2014 Kia Optima & Volkswagen Passat Vehicle Comparison

There are certainly plenty of options available these days for anybody in the market for a new vehicle. In fact, there are more options than ever before, including sports utility vehicles, compact SUVs, hatchbacks, wagons, minivans, compacts, etc. There are so many modern vehicle options that it can be easy to overlook the classic, four door sedan. However, there are some popular, acclaimed sedans on the market for the 2014 model year, including the Kia Optima and the Volkswagen Passat.

These two similarly-priced vehicles vie for a similar segment of the market. For anybody trying to decide which of these sedans is worth the investment, this is a closer examination of the 2014 Kia Optima and the 2014 Volkswagen Passat, as well as a comparison between the two.

The 2014 VW Passat

2014 VW Passat

2014 VW Passat

Volkswagen has put some effort into making the Passat more appropriate for the American market: the new Passat is upgraded in size from previous model years, and the engine power has also evolved marginally.

However, as far as power is concerned the base model 2014 Passat still lags behind the competition with a mere 170 horses in the five-cylinder engine. This VW works fine for mild, slower driving, but when acceleration and power is needed, there is definitely something missing from the base-level Passat. Car buyers will have to shell out more if they want more power in their Passat.

For the substantial family car market the 2014 Passat does offer some plusses, including a fairly spacious backseat and no small amount of storage space in the trunk, as well as decent safety features. On the other hand, contemporary families often expect more in their vehicles, especially for longer trips: where is the satellite radio, the modern infotainment system, or even a USB port to charge or plug in an ancillary device? Not in the standard 2014 Passat. Just like a satisfactorily powerful engine, consumers have to pay extra if they want any of those features.

2014 VW Passat Interior

2014 VW Passat Interior

The exterior and interior design of the new Passat is unlike what Volkswagen fans may be used to. The understated does resemble other popular sedans from Honda and Toyota. Whether this is a good or bad thing depends on who you ask.

The 2014 Kia Optima 

Kia Optima NJ

2014 Kia Optima

Over the past few years, the Optima has become a major player in the sedan world, and this is mostly thanks to Kia’s continuing optimization of the Optima’s design and features. The 2014 Optima is a continuation of this successful trend, with a subtle update of the sedan’s exterior that does well by the current generation of Optima design while adding a sharp, distinct element to the front-end and the exterior overall.

2014 Kia Optima Interior

2014 Kia Optima Interior

Drivers will be happy to find that the dash controls are simplified and intuitive while still providing plenty of options. The 4.3 inch infotainment and navigational display is also welcome. The seats have been improved to provide even more comfort and spaciousness in both the front and the back.


Like the Passat, the Optima has great safety features and ratings. However, the Kia also packs plenty of power even in the base model: a horsepower of 200 in the direct-injection engine with affordable upgrades available for those who wish for even more power.

The Verdict

Kia Optima NJ Black and White

Kia Optima

While Volkswagen is working on adapting the Passat for the contemporary sedan marketplace, Kia is already there with the Optima, and the 2014 Optima is not only the best Kia Optima yet, it is among the best choices for sedan buyers on the market.

Stop by the Burlington Kia lots today to see the 2014 Kia Optima in person.

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