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2020 Kia Rio

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Expert Rating
2.7 (Fair)

Our expert ratings are based on seven comprehensive criteria: quality, safety, comfort, performance, fuel economy, reliability history and value.

You can interpret our ratings in the following way:

: Outstanding vehicle. Only the most exceptional vehicles achieve this rating.

: Very Good vehicle. Very good and close to being the best vehicle in its class.

: Good vehicle. Decent, but not quite the best. Often affordable, but lacking key features found in vehicles of the same class.

: Below average vehicle. Not recommended, and lacking attributes a car buyer would come to expect for the price.

: Poor vehicle. Simply does not deserve to be on the road.

Select a Trim
Select a Trim
2020 LX 4dr Sedan
most popular
Price:   -  From $15,850
2020 S 4dr Sedan Price:   -  From $16,490
2020 S 4dr Hatchback Price:   -  From $16,790

Overview

What's New

Powertrain updates grab the spotlight for the 2020 Kia Rio. It's now more efficient and less powerful, while the Rio gains further value with newly standard 7-inch touchscreen with Apple CarPlay and Android Auto.

The Kia Rio remains focused on the cost-conscientious crowd who prefer a larger interior and won’t sacrifice a good ride.

Choosing Your Kia Rio

There are two Kia Rio trims: LX and S. Pricing starts at $16,675 including destination for the LX sedan and only climbs to $17,315 for the S. The S variant is also available as a five-door hatchback for $300 more.

Engine Choices

The Kia Rio is powered by an all-new 1.6-liter four-cylinder engine that makes 120 horsepower and 112 pound-feet of torque. It's paired with a continuously variable transmission and earns an EPA-estimated 33 miles per gallon city, 41 mpg highway, and 36 combined.

Though the new engine shares the same displacement as last year’s, it's been thoroughly updated and, unusually, generates less power. Last year's 1.6-liter engine generated 130 hp and 119 lb-ft of torque.

However, the new engine is more efficient, which buyers will appreciate. Last year's model only achieved 28/37/32 mpg (city/highway/combined).

Passenger and Cargo Capacity

The Rio’s larger exterior size, though still compact, allows for a relatively spacious interior regardless of door count that can handle five people. The shared 101.6-inch long wheelbase helps allow for 33.5 inches of rear legroom.

The Rio sedan's trunk offers 13.7 cubic feet of cargo space, while the hatchback has 17.4 with the rear seat up and 32.8 with it folded.

Kia Rio

Safety Features

The Kia Rio lacks any standard active safety features. On the S, the Technology Package ($800) includes automatic emergency braking and forward collision warning. However, last year's model was an IIHS Top Safety Pick, which should carry over when the 2020 model is tested.

Connectivity

A 7-inch infotainment touchscreen is newly standard with Apple CarPlay, Android Auto, Bluetooth, and a USB port. The S trim adds a second-row USB port, while the available Technolgy Package includes satellite radio and Kia's UVO telematics services.

Kia Rio

LX - From $16,675

The Rio LX is aptly equipped considering its low price. It's held back by 15-inch steel wheels and a six-way manually adjustable driver's seat. Body-colored door handles, heated side mirrors, and tinted glass are nice touches.

S - From $17,315

The Rio S includes many of the convenience features that one might expect in a 2020 model, such as cruise control, a split-folding rear seat, and remote keyless entry.

The S Technology Package ($800) includes the safety and infotainment upgrades mentioned above, LED headlights and positioning lights, an upgraded driver information display, and a tire pressure monitoring system.

Compare Rio Trims Side-By-Side

CarsDirect Tip

The limited safety features on the 2020 Kia Rio may cause customers to shy away. However, the S trim with the optional package presents a strong value with few reminders of its low cost.

author image
Automotive Editor
Read Less

Expert Review

Pros
  • Smooth ride
  • Good value
  • Strong fuel economy
Cons
  • Small interior
  • Devoid of character
  • Lacking active safety aids
Expert Rating
2.7 (Fair)

Our expert ratings are based on seven comprehensive criteria: quality, safety, comfort, performance, fuel economy, reliability history and value.

You can interpret our ratings in the following way:

: Outstanding vehicle. Only the most exceptional vehicles achieve this rating.

: Very Good vehicle. Very good and close to being the best vehicle in its class.

: Good vehicle. Decent, but not quite the best. Often affordable, but lacking key features found in vehicles of the same class.

: Below average vehicle. Not recommended, and lacking attributes a car buyer would come to expect for the price.

: Poor vehicle. Simply does not deserve to be on the road.

author image
Automotive Editor

Efficiency reigns supreme. The 2020 Kia Rio won’t win any drag races and will need a stern kick in the pants to pass someone at highway speeds, but it sure is efficient. Power for the Rio comes from a new-for-2020 1.6-liter four-cylinder engine that produces a modest 120 horsepower. Also new for the model year is a continuously variable transmission.

The Rio’s new powertrain helps the subcompact car achieve excellent fuel economy figures. The EPA rates the Rio at 33 miles per gallon city, 41 mpg highway, and 36 combined. Last year's model only got 28/37/32 mpg (city/highway/combined).

It also makes the Rio one of the most efficient vehicles on the market that doesn't have a hybrid powertrain.

Solid crash test scores. The Rio was named an IIHS Top Safety Pick. It earned "Good" ratings (the best possible) in five of their six crash tests, and an "Acceptable" rating in the passenger-side small overlap front test.

While the Rio has good crash test scores, it doesn’t have a lot when it comes to standard active safety aids. The only feature that’s standard is a rearview camera. Automatic emergency braking and forward-collision warning are available, but those are the only advanced features buyers will find.


Kia Rio

Good value. The most affordable Rio, the LX, costs $16,675 including destination. At that price point, you’d expect a bare-bones car, but it comes well equipped with modern-day creature comforts. Apple CarPlay, Android Auto, and a 7-inch touchscreen are standard.

The next step up, the S trim, offers the most value. It adds remote keyless entry, a rear USB port, and cruise control. The trim is also the first that can be fitted with advanced safety features.

For its price tag, the Rio offers quite a lot for your money.

Clearly a budget-oriented subcompact. Because of its size, the Rio’s interior isn’t exactly spacious. While the front seats are roomy and comfortable, taller drivers may find it difficult to find a cozy driving position because of the tilt-only steering wheel. With only 33.5 inches of rear legroom, things are tight in the back. But cramped rear seats are common for the segment.

Materials aren’t luxurious on the inside, this is an affordable car, after all. There is a fair share of rough plastics and cloth seats are the best you’ll get. Don’t look for heated seats, either. The interior’s design, though, is well thought out and easy to use.

When it comes to cargo space, things are slightly better. Sedan body styles have 13.7 cubic feet of cargo space. Hatchbacks raise that figure to 17.4 cubic feet behind the rear seats and a total of 32.8 cubic feet.

Final thoughts. Subcompact vehicles aren’t that popular these days, but the 2020 Kia Rio showcases all of the strengths and weaknesses of the class. It gets excellent fuel economy, has good crash test scores, is backed by an impressive warranty, and has a comfortable ride. Thanks to a low starting price, the Rio is a good value, too.

Compared to other options in the segment, the Rio is missing a lot of modern safety features. A lack of options could be an issue for some shoppers, as Kia’s take-it-or-leave-it trim levels may not appeal to everyone.

The main option in the subcompact segment is the Honda Fit. The Fit has many more safety features, a more powerful engine, more cargo space, and it is more enjoyable to drive. The Nissan Versa is more affordable than the Rio, gets nearly the same fuel economy, and comes with more advanced safety features as standard.

Check prices for the 2020 Kia Rio»

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Specs & Features

Highlights
Overall Crash Safety Rating
Not Available
Engine - Cylinders/Horsepower/Torque
1.6L I-4 / 120 HP / 112 ft.lbs.
Transmission
Intelligent Variable Transmission (IVT) 2-spd CVT w/OD
Drive Type
Front-wheel
Fuel Economy - City/Highway/Combined
33 / 41 / 37 Mpg
Passenger Capacity
5
Bumper to Bumper Warranty
60 Months / 60,000 Miles
Mechanical Specs
Engine - Cylinders/Horsepower/Torque
1.6L I-4 / 120 HP / 112 ft.lbs.
Drive Type
Front-wheel
Fuel Economy - City/Hwy/Combined
33 / 41 / 37 Mpg
Brakes
Front Disc/rear Drum
Front Suspension
Strut
Rear Suspension
Semi-independent Torsion Beam Beam
Spare Tire And Wheel
Compact Steel
Fuel Tank
11.9 Gal.
Recommended Fuel Type
Regular Unleaded
Average Cost To Fill Tank
$45
Dimensions & Capabilities
Maximum Cargo Volume
13.7 Cu.ft.
Passenger Volume
90 Cu.ft.
Exterior Length
172.6 "
Exterior Width
67.9 "
Exterior Height
57.1 "
Front Headroom
38.9 "
Rear Headroom
37.4 "
Front Legroom
42.1 "
Rear Legroom
33.5 "
Front Shoulder Room
54.1 "
Rear Shoulder Room
53.3 "
Front Hip Room
Rear Hip Room
Curb Weight
2,767 Lbs.
Wheel Base
102 "
Turning Radius
16.7 '
Exterior Features
Door Count
4 Doors
Wheels
15.0 " Steel
Paint
Clearcoat Monotone / Pearlcoat Monotone
Exterior Mirrors
Dual Power Remote Heated
Bumpers
Body-colored With Black Insert
Grille Moldings
Black
Rear Spoiler
Exhaust
Stainless Steel
Interior Features
Seating
Passenger Capacity
5
Seat Trim
Cloth
Front Seat Type
Bucket
Heated Front Seats
Front Driver Seat Direction Controls
6-way
Front Passenger Seat Direction Controls
4-way
Front Armrests
6-way
Rear Armrests
Rear Seats
Bench
Radio & Infotainment
Radio
Am/fm Stereo, Clock, Seek-scan / Clock
Speakers
6
Radio Steering Wheel Controls
Apple Car Play
Android Auto
Bluetooth w/ Hands-Free Connectivity
Convenience Features
Steering Wheel Type
Tilt
Climate Control
Cruise Control
Sun Roof
Rearview Mirror
Day-night / Auto-dimming Day-night
One Touch Open Window
Driver
Tinted Windows
Light
Vanity Mirrors
Remote Keyless Entry
Power Outlets
1
Safety Features
Overall Crash Safety Rating
Not Yet Available
Overall Front Crash Safety Rating
Not Yet Available
Overall Side Crash Safety Rating
Not Yet Available
Rollover Crash Safety Rating
Not Yet Available
Front Impact Airbags
Driver And Passenger
Driver Side Impact Airbags
Seat Mounted
Knee Airbag
Passenger Side Impact Airbag
Seat Mounted
Rear Side Airbag
Seatbelt Pretensioners
Front
Anti-Lock Brakes
4-wheel Anti-lock Brakes (abs)
Forward Collision Warning
Blind Spot Sensor
Lane Departure Warning
Autonomous Cruise Control
Pedestrian Detection
Driver Attention Alert
Daytime Running Lights
Auto High Beams
Adaptive Headlights
Parking Sensors
Security Systems
Panic Alarm
Ignition Disable
Immobilizer
Warranty
Bumper To Bumper Months Miles
60 Months / 60,000 Miles
Major Components Months
120 Months / 100,000 Miles
Included Maintenance Months
Roadside Assistance Months
60 Months / 60,000 Miles
Corrosion Perforation
60 Months / 100,000 Miles
Accessories Months
60 Months / 60,000 Miles

Used 2020 Kia Rio for Sale

2 vehicles found within 100 miles of your area
Kia
S
Color: Red
Price

$13,495

Mileage

54,477 mi

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HGreg Nissan Buena Park (24 mi)

Phone: (714) 509-5480
Kia
S
Color: Silver
Price

$16,998

Mileage

20,327 mi

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CarMax Oceanside - Offering Express Pickup and Home Delivery (82 mi)

Phone: (833) 538-2915

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Redondo Mitsubishi (4 mi)

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CarWorld (4 mi)

Phone: (844) 851-2158
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