2002 Kia Rio 1.5L 4 cylinder from North America


This is a sheep in wolf's clothing


Nothing mechanically wrong.

General Comments:

Before I purchased this car, I was tooling around in a '94 Geo Metro.

I thought I was upgrading when I purchased the Rio, but I was wrong.

You can definitely feel that this is the cheapest car on the market.

Nothing has gone wrong mechanically, but.

The Geo was more refined and better built.

~The shifting mechanism on the Rio is sloppy, slow, and doesn't engage instantly.

~There is no power. My 3cyl Geo can outrun the Rio.

~Gas mileage is terrible. For this size of engine, 27-31mpg is absurd! I've been getting 45mpg+, so I'm a little spoiled.

~The interior looks alright and the sound system is quite nice, but the overall feel of the car is that it is simply trying to "appear" expensive.

With poor gas mileage, no power, and the sloppy shifting design, this car gets negative marks from me. The body/look is fine and the interior is nice. However, the interior and the body are not what get you from place to place.

Would you buy another car from this manufacturer? Don't Know

Review Date: 17th May, 2005

17th May 2005, 14:17

I also traded a 1997 Geo Metro 3-cylinder for a 2002 Kia Rio and I have to agree the Metro does have more pep than the Kia even with the a/c on-

2002 Kia Rio from North America


Rio is junk and KIA will not honor its warranty


Gas guage quit working at about 2000 miles. Took it in twice to have it fixed. They fixed the gas guage, but then something in the fuel line broke. I left the dealership and got about ten miles down the road - with gas pouring out of my car - watching the newly fixed gas guage go from full to completely empty. The dealership would not come get me or the car, they made me call a tow truck and tow it in, then get my own ride back to work. I was told that if I would give the dealership all 10's on the customer survey, they would give me a free oil change. Right...

Have had to put four new tires on the car twice in 2 1/2 years.

Factory recall to address some problems with the heat sensors in the engine (causing stalling).

Rain strips in the roof keep blowing out.

There was a second factory recall to fix the fuel distribution system.

Now, for the REAL problem. My car is 2 1/2 years old and has 60,005 miles on it. It needs a whole new engine because it has a "knock in the lower engine compartment". The service department cannot tell me what is causing the knock, what went wrong, or whose fault it is, just that I need a new engine. However, KIA is refusing to honor the warranty because I did not keep my oil change receipts. Without these receipts, they do not have to honor the warranty ("as clearly stated on page 17 paragraph 2 of your owners manual, therefore, KIA is legally covered and does not have to honor this warranty"). The cost to replace my engine? $3310.00! for a car that's only worth about fifty bucks now.

General Comments:

The reason I bought this car was the warranty. I, too, am a single mom on a very tight budget. I cannot afford to have a car in for repairs all the time. I was told at the dealership that if anything ever went wrong, the engine and transmission would be completely covered for 100,000 miles. No on ever disclosed to me that without receipts, the warranty would be void. Furthermore, what kind of cheap piece of junk car can blow an engine at 60,000 miles?!

Would you buy another car from this manufacturer? No

Review Date: 17th May, 2005

17th May 2005, 14:49

It doesn't sound as if they have a leg to stand on.

There will be a service book with the car, and this should be stamped every time the car is serviced. KIA has to accept their own service book as being proof that the vehicle was serviced to their schedules.

We have these cars in the UK as well and they are generally regarded as being a waste of money and road space.