Review written by Brian. (aka, Daddy to Rylie and Bryce)
Disclosure: All opinions are my own. A car was provided for one week at no cost, in order to facilitate this review.
If you recall my last review, you may remember that I have been in the market for a new car for when my current lease expires. I've been considering something smaller and more economical, so I jumped at the chance to test and review another small sedan: the Kia Rio 5-door.
My first thought after I saw the Rio was that this would definitely be the smallest car I had ever driven. My second thought is that the Electronic Blue is an awesome looking color, and I really liked the sporty style of the wheels. So even though it was smaller than I've been used to, there were enough style points to meet my acceptance criteria.
I decided to see just how small this car was on the inside, and set about installing Bryce's car seat and Rylie's booster seat in the back. After the seats were secured, I stepped back and was slightly amazed at how much leg room was still available. Kia certainly didn't waste any space here. If you're a Doctor Who fan, you might even say it's bigger on the inside.
The cargo area, however, is NOT bigger on the inside. You could fit a week's worth of groceries, as long as you don't buy that 12 pack of paper towels. The cargo cover is a nice addition to keep your valuables out of sight.
Another area where this Kia Rio 5-door shines is in all of the features and amenities you can get. Some of my favorites are:
- Navigation with SiriusXM Traffic. Live traffic updates so you can avoid one of life's biggest annoyances.
- Steering wheel mounted controls. Adjust your music and answer your phone without taking your hands off the wheel.
- Bluetooth phone and audio integration. Phone integration is a must, and thankfully audio integration is becoming more common so you can listen to your MP3s or stream internet radio through your stereo wirelessly.
- Rear-Camera Display. Every vehicle should have this.
The Rio 5-door also has a full complement of safety features. The impressive part is that even the base model comes with everything the top end model does in the safety department. Including:
- Dual front and side airbags
- Full-length side curtain airbags
- Anti-lock brakes
- Electronic Stability Control
- Vehicle Stability Management
- Electronic Brake-Force Distribution
- Tire pressure monitoring system
- Side-impact door beams
- Front and rear crumple zones
The executive summary is that this is a great little vehicle that is a perfect commuter car during the week, and can still handle family outings on the weekend. You get a lot of features for not a lot of money, or you can go for just the basics and barely make a dent in your budget. And now for the last shot that shows one more reason the Kia Rio 5-door makes a great city car: