2002 Kia Spectra Base 1.8 from North America


-Weather strips on every window and door came off/became damaged. The dealer reaplced these, but it is clear the material is very cheap and poorly manufactured so I expect it to happen again out of warranty.

-Up to a 30 second delay when you are shifting to reverse. Dealer claims it is a fluid needing changing (yea, whatever -tempted to say... okay when you change it and it still doesn't work then you will pay for my unnecessary tran fluid change.)

-Driver side window does not close and is incredibly hard to open/close - going to take that into warranty soon. Think this won't be an issue with dealer.

-Engine sounds like crap - loud and whiny.

-Rear middle seat belt stopped snapping in, but warranty covered it. They didn't say why it broke.

-Rear-ended another vehicle bad. Crumpled like crazy... 3000 dollars for insurance to repair. No deployment of air-bag on KIA. Surprisingly on SUV it caused a scratch on did deploy its airbag. Hmm... interesting.

General Comments:

I would never buy one of these ever again. I will never buy any KIA again. This is the worst car I have ever owned.

Don't let the 10 year warranty fool you. It only covers most things up to 6 year/60000 miles anyway.

The car is also poorly manufactured. You definitely get what you pay for.

Would you buy another car from this manufacturer? No

Review Date: 26th May, 2005

6th Sep 2006, 12:18

I have had the first four problems listed.

29th Oct 2008, 06:09

Mine has 104000 on it and the tranny does the same as described but sometimes it will go in right away and other times you will have to wait a while, that really sucks. The weather stripping is bad on mine too, not a big deal.

2002 Kia Spectra LS 4 cylinder from North America


Not worth the worry


At 10000 miles, after several trips to the dealer complaining of an engine whine the transmission was replaced under warranty.

At 13000 miles a bad vibration began when braking. Despite only 13000 miles Kia wanted $100 to replace both front rotors, claiming brakes were only covered for 12000 miles. Ended up getting the rotors turned at a local shop for $20 and solved the problem.

Needed a new set of tires at 20000 miles despite rotating and balancing as required.

Replaced some window molding at 25000 miles, covered under warranty.

Developed another vibration when driving with ac on which Kia won't acknowledge as a problem.

General Comments:

This car keeps up with traffic fairly well and rides and handles decent for a $10000 car.

Gas mileage is less than expected for such a small car.

It's a bit cramped on the inside and the seats are uncomfortable on long trips.

I like the car, but not too confident I won't be having more trouble in the near future.

Would you buy another car from this manufacturer? No

Review Date: 31st July, 2004

2nd Oct 2004, 17:34

I have the KIA Spectra "base" model which is as bare bones as it can get. No power locks, windows, and no cruise control. I have only had the check engine light come on once, but after I had the oil changed, after like a wk. it went off. Other than that, I got both headlights changed (different times) and my wife hit a pothole and we had to get the wheel bent back in shape (got that done for free). Only thing now is that at high speeds (60 and up) the car (mainly the steering wheel) shakes. It is now at about 43,000 miles and everything else has been fine. Not too roomy though.

2002 Kia Spectra from North America


An OK starter car... ya get what ya pay for


6 head light replacements in 2 years @ $20.00 per!!

Factory issue tire 'threw' a belt.

Brakes have been replaced 2X's.

Dash lights flickers at will. Interior overhead light works occasionally.

Rear speaker intermittent.

Center console poorly designed... it collects crumbs, dust etc and is VERY difficult to clean.

Most recently, the back support of the driver's seat has given way and is extremely uncomfortable.

Poor service at the dealership!

General Comments:

It has started every day during our Canadian winters.

It does not like to take a hill from a stop, but is fine if you hit the hill running :-)

Harder on gas than it should be for a small car.

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

Review Date: 30th June, 2004