Kia sends two men to set world record in an Optima -, GA News Weather & Sports

Kia sends two men to set world record in an Optima

By Taylor Barnhill  - bio | email 

WEST POINT, GA (WTVM) -  A local car manufacturer loaded up two drivers and sent them to 48 states, and you'll never believe how they completed the journey. Since coming to the valley a few years ago, Kia has added quite a few accomplishments to its resume.  Now, they can add world record holder.

Two drivers in one car through 48 states in just 14 days… it certainly sounds like a world record. But, what puts Kia and these two men in the record books is the fact they traveled nearly 8,000 miles on an average of 64 miles per gallon.

"We keep setting records, we keep setting milestones and this is just another one to put in the history books. We are very proud of this achievement," explained Vice-President of HR and Administration for Kia Randy Jackson.

Drivers Wayne Gerdes and Chris Bernius loaded up the Kia Optima on August 26th and drove through 48 states. The shocking part is they used just a little more than five and a half tanks of gasoline. Bernius told News Leader Nine, "It is as technologically as advanced as you want it to be. If you want to drive it like a regular car, you drive it like a regular car, the speedometer is right there. You get fantastic gas mileage."

The official record title is "lowest fuel consumption driving through all 48 contiguous U.S. States in a gasoline hybrid car." Philip Robertson, the Adjudicator for Guinness World Records said, "In order to make sure its achievable by someone else, we need to create a benchmark or a level playing field for someone else to attempt in the future, which is why we had strict guidelines for them to follow so someone else can attempt it in the future."

Not only were records being set, but it was a great opportunity to show off one of the most fuel efficient cars on the market. Jackson said, "The drivers told me they had a lot of questions and excitement about the vehicle. We thought it was an excellent idea, it was creative and we are very proud of them."

Even though the trip lasted two weeks, Bernius says he would be more than willing to do it again, "With a little commitment and the right techniques we could do it again and again. The car performed flawlessly and I would do it again next week if I could get the time off next week."

Neither of the drivers own an Optima, but they said they are seriously considering a switch.

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