The new Optima rolls into the market

Kia Optima
The upgraded Kia Optima is now on sale in Ireland with one specification (Platinum) model trim.

The upgraded Kia Optima is now on sale in Ireland with one specification (Platinum) model trim.

The latest Optima (pictured) features new headlights, fog lamps, rear lights, bumpers, wheels and a new sharper-edged trunk lid.

At the front, the LED daytime running lights are moved from the bumper into the headlight – consistent with other Kia models – and the fog lamps are set into a body-colour panel rather than the transverse black panel of the original design.

In Ireland the 2014 Optima features a sports pack which comes with a black-mesh front grille, chrome trim around the lower air-intake, unique 18”, five double-spoke alloy wheels and a matt-black diffuser beneath the rear bumper.

The Optima’s smooth contours enhance its aerodynamic efficiency and result in a drag figure of just Cd 0.29, minimising wind noise, while boosting performance and fuel economy.

The Optima is available in Ireland at €30,950. The 1.7D (134hp) engine is retained.

Audi World car

Meanwhile, the Audi A3, the premium compact best seller from the brand, is the 2014 World Car of the Year. This is the second overall title for Audi in the 10 year history of the awards. The A6 won the inaugural title.

The A3 was voted the best by an international jury of 69 top-level automotive journalists from 22 countries.

The new Audi A3 is available as a 3-door, Sportback, Cabriolet and Sedan. It is powered by a range of TFSI gasoline and TDI diesel engines. The A3 Sportback can also be ordered as a g-tron, which can be operated using e-gas generated by Audi, natural gas, or gasoline – when powered by e-gas, the A3 Sportback g-tron travels CO2-neutral.

Skoda flagship

Skoda Ireland has released its most luxurious model to date, the new flagship Superb Laurin and Klement. There will be further models with this specification arriving in the coming months.

Named after the founders of Skoda, Václav Klement and Václav Laurin, these days Laurin and Klement is reserved for the highest grade models in the range. This one comes with a powerful 2.0-litre 170bhp TDI engine and is available in manual, DSG or 4x4 variants.

Standard equipment includes 18” ‘Sirius’ alloy wheels with a silver and black design, the L and K logo on the door inserts, exterior and on the leather seats embroidered into the seat backrests.

There are heated seats front and rear, Park Assist, the high-end Columbus Sat-Nav with ‘Canton’ surround sound with 10 loudspeakers, Climatronic dual-zone air-conditioning, keyless entry, bi-xenon lights and rear LED lights.

Raymond Leddy, head of Marketing and product Skoda said Laurin and Klement built their reputation early in the last century by supplying large luxurious limousines supplied to royalty all around the world.

Prices start from €36,415 for a car with rear legroom able to match and better that of most luxury saloons.