2019 Kia Optima vs Chevy Malibu

Sedan shoppers in Mechanicsburg, Harrisburg, and Carlisle can get excited because the 2019 Kia Optima and the 2019 Chevy Malibu are finally here. But with both vehicles offering an excellent combination of performance, interior space, and technology, how will shoppers be able to choose between them?

We at Fred Beans Kia of Mechanicsburg have put together this detailed comparison to help you do just that. Below, you'll learn about how these two vehicles stack up against each other, so you can zero in on which one is the perfect fit for you!

2019 Kia Optima

2019 Chevy Malibu

Standard Horsepower



Cargo Volume

15.9 cubic feet

15.7 cubic feet

Passenger Volume

104.8 cubic feet

102.9 cubic feet

Driver Attention Warning


Not Available

Power-Adjustable Heated Outside Mirrors



Optima vs Malibu: Performance

The 2019 Kia Optima offers three high-powered engines in its powertrain lineup. Standardly, the Optima sports a 2.4-L DOHC 4-cylinder engine. This base engine delivers an impressive mix of power and efficiency with 185 horsepower and an EPA-estimated 35 highway MPG1 to offer.

The 2019 Chevy Malibu also offers three different engines starting with its standard 1.5-L 4-cylinder engine. While this smaller engine's efficiency is similar to the standard EPA-estimated highway MPG of the Optima, it lacks when it comes to power output. This engine puts out just 160 horsepower.

Additionally, the Malibu has a significantly smaller fuel tank. This model can only carry 15.8 gallons of gasoline between fuel-ups. The Optima can hold a whopping 18.5 gallons of fuel, making for longer drives without having to worry about stopping.

Optima vs Malibu: Interior Space

When you're looking for your next sedan, interior space and comfort are a priority. In both the 2019 Kia Optima and the 2019 Chevy Malibu, you'll find ample space for all your cargo with slightly more space in the trunk of the Optima.

When it comes to passenger space, though, the Optima has the upper hand with 104.8 cubic feet of passenger volume to split among its five passengers. Front row passengers will have an incredible 45.5 inches of legroom while rear-row passengers will have 56 inches of hip room. Compare this to the Malibu's 41.5 inches of front legroom and 53.4 inches of rear hip room.

Optima vs Malibu: Safety

While both vehicles come with a rear-camera display to help you check your surroundings while backing up, the 2019 Optima has even more standard technology aimed to keep you safe while driving.

Park Distance Warning-Reverse and Rear Cross Traffic Collision Warning will help you get your Kia Optima in and out of parking spots safely. Forward Collision Warning with its Avoidance Assistance can keep you from colliding with a vehicle in front of you by applying emergency braking.

Even the Driver Attention Warning will assist you in staying safe when out on the roads. This system allows the 2019 Kia Optima to monitor your driving and alert you if it senses you are becoming distracted while driving. To get any of the driver-assistive features with the Chevy Malibu, you'll need to upgrade to a higher trim level. 

2019 Kia Optima vs 2019 Chevy Malibu: Which One?

As you can see, the 2019 Kia Optima takes the cake when it comes to satisfying the needs of sedan drivers in Mechanicsburg, Harrisburg, and Carlisle. Now that you've had a taste of what this vehicle can do, it's time to get behind the wheel and experience it for yourself.

Give us a call at Fred Beans Kia of Mechanicsburg today to schedule your test drive!


1 EPA fuel economy estimates. Actual mileage will vary with options, driving conditions, driving habits, and your vehicle's condition.

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Fred Beans Kia of Mechanicsburg

6302 Carlisle Pike
Directions Mechanicsburg, PA 17050

  • Sales: 717-766-4733
  • Service: 717-766-4733
  • Parts: 717-766-4733


  • Monday 9:00AM - 8:00PM
  • Tuesday 9:00AM - 8:00PM
  • Wednesday 9:00AM - 8:00PM
  • Thursday 9:00AM - 8:00PM
  • Friday 9:00AM - 8:00PM
  • Saturday 9:00AM - 5:00PM
  • Sunday Closed