Handsome Hatch Gets A Mini Nip And Tuck
Finweek English|23 April 2021
Will the Kia Rio’s refreshed, well-equipped interior and its subtle exterior changes be enough for a competitive shove?
Glenda Williams

Manual cars with naturally aspirated engines are in shorter supply these days. So, driving a new offering is a refreshing and welcome change from the bevy of turbocharged automatics on the market.

Among the (mostly smaller) passenger vehicles that offer both these features is the compact hatchback Kia Rio, a popular and important model in the Kia line-up.

However, it competes in the hotly contested B-segment locally, facing stiff competition from other hatchbacks, like the Ford Fiesta, Hyundai i20, Toyota Yaris and VW Polo.

The Rio, though, has undergone a bit of a nip and tuck. Apart from a minifacelift, it now offers better infotainment and connectivity features, and increased standard features.

Of more significance perhaps is that another model has also been added to the range, the affordable LS grade, benefitting from a more powerful 1.4-litre powerplant. While the 1.2-litre LS still provides the entrylevel point to the Kia Rio range, Kia have now added an LS model in both manual and automatic to its 1.4-litre line-up.

The refreshed Rio range retains its four specification grades, namely LS, LX, EX and the halo model in the Rio range, the Kia Rio TEC.

finweek hopped behind the wheel of the newly introduced Kia Rio 1.4 LS manual.

Discreet facelift

Exterior changes are so discreet that at first glance not much seems to have changed since the all-new Rio launched here in 2017. But look a little closer and you notice that the “tiger nose” grille is a tad more pinched, and the front bumper has undergone a minor redesign, now wider and lower. Alloy wheels have been added to the LS entry-level grade, but essentially the hatch’s crisp profile and pert rear with its high-level (third) brake light and lip spoiler remain mostly unchanged.

Styling changes might be almost indistinguishable, but the latest iteration is really about the bits and bobs that have been added to the standard features list, as well as the new 1.4 LS model.

Continue reading your story on the app

Continue reading your story in the magazine

MORE STORIES FROM FINWEEK ENGLISHView All

What is a store of value?

Gold, cryptocurrencies and cash have all been argumented for as protection against inflation and market crashes. Simon Brown busts this myth.

3 mins read
Finweek English
11 June 2021

Simon's stock tips

Founder and director of investment website JustOneLap.com, Simon Brown, is finweek’s resident expert on the stock markets. In this column he provides insight into recent market developments.

6 mins read
Finweek English
11 June 2021

STOCKS PROTECTING THE PLANET AND DIGITAL LIFESTYLES

Is it possible to invest in companies that aim to secure humans’ existence on an ever-dwindling planet and those that protect our increasingly digital lifestyles? finweek looks at these issues and analyses four offshore companies that fit these themes.

10+ mins read
Finweek English
11 June 2021

The morass that is coal supply to Eskom

The Seriti contract with the power generator shows up other issues in the supply chain to keep SA’s lights on.

3 mins read
Finweek English
11 June 2021

Does convenience cause risk?

Thanks to technology, it has become far easier to make payments, but how safe are contactless payments and what are South Africans’ options?

7 mins read
Finweek English
11 June 2021

Swanky, safe, and more affordable

The Volvo XC40 T3 with its turbocharged three-cylinder engine brings a less pricey entry point to the XC40 range.

6 mins read
Finweek English
11 June 2021

Do central banks still care about inflation?

Structural consumer price increases may be abating. We’ll soon see whether monetary authorities will adapt their mandates.

3 mins read
Finweek English
11 June 2021

Are you on the right track with shares?

It is a good time to look at your portfolio to determine whether there are still good prospects, advises Schalk Louw.

3 mins read
Finweek English
11 June 2021

The Outlook For Inflation

What is driving higher local consumer prices?

3 mins read
Finweek English
11 June 2021

Flush-Outs Among Cryptos Are Healthy

Valuing cryptocurrencies and determining their correlation with traditional asset classes are becoming easier.

4 mins read
Finweek English
11 June 2021