2006 Kia Spectra SX 2.0 inline 4 from North America


Poor Man's Sports Car!


Just some steering wheel shake - need to get the alignment checked.

General Comments:

The car is fast!

Handles beautifully!

Mileage is great!

Excellent reliability!

Would you buy another car from this manufacturer? Yes

Review Date: 28th January, 2011

2006 Kia Spectra EX 2.0 liter from North America


Great value and more than basic transportation


One wheel was out of spec when delivered, and caused shimmy. I replaced them with alloy wheels from a previously owned Spectra.

General Comments:

Absolutely no complaints about mechanicals. I am getting great road mileage, and fair in-town economy. KIA is as good a car as any Toyota or Audi I have owned in terms of doing what cars are supposed to do; go from here to there.

Comfort is enhanced by back support added for long trips. Shims have been placed under front of driver seat tracks to raise front lip of seat to improve the seating position.

I added a front strut bar from a Spectra 5, and plan on adding a Hyundai Tiburon anti-sway bar in back to help eliminate body roll in turns. This is a second childhood thing, more than a must do thing.

Would you buy another car from this manufacturer? Yes

Review Date: 6th May, 2008

2006 Kia Spectra EX 2.0L DOHC I-4 from North America


A Toyota Corolla with money on the hood


Strange sloshing sound from underneath front passenger's seat upon accelerating from a complete stop.

Fuel economy not as good as usual.

General Comments:

Overall a good commuter car, but it takes corners like a Buick.

The interior is comfortable, spacious and quiet, with excellent fit and finish. Top quality materials used throughout, with barely any hard plastic.

Controls are simple, and an easy reach for both driver and passenger.

Good engine and adequate acceleration from very smooth 4sp auto, but returns disappointing 29mpg city. Transmission is very good for an automatic, and rarely shifts at the wrong time (when I don't want it to).

Smooth ride, with comfortable and very well-bolstered seats, with 6-way driver adjustment. However, the driver's seat doesn't accommodate long-legged people well.

The steering is adequate, with nice weighting but lacking in feel.

Brakes are good, with reasonable pedal feel. Brake dive and acceleration squat are highly noticeable.

Body roll is tremendous, and the tires are easily overwhelmed into squealing submission if taking turns while going over 45mph.

Designed to make the passengers smile more than the driver, but a very good deal overall. The Spectra is king of compact commuter cars, and is incredibly reliable.

Would you buy another car from this manufacturer? Yes

Review Date: 26th April, 2008

6th May 2008, 15:01

How can 29MPG City be disappointing?

31st Jul 2008, 01:40

29 mpg city is disappointing?

Taking turns over 45 mph? LOL.

18th Aug 2009, 23:11

Hi, did you ever find out what the "Strange sloshing sound" is, I also hear it all the time when accelerating or stopping. Thanks!

20th Feb 2010, 17:47

I just bought a used Spectra today, and while test driving, heard the sloshing noise as well coming from the hood in front of the front passenger area.

I mentioned it to the owner, and he said he had been told it is a problem that affects some Spectras, and that it is trapped air in the radiator (not totally sure).

He said the fix was to open the radiator (the thing in the front that makes the AC cold, get the car at a 30% angle with it running (I think the heater has to be on as well), this way the trapped air bubbles out.

He did it in front of me and I saw the whole process. He opened the radiator lid, very slowly, (I guess it will gush out if you open it too fast), then he got 2 wedges and ran the car up them, I think the heater was on and he did it for 5 minutes.

I haven't heard the noise again.

You might want to google this issue to get more specific instructions.

Hope this helps.

30th Mar 2010, 17:13

Many people have that problem... I have 96,000 miles on my 2006 SX, and it had it when I first got it, but it just went away on its own. I have not had a single problem, and it will have 100,000 miles before it is even 4 years old!!!