It's longer, lower, and wider than its predecessor.

Kia introduced the fourth-generation Rio supermini back in September 2016 at the Paris Motor Show, but it’s only now the subcompact hatchback is making its U.S. and Canadian debut debut. It is being joined by the sedan variant unveiled at home in South Korea towards the end of last year under the name of “K2.” Both body styles adopt a sportier exterior design and a more upmarket interior packed with the latest technology available in this segment.

The sedan has been elongated by 15 millimetres, now at 4,384 mm and most of the stretch is found in the wheelbase that has been extended by 10 mm to 2,581 mm to free up more room inside the cabin for rear passengers. The five-door model has the exact same wheelbase, but is obviously a tad shorter overall, at 4,064 mm or 15 mm than the car it replaces. Kia has also made the Rio slightly wider and has lowered the ride height a bit to enable a more dynamic appearance.

2018 Kia Rio U.S. Spec
2018 Kia Rio U.S. Spec

As a result of the increased footprint, the new generation Rio is now among the most spacious models in its class, with the sedan providing a passenger space of 2,545 litres, whereas the hatch offers 2,563 litres. Those sitting on the front seats will be happy to hear there’s more headroom, legroom, and shoulder room than before, while rear passengers will get to enjoy additional legroom and shoulder room.

The 2018 Rio Sedan should also prove to be a better companion on longer trips considering the trunk can hold up to 387 litres of luggage. Go for the 5-Door model and that cargo capacity jumps to 493 litres or a generous 929 litres once you fold down the rear seats.

More Kia news:

All Rio models in Canada are going to be powered by a four-cylinder, 1.6-litre GDI engine carried over from the previous generation. However, the engineers have upgraded the unit to boost not only fuel economy, but also increase throttle response. Output stands at 130 horsepower and 119 pound-feet of torque, which represents a minor decrease compared to the outgoing model rated at 138 hp & 123 lb-ft. In charge of sending the engine’s punch to the front axle will be a standard six-speed manual or an optional six-speed automatic gearbox.

With Kia’s focus being on increasing efficiency, expect the fuel economy numbers to be improved over the 2017MY Rio Sedan’s 8.8/6.6 litres per 100 kilometres (city/highway) with the manual and 8.8/6.5 L/100 km with the auto. A minor weight loss of eight pounds (3.7 kilograms) in the case of the manual-equipped model and 15 lbs for the auto-fitted version might also pay dividends in terms of fuel economy in the long run.

“The all-new 2018 Rio sedan will provide consumers with an exciting combination of impressive fuel efficiency, innovative technology and fun-to-drive characteristics,” said Ted Lancaster, vice president & COO, Kia Canada. “It is yet another example of how the Kia brand is evolving to meet the needs of Canadian drivers.”  

2018 Kia Rio U.S. Spec
2018 Kia Rio U.S. Spec

On the inside, the new Rio will be available with a seven-inch infotainment system with both Android Auto and Apple CarPlay integration as well as support for voice recognition. Kia mentions it has made efforts to refine the cabin by lowering noise, vibration, and harshness (NVH) levels, while the all-new suspension geometry should provide a smoother ride.

Kia will have the 2018 Rio on sale later this year, with pricing to be announced closer to launch.

Source: Kia

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