2012 Kia Rio and Rio5

12 May 2011 | 3,220 views | No Comment
      The almost dizzying pace of new products from Kia continues with the recent introduction of the 2012 Kia Rio and Rio5. The pair made their first  public appearance at the New York International Auto Show  and Geneva Motor Show media days events, anbd it's fair to say that the new models are light years ahead of their predecessors, with an all-new platform, up to date stytling, and the usual lavish list of standard equipment. But it's equally fair to say that the Rio will be taking on some pretty tough competition because, with Hyundai's new Accent, the coming Chevy Sonic, the Ford Fiesta, new Nissan Versa and a number of other products, there will be plenty of new models which consumers can compare before making a final purchase. Still, from the looks of things, Kia's Rio should fare well, given the sporty, "in motion" look of the cars, their lengthy warranties and higher horsepower than the competition.  "The all-new Rio brings Kia's successful combination of world-class styling, outstanding fuel economy, advanced technologies and tremendous value to the smallest and most economical vehicle in the Kia lineup," said Michael Sprague, vice president, marketing & communications, KMA. "With gas prices rising, sub-compacts are becoming increasingly more popular and with more power, up to 40 miles per gallon fuel economy and stunning design, the all-new Rio sets the standard in the sub-compact class and becomes a vehicle that is not only affordable, but one that people will aspire to own."      The new Rio will be available in three trims,  LX, EX and SX, and will be equipped with a 1.6-liter GDI four-cylinder with the option of either a six-speed manual transmission or six-speed automatic.Kia says that their Rio is one of only two cars in the subcompact segmentthat will offer a GDI engine, (gasoline direct injection) and  Go (ISO) technology in which the engine turns off when the vehicle is not in motion such as at a stop light or in traffic. The engine restarts automatically when the driver releases the brake pedal, resulting in lower levels of fuel consumption. In addition, Kia says, the Rio will distinguish itself with class-leading fuel economy--30/40.    The new Rios were drawn up at  Kia's design studios in Irvine, Calif., and the all-new sedan and hatchback have "highly sculpted sloping shoulder lines and wedge-shaped exteriors, projecting an athletic profile that conveys power and agility while mimicking the aggressive lines found on other recently launched Kia vehicles such as the 2011 Optima and Sportage," the Kia news release says.       The release adds, "Both Rio models sport their own interpretations of Kia's signature grille, slimmed down to connect to the dynamic headlamp design, providing a new twist on the Kia family look that includes a bigger air intake to exude a youthful persona. The Rio sedan shares the sleek skin of its hatchback sibling, only dropping the wedge line slightly toward the rear door down to the trunk."     The three model lines have distinct differences among them, Kia says. "The LX trim includes body-color door handles and side mirrors and 15-inch steel wheels with 185/65R15 tires, while the Rio5 also comes with a standard rear spoiler to improve aerodynamics. To accentuate a premium look, the side mirrors are attached to the door rather than the plastic triangle like so many others in the segment," Kia says. "Moving to the EX trim brings additional standard conveniences, including power door locks with keyless entry and a standard rear wiper for the Rio5. For consumers looking for higher levels of sporty refinement, the SX trim offers standard 17-inch wheels with 205/45R17 tires, fog lamps, LED daytime running and rear combinations lamps, dual chrome tip exhaust, outside heated mirrors with turn signal indicators and, unique for the Rio5, projector headlamps."        Consumers will see that the wheelbase on the new Rios is up--101.2 inches-- which means more room inside for passengers and cargo,  with  40 inches front headroom, 37.8 inches rear headroom, 43.3 inches front legroom and 31.1 inches rear legroom for the Rio sedan and Rio5 hatchback.      "Standard on the LX trim is a driver's seat height adjuster, while moving to the EX trim includes standard power windows with automatic up/down on the driver's window, Bluetooth wireless technology connectivity with steering wheel-mounted voice activation controls to enable hands-free operation for compatible mobile phones, telescoping steering column, 60/40 split folding rear seats and leatherette door trim. The SX trim offers consumers an even more upscale look and feel with standard metal pedals, metal grain, a Supervision™ meter cluster, leather-wrapped steering wheel and shift knob, maplight with sunglasses holder, illuminated vanity mirrors, trip computer, cruise control, UVO powered by Microsoft, in-car hands-free communication and entertainment system with rear camera display, and chrome-coated accents throughout, " Kia says. The standard equipment list on Rio includes an AM/FM/CD/MP3/Sat audio system with SIRIUS Satellite Radio capabilities and three months complimentary service and auxiliary and USB audio input jacks for connecting with MP3 players. Available packaging upgrades for the Rio EX include a Convenience Package and Eco Package, while the SX level offers an available Premium Package. The Convenience Package includes 15-inch alloy wheels, automatic light control, fog lamps, leather-wrapped steering wheel and shift knob, maplight with sunglasses holder, illuminated vanity mirrors, outside heated mirrors with turn signal indicators, trip computer, cruise control and the UVO powered by Microsoft in-car hands-free communication and entertainment system with rear camera display.  The Eco Package appeals to the environmentally friendly consumer with ISG technology and an Active Eco System for optimal fuel-efficient driving. Upgrading the SX trim with the luxurious Premium Package includes a navigation system (replaces the UVO system), push-button start with Smart Key, leather seat trim, heated front seats and a moonroof to give an open, airy feeling.      The new Rios have an all-new platform that is longer,lower and wider than what was used for current models. The overall length is  171.9 (Rio sedan) or 159.3 (Rio5) with a platform measuring 67.7 inches wide and 57.3 inches high.

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