I wrote this because some people seem to exist to complain about cars every time the air is low in their tires. My '05 Kia Rio5 has been great, and I've only encountered things you would expect from an inexpensive car. It came to me used, from my mother's estate after she died a few years ago. It was low-mile, with the I4 and a 5-speed (ma always liked to row her own!). The LX is sporty, handles well, and the shifting is snappy and clean. Not a powerhouse, but what do you want from a sub-15k car? It's quick enough, and I learned that while off-the-line acceleration is not mind-bending, at-speed and lane-change acceleration is pretty darn good. Brakes are great, as I learned in San Francisco on the busy, hilly streets. Also, I've had two people hit me in this car (their fault both times), and after repairs the car still runs great. Now at 55k with a cross-country road trip under its belt, the Kia is still running great. In fact I only this week had one of the few off-schedule maintenance issues, a PCSV valve that's giving me a check-engine. Only replacements besides tires/oil have been two of the Coil-on-Plug units on the motor at about $50 each. I put them in myself, they're right on top of the motor and it's pretty easy. Even a shop couldn't charge you too much for the service. At 8 years, the only issues are some dry-rotted rear window seals from it's first 5 years in Arizona, and the chrome/plastic passenger door handle which is peeling. There's some increased body noise coming from the hatch area, and it's a bit squeaker overall than when new, but I think that for a budget car, it's been terrific. No electrical problems ever, which I hear is not the case with some newer Kias. Overall, I'm very very happy with this low-maintenance long-running car. Oh, fold-down rear seats in this hatchback provide ample room for stuffing things in the back. I've loaded this car to the roof many times, then driven her 12 hours straight. She runs great still!
I bought my Rio5 new with 9km on it. I drove many comperable models from different mfg including Chev Aveo, Toyota, Dodge Caliber etc. I was impressed with the handling and jump for such a small car. I've had no issues with summer or winter driving. I've been religious with oil changes but haven't had to do anything major. Just recently at 70K did I have to replace the set of belts before a long trip. If I had to pick at something, it would be the OEM Kuho tires. My front set only lasted about 40K.
Warranty is great (8 yrs, 160K km) although nothing has gone wrong. Orig brakes still have 40-50% left on them and still getting close to 450km on 40L of gas.
An excellent car for the money!
AMAZING lil beast! Traded in a 2002 for it ... WAY happy with it. Done nothing to it other than normal maintenance. Just this year A/C needed recharging. STILL getting 48mpg.. UPDATE A/C not just a recharge, pump replaced, all parts needed, with SIX relays, it won't kick from the dash button. WTF????
I bought this car in hopes of having a reliable vehicle for once. Day 1 02 sensor went out. 9 months later electrical problems. Went through 4 Cruise controls in 1 year because Kia kept putting the same one in. Went to private custom shop they put a better one in and told me that my car was destroying the Cruise because the car and Cruise control were not compatible. 2 years running lights and fog lights to make sure they are on I have to tap them before I drive away. Handles horrible in the winter. Gets worse gas mileage than the car I traded in for 1995 Dodge intrepid. I got 28 the first month of owning this car now I am lucky if I get 18 mpg. Everyone one I see I say stay away from Kia!