I am writing this 2 days after I totaled my 08 Kia Rio. Very sad day. My main problem with this car is the rear defroster stopped working twice. after the 2nd time, i never bothered to get it fixed. I used to affectionately refer to it as my POS Kia, though it did get GREAT gas mileage and was always a fun and sporty drive. I loved zipping along the highway, the city, suburbia in my Rio! however, the best thing about this car is how it saved me during the worst accident i've been in. My back tire was bad, I slipped on wet highway, hit a guardrail, spun into oncoming traffic, had a head on collision with a F250 and walked away w/o a SCRATCH. Thank you for holding up, Rio!
PLEASE DO NOT LISTEN TO ALL OF THE HORRIBLE REVIEWS ON THIS CAR! Every type of car can have these issues. Honestly, I had my little kia for 3 years, and it never failed me. Even with all of the bad weather that we have up in Wisconsin, it kept going strong for my kids and I. The only issue that I ever had was that the headlights are supposed to be automatic, but if I didn't manually turn them off, sometimes the batter would drain. but that only happened a few times in all the years that I had it. besides that, never had a single issue. I have several friends and family members who also have these cars, and they never have major issues either. great car for a small family.
I'm getting great gas mileage, and despite mixed rated for 29, I'm getting 34+ mpg. The gearing is just about right, giving its power (and efficiency) in all the right places -- with the manual trans you won't feel like you have such a small engine (reviews on internet says the auto can feel sluggish). The car has a lot of nice touches -- arm rest, aux input, stub holder, center console orientation, the list goes on. All of the small things add up to get a comfortable ride. I can't think of any downsides, although friends have reported the back seats feel a bit cramped. I bought it used, and I think when it comes time to buy a new car, I'll go with a Rio (or Hyundai's version, the Accent).
Reliability, gas mileage, handling. However, interior plastic is of low quality and motor mounts should last longer than 63,000. Motor mounts on models later than 2007 are not covered under the Kia 10 Year warranty.
I bought my Kia Rio new, with 28 miles on it, and now have over 60k miles on it. It came with a great warranty and I've had all scheduled maintenance required to keep the warranty active. I have never had any trouble out of it. The only cons I can mention is that the brakes sound like they are grinding when you first apply them in a damp or wet environment, but after the first application that sound goes away. I have them checked every time I go in for service and they are always ok. The other thing is the fact that the ride is a little noisier than I prefer, but you will find that to be the case with all small cars. I average about 33-35 mpg. Keep up the maintenance, it will last!