2002 Kia Spectra Base Consumer Reviews | Edmunds
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2002 Kia Spectra - Consumer Reviews

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2002 Spectra Consumer Reviews

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Got 166,000 miles but with problems
Performance
Comfort
Fuel Economy
Fun To Drive
Interior Design
Exterior Design
Build Quality
Reliability
By julia17
on

Vehicle

2002 Kia Spectra 4dr Sedan (1.8L 4cyl 5M)


Review

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.


Favorite Features

Good gas mileage. Could be a bit sporty at times.


Suggested Improvements

Improved durability of AC/Heater. Better quality plastic on the interior. More comfy seating. More durable seat belts.


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Surprised Me!!!
Performance
Comfort
Fuel Economy
Fun To Drive
Interior Design
Exterior Design
Build Quality
Reliability
By baby_c_1989
on

Vehicle

2002 Kia Spectra 4dr Sedan (1.8L 4cyl 5M)


Review

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.


Favorite Features

Reliability


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Love my Spectra
Performance
Comfort
Fuel Economy
Fun To Drive
Interior Design
Exterior Design
Build Quality
Reliability
By kialover15
on

Vehicle

2002 Kia Spectra 4dr Sedan (1.8L 4cyl 5M)


Review

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!!


Favorite Features

Love the seats, the quality of the speakers, the MPG, and the overall looks.


Suggested Improvements

Not so sensitive of an engine light. Mine is on because of a micro miny leak, and the garage said it wasn't even worth finding, let alone fixing. So, I'm not so worried about it. I'd like to have cruise control, and I would like to be able to adjust the speed of the intermittent wipers.


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9 years and still going strong
Performance
Comfort
Fuel Economy
Fun To Drive
Interior Design
Exterior Design
Build Quality
Reliability
By nicegirl
on

Vehicle

2002 Kia Spectra 4dr Sedan (1.8L 4cyl 5M)


Review

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.


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Don't Do it
Performance
Comfort
Fuel Economy
Fun To Drive
Interior Design
Exterior Design
Build Quality
Reliability
By Gen
on

Vehicle

2002 Kia Spectra 4dr Sedan (1.8L 4cyl 5M)


Review

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!


Favorite Features

It was a relatively nice car, but a short life span. And the tires were always going flat. It does not have any perks. So if you want heated seats and power windows try again. I thought it would go farther and give me more. Instead I got a poor man's car and didn't even get my moneys worth.


Suggested Improvements

It is made for tiny people. Seat belts are useless if you weigh more then 200 lbs. If you are a big guy, you will be strapped in tight. Windows always came off track! Headlight covers yellowed. A mechanic friend told me the life of a trans on a Kia is only 140,000 not long enough!


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No way, no how
Performance
Comfort
Fuel Economy
Fun To Drive
Interior Design
Exterior Design
Build Quality
Reliability
By jayjay
on

Vehicle

2002 Kia Spectra 4dr Sedan (1.8L 4cyl 5M)


Review

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.


Favorite Features

gas mileage ... when it's running


Suggested Improvements

don't make it


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My 2002 Kia Spectra Reliable
Performance
Comfort
Fuel Economy
Fun To Drive
Interior Design
Exterior Design
Build Quality
Reliability
By JED
on

Vehicle

2002 Kia Spectra 4dr Sedan (1.8L 4cyl 5M)


Review

I have 65,000 miles on it. I only have has minor issues on the car. It's pretty reliable and GREAT on gas. If someone is looking for a car that's economical and can't afford a civic or a corolla this is the car with comparable features as the competitors. I wish Kia and Hyundai would hold their value much better. Overall it's been a great car and Korean have come up in the auto industry.


Favorite Features

It's a pretty smooth ride, Gas Hater, and Economic.


Suggested Improvements

Handling is ok, should have a better suspension though, a little more horsepower.


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Can't Be Beat for the Price
Performance
Comfort
Fuel Economy
Fun To Drive
Interior Design
Exterior Design
Build Quality
Reliability
By lhartford03
on

Vehicle

2002 Kia Spectra 4dr Sedan (1.8L 4cyl 5M)


Review

I have found my Kia to be very reliable. Few mechanical problems (I keep up on maintenance). Good pick up for a 4 cyl - I have 5 speed version. Overall, the car has gone above and beyond what I would have expected for the price.


Favorite Features

Great pick up and shifting (5 speed)


Suggested Improvements

Only complaint is that if something does go wrong it is very expensive to fix (and tires are expensive too).


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Love the Car!!
Performance
Comfort
Fuel Economy
Fun To Drive
Interior Design
Exterior Design
Build Quality
Reliability
By mazkds
on

Vehicle

2002 Kia Spectra 4dr Sedan (1.8L 4cyl 5M)


Review

We bought our Spectra brand new with 28 miles on it. We have not had to put hardly any money into it (besides normal maintenance). We have almost 104,000 miles on it and have taken it on a number of long trips over the eastern half of the US. Our only complaint is that the front bumper is completely faded and the dashboard is warping. So I think the quality could have been a little higher. For $11,000 (brand new) I can't really say that I am disappointed. I think we have a great car and look forward to driving it for many more years. GO KIA!!!


Favorite Features

Having no big expenses or mechanical problems related to the vehicle.


Suggested Improvements

Make the dashboard a little more durable and better paint.


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eh... it's good for the price
Performance
Comfort
Fuel Economy
Fun To Drive
Interior Design
Exterior Design
Build Quality
Reliability
By Jamie
on

Vehicle

2002 Kia Spectra 4dr Sedan (1.8L 4cyl 5M)


Review

It gets me where I need to go. No major problems. The only bad part is the standard interior is not fun. No automatic door locks, windows etc. Other than that, it's not too bad for the low price.


Suggested Improvements

Interior standard features and gas mileage.


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