The 2018 KIA Rio

They say it is the little things that matter in life. It's nice when a carmaker gets all the little things right. It is a really big deal when it comes to getting the little things right in a small car. The likes of the 1995-2005 Chevrolet Cavalier have shown us what a bad cheap car looks like. What with hard plastics a serious lack of basic features. It is the end of an era, and the beginning of another as the Rocky Marciano of small cars makes its entry. The 2018 Kia Rio is absolutely fascinating to say the very least. The lowest priced subcompact from Kia has been noted for the remarkable strides it has made in technology with each generation.


What's under the hood?

Under the hood, Kia has re-tuned the engine to be more in line with those of its rivals. The 1.6-liter engine now produces 130 hp and 119 lb-ft of torque, which is about eight ponies and four lb-ft lower than the previous engine. Torque, however, seems to kick in a little earlier on the rev range giving the drive a more immediate feeling of power. This does not make the car really fast, but paired with the six-speed automatic or manual transmission; it is usable in the city and suburban routes.


What's New for 2018?

The stylish Rio has received several changes for 2018. These changes are geared towards making it a more refined, upscale and high-tech small car. Kia dishes out goodies for every Rio buyer there is. Features like air conditioning, power locks, and a touchscreen infotainment system come standard for the base model. It might seem like usual stuff in cars nowadays but being a small car whose competitors, including the Nissan Versa, have nothing of the kind, it has done pretty well.


What are the Hi-Tech features on the new Rio?

The new Rio comes equipped with Kia's UVO telematics system which is an important part of the Rio experience. This feature allows you to start the Rio using an app or website remotely. It also shows you the location of the car just in case you can't find it in the parking lot. In addition to this, the UVO system is capable of sending the owner a vehicle health report and an onboard diagnostic report to help budget for maintenance and repairs. The only thing that will raise your eyebrows higher is that the service is free for five years.


How is the new Rio's interior?

The Rio's looks are definitely appealing to the eye from the outside and they get even better is the inside. The manufacturers have gone out of their way to provide sleek looks with a quality fit and finish. There are some hard plastics onboard yes, but there are also lots of soft-touch materials which make it a nice and balanced package. So what about space? Well, cargo space suffers a loss of 15 cubic feet, and it all goes to giving the passengers more comfort in their seats.


What is not so good about this car?

Kia has for decades packed a lot of value in their cars and the 2018 Rio is no exception. It boasts a relatively lower price tag and offers a great balance of its abilities and features. This is certainly the car for anyone looking for a great car with a small budget.

Get the latest vehicle news, advice & deals.