Economy cars are a natural in the city but don't usually perform all that well on long highway expanses, but in testing the Kia Rio on such roads it surprised...
... us with peppy acceleration, a stable ride and a quiet interior. Steering feel hasn't traditionally been a strong point in Kia vehicles, even the more expensive models with the adjustable Flex Steer system. But in the Rio, the steering is nicely weighted, making it easy to keep this subcompact car stable between the lines even as semi-
trucks rolled by. We also must give kudos to the little 1.6-liter 4-cylinder engine, which is eager to put its 138 horsepower to good use and plays exceedingly well when paired with the 6-speed automatic transmission. The Rio especially excels around town, where its small size makes it easy to park and maneuver. In spirited driving, the Rio is fairly agile, but not as fun as a Mazda2 or Fiesta.