February 10, 2013


Kia Rio's designer Peter Schreyer has successfully in making the simple looking Rio into a cheeky and attractive urban roundabout B-segment hatchback. The design of the latest Rio doesn't appeal much to me at first, but it slowly grow in me after seeing the real thing in person. It's a small B-segment hatchback which is cute and easy to drive for girls, but guys like me might like it too due to its contemporary styling.

Daytime running LED lights, LED taillights and indicator integrated wing mirror give the Rio an image that it's not your ordinary hatchback. With the 1.4SX, you'll get 5-spoke 17-inch wheels that will grab the attention of passerby. Stylish indeed, but changing tyres might cost a bomb. The 1.4EX however, comes with slightly less attention-getter 16-inch wheels. Swooping roofline and sculpted side profile give the Rio a sporty stance, but as a result the rear windows and rear windscreen are a bit smallish, not good for rearward visibility. For more specification of the car, please visit here.
Kia Rio 1.4EX with 16-inch wheels.

I literally wow-ed when I entered the cabin. Looks like Kia put in plenty of effort in making sure the Rio is good looking inside and out. Everything seems plush and upmarket, especially the points of touch such as the aircraft cabin-inspired air-cond buttons and leather-wrapped steering wheel. Material used for the cabin is so-so, but what to complain considering its affordable price tag that starts from RM73,888 for the EX to RM79,888 for the SX, where both trims come with a super long list of features.

While the Rio is small on the outside, it's the opposite in the inside. Legroom is adequate for me, a 1.8m tall person while there is headroom to spare. The 288 litres boot, it is larger than it looks in this picture! I would say it's adequate to accomodate the luggage of a small family's balik kampung trip. Full-sized spare tyre underneath.

I was very interested with the Rio but unfortunately, I was unable to get a test drive due to the unavailability of a test drive unit. Therefore, I can't check out whether the performance of the 1.4 litre CVVT Gamma engine is adequate for the Rio or not. Hopefully I'll get to try it out soon.

P.S. Today is the first day of Chinese New Year, therefore I wish everyone Happy Chinese New Year! Remember to drive safely!

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