For 2013, Kia offers its Idle Stop and Go (ISG) technology as part of the Rio EX's Eco package. ISG automatically shuts down the engine when stopped and then restarts it once the gas pedal is depressed. Also new are steering-wheel paddle shifters on the Rio SX.
The Kia Rio has been completely revamped for 2012 and has an even lower price tag. It's still available as a 4-door sedan, but adds a 5-door hatchback design, both of which sport a new look, a new engine and enough tech-savvy features to make others in its class jealous.
Kia continues to take small cars seriously. When the South Korean automaker launched a wagon companion to its subcompact Rio sedan for 2001, that hatchback was called the Rio Cinco ("five" in Spanish), to denote the number of doors. The Cinco name may be gone, but the five-door hatchback remains with a simpler name: The 2008 Kia Rio5. Sharing much of its design with the Rio Sedan, the Rio5 has a sportier demeanor about it, not to mention a more versatile cargo hold. And, despite the Rio5's "entry-level" pricing, Kia installs six standard airbags in every vehicle. Kia claims to be the most improved brand in terms of initial quality over the past five years. A half decade ago it had serious room for improvement, but now it is certainly in the mainstream of vehicle quality.