2001 Kia Rio from North America


I guess you get what you pay for


The battery finally died, but it told you it was going. The car is shaking/vibrating religiously. The dash board, passenger seat, and the steering wheel shake badly. I tried aligning the car and balancing the wheels to no avail. I'm afraid to take it to a KIA dealership as they will attempt to fleece me.

General Comments:

This car is not bad on the mileage and although it's not fast, once on the highway it can go. In any case, I will never buy a KIA vehicle. The only reason I bought the Rio was because I did not have enough money to buy something else.

Would you buy another car from this manufacturer? No

Review Date: 28th April, 2003

19th Aug 2004, 08:16

I purchased my 2001 Kia Rio in Oct 2000.

I was in need of a car quick, because the insurance company was pressuring me to hurry up and get me a car, because they could not keep me in a rental car indefinitely.

So, because the Kia looked like what I wanted, I purchased it. But about six months after buying the Kia, my fuel injectors had to be replaced, and because it was under warranty, it did not cost me anything. The Kia service department said that bad gas could have caused the fuel injectors to quit. Two went bad, they replaced all four, or so that is what I was told, that all four had been replaced.

Also, when I first checked out the Kia I now drive, the seat belts would not retract all the way in, like all the other cars that I have driven are supposed to do. The salesman that sold me the car, told me that all I had to do is push the button above where the seat belt goes in, and the seat belt would retract. That did not work. I had to hold the button, and then work the seat belt back in. He said that was the way they were made. Still have the problem. Was told by the salesman at that time I was thinking about buying the car, that I had a 36,000 or 3 year warranty on the car. I did not ask inside the dealership. Took his word. Then after I started having some problems with my car after about 60,000 miles, I took my car to the dealership that I had bought it from, and they told me that I should have brought it back sooner, that everything on the car was warranted 60,000 miles or 6 years... whichever came first.

I have had to have the right rear wheel bearing replaced 3 or 4 times, the left rear twice. There is a noise in the right front, and the service manager of the service department of the dealership that I bought the car from, took a test drive with me driving, and I heard the noise, and I said "listen, that is what I was telling you about". He said it could be any number of things, and he would hate to recommend something and it not be the problem. He did put it up on the lift and checked out the suspension and the wheel bearings, and said that everything looked OK "at that time". He also said that my front wheel cover was warped, and that could possibly cause the noise, so he moved the right front wheel cover to the right rear, and put the right rear wheel cover on the front right wheel. I test drove it, got it up to about 70 mph, and could hear the noise, and even at 55 mph could here the noise.

Contacted the service dept, and told him that I could still hear the noise. Still have the problem. Back a week or two ago, I contacted the DOT Safety Hotline, and told them about some of the problems I had been having, and that I had been on the computer and had found some recalls on my car that I had not been notified about. They called me back, and told me that they would be sending me some forms to fill out. I received the forms, and I will be filling them out, and letting them know about all the safety problems I have noticed with my car.

I don't know where to go from here. Please let me know. Also, the DOT has a website where you can go online and look up recalls on your car, whether it be new or used, and it also has on there where that you can research complaints on your car, whether it be new or used. I found it, and found a lot of complaints on the 2001 Kia Rio, and a lot of recalls on the 2001 Kia Rio, and I was not notified about any of them, but one. Two have been fixed by the dealership; the first one was fixed when I had my car in for an oil change, and I did not receive my recall for it until the day after the recall was fixed.

And the other, I went online and found the recall, and when I ask the service dept, they said they knew about the recall, but they had a back order for other people, and were waiting on the parts. I had been online the day before, and found a letter letting the Kia manufacturer know about the recall back in Sept of 2003 (I was able to pull up the letter that was written to the Kia manufacturer, letting them know that a recall was being made.. They knew about it as of Sept 2003, but said that the letters to the owners of the Kia Rio 2001 should be getting recall notifications around June 2004); it was for the fuel rail, and so I threatened them with Channel 9, one of the local channels in my viewing area, and before the day was out, the service department manager called me and said that they had found the parts, which was the fan motor I needed, plus the recall part (fuel rail), and that they were sending a man to Raleigh to pick up the parts, and they would call me when my car was ready.

Originally, I had needed a motor for my fan, because my fan would not come on unless you tapped it on the side. And we were waiting on a fan motor, but the dealership called me the second day they had my car, and told me that they had ran into a problem, that there were two different fan motors for my car, and they had sent the wrong motor, because the part number was listed wrong. Whose fault? The place where the part came from, or was it the fault of the parts department of the dealership's service department that was doing the work on my car. Maybe it was cataloged wrong at the parts department at the dealership.

Please advise, and offer any comments. I will never buy another Kia of any kind, no matter what.

2001 Kia Rio LX 1.5 from North America


I'm counting down the days until the lease is up!


On the very day we drove our Rio off the lot, we encountered problems with wind noise. It took four visits back to the dealer to get this problem fixed. After having my windshield re-sealed, my mirrors removed, re-installed and my bonnet adjusted, a Kia technician finally came with me for a drive to hear the problem for himself. Immediately, he told me that the problem was due to poorly installed rubber around the front doors. By now, three months had passed!

A few months later, my brakes started to squeak. I was told that the service would "only take a few minutes", so I decided to wait at the dealership. Two hours later, my car still hadn't been looked at, so I asked for my keys and promptly left. On a cold morning a few days later, the rubber came off my doors as I opened them. I had to wait another week for the parts to arrive, upon which time my brakes did get fixed.

A couple of months later, and the overdrive and engine lights came on. The day after I got this serviced, they came back on again. At the same time, the heat shield was causing a major rattling noise, so this had to be serviced as well.

Throughout the past winter, the car would stall on cold morning start-ups. The car was brought in to be serviced twice for this, at which time the engine warning light came on. Today marks the fifth time in the past five weeks that I will have brought this car back to the dealer for the same problem. Kia will only give me a loaner vehicle if they keep my car in the shop for four consecutive days. The fact that I have to keep bringing the car back for the same problem is irrelevant.

And to top it all off, the gas mileage sucks for a small four cylinder car!

General Comments:

My patience has grown extremely thin with both the car as well as the dealership. I know that first-year production vehicles are often full of little bugs, but not to the extent that mine has had. The dealership is only concerned with "policy this" and "policy that". My inconveniences mean nothing to them. They have done absolutely nothing to regain my confidence in them. I wouldn't care if they kept my car in the shop for a week if it meant getting it fixed right, as long as they provide me with a loaner vehicle. However they keep giving it back to me after each visit, telling me everything is OK. Everything is not OK!

Would you buy another car from this manufacturer? No

Review Date: 21st April, 2003

15th Jan 2004, 10:04

I have also had several similar problems with my Kia Rio 2001 car. I, too, have had problems with the heat shield rattling, the overdrive light going on, shaking steering wheel, and now my engine light is going on during this winter season.

I would never recommend anyone, to buying anything made by Kia. I don't feel safe driving it on the highway or on back roads either. It should be taken off the car market. It has no value and seems dangerous to the driver and others on the road.