It was revealed previously that Kia Motors is bound to premiere the next generation Rio at the upcoming Paris Motor Show. Kia has now released full details of the new, fourth generation Rio, which is manufactured at the marque’s Sohari factory in Korea. The new Kia Rio is set to go on sale in the first quarter of the next year.
The Rio’s progressive new exterior and interior design was led by Kia’s design centers in Germany and California, in close collaboration with the company’s domestic design base in Namyang, Korea.
At a glance, the new Kia Rio spots the latest evolution of the ‘tiger-nose’ grille, now thinner in height and wider across the front of the car, with a gloss black grille cover. The grille is integrated with the newly-designed bi-function headlights, more sculpted for a sharper look, and featuring a new U-shaped LED DRLs. The Rio’s front fog light surrounds are moved outwards and upwards in the front bumper compared to their position on the third-generation model, adding greater visual width to the front of the car for a stronger overall look. The longer bonnet features bracket-shaped creases that run down from the base of the A-pillars to the grille and headlights.
In profile, the fourth-generation Rio’s lengthened, more balanced stance is achieved with a long bonnet and longer front overhang, a 10 mm longer wheelbase (up to 2,580 mm), a thinner, more upright C-pillar, and a shorter rear overhang. Overall, the new car is 15 mm longer than its predecessor, at 4,065 mm in length, and 5 mm lower (now 1,450 mm tall). Straight, clearly-defined lines run down the full length of the car’s shoulder and along its doors, further stretching the appearance of the car for a more confident look.
From the rear, the new Rio has a near-vertical windscreen and shorter overhangs. The straight line that runs from the grille, through the headlights and along the top of the doors, continues around the back of the car, paired with thinner, more sculpted rear lights, which now feature a new arrow-shaped LED light signature. Lastly, the new Rio takes on three types of wheels, ranging from 15- to 17-inch, and a choice of eight body colors.
The interior is upgraded from the previous edition with emphasis on sculptural forms and a more ergonomic layout. Like the exterior, straight lines running the width of the dashboard characterize the shape of the interior, giving the cabin a wider appearance and increasing the sense of space for occupants. As well as long, lateral lines that govern the shape of the dashboard, horizontal vents further add to the visual width of the cabin, replacing the vertical vents of the third-generation model. Gloss black trim lines the central section of the driver-centric dashboard.
At the center of the dashboard is a ‘floating’ HMI (human-machine interface), available with a high-resolution touchscreen. Below, the driver-oriented center console features fewer buttons, with more ergonomic, concave switches and rotator dials below to control the heating and ventilation. Also placed at the center of the dashboard is the new infotainment system, housing Kia’s latest HMI (human-machine interface). The new Rio is available with a ‘floating’ 5.0-inch touchscreen audio system with six speakers or 7.0-inch touchscreen infotainment and navigation system (option).
The new Kia Rio is available with a choice of black or grey cloth seat upholstery, or with black or grey artificial leather. A ‘Red Pack’ for the #rio gives buyers black with red artificial leather-trimmed seats throughout the cabin.
A host of technologies added are; keyless entry and ignition, heated seats and steering, rain-sensing windscreen wipers and auto headlights, as well as auto Cruise Control with speed limiter and Rear Park Assist with a rear view camera. In addition, the new Kia #rio will be the first car in the B-segment to be equipped with USB ports in both the front and rear of the cabin, enabling users to physically connect a mobile device to the Rio’s infotainment system, and recharge batteries on the move.
With increased cabin space, ample small stowage compartments and a boot capacity of 325 liters, the new Rio offers plenty of practicality when it comes to occupants’ comfort and convenience.
The new Kia Rio will be powered by a range of petrol and diesel engines, including Kia’s latest three-cylinder 1.0-litre T-GDI (turbo gasoline direct injection) engines. The new Rio with 1.0-liter T-GDI engine churns between 98 or 118 bhp power outputs. The 98 bhp engine produces peak power at 4,500 rpm and 172 Nm torque from 1,500 to 4,000 rpm .The higher-powered 118 bhp engine produces the same torque output across the same band of engine speeds, while power is accessible at a higher 6,000 rpm peak. Now in the latter stages of testing and development, both engines are expected to deliver sub-100 g/km CO2 emissions (NEDC, combined).
Alongside the 1.0-liter T-GDI, the new Rio is offered with naturally-aspirated 1.25-liter and 1.4-liter MPI (multi-point injection) petrol engines. For even lower emissions, the new Rio will also be sold with a 1.4-liter diesel engine.
All engines apply power to the front wheels, either through a five-speed manual transmission for 1.25-liter and 98 bhp 1.0-liter T-GDI gasoline engines; or a six-speed manual transmission for the 1.4-liter gasoline engine, the higher-output 118 ps 1.0-liter T-GDI engine, and both 1.4-liter diesel engines.
When it comes to safety, the new Rio doesn’t skim on all the latest offerings thanks to a package of Kia’s Advanced Driver Assistance Systems (ADAS), which comprises the Autonomous Emergency Braking (AEB) with pedestrian recognition, Vehicle Stability Management (VSM), Electronic Stability Control (ESC) and more. The new Rio is built on high-strength steel body and features a wide array of passive safety equipment, for example; six airbags and ISOFIX points.
Compared to the third-generation model, the modifications to the Rio’s chassis include: more rigid front suspension struts and cross member and a raised rear torsion beam for high-speed stability; the adoption of new vertical rear shock absorbers and front shock absorbers with pre-loaded linear valve technology, both resulting in more linear handling and suspension response over broken road surfaces; and a repositioned power steering gearbox, to enable greater ‘on-center’ feel through the steering.