A few comments / observations:
- Are you sure you're in North America? You state that your car has a 1.8l motor, but I thought only 2.0l were sent here. I thought only non-U.S. specced Spectras got a 1.8l.
- How in the devil could you tear your carpet in only 1600 miles? I've got over 10,000 miles on my EX and my carpets are pristine. And that's with hauling pre-teen children!
- Also... I'm not sure what you're talking about when you say that everything inside the car feels like it's going to break off. I've driven many cars in my day, and one of the things I'm actually impressed with in my car is the quality of all of the controls and tactile pieces. What do you usually drive around in... a bus? A semi-tractor?
- All of the windows, moonroof, doors, etc. all still work perfectly in my car that's driven in the Northern climate on rough roads.
- Handling on my car is also very good. I'm probably fairly easy to please in this respect, but I drive to work every morning on some decently curved roads with some switchbacks out in the country, and never once have I felt "uncomfortable" while driving. My car has Eagle RSA's on it instead of Kumhos / Hankooks, so maybe that helps.
Check the specifics on my car at:
You are correct, all North American Kia Spectra's have only 1 engine. It is a 2.0l that is also used in the Hyundai Elantra. They are actually very similar cars as Hyundai has become the parent company of Kia, which is why the quality of Kia products has been drastically increased in the last couple of years. If you are looking at buying one of these cars, it would not hurt to check out reviews on the Hyundai Elantra as well. There are more reviews for that car than the Kia. Good luck.
I agree with all the comments above. The handling on the Spectra 5 is great. Engine performance is better than the civic and corolla. Shifting is fairly tight although, I do sometimes have a problem with getting it in reverse. The engine is not overly intrusive even at 70 mph. The interior components are finished out nicely and for the most part, seem real durable. The carpet is of adequate quality and I have not seen any tears in mine.
I have taken the car on two long trips and averaged about 32 miles per gallon. I have put 7,000 miles on my car since I bought it in March of 2005. When I bought mine, I never saw any other Spectra 5's on the road, but, now I am seeing more and more where I live. I am seeing more Kia's on the road in general.
My only complaint is that I have a few small rattles in the dash that to me, should not be there in a new car. I have yet to take the car to the dealership for that because it is so minor.
I bought a Kia Spectra 5 in May and have already had it in the body shop 2 times and still problems. The paint is bubbling and coming off. The molding on the doors and the bottom molding on both the drivers and passengers sides have been replaced due to paint problems. The car is red and it shows any and all imperfections in the paint even from the repairs.
The drivers seat already had to be replaced due to the seams coming apart. I work in an office so no tools and stuff like that in my pockets.
I love the way the car runs and handles. Very solid and sturdy. Corners good and highways are a breeze.
I do not get any where the gas mileage that they advertise. They tell me that it will get better as the engine wears in, but I am over 3000 miles and no change. With the cost of gas these days, we need all we can get with the mileage.
The Kia Spec 5 is a good car, but guess I just got a bad one. Luckily they do have a good warranty but I did not expect to have to use it so much in the first 3 months of ownership.
We bought our Kia Spectra LX sedan in June and have 35,000km on it already. We love the car overall. Our dash rattles a bit as well - haven't found the cause yet. We compared several small cars and in this price range the Kia had them beat hands down. Carpets and other fittings show little or no wear, so I don't understand your carpet problems. The dealer we go to has always been great dealing with any little problems we had with the car. Love the cruise control paddle design - so much better than the North American version. Our previous car was a 1996 Elantra, it lasted 9 years with little or no repairs until the last year. We are hoping to get the same service from the Kia. Also haven't seen the mileage that was advertised by both Kia and Transport Canada. Maybe we are running a little to fast... but it's hard not to :)
I bought my Kia Spectra 5 back in November of 05 and I now have 16,000 on it.
On average I usually get at least 32 miles a gallon. I have had no problems with it at all. It has very good power and girls like it very much too.
I used to drive a 1992 Trans-Am and the Spectra 5 handles even better than the Trans-Am.
I use to be a mechanic, and mechanical wise it is a great car. Kia has come a long way. Kia is how I use to make my money, casue they were junk. But not since 2004, Kia has completely changed.
I bought an 05 EX last year and have 22 K on it now. I really like the car, but the main complaint I have is the highway mileage stinks. I only get 28-29 mpg with the cruise set and driving 500-700 miles. My 1991 Taurus with a 3.0 six gets that kind of mileage. Around town, it is OK, but the highway... I would think we would get at least 31-32 mpg, but I have never broken the 30 mpg barrier. I have tried 65 mph, 75 mph and everything in between. I am even running some of the best synthetic oil known, and no improvement.
Anyone else out there having this problem? If you have and now are getting better mileage, how did you accomplish this?