I bought this car brand new, paying less than $9000 total - out the door. The car has been extremely reliable.
In the past 2 years I have put 50,000 on my Rio. This is a great car! It is small, but very economic. Just last week we checked the gas mileage (now that gas is over $2 per gallon) and this car is still giving us 35 miles per gallon.
We've driven the Kia to California (from Michigan) and experienced the high heat. The air conditioner kept us perfectly cool, with no problems. One draw-back however, is that when Kia designed this car, they used the compressor from the air condition unit to double as the heater. As a result, each Spring, I need to replace the $2 fuse under the hood.
Living in Michigan we also get lots of snow and ice. The Kia handles well through this slop, as long as the tires are in good condition. Driving in high winds can be tricky since the car is very light.
After about 3 weeks of driving the Kia, we began getting a huge "shake" in the front end. When we drove it back to the dealer, they discovered that it was simply mud inside the wheels and cleaned it out for us. No problems after that!
The body of the Kia looks modern, with its "cat like" head lights and tail lights. The panels are thin though. My dog put one dent in the driver's door after slipping off the icy porch this past winter.
The thing I love the most about my Rio, besides the money I saved, both on the purchase and on the gas I buy, is the reliability of this car. I've never had to replace anything, except for the fuse, two tires (after 50,000 miles), windshield wiper blades (one time), and one cracked windshield (from a rock. Kia also offers a 6 year, unlimited mileage roadside assistance plan if anything were to go wrong. Its one call I've never had to make.
If you are looking for a bargain with reliability, get this car! I'm looking at buying another one for my daughter!