Design and Engineering

Design and Engineering

Good Arriving in Australia in January 2005, with the very late 'mid-life' facelift following in January 2010, the Kia Rio's` exterior design is an improvement over the previous shape; good exterior visibility.
Not so good To most sets of eyes the hatch is the better looking member of the Rio family.
Interior and Styling

Interior and Styling

Good Generous leg and head-room on offer for the taller drivers out there; large boot; reasonable fit & finish throughout.
Not so good It's a little pale and grey on the inside, making it look quite dated against newer competitors; non-integrated audio system.
Performance

Performance

Good The 1.6L is quite powerful for an entry-level SUPERMINI. With 82kW of power and a relatively light body it keeps up with traffic easily.
Not so good The Automatic transmission struggles to find the right gear, and is too low-geared for highway driving.
Ride and Handling

Ride and Handling

Good Steering is decent, making it a breeze to drive around the city.
Not so good Excessive understeer, and can feel quite 'bouncy' when driven on rougher roads. The Kia Rio didn't really like our spirited driving, which was a shame.
Buying and Owning

Buying and Owning

Good 5 year, unlimited kilometer warranty is a big tick here.
Not so good Unlikely to hold its resale value as well as some of the others in the SUPERMINI class.