Best Kia Vehicles for Young Professionals

professionalBeing a young professional can be exciting, but it can also mean long hours and late nights while you are trying to establish yourself in your chosen profession. Buying a car is often part of just starting out in life, but deciding which one specifically to purchase, especially if your life is still in flux, can be difficult. How do you know what vehicle is going to function just as well for you in three years as it does right now? The key is to buy a vehicle that is versatile. Luckily, Kia has a wide variety of those in its lineup. Here are the best Kia vehicles for young professionals:

The Kia Optima


The Optima is probably Kia’s most versatile vehicle and one of its most popular. It is designed to be both stylish and fun to drive, which makes it a great option for younger drivers. It’s also armed to the teeth with the best technology optima has to offer, as well as a number of great safety features, which could be a selling point for those who have long commutes and spend a lot of time on the road. This is a mid-sized sedan, which makes it larger than some of Kia’s other sedans, for more storage space and leg room. You certainly won’t sacrifice sportiness, however, if you choose the Optima.

The Kia Soul

The Soul is, without a doubt, the most unique vehicle in Kia’s lineup, which should make it the perfect choice for anyone who wants a car that marches to the beat of its own drum. It has everything that makes a sedan great, while being extremely unique-looking. On a less-aesthetic level, it is a fun-to-drive, engaging vehicle with plenty of technology and advanced handling. If you want to turn heads and to drive a vehicle that no one else at the office is going to be driving, this is the one for you.

The Kia Sportage

If you are looking for a vehicle that is as stylish as it is versatile, the Kia Sportage is a great option. Not only is the Sportage getting a few incredible updates this year (including being the first to get Kia’s updated UVO3 infotainment system), this vehicle is affordably priced, starting at just over $22,000. This makes it comparable to many entry-level sedans for most other brands, but gives you the functionality and look of a SUV.

If you find yourself often needing to haul stuff or people around, this is the vehicle for you. While some brands might opt for a more utilitarian design, the Sportage is sporty without being drab, and is still tons of fun to drive.

The Kia Forte

The Kia Forte is routinely among the cars listed as being the best for those just starting out in their careers—and for good reason. It’s stylish, there are plenty of different color options, which makes it customizable, and it gets great gas mileage. It is also less expensive than most other vehicles, starting at just under $16,000, which makes it much more accessible than even the cheapest sedans from most other brands.

The Forte has a lot going for it. Despite its relatively small size, it still has a roomy interior, a high quality infotainment system, and a sporty design that makes it a great choice for someone who does not want a sedan that looks like something their mother would drive. One of the best reason to pick a vehicle like this is to be able to get more vehicle for a lower price. The low entry price makes it possible to upgrade to a higher trim level and get more features, while still paying less than you would for other vehicles.

The Kia Rio

The smallest and least expensive vehicle in Kia’s lineup, the Rio still has plenty to offer. Not only does it have a combined MPG of thirty-one, it starts at just over $14,000. You cannot find a sedan, even a sub-compact, from any other brand, at that price. They just don’t exist. If you need a car and you want to buy a new car, but you can’t find anything that is affordably priced, this is a great alternative. You will be looking at very low monthly payments, or a shorter payment track, giving you the flexibility to pay off your vehicle quickly.

The Rio comes in two different configurations. There is the standard Rio, which has four doors, and the Rio 5-door, which is essentially the same as its four-doored alternative, except that it is a hatchback. This gives the Rio an even sportier appearance.

The Optima Hybrid

Last, but not least is the Optima Hybrid. It looks almost exactly like the Optima, but it has one important improvement: gets a combined MPG of thirty-eight. This means that if you have a long commute or you just want to protect the environment, you could seriously reduce your impact on the environment, simply by buying this vehicle.

What is especially impressive about this option, is that, despite being a Hybrid, it is still reasonable priced, starting at just under $26,000. This is not a price point you are going to be able to find from most other brands. If you want to purchase a vehicle that protects the environment or allows you to use less gas, you are probably going to see yourself with few options that start under $30,000. Kia does it and provides with a stylish, eco-friendly option that any young professional would be proud to drive.

How to Pick the Right Kia as a Gift for Your Graduate

Kia Graduate Program

While some might see a car as too extravagant a gift for a graduate, reasonable car payments and great warranties make a Kia a great present for any student who is college, graduate school, or career-bound. A car means mobility and freedom and flexibility, three things that any young person needs in order to be successful in this next stage of his or her life. But buying a car for someone else can be tricky, because as thrilled as they might be with the gift, if the car isn’t the right car, it may temper the excitement of the gift. Here are some tips for picking the right Kia for your graduate.

Ask the Graduate

If you are planning to give the vehicle as a surprise gift, you probably don’t want to just flatly ask the graduate what kind of car he or she wants. What you can do is get another family member to ask the question or bring it up as you drive past a dealership. There are sneaky ways to figure out what kinds of vehicles they prefer and if there are any special features they might want their own car to have.

Pay Attention to Safety

Luckily, Kia has extremely high safety ratings, so finding a safe car is no problem. While all have great ratings, some do have better ratings in different areas than other models. When trying to decide which Kia model to select, think about how your recipient drives. Are they more likely to rear end someone or to be rear ended? Of course, it’s impossible to know if they will ever be in an accident and what kind of accident it will be, but you can rest easy knowing Kia has some of the best safety ratings on the road.


Ask About Reliability

Especially for a recipient who will be taking this vehicle off to university or to another city or state to pursue a goal or a dream, you want to pick a reliable vehicle. Sports cars might be fun to drive, but they don’t have a lot to offer in the way of safety or reliability. Kia vehicles, on the other hand, are designed to be extremely reliable, and because Kia offers the best warranties in the business, your graduate won’t have to worry about breaking down or paying for repairs any time soon.

Consider Fuel Efficiency

With gas prices only on the rise, it makes sense to look for a vehicle that has great fuel efficiency. Sedans and compacts will usually have the best fuel efficiency out of any model (with the Rio having the best efficiency), but there are SUVs and crossovers that have great fuel efficiency for their size. For those graduates who might be especially concerned about the environment, Kia does have an electric version of the Soul (105 mpg) and a hybrid version of the Optima (38 mpg).

Don’t Forget about Insurance

In most states, it is illegal to drive without insurance. The kind of car you are buying and the driver himself or herself will affect the insurance rate. Any car that has great safety ratings will be less expensive to insure, and many insurance companies may give discounts for graduates or students, if they can show proof of responsibility (like good grades).

Insurance is just part of the cost of owning a car, so if the graduate is going to be paying for the insurance, avoid purchasing him or her a vehicle that is going to be expensive to insure, like a sports car or a luxury vehicle. Small cars, with high fuel efficiency, and documented safety ratings, are usually less expensive.

Pick the Trim that Fits Your Graduate’s Needs

One of the mistakes that some parents and grandparents make is buying the base model of a vehicle, believing that the simplest model will be the best “starter car” for a young person. The truth is that the best car for a young person is the one that has the features they need. For example, if she is a music lover, make sure she has a great sound system and an entertainment system that is easy to use.

If your graduate loves hiking, biking, or other messy sports, durable floor mats that are easy to clean might be more important than leather seats or a leather-trimmed steering wheel. Don’t go overboard with features, but make sure that the car has what the driver needs. Even Kia’s most basic models still have plenty of great features for any driver, but some of the more outfitted trims may be better for your particular recipient.

Think About What He or She Will Use It For

At the end of summer, the graduate will probably use the car to move to college, a graduate degree, or into a new house or apartment to start his or her own career. Don’t purchase a car just with this move in mind. Think about what he or she is likely to use the car for. Are they moving somewhere cold where they are likely to get lots of snow (where a bigger, more rugged vehicle might come in handy?), or are they moving somewhere mountainous, where a zippy, responsive sedan might be more ideal?

Discuss the Conditions of the Gift with the Recipient

In some situations, there may be no conditions placed on the gift. In others, setting up a plan for who pays for what, how the car should be used, when it can be used, and other restrictions might be useful, especially if the recipient is a teenager graduating from high school who has never had a car of his own before. Laying some ground rules like no drinking and driving (obvious) and proper care and maintenance is never a bad idea.