This car I purchased Labor Day weekend 2007. I went to the dealership and was looking at the KIA Rio. For a thousand or so more dollars I was really interested in the Spectra. I took the vehicle for a test drive and was highly impressed with the way the vehicle handled and how much power the little four cylinder really had. In my previous civics the mountain I climb for work everyday I always needed to downshift... in this Spectra I can just keep it in fifth gear and it just keeps on going like a tank.
At first glance of the car I figured it would feel cramped or small on the inside. I was awfully surprised on how roomy the interior actually is. This four door sedan is very roomy (for a smaller vehicle) and has some nice features. The driver seat does have a six way adjust which is very nice. It does come with a tilt steering wheel, but I would have liked a telescopic wheel instead. CD player is standard with the auxiliary port ready to hook up a Zune or Ipod to play. The six speaker stereo sounds good, but to me could always be better.
Trunk space is a decent size, the bad part is the vehicle does not have gas shocks to raise the trunk. It has those big hinges that crush items if they are packed too tightly in the car. To me personally, this is not a problem.
Underneath the hood it is very easy to see all items and work on later after the 100,000 mile warranty expires. I went ahead and opted for the 10 year 100,000 mile bumper to bumper warranty for very little extra. I believe this will be well worth it.
All in all I think this is a great vehicle for what it is. I compared the Nissan Versa, Chevrolet Aveo, Toyota Corolla, Dodge Caliber, and the Hyundai Accent. Even though the KIA name brand is not as well known as these others, I could not see a reason to pay more for the name. You can talk about resale value, but I am looking at this as a long term investment.