2011 Kia Optima

While the U.S. car companies were asleep at the wheel, the Hyundai Kia Automotive Group was busy improving the fit, finish, and overall quality of their cars. The latest Killer Korean is the 2011 Kia Optima ($TBA). Although it shares a wheelbase and many dimensions with its cousin the Hyundai Sonata, the Optima differentiates itself with more aggressive, Acura-like styling, three engine options, including a 274hp 2.0L turbocharged four cylinder and a 2.4L hybrid, the Uvo infotainment system, based on the same Microsoft OS that powers Ford's Sync system, HID headlights, LED rear combo lights, and impressive 18-inch black machined finish alloy wheels.

  • 2011 Audi A8

    As much a car as it is a gadget on wheels, with the 2011 Audi A8 ($TBA; late 2010) Audi has raised the automotive technology bar once again. The latest version of Audi's flagship sedan boasts standard features like quattro all-wheel-drive, a 4.2L FSI V8 engine good for 372hp, and an Aluminum Space Frame body. These traditional features are overshadowed by the car's technical prowess, however, thanks to additions like full LED headlights that adjust direction and throw length based on instructions from the navigation system, a touch-pad multimedia controller, tri-color ambient interior LED lighting, an available 19-speaker Bang & Olufsen sound system, dual rear 10.2-inch headrest-mounted displays, available separate rear seats, an eight-speed Tiptronic transmission, lane change assist, night vision, and more. It's as close as you can get to a real-life KITT, and will likely carry a price to match.

  • 2010 Saab 9-5

    Those of you looking for an alternative to the standard Bimmer, Benz, or Lexus sedan now have a new option: the 2010 Saab 9-5 ($TBA). An all-new design, the 9-5 offers a choice of 2.0L gas, 2.0L diesel, 2.8L V6, or 1.6L turbocharged engines, and boasts high-end features like an aircraft-inspired head-up display, adaptive Bi-Xenon headlights, Saab's DriveSense adaptive chassis with real-tim damping control, an 8-inch touchscreen navigation system with hard disk storage for both maps and music, USB and auxiliary input ports, keyless entry and startup, tri-zone climate control, parking assistance and Saab's XWD all-wheel-drive system.

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