Kia Optima GT top front Kia Motors Europe has announced that a high-powered version of its new Optima is in the works. The new Kia Optima GT, slated to be the Korean marque’s first- performance variant in its D- segment line-up, is reserved for the European markets and scheduled to go on sale early next year.

The Kia Optima GT is displayed alongside the new Sportage at the ongoing IAA Frankfurt, together with the standard European-spec Optima. Set to introduce the Kia brand to those looking for a performance-oriented drive, the Optima GT becomes the marque’s second GT variant, after the cee’d GT and pro_cee’d GT; introduced two years earlier. The new Optima GT, currently in the works, is a collaborative effort between Kia’s global R&D center in Namyang, Korea, and the company’s European R&D center in Rüsselsheim, Germany.

Kia Optima GT rear

The Optima GT in a prototype display for IAA Frankfurt boasts a more athletic appearance than the standard Optima, The production Optima GT obviously takes up a redesigned signature ‘tiger-nose’ grille at the front, svelte body styling for its profile and new wheels.

Inside, the Optima GT is based on the similar refined, plush interior of the standard Optima. Details should be released by Kia nearer to the production roll out at the end of the year.

Offering a higher power output than the other Optimas, the Optima GT is set to receive the 2.0-liter T-GDI (turbocharged gasoline direct injection) engine for possibly 200 PS of output and 250 Nm of torque ratings .

Driving dynamics and handling are said to have been be tuned to match the Optima GT’s bold, muscular appearance, yet maintaining the large sedan’s expected refinements and comfortable, dependable ride. Engineered for the European markets, the Optima GT gets its own unique suspension settings and is fitted with a new Electronically-Controlled Suspension system; that allows individual damping to each wheel. Additionally, larger disc brakes and a rack-mounted, powered steering (R-MDPS) guarantee the large sedan’s superb stopping power and easy maneuverability.