, subscribe at www.kiamedia.com/us/en/newsalert.
* The Sorento and Optima GDI (EX, SX & Limited and certain LX Trims only) are assembled in the United States from U.S. and globally sourced parts.
1 2015 K900 V8 available in select trims and in select markets with limited availability.
2 Soul EV in select markets with limited availability.