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We have a limited number of reviews for the 2023 Rio, so we've included reviews for other years of the Rio since its last redesign.
4 out of 5 stars

Excellent commuter

Walter, 06/11/2020
2020 Kia Rio LX 4dr Sedan (1.6L 4cyl CVT)
88 of 90 people found this review helpful

Pros: It's sharp and comfortable, regular 37-39 MPG in town, only paid $15,900 new, the infotainment system is pretty good and responsive despite the price. Cons: It gets blown around on the freeway, there needs to be a mode between normal and sport for the freeway, no keyless entry or cruise on the base model. I purchased the base LX with floor mats as the only option. It reminds me of a cross between my mother's 2005 Honda Civic and my old 2003 Saturn S-Series. All are simple, durable, and go-kart like. It get great gas mileage, and does the trick for commuting. The IVT doesn't have the typical CVT drone, and honestly it's fairly peppy for the segment. There's more front driver room than in my old Chevy Malibu. However, you'll wrestle with it on the freeway. It doesn't track great about 65 mph, and gets blown around by wind and semi-truck wake. Being used to small cars (Saturn, Metro, Cobalt, Cavalier), I did get used to it. Cruise control and big tires would help. It was one of the cheapest new cars on the market. It's not the best at everything. The Honda Fit is roomier, but terribly cheap on the inside and much pricier. The Ford Fiesta is way more fun to drive, but the reliability is awful (I'd own one if it didn't have such a bad transmission). The Nissan Versa is made by Nissan. The Yaris is cool looking, but pricier. The Mirage is equally as basic and cheap, but terrible to drive. The Spark is terrible all around. In the end, it's not the best, it's just the perfect medium spot for price, feature and comfort. I'll be sure to drive it into the ground.

Safety
4 out of 5 stars
Technology
4 out of 5 stars
Performance
4 out of 5 stars
Interior
4 out of 5 stars
Comfort
4 out of 5 stars
Reliability
4 out of 5 stars
Value
5 out of 5 stars
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4 out of 5 stars

One of the most economical non-hybrids available

Brent, 03/13/2022
2022 Kia Rio LX 4dr Sedan (1.6L 4cyl CVT)
32 of 32 people found this review helpful

I'll start by stating that I live in Los Angeles County. The quality of roads around this massive metropolitan area ranges from very good to pretty poor (meaning pothole-ridden and full of large cracks). If you live in an area with constantly terrible roads, you may find the suspension tuning to not be soft enough for the constant beating, but I suspect that 90% of buyers will be plenty content with the suspension...certainly more so than its larger cousin, the Kia Forte with its very choppy suspension tuning over even modestly bad pavement. Overall, the suspension tuning and ride comfort is decent to good; certainly better than the thrifty price tag would suggest. It might be a little too firm for some over *really* bad pavement due to the front strut/torsion beam rear setup, but the car *does* remain composed and well-controlled at all times. If pavement conditions are fair to good, you'll find this vehicle to be quite comfortable for both city trips and long journeys. Fuel economy is where this vehicle really shines; it is fantastic for a non-hybrid. Official EPA ratings are 33 city/41 highway, but I've been consistently averaging 34-35 city/43-46 highway. DO NOTE that your fuel economy gauge in the insturmentation cluster may read something higher than what you'll actually get at the pump (a weird oversight by Kia). Mine constantly displays 36-39 in the city and 45-50 on the highway, which is 1-3 MPG too generous over real-world fuel economy. My driving style is generally leisurely but I will punch it a bit, here and there. 70-75 MPH on the freeways; sometimes closer to 80 MPH, and there are a decent number of hills in my area. Some folks may be concerned about the CVT's performance, but the CVT in the Rio and the Forte uses a chain instead of a rubber belt. Unlike most CVT's, there's no weird lag, awkward pulling sensations or delays with acceleration throughout the power band...very consistent and predictable power. Acceleration is solid and if you really need the extra power, you can either switch the transmission to sport mode and/or manually shift the simulated fake gears to quickly get up to highway speeds. Honestly, I cannot really tell the difference between Kia's CVT (IVT as they call it) and a traditional automatic transmission. While you won't be beating anyone in a 0-60 race, you'll certainly have more than enough power to keep up with both city and freeway traffic without having to floor the accelerator. Front seat room is quite generous for a subcompact and comparable to that of a large compact. Front seats are on the slightly firmer side but are still pretty supportive and comfortable for most. Thanks to an outward-shaped design of the interior door panels, Kia was able to crank out a few centimeters of space to make the cabin feel just a bit more spacious. Rear-seat leg, shoulder and head room is ample for 2 adults sitting behind 6 foot adults, but 3 adults in the rear is a very tight squeeze. Despite the narrow wheelbase, the car feels surprisingly composed at highway speeds, with fairly precise on-center steering accuracy and none of the constant overcorrecting that has plagued many subcompacts on longer road-trips on the freeway. Steering feel is a bit numb, but the accuracy is certainly there; you know exactly what your wheels are doing and is what you want in a city commuter or long-distance cruiser. Ergonomics are excellent; the controls are well-placed, easy to use and quite intuitive with old-school knobs, switches and buttons. Gauges are easy to read and attractive. The 8 inch infotainment touchscreen with wireless Android Auto and Apple Car Play works great, and the 6 speaker sound quality is quite good for what is supposed to be a budget system. The rear camera quality is quite clear on the infotainment display. The trunk will fit 2 large suitcases and another carry-on with enough room to spare for extras. Really, Kia is almost doing a public service by offering a composed, refined, fuel-saving car that has good driving dynamics, looks attractive enough and is roomier inside than some larger compacts for what is a total bargain these days, then backing it up with their 100,000 mile powertrain/60,000 mile comprehensive warranty.

Safety
4 out of 5 stars
Technology
4 out of 5 stars
Performance
4 out of 5 stars
Interior
4 out of 5 stars
Comfort
4 out of 5 stars
Reliability
5 out of 5 stars
Value
5 out of 5 stars
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5 out of 5 stars

Peppy Hatchback!

Saif A., 07/10/2021
2021 Kia Rio S 4dr Hatchback (1.6L 4cyl CVT)
21 of 21 people found this review helpful

These cars are indeed a dying breed. Everyone wants an SUV or a sports car, so the hatchback segment has been shrinking in America. In Europe its a different story, hatchbacks are everywhere...but I don't live in Italy, I live in L.A. so here are my thoughts. The Hatchback version is the one you want. The sedan is a smaller, uglier Forte, so avoid it. The power is average for the segment, and so is the comfort. If you're looking at this car for superior driving dynamics, or superior speed, keep looking; this isn't the car for you. The legroom is fantastic (I'm 6 foot 4) and so are the simple a/c and temp controls. The hidden gem here is the touchscreen and WIRELESS Apple Car Play/Android Auto. Thats standard with the car. The hatchback is tiny and you can park anywhere in L.A. with it. The seats fold down if you need to shlep a bunch of gear around. Can't beat the 5 year 60k mile bumper to bumper warranty; 100k drivetrain. That makes me feel good knowing if something goes wrong, Im covered for years. I think its the best bang for the buck out there. Oh yeah, its one of the few new cars available for under $20k. I love it.

Safety
5 out of 5 stars
Technology
5 out of 5 stars
Performance
4 out of 5 stars
Interior
4 out of 5 stars
Comfort
4 out of 5 stars
Reliability
5 out of 5 stars
Value
5 out of 5 stars
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4 out of 5 stars

small wonder

Aman, 10/01/2020
2020 Kia Rio LX 4dr Sedan (1.6L 4cyl CVT)
19 of 19 people found this review helpful

Note this is a budget car but you are also getting apple play touch screen, great for beginner drivers to college students whom need something that fits there daily budget. I personally bought this for my Parents whom don't like fancy gadgets in today's vehicles. This was the best buy with less gadgets.

Safety
5 out of 5 stars
Technology
4 out of 5 stars
Performance
4 out of 5 stars
Interior
4 out of 5 stars
Comfort
4 out of 5 stars
Reliability
5 out of 5 stars
Value
5 out of 5 stars
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5 out of 5 stars

2022 Kia Rio

FCampbell, 12/22/2021
2022 Kia Rio S 4dr Sedan (1.6L 4cyl CVT)
15 of 15 people found this review helpful

I love this little vehicle. I had a 2007 Kia Rio and this one has all the bells and whistles that I always wanted that one to have. Very comfortable and loaded with fun features. Best car on the market for the money. 45 mpg so far, not too bad.

Safety
5 out of 5 stars
Technology
5 out of 5 stars
Performance
5 out of 5 stars
Interior
5 out of 5 stars
Comfort
5 out of 5 stars
Reliability
5 out of 5 stars
Value
5 out of 5 stars
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