1998 Kia Sephia from North America


A nice first car


I had to replace the brakes and rotors about 3 weeks after I bought it, which was very upsetting since it cost me $200.

The car dents really really easy and when I got a dent repaired I leaned on it and it re-dented.

General Comments:

I love my car very much.

But I can definitely see what people talk about the bad things of this car because it seems like most of them are coming true.

Would you buy another car from this manufacturer? No

Review Date: 26th January, 2003

3rd Feb 2003, 11:50

I know that I said it was a nice first car, but now only 2 weeks after I wrote this review I had a total brake failure. This happened last night and I am very lucky I didn't hit the car or the telephone pole. The Emergency Brake saved me and my peice of **** car. So now it's in the shop and I honestly want to sell it, but I don't think anyone will buy it. So much for being a nice first car.

1998 Kia Sephia LX 1.7 cc 4 from North America


Reliable car at a very low price


Only one problem with the car... front discs became warped at 25,000 miles. Replaced under warranty and no problems since.

General Comments:

Probably the most reliable car I have ever owned. 70,000 miles and I have only done brakes, tires, and spark plugs. The car has reasonble performance, good headroom, and good stability on snow and ice. A bit noisy at high speeds. Dealer service has been exceptional.

Would you buy another car from this manufacturer? Yes

Review Date: 23rd December, 2002

1998 Kia Sephia LS 1.8 DOHC from North America


This year's model had some bugs in it, and it needed a 10 year /100,000 mile warranty


Front Brakes have needed replacement, or repair every year.

Engine Check light would come on every once in a while then go off.

Now engine check light flashes, and car misses badly. Taking it in for service tomorrow.

Front tires wear unevenly, and need to be replaced every year and a half.

AM/FM CD-Radio digit readout LED has burned out.

Recalled for faulty fuel gauge reading.

General Comments:

This car wouldn't be so bad, except for the problems I mentioned. However, the 1998 model only had a 3 year warranty. Things are starting to go wrong, and I think the worst is about to come.

The car is comfortable, and generally drives well. It's very responsive for its size with only a four-cylinder engine.

The cabin is somewhat noisy on the freeway, and the suspension is lacking.

Would you buy another car from this manufacturer? No

Review Date: 11th December, 2002

1998 Kia Sephia from North America


Not worth your money!


Gears stuck, transmission had to be rebuilt.

Starter has been replaced several times.

Rear passenger door handle coming off.

Car randomly decides not to start.

Several problems with air conditioner.

General Comments:

When I bought this car, I didn't have a lot of money to spend and it seemed like a good deal. It's not a horrible car, but I don't really recommend it.

I used to drive between college and home and driving it on the interstate scared the heck out of me. Once I saw a Sephia in an accident, the little car was absolutely totaled when it really shouldn't have been.

The exterior of my car dents VERY easily and the paint on the bumpers scratches off easily too.

The manual transmission also shifts very hard; I mean it tends to jump a lot and slip out of gear. Also, the clutch is very loose.

Would you buy another car from this manufacturer? No

Review Date: 15th November, 2002

1998 Kia Sephia 2.4 from North America




I had purchased the car with a 3 year 30 thousand mile warranty on it within that time nothing had happened. As soon as the warranty expired I had to replace the clutch. About 3 months later the car was giving me problems starting so I had to have the starter replaced. The speakers are fading in and out. The paint on the car is fading. The car gets a lot of dings and dents. The brake light goes out when you turn the headlights on. The driver side door cannot be opened from the outside because the handle broke. The battery has been replaced twice. The car is having problems starting again I think it might be a problem with the starter or maybe the electrical system. It failed inspection. And to top it off the engine has a leak somewhere. So with all these problems I would never buy another one of these cars. I don't care if they offer a 50year 500000 mile warranty. It's a piece of junk through and through.

General Comments:

I would never buy another Kia Sephia.

Would you buy another car from this manufacturer? No

Review Date: 5th November, 2002

27th Feb 2003, 14:43

I couldn't help, but notice something about this review of the Sephia. Dings, broken handles, fading paint and burning up a clutch are all either abuse or neglect. As a Kia technician I see many people neglecting and abusing these cars and expecting them to take it like a Mercedes. These cars treat you as well as you treat them (assuming you have a good mechanic). My boss owns a 1999 Sephia with 126,000 city miles on it. Besides the bumper paint flaking, the car is like new.

11th Apr 2003, 17:36

I disagree with the previous comment. THIS CAR IS GARBAGE! If you're a kia tech, I'm sure you make a lot of money.

21st Oct 2004, 08:10

I have to say that the Kia Sephia is a piece of junk. I don't know what the Koreans were thinking when they built this car.

I have had nothing, but problems withthis car. I have had to replace the Master brake cylinder, brake pads, rotors, the battery. The car shakes no matter what is done to the alignment or balancing. It has a hard time starting anytime, not just the cold. One person said that when your headlights turn on the brake light turns off. Well that happens to me. Never in my life have I experienced a car with this many problems. Kia Techs have to make good money to lie about this car. The kia Sephia is like heroin, NO ONE NEEDS IT!!!