2002 Kia Spectra Review | Edmunds.com

2002 Kia Spectra

Certified Pre-Owned (CPO) is a category of used car. Often late-model vehicles, they have been inspected, refurbished, if necessary, and are under warranty by the manufacturer.
ADVERTISEMENT
Kia Spectra Features and Specs

Features & Specs

  • Engine 1.8 L Inline 4-cylinder
  • Drivetrain Front Wheel Drive
  • Transmission 5-speed Manual
  • Horse Power 126 hp @ 6000 rpm
  • Fuel Economy 21/29 mpg
  • Bluetooth No
  • Navigation No
  • Heated Seats No

Review of the 2002 Kia Spectra

  • The Spectra will never be called a great car, but for some, it might prove to be a good bargain.

  • Safety
  • Pros

    Low base price, responsive steering and nimble handling, available hatchback configuration, killer warranty.

  • Cons

    Lackluster engine performance, cheap interior materials, dearth of refinement, Kia's initial poor quality reputation.

  • What's New for 2002

    The Kia Sephia has officially been renamed the Spectra sedan. Got that? So now, there's the Spectra hatchback and the sedan; they've always shared mechanicals, so no big change there. The sedan will now sport some exterior styling cues borrowed from the five-door version.

ADVERTISEMENT
Gas Mileage

EPA-Rated MPG

  • 21
  • cty
/
  • 29
  • highway
Calculate Yearly Fuel Costs
ADVERTISEMENT
ADVERTISEMENT
What Others Are Saying

Customer Reviews



Got 166,000 miles but with

by on
Vehicle: 2002 Kia Spectra 4dr Sedan (1.8L 4cyl 5M)

My 2002 Kia Spectra just threw a head gasket at 166,000 miles. Previous problems: the a/c went out in 2007 and was repaired for $1400. It went out again about 9 months later and the mechanic wanted another $750. Shortly afterwards, the heat went out. I replaced the clutch 3 times. Also replaced a valve in the braking system for $250. Lots of the cheap plastic interior broke and/or fell off including the driver's side sun visor. The driver'side seatbelt also broke and had to be replaced. I did a lot of driving for work and both knees and hips were hurting me due to driving this car. If you're only going to put maybe 10-12,000 miles/year on a 2002 Spectra, it may be worthwhile.




Surprised me!!!

by on
Vehicle: 2002 Kia Spectra 4dr Sedan (1.8L 4cyl 5M)

I bought my Kia with 80k (or something like that) a year ago it now has 108k miles on it and is still going strong. I was really worried about buying a kia but I needed a cheap car right away! I was surprised when I bought it, she told me it was still under warranty until 100k (WOW!) She had all her maintenance records and it seemed she had some issues with the car the first year or two she bought it. Since Ive had it the only out of pocket expenses have been oil changes and tires. I have had NO mechanical difficulty with this car it has been extremely reliable as our only means of transportation. I am no considering buying a new kia when its time to buy a NEW car.




Love my spectra

by on
Vehicle: 2002 Kia Spectra 4dr Sedan (1.8L 4cyl 5M)

I finally purchased my own car, and the Kia Spectra was a great choice. I love this car, it has great A/C, automatic, and I just bought my own stereo for it, and now it is perfect. This car is very comfortable (coming from someone with a bad back) and it also gets great MPG!!! I average close to 30 mpg everytime, and that is 80% city! The lowest that I have ever gotten was 23 mpg, and I'm still happy with that. The trunk is very nice sized, and it has great visibility. Very well designed car!!




9 years and still going

by on
Vehicle: 2002 Kia Spectra 4dr Sedan (1.8L 4cyl 5M)

I have over 123,000 miles on the car and have had no major repairs, except while under warranty it was discovered that I had a faulty transmission. It was replaced immediately. I agree with an earlier post that repairs, tires, brakes, even windshield wipers are more expensive than they should be. My pain has begun fading as well, but it's been 9 yrs. since I bought it. Very reliable.




Don't do it

by on
Vehicle: 2002 Kia Spectra 4dr Sedan (1.8L 4cyl 5M)

I got a brand new 2002 Kia Spectra. And b/f I was off the lot a headlight was out, it should have been an omen. The windows never worked right, and there was a weird knocking when it rained. And, the alternator was going after only 6 years. Last week, the transmission just went out! We were not going anywhere. $2000.00 worth of repairs on a car with only 136000 miles on it. I have a Subaru Impreza with 196000 miles on it that is 13 years old that is still working great! I only got 400.00 for the car b/c it was just so broken down! My two cents is if you want a car that will give you your moneys worth, buy a Subaru. I had only paid the car off one year b/f it died. Never again!




No way, no how

by on
Vehicle: 2002 Kia Spectra 4dr Sedan (1.8L 4cyl 5M)

Window motor replace, cruise control replace, transmission rebuild by 10,000 miles. Second transmission rebuild (the day after 5 yr warranty was up) gear shaft replaced incorrectly by dealership(and almost killed us) and a new starter by 40,000 miles. KIA would not help us, they were very rude and when our gear shaft fell out, we waited at the side of the road for 5 hrs waiting for them to send a tow. HORRIBLE customer service. And everything is high priced to replace. I'm talking about a bolt costing $270. Before labor. It seemed like a good deal, but we have spent the buying price in repairs. Spend the extra $ for a different car. I have been broke ever since we got it. no way no how.



ADVERTISEMENT
ADVERTISEMENT

Full 2002 Kia Spectra Review

What's New for 2002

The Kia Sephia has officially been renamed the Spectra sedan. Got that? So now, there's the Spectra hatchback and the sedan; they've always shared mechanicals, so no big change there. The sedan will now sport some exterior styling cues borrowed from the five-door version.

ADVERTISEMENT
ADVERTISEMENT

Talk About The 2002 Spectra

2002 Kia Spectra Discussions See all Started By

iluvmysephia1
iluvmysephia1
09-22-2001
Howdy. I'm thinking of trading my '99 Kia Sephia in on either a 2002 Kia Rio Cinco, 2002 Kia Spectra hatchback or a 2002 Kia Spectra sedan. Has anyone bought a 2002 Kia Spectra sedan yet? What'd'ya th...


faoemail
faoemail
02-22-2008
Is it a recall on transmission for Kia Spectra 2002...


iluvmysephia1
iluvmysephia1
01-04-2002
Spectra review! I went to the owner's club and took a look at the 2002 Spectra hatchback in concept. Looks good to me! I have a 2001 Kia Sportage 4x4 that I love! I traded my '99 Sephia in for it in S...



ADVERTISEMENT
ADVERTISEMENT
Have a question? We're here to help!
Chat*
Chat online with us
Email
Email us at help@edmunds.com
*Available daily 8AM-5PM Pacific