Affordable Cars: 2018 Kia Rio

2018 Rio

With an incredibly low starting price as a new model and the fact that this Kia Rio is already one year old, this is certainly a very affordable vehicle. In fact, it is among the most affordable recent model years you will find anywhere. After all, a year-old model will likely be used, letting you take advantage of depreciation for instant savings. The Rio’s affordable pricing comes from its status as a subcompact vehicle and fewer standard features than other Kia models. Even so, you get a powerful engine and an interior that is surprisingly upscale for a very reasonable price.

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Choice of Body Style

In addition to offering multiple trim levels to meet your needs and budget, a strong point of the 2018 Rio is the fact that it is available as either a sedan or a hatchback. This provides more versatility at an affordable price point since you can choose the style that you prefer. The hatchback is a smart choice for anyone who wants a bit more cargo space or a more cohesive look. Either body style delivers swept-back headlights, a contrasting grille, and a rounded rear end that make you think of a classic hot hatch without making promises the Rio cannot keep.

Surprisingly Upscale Interior

One of the strongest points in favor of the 2018 Kia Rio is its interior, which is stylish and has a European attitude. You will find soft-touch surfaces in multiple locations and plenty of flair that you would expect to only get from more expensive models. You will notice proper bolstering on the seats and adjustability in front for most models. The Rio will fit five passengers, but you will likely want to limit it to four adults, at least for anything but a very quick drive.

2018 Rio

When you drive, you will appreciate the extra sound-deadening foam Kia added starting in the 2016 model year. The Rio hatchback is your choice for storage, offering 15 cubic feet for cargo. However, the sedan’s 13.7 cubes are respectable enough for most drivers of a subcompact.


The Kia Rio runs on a 1.6-liter 4-cylinder engine with 138 horsepower. This powertrain is nice and quiet, so it will not interfere with your daily conversations or music listening. You can opt to pair your Rio with a 6-speed manual or automatic but may have to look hard for a used version with the manual given the clear preference for automatic by American drivers. This is made harder by the fact that you can only get the manual with the base sedan.

Available Features

To keep prices low, the 2017 Kia Rio comes standard with hand-crank windows and manual locks. At the very least, you get air conditioning, which some vehicles in its price range won’t include. You also get standard satellite radio. Most drivers will want to find a Rio EX or higher to get a 4.3-inch touchscreen, Bluetooth, and power windows. You could also enjoy a rearview camera, stop-start technology to save fuel, keyless ignition, a 7-inch touchscreen, and a sport-tuned su

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