The sassy little hatchback has long caught my eye, thanks to the success of it’s predecessor. With the gorgeous, new and sleek style of the Rio, I am eager to hear from Lehlohonolo Moloi, Sales Executive at Kia Goldreef, what his take is on the new dynamic Rio.
With 7 years of experience in the motoring industry, Lehlohonolo notes that his true passion lies in working with people, which he conveys to me is a privilege he enjoys. With aspirations of becoming a manager and ultimately a Dealer Principal, Lehlohonolo believes that by upholding the philosophies of honesty, keeping your promises to clients and making them feel comfortable being around you, he will be able to achieve great success in the Dealership he has served so loyally for the past six years. Loving the fact that everyone at Kia Goldreef seems to get along with each other, the friendly and warm environment is ideal for me to learn more about the new Kia Rio, which promises to hold more features, and more comfort, than ever before.
The Rio is always recognisable on the road: its Tiger Nose grill and smooth aerodynamic curves provide it with a more purposeful, determined stance. Thanks to its new longer wheelbase, the Rio boasts more space in terms of head and leg room than the previous model. I am not disappointed by the beautiful cloth upholstery interior (whilst leather is an optional extra) and high-end finishes. The Rio is well laid-out with a cockpit that seems designed to give the driver all control whilst minimising distractions: a multi-function steering wheel telescopes to my preferred position and I slip into the comfortable driver seat, with all the controls within easy reach.
I love the purposefully straight-forward lay-out of the dashboard that provides all controls within easy reach. Awesome features such as air-con, auto defogger that detects fog on certain models, rear-mounted USB ports as well as fully-flat folding rear seats are brought to my attention, and I can’t help but feel this is not only a practical car, but a modern, funky and comfortable vehicle too. There are also sufficient cupholders in the front, as well as an arm-rest, which I particularly like as added touches.
Available in four variants that include the 1.2 LS model, 1.4 LX and EX, and the top o the range 1.4 TEC model, the Rio is available in both manual and automatic, and boasts a fuel consumption of 6.4 litres per 100 kilometres in urban conditions, and 5.9 litres per 100 kilometres on combined cycles, according to my knowledgeable host Lehlohonolo. This makes the Rio an ideal family car as well as the perfect vehicle for the young executive, or even the working student.
Producing 135 nM of torque, the Rio promises to be strong on take-off, and on the road, the Rio is a fabulous drive indeed: smooth and nimble, with agile responses and a lovely, solid feel around the corners. With a naturally aspirated engine, the Rio responds with predictable and familiar power when needed, which provides me with a great sense of security as I feel that I know exactly what the vehicle is capable of. I feel in full control with this smooth power delivery as it responds immediately to my urging. With the added benefits of a better sounding engine and no turbo lag, this engine design is spot on for this vehicle.
My sentiments so far seem to be echoed by leading industry professionals who awarded the Kia Rio the prestigious Red Dot Award for 2017, which the Kia Goldreef team informs me relates to the exceptional vehicle design (along with two other Kia vehicles, namely the Optima Sportswagon and the hybrid crossover Niro). With the intelligent active-safety technology built into the vehicle, as well as significant passive-safety features (and two airbags in the front), the Rio is impressive as a family vehicle safely carrying your most precious cargo. This is in line with what is policy at Kia Goldreef, where family is prioritised, and every client that steps through the door is treated as such.
Lehlohonolo notes that the Manual Rio starts at R257 495, whilst the automatic variant is priced at R270 495. The vehicle’s capabilities are further enhanced with the additional options of park distance control, custom mags and reverse camera to name but a few, and with the 5-year, unlimited kilometre warranty, Kia will look after you, and your vehicle, ensuring you get the best from this dynamic car.
For further information or more details on the Kia product range, Kia Goldreef’s website is:Kia Goldreef
Journalist: Desh Bechan
Reporter: Inge Stols
Editor: Belinda Anderson