When the Kia Optima gets noisy just turn up the remarkable music system…

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I’ve clocked up several hundred miles in the Optima already and have concluded that 1.7-litre diesel engine is quite capable enough of moving such a big car sufficiently well.

There is, of course, only one engine choice – no 2.0 diesel, or even a petrol. And while the Optima feels okay around town, it runs out of steam overtaking at speed. You will have to work the six-speed gearbox to achieve anything useful.

Noise levels are acceptable but once the turbo has kicked in, the Optima starts to scream when you push it along.

The answer? Do what drivers have been doing for decades in this situation, turn up the stereo. The Kia strangely boasts a heavyweight, bass-booming hi-fi that wouldn’t disgrace a supercar. Bizarre.

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