2018 Kia Rio 5 Door LX
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2018 KIA Rio 5-Door LX

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2018 KIA Rio 5-Door LX

Test Drive

Written by Marco Carvajal
Photographs by Marco Carvajal

The 2018 KIA Rio is so tiny – this is what people usually think when they first see this compact car, but sometimes the best things come in small sizes. The Rio might be small but due to great architectural and design planning the space is used very efficiently and the car feels bigger than it is, especially the interior doesn’t feel small. This compact Kia is very practical for people who live in big cities with limited space, it will always fit on any parking space.

Dynamic, Stylish, Capable and Feature-Rich Subcompact Provides Tremendous Value

2018 KIA Rio 5-door LX
5 seats

Transmission: 6-speed Manual

Engine: 1,6 Liter, Inline 4

Horsepower: 130 hp @ 6,300 rpm

Torque: 119 lb.-ft. @ 4,850 rpm

Fuel Tank Capacity: 11,9

Combined EPA MPG:



City / Highway


2018 KIA Rio 5 – door LX

It is hard not to underestimate this car because of its small appearance. But it is not as simple as it seems. The 2018 KIA Rio 5 – door LX is certainly going to impress everyone who would sit inside, with great dynamics, easy to drive, spacious despite the small sizes. Looks like a great city car. The space is used as its best, Kia designers have been able to create a small car that feels like a big car inside.

The RIO has a new eye-catching design, very European. Kia has been able to create a combination of fuel efficiency, innovative technology and advanced safety technology into this compact car.  The Rio also offers everyday convenience with many practical details, and its great fun-to-drive character.

This is a great car for those who like small European cars, it is fun, easy to drive, economical and has a very nice design.


KIA is now considered to be a true landmark of Southern Korea. One of the very first KIA cars was a luxurious KIA Enterprise, released in 1997.

At the present time, KIA has the position of one of the most famous and trusted car companies around the world. Kia has leading sales in the United States and around the world.

Kia is one of the most famous Southern Korean car companies which occupies a leading position in the middle price segment, as one of the best «ratio of price to quality». Before the 1970s, the company was engaged in the production bicycles and motorcycles. In 1988 they released their millionth car. 

Kia Motors Corporation (KMC), founded in 1944, is South Korea’s oldest manufacturer of motor vehicles and is now a subsidiary of the Hyundai-Kia Automotive Group. Over 1.5 million vehicles a year are produced in 13 manufacturing and assembly operations in eight countries. Kias has a network of distributors and dealers covering 172 countries. With a brand slogan “The Power to Surprise” they continue to impress us with a style, durability, energy and speed.

In 2006 Peter Schryer, who previously worked at «Volkswagen» and «Audi», was invited to KIA Motors as chief designer and since that time the main designer feature of KIA cars is a radiator grill in «tiger`s grin» style.

Since 2013, KIA is occupying the leading positions in sales in the world. The company`s best seller is the KIA Rio.

KIA Rio 5 – door LX
Starting from $14,200

Engine and Performance

2018 KIA Rio 5 – door does really have many things to impress even the most experienced driver. The modernized steering wheel system works great, which is now turning «Lock-to-Lock».

These are some of the mechanical features of the Rio:

  • 6 – speed manual transmission
  • EPA MPG (City/Highway/Combined) – 28/37/32
  • Fuel tank capacity (gal) – 11,9
  • Anti-Lock Braking System (ABS)
  • Front Diameter (in.) – Ventilated Disc – 11,0
  • Rear Diameter (in.) – Drum – 8.0»
  • Front Wheel Drive (FWD)
  • Steel unibody
  • Motor-driven power steering (MPDS)
  • Front Suspension – MacPherson Struts, Gas Shock Absorbers, Stabilizer Bar
  • Rear Suspension – Coupled Torsion Beam Axle, Twin-Tube Shock Absorbers
  • Steering Wheel Turns: Lock-to-Lock – 2, 8
  • Vehicle Turning Circle: Curb-to-Curb (ft.) 33.5


The 2018 KIA Rio 5 – door LX a perfect combination of KIA`s traditional aggressive features, modern restraint and even something from the first generation of theVolkswagen Juke (the very first hatchback in the world).  European design with modern-retro look.

The exterior of the RIO include the following features:

  • Front grill, black mesh
  • Front Grille, EX Exclusive Design – Gloss Black & Chrome
  • A body-color rear spoiler provides a sporty, distinctive look to your Rio 5-Door while enhancing the vehicles overall aerodynamics.
  • The body-color exterior door handles preserve the clean, dynamic lines of the Rio 5-Door.
  • The power-operated side-view mirrors conveniently heat up to help melt ice or snow.
  • Designed to enhance comfort, the windshield and front windows are made of Solar Control Glass that helps reduce interior heat buildup on sunny days.
  • Variable Intermittent Windshield Wipers are an added convenience on rainy days.
  • The rear window is heated to help defrost or melt snow for a clear view. And with a convenient, automated shut-off system, you don’t have to worry about overheating.
  • The Rear Wiper/Washer is a useful feature during inclement weather.
  • The Halogen Multi-Reflector Headlights offer substantial illumination of the road in front of you.
  • With auto light control, the headlights automatically turn off or on depending on the level of sunlight outside.
  • Seamlessly integrated into the lower front fascia, the fog lights create a dramatic look while providing crisp illumination of the road ahead.
  • The locking fuel-filler door helps provide secure closure.
  • The locking fuel-filler door helps provide secure closure.


A rare hatchback offers a spacious interior but KIA has been always famous for making real something that others would say is impossible. Due to the rationally organized space, it usually doesn’t feel small, even when the car is completely loaded.

The interior of the RIO include the following:

  • 5″ Touch Screen w/ AM/FM/MP3/SiriusXM® Audio System
  • UVO w/ 7″ Touch Screen
  • Rear-Camera Display
  • Autonomous Emergency Braking (AEB)
  • Forward Collision Warning System (FCWS)
  • Bluetooth® Wireless Technology w/ Steering-Wheel-Mounted Buttons
  • Siri® Eyes Free
  • Voice Recognition
  • Android Auto™
  • Apple CarPlay™
  • 4 Speakers / 6 Speakers w/ Front Tweeters
  • USB/Auxiliary Input Jack
  • USB Charging Ports
  • 12V Outlet
  • Steering-Wheel-Mounted Audio Buttons
  • Cruise Control w/ Steering-Wheel-Mounted Buttons
  • Power Windows w/ Driver’s One-Touch Auto-Up/Down
  • Power Door Locks
  • Remote Keyless Entry w/ Alarm and Trunk Opener
  • Air Conditioning
  • Tilt Steering Column
  • Tilt and Telescopic Steering Column
  • Trip Computer
  • Supervision Meter Cluster w/ 3.5″ Display
  • Center Console w/ Sliding Armrest and Storage
  • Dual Front Cup Holders
  • Front & Rear Door Map Pockets w/ Bottle Holder
  • Day/Night Rearview Mirror
  • Overhead Sunglasses Holder
  • Dual Map Lights
  • Dual Visor Vanity Mirrors
  • Dual Illuminated Visor Vanity Mirrors
  • Glove Box w/ Illumination
  • Parcel Shelf
  • Space-Saver Spare Tire
  • Tricot & Woven Cloth Seat Trim
  • Embossed Tricot Cloth Seat Trim
  • 6-Way Adjustable Driver’s Seat
  • Height-Adjustable Front Seat Belt Anchors
  • Rear-Seat Adjustable Headrests
  • 60/40 Split-Folding Rear Seat
  • Leather-Wrapped Steering Wheel & Gear Shift Knob

Hatchbacks are not usually known to be those cars that provide very good safety, but KIA has improved the safety of the RIO including all the following:

  • When used with properly fitted seatbelts, this advanced system helps detect the presence of a front-seat passenger, monitors the severity of an impact, and controls airbag inflation accordingly to help reduce injuries in certain collisions.
    When used with seat belts, the dual front seat-mounted side airbags offer an additional level of enhanced safety and can be effective at reducing injuries from certain collisions.
  • The full-length side curtain airbags offer enhanced safety of occupants in all rows by reducing the potential for injury in a collision or rollover scenario.
  • The first line of defense in safety is the seat belts. Front and rear 3-point seatbelts are an integral part of an elaborate vehicle-wide safety system designed to help minimize the effects of an accident.
  • In the event of certain collisions, front seat-belt pre-tensioners are designed to tighten the seat belts, pulling the driver and occupants more snugly into their seats in anticipation of an impact, to help to reduce the likelihood of injury.
  • The foundation of your Kia’s active safety system, the Anti-lock Braking System (ABS) uses electronic sensors at each wheel hub to detect when wheels begin to skid. If skidding under braking is detected, ABS modulates brake force to reduce skidding. This allows for reduced braking distances in addition to helping you maintain control of your vehicle.
  • Electronic Stability Control (ESC) offers an enhanced level of vehicle control with improved directional stability, helping you maintain your Kia’s intended direction of travel. ESC monitors and assists in the control of key vehicle functions by braking individual wheels and reducing engine power accordingly.
  • Vehicle Stability Management (VSM) adds steering direction control capability, intervening when appropriate to further stabilize the vehicle. This can help the driver regain control and return the vehicle to its intended path.
  • The Electronic Brake-force Distribution (EBD) system offers a measure of enhanced safety by electronically distributing appropriate amounts of braking pressure to each wheel through a network of sensors. The result is more controlled and precise handling while applying the brakes.
  • Hill-start Assist Control (HAC) offers an added measure of security when moving from a stop on a steep hill by preventing the vehicle from rolling backward. It functions by gently applying the brakes for two seconds while you move your foot from the brake pedal to the accelerator.
  • The Tire-Pressure Monitoring System (TPMS) offers the convenience and added the measure of preventative safety by constantly monitoring tire inflation pressures in all four tires. A warning light appears in the instrument cluster should any tire pressures drop below a specified range.
    High-line TPMS standard on EX.
  • Your Kia offers an added measure of security with reinforced steel beams in every door. Specifically, these steel beams are designed to absorb impact energy and deflect side-impact force. Additionally, both A and B pillars are reinforced to help minimize impact forces.
  • The front and rear crumple zones are specially designed to absorb and dissipate impact energy, helping to preserve the passenger compartment.
  • Lower Anchors and Tethers for Children (LATCH) is a universal child-seat attachment system that allows for quick, easy, and secure installation and removal of LATCH-equipped child seats.
  • The rear child-safety door locks offer peace of mind by enabling parents to disengage the interior door opening mechanism ensuring children can’t open the rear doors while the vehicle is in motion.


2018 KIA Rio 5 – door LX is a great compact automobile for the city. Is going to be the perfect match for anyone, whether you just got your driver`s licenses or you have already spent many years driving a car, the RIO can make you happy. It is not luxurious at all but still looks quite stylish and elegant. It is a golden middle for anyone who wants to get a new car with European compact design, fun to drive and convenient.

In terms of pricing, the 2018 KIA Rio 5 – door LX has a great low price around $14,000. It is very affordable and with the right financing anybody could buy it.

I like how Kia has including so many features in the RIO, I am a fan of additional features (at no extra price) and Kia keeps making me happy providing more standard features at no extra cost. Other car companies don’t give you so many standard features included on their base models, and this may end up increasing the price a lot when you add all the additional costs.

According to Kia, the Rio is dynamic, stylish, capable and feature-rich subcompact that provides tremendous value, and I must agree!

Follow Marco Carvajal:
Marco Carvajal has many years of experience in the editorial world, in the entertainment industry including events, cars, music and other fields. He also has wide experience in business, e-business and e-commerce. He is actively involved in the development of AutomotorPro.com and other affiliated car publications, from marketing and business management, to the editorial department as a contributing writer and editor for other writers. His passion for automobiles, travel and art, supports the development of AutomotorPro.com in an original and unique way, as a leader in the automobile editorial industry, nationwide in the United States and international territories. Marco graduated from the University of Miami, in addition to additional studies at other universities and institutions. In the field of business, he has created several enterprises and multinational projects related to publishing and entertainment. As a writer, the number one goal for Marco Carvajal is to be able to communicate clear information easy to understand for our subscribers, in an easy language, very detailed, about automobiles and lifestyle. He also likes to show a different perspective, with innovative style, about the information and characteristics of each car, mostly oriented to the daily life, about what each person may want learn about each car, thinking on the practical daily use of cars in real life. Marco Carvajal tiene muchísimos años de experiencia en el mundo editorial, en la industria del entretenimiento incluyendo eventos, autos, música y otros, así como gran experiencia en los negocios, e-business y e-commerce. Se envuelve activamente en el desarrollo de AutomotorPro.com, desde aspectos de mercadeo y manejo de negocios, hasta el departamento editorial donde también escribe y edita artículos de otros escritores. Su pasión por los autos, viajar y el arte, le ayudan a AutomotorPro.com a desarrollarse de una forma original y única, como un líder en la industria editorial automotriz a nivel nacional en Estados Unidos y otros territorios internacionales. Marco se graduó de la Universidad de Miami, además de haber realizado estudios y cursos en otras universidades e instituciones. En el área de negocio ha fundado varias empresas y creado varios proyectos multinacionales en el área editorial y del entretenimiento. Como escritor, la meta número uno de Marco Carvajal es lograr transmitir información sobre automóviles fácil de entender para los lectores, en un idioma sencillo, los más detallada posible. Además de lograr mostrar un lado diferente e innovador sobre la información y características de cada auto, principalmente orientado a lo cotidiano, a lo que cada persona puede aprender sobre cada automóvil, pensando en la vida diaria, en el uso de cada auto en la vida práctica.
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