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I put 7000 miles in 45 day...

Engine - Better than expected low end torque, good accel from dead stop, exhaust sound gets noticeably louder above 3000 rpm. I don't regret not getting 5-spds. No leak or smoke anywhere at this time.

Trans - A/T works flawlessly, almost. Downshifting algorithm is little too slow/late for my kind of driving, wish there is a ECT/power button. Noticed there is another gear when driving in D. When going up hill, it down shifts byitself and rpm went up a few hundred. I thought it went down to 3rd. So, I manually shifted down to 3rd at the same speed and did not expect the rpm to change. But it did! The rpm increased even more. So, I did further experiment by shifting to 2nd gear, and the rpm went up even higher! The spec chart says this is a 4-spd A/T. I think this kind of set up is similar to my 4.7L Dakota A/T that uses a combination of other gears to produce another ratio between 4th and 3rd- acts like 5 speeds but there are only 4 gears according to dealer service dept when I asked them. If you have A/T, do the experiment.

Fuel Economy - Lowest was 26 and the highest was 33 MPG. Majority of avg mpg was between 28 and 30 with A/C on most of time. Not bad from 2.0L, but can be better if you consider what 4-cyl Camry and new Sonata are getting.

Interior - Seat is too firm for my comfort. Also, beige color looks clean but it is too light and shows every stain. Gauges are large and easy to read/control. Exlnt stereo for this class of car.

Exterior - I use gas power washer to wash all my cars and the Spectra paint is holding up good so far. No loose body parts or rattling found anywhere.

Maintenance - Did 2 oil changes at home. Factory oil filter appears to be really, really quality made, larger filtering area and heavier-duty construciont, much better than junk Fram or anything else out there. Can't believe you have to remove the plastic underbody panel for oil filter change. Engine did not burn/leak any noticeable amount of oil - close to 4.5 qt drained out. Also, all the fluids under the hood remain same and did not require any refill.

So far, I like this car a lot, and it is worth a few thousand more than what I paid for. Only thing people don't seem to like is the name - KIA. I would buy it again.

I'll update when something else comes up.
 

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2007 Optima, 2007 Sorento
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Enjoyed reading your summary and how well you like your Kia. Give Kia another 5 years of building quality autos and there will be fewer people poking at the Kia name.
 

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That is a great update on your Spectra. Glad to hear you like it. I have a 05 Spectra SX Sedan. I have had it for about 3 months now and have about 4500 miles on it. What a great car. I agree with you when you say you would buy it again.
 

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Noticed there is another gear when driving in D. When going up hill, it down shifts byitself and rpm went up a few hundred.
That would be the lock-up tourque converter "unlocking"..... not another gear or combination.

d
 
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