2020 Kia Rio Hatchback

2020 MODEL
$16,790
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7.8

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2020 Kia Rio Hatchback Complete In-depth Review & Buying Guide

Updated on: July 10, 2020
Shivendra Garg's image

Shivendra Garg

Automotive Content Creator

For all the folks out there who want a reliable machine that can take care of all their basic needs while on a commute, the 2020 Kia Rio Hatchback is definitely worth a look out. This Kia looks and feels a lot more sophisticated than some of the other subcompacts on the market that cost just as much, and for the year 2020, things are going to get better.

See detailed review »

Pros

Very well equipped with features

Large fuel tank and efficient engine

Above average cargo capacity

Comfortable and agile driving demeanor

Fairly upmarket for its price

Cons

The 120 hp 1.6-liter engine lacks flair

Cramped second row

No option of alloy wheels

What's New?

More efficient 120 hp 1.6-liter inline-four engine replaces the old 130 hp 1.6-liter four-cylinder

New continuously variable automatic transmission replaces outgoing six-speed automatic

A 7-inch touchscreen with Android Auto and Apple CarPlay is standard


Features

vehicle bio

base price

$16790

bodystyle

4dr Hatchback

passenger capacity

5

drivetrain

FWD

engine type

displacement

97 cu.in.

horsepower

120 hp @ 6300 rpm

torque

112 lbs.-ft. @ 4500 rpm

transmission

2-speed CVT

chassis

frame type

Unibody

suspension front

Independent front strut suspension

suspension rear

Semi-independent rear torsion beam suspension

brake rotors (f/r)

11-Nov

dimensions

wheelbase

101.6 in.

length

160 in.

width

67.9 in.

height

57.1 in.

curb weight

2762 lbs.

ground clearance

5.5 in.

capacity

passenger volume

90.5 cu ft.

cargo volume

32.8 cu ft.

towing capacity

9500 lbs.

performance

zero to 60 mph

9.4 sec.

standing ¼-mile

17.2 sec.

fuel economy

city/combined/highway

28/37/32 mpg

highway range

440.3 mi.

warranty

basic warranty

5 yr./ 60000 mi.

drivetrain warranty

10 yr./ 100000 mi.

corrosion warranty

5 yr. /100000 mi.

roadside assistance

5 yr. / 60000 mi.


Pictures & Videos

Exterior
Interior
Videos
2020 Kia Rio Hatchback Review video
2020 Kia Rio Hatchback Exterior video

Styles

2020 Kia Rio Hatchback in Alpine White color
Alpine White

Vehicle images are guides only and may not reflect the model's exact specifications/features– exact specifications/features should be confirmed with the seller.

Ratings

Features

9.0

Engine And Performance

7.0

Fuel Economy

9.0

Interior

8.0

Exterior

8.0

Safety

8.0

Competition

7.3

Final Verdict

8.2

7.8

OVERALL RATING

Trims and Configurations

MSRP


2020 Kia Rio Hatchback S

S

power
120 hp @ 6300 rpm
fuel
Regular unleaded
mpg
32 combined

$16,790


Style Prices MPG Engine Transmission Drivetrain Seats Colors
S 4dr Hatchback (1.6L 4cyl CVT) Starting at $16,790 MSRP (28/32/37) 120 hp @ 6300 rpm, 1.6 L, Inline 4, regular unleaded
2-speed CVT front wheel drive 5

Expert Review

7.8

Overall Rating


To begin with, the 2020 Kia Rio will use a new 1.6-liter inline four-cylinder engine, which, in order to improve efficiency, will make 120 hp and 112 lb.-ft. torque. Helping the now less powerful engine in being as fuel-efficient as possible, a continuously variable transmission replaces the previous six-speed automatic.

Other upgrades will include a 7-inch touchscreen unit that will feature Android Auto and Apple CarPlay as standard. Consequently, with these upgrades, and at a starting price of $16,690 for the year 2020, the Kia Rio Hatchback looks ready to rub shoulders with Honda’s Fit and Chevy’s Sonic hatchbacks.

2020 Kia Rio Hatchback Front View
2020 Kia Rio Hatchback Rear View

9.0/10
Features

 

7.0/10
Engine and Performance

 

9.0/10
Fuel Economy

 

8.0/10
Interior

 

8.0/10
Exterior

 

8.0/10
Safety

 

7.3/10
Competition

 

8.2/10
Final Verdict

 

2020 Kia Rio Hatchback Features

9.0/10

Unlike the Rio sedan, the Rio5 or Rio Hatchback is available in a single, all-inclusive trim, S. For the year 2020, the Rio S will be powered by a new 1.6-liter inline four-cylinder engine. Unlike the old 1.6-liter inline-four, this one favors efficiency, and hence, at 120 hp is less powerful than the older 130 hp powertrain.

Also new on the 2020 Kia Rio hatchback is a continuously variable automatic transmission, which replaces the previous six-speed automatic, and a 7-inch touchscreen unit that feature Android Auto and Apple CarPlay as standard.

Trim

S

MSRP (FWD)

$16,790

Key Features

6-way adjustable driver’s seat

 

LED headlights

 

SiriusXM satellite radio

 

7-inch touchscreen display

 

Apple CarPlay/Android Auto

 

6 speakers w/ front tweeters

 

Tilt steering column

We recommend:

The Kia Rio Hatchback is a viable subcompact that offers great value for money. It is loaded with standard features and delivers the kind of practicality one would expect from such a car. In order to get more out of your Rio5, pair it with the Technology Package that adds automatic emergency braking.

2020 Kia Rio Hatchback Engine and Performance

7.0/10

For the year 2020, the Rio hatch does away with its old 1.6-liter inline-four engine and replaces it with a new 1.6-liter inline four-cylinder. The only difference being in power output. At 120 hp and 112 lb.-ft. torque, the new 1.6-liter four-cylinder makes 10 hp and 7 lb.-ft. torque less than the outgoing 1.6-liter. This makes the new Rio5 a bit more efficiency-minded than before.

Likewise, the older six-speed automatic has been replaced by a continuously variable automatic one too. What remains unchanged though is this Kia’s drivetrain. Power from the more economical engine will travel to the front wheels of the 2020 Rio Hatchback with the help of the new CVT.

Models

Kia Rio Hatchback

Toyota Yaris Hatchback

Chevrolet Sonic Hatchback

Honda Fit Hatchback

MSRP

$16,790

$17,750

$19,420

$16,990

Engine

1.6L Regular Inline-4  1.5L Regular Inline-4  1.4L Regular Inline-4  1.5L Regular Inline-4 
Drivetrain FWD FWD FWD FWD

Transmission

2-Speed CVT w/OD 6-Speed Automatic w/OD And Auto-Manual 6-Speed Automatic w/OD And Auto-Manual 2-Speed CVT w/OD

Power

120hp@6,300rpm 106hp@6,000rpm 138hp@4,900rpm 128hp@6,600rpm

Torque

112lb-ft@4,500rpm 103lb-ft@4,000rpm 148lb-ft@1,850rpm 113lb-ft@4,600rpm

How fast is the Kia Rio?

The new 120 hp inline-four motor of the 2020 Kia Rio Hatchback is lively, no doubt, but it's not meant to excite you. There’s hardly any torque in the lower ranges of the powerband. Also the CVT is perfectly in-line with the efficiency-minded 1.6-liter inline-four. It shifts reluctantly to ensure just enough power to keep the car going.

2020 Kia Rio Hatchback 0-60 MPH In just 8.9 sec

So throttle inputs are met with sluggish response from the powertrain. While this suits the Kia Rio5’s ability to be a more efficient daily drive, it takes away from the pleasure of mobbing around the tracks, which is clearly what this Kia isn’t meant to do.

Model

Kia Rio Hatchback

Toyota Yaris Hatchback

Chevrolet Sonic Hatchback

Honda Fit Hatchback

0-60 MPH

8.9 sec

10.2 sec

8.5 sec

8.6 sec

Quarter Mile

16.9 sec

17.8 sec

16.4 sec

16.8 sec

Top Speed 114 MPH 115 MPH 108 MPH 115 MPH

Engine

1.6L Regular Inline-4  1.5L Regular Inline-4  1.4L Regular Inline-4  1.5L Regular Inline-4 

All hatchbacks in this segment are more or less equally sporty. Though the Toyota Yaris Hatchback is the slowest of the lot, as its engine makes the least power.

What about the braking performance of the Kia Rio?

The 2020 Kia Rio5 features disc brakes at the front and drums at the back, all equipped with anti-lock feature. They do a more than decent job of stopping this hatch. An optional $800 Technology Package equips this Kia with automatic emergency braking, which makes those urgent stopping scenarios less severe for the driver.

2020 Kia Rio Hatchback Front Brake is 11.0 in

Model

Kia Rio Hatchback

Toyota Yaris Hatchback

Chevrolet Sonic Hatchback

Honda Fit Hatchback

Brake Rotors Front

11.0"

10.2"

10.8"

10.3"

Brake Rotors Rear

8.0"

9.0"

9.0"

7.9"

Curb Weight

2762 lbs

2396 lbs

2896 lbs

2568 lbs

60-0 MPH

119 ft

N/A

124 ft

126 ft

The Kia Rio Hatchback is the heaviest of the lot. Still it manages to stop way quicker than all other hatches in this comparison.

What about its driving dynamics?

The Kia Rio Hatchback is nowhere near being sporty. But its compact dimensions and small footprint make it impressively nimble. Furthermore, the adequately weighted steering wheel responds precisely to steering inputs, and the finely-tuned suspension do a better than ordinary job of keeping body roll in check while cornering. The only thing lacking about this hatch is its slouched engine and transmission.

2020 Kia Rio Hatchback Three Quarter View

But these factors make the Rio5 an incredibly enjoyable city ride. The solid chassis setup and level of damping allow this Kia to efficiently take on unevennesses on everyday city streets. Also its smaller size means it can easily get in and out of tight urban spaces. In addition, the steering wheel provides feedback to the drive to keep them informed about whatever’s going down at the front wheels. This allows the driver to operate the Rio5 a lot more easily.

2020 Kia Rio Hatchback Fuel Economy

9.0/10

If the older Kia Rio Hatchback was adequately fuel efficient, the 2020 Kia Rio Hatchback is even more. The new 1.6-liter inline four-cylinder makes less power as well as torque than before. Less power does usually translate to better efficiency.

So it is only fair that the 2020 Rio drinks even less than it did before. Also the new continuously variable automatic transmission further helps in making the 2020 Kia Rio Hatchback more economical.

Model

Kia Rio Hatchback

Toyota Yaris Hatchback

Chevrolet Sonic Hatchback

Honda Fit Hatchback

MPG (City)

33

32

26

33

MPG (Highway)

41

40

34

40

MPG (Combined)

36

35

29

36

Fuel Capacity

11.9 gallons

11.6 gallons

12.2 gallons

10.6 gallons

Range (City/Hwy/Combined)

393/488/428 miles

371/464/406 miles

317/415/353 miles

350/424/381 miles

Emission (Tons/yr of CO2 Emissions @ 15K mi/yr)

4.9

5.1

6.1

5.6

The Honda Fit Hatchback and Kia Rio Hatchback return similar MPG ratings. Only the Kia gets a bigger fuel tank too. So it offers more range.

2020 Kia Rio Hatchback Interior

8.0/10

For a simple, modern-urbanite, the Kia Rio Hatchback is a clean and well-built car spacious enough to comfortably accommodate four people. The center seat in the second row is more appropriate for kids as availability of legroom in the rear is compromised. Otherwise, roominess around the cabin in general is pretty decent.

The standard tricot and woven cloth seats feature adjustability functions and provide ample support for comfort over longer hours being spent inside this Kia. While the cabin is mostly covered in hard plastic, the textures on them make the cabin feel fairly price-appropriate.

2020 Kia Rio Hatchback Front Seats

Driver comfort is further enhanced by all relevant controls logically laid in front of them. Overall visibility from inside the Rio5 is also fairly decent. While thin B and C pillars minimize blindspots, the rearview camera ensures ease while reversing.

Model

Kia Rio Hatchback

Toyota Yaris Hatchback

Chevrolet Sonic Hatchback

Honda Fit Hatchback

Seating Capacity

5

5

5

5

Front Row (Head/Shoulder/Leg) (in)

38.9/54.1/42.1

38.2/53.2/41.9

41.8/53.4/41.8

39.5/54.8/41.4

Rear Row (Head/Shoulder/Leg) (in)

38.0/53.3/33.5

37.2/50.0/33.4

38.1/53.0/34.6

37.5/52.6/39.3

All hatches in this comparison are similarly accommodating, but none offer the kind of roominess like the Honda Fit.

Does it come loaded with tech inside?

As part of modernizing the 2020 Rio Hatchback, Kia has equipped it with a 7-inch touchscreen infotainment unit along with a handful of standard features. They include:

  • AM
  • FM
  • MP3 audio system
  • SiriusXM satellite radio
  • Android Auto
  • Apple CarPlay
  • Bluetooth
  • Siri Eyes Free
  • UVO eServices

What about utility?

The compact dimensions of the Rio Hatchback frees up only so much space inside its cabin, which further gets divided into two seating bays and a cargo area. However, the Rio Hatchback manages to free up enough space in the back to comfortably store your baggage.

2020 Kia Rio Hatchback Cargo Volume with rear seats up is 17.4 cu ft.

In fact, the Rio Hatch offers better usability than the Rio sedan, but in doing so it takes up a significant amount of legroom from the second row.

Model

Kia Rio Hatchback

Toyota Yaris Hatchback

Chevrolet Sonic Hatchback

Honda Fit Hatchback

Cargo Capacity

17.4 cu.ft.

15.9 cu.ft.

19.0 cu.ft.

16.6 cu.ft.

The Chevrolet Sonic Hatchback, which has a shorter wheelbase than the Kia Rio Hatchback, offers the biggest trunk. Nonetheless, the cargo space in the Rio5 is well above average.

Creature comforts on offer in the Kia Rio

Besides a finely-tuned suspension and solid chassis, the 2020 Kia Rio gets several other features to enhance the level of comfort for the occupants inside:

  • 6 speaker with front tweeters
  • Rearview monitor w/Dynamic Parking Guidance
  • USB/Auxiliary input jack
  • USB charging ports
  • 12 V outlet
  • Steering wheel mounted controls
  • Cruise control
  • Air conditioning
  • Tilt steering column
2020 Kia Rio Hatchback Interior
2020 Kia Rio Hatchback Interior
2020 Kia Rio Hatchback Interior
2020 Kia Rio Hatchback Interior
2020 Kia Rio Hatchback Interior
2020 Kia Rio Hatchback Interior
2020 Kia Rio Hatchback Interior
2020 Kia Rio Hatchback Interior
2020 Kia Rio Hatchback Interior
2020 Kia Rio Hatchback Interior

2020 Kia Rio Hatchback Exterior

8.0/10

The Kia Rio Hatchback looks fairly upmarket and sporty for its price. Its signature Tiger-nose, blacked-out mesh grille is accentuated by air intakes that sit lower on the front bumper. Flanking that grille are swept-back LED headlamps that feature auto light control function.

2020 Kia Rio Hatchback Side View

From the sides, the Rio5 looks a like a proper subcompact. While its long roof adds a sporty flair, the body colored door handles and dual-body colored side view mirrors highlight functionality and tastefulness. The rear spoiler and blacked-out rear bumper harmoniously put the entire car together.

Model

Kia Rio Hatchback

Toyota Yaris Hatchback

Chevrolet Sonic Hatchback

Honda Fit Hatchback

Curb Weight

2762 lbs

2396 lbs

2896 lbs

2568 lbs

Length

160.0"

161.6"

159.8"

161.4"

Width

67.9"

66.7"

68.3"

67.0"

Height

57.1"

58.9"

59.7"

60.0"

Ground Clearance

5.5"

5.5"

N/A

N/A

Wheelbase

101.6"

101.2"

99.4"

99.6"

At 2,762 pounds the Kia Rio Hatchback is the heaviest subcompact in the segment. It also has the longest wheelbase. Though it is the Toyota Yaris Hatchback which is the longest overall.

What are those eye catching features?

The several exterior styling elements of the Kia Rio Hatchback that make it look simple yet a bit sophisticated for its price are:

  • Tiger-nose grille
  • Swept-back LED headlights
  • Front bumper with integrated air vents
  • Body-color door handles
  • Dual body-color power heated mirrors
  • 15-inch wheels with full covers
  • Rear spoiler
2020 Kia Rio Hatchback Exterior
2020 Kia Rio Hatchback Exterior
2020 Kia Rio Hatchback Exterior

2020 Kia Rio Hatchback Safety

8.0/10

The Kia Rio Hatchback is a competent subcompact with above average safety features. They include:

  • Auto light control
  • Forward collision-avoidance assist
  • 6 airbags
  • Electronic stability control
  • ABS
  • Vehicle stability management
  • Electronic brake-force distribution
  • Hill start assist
  • Tire-pressure monitoring system
  • Side-impact door beams
  • Front and rear crumple zones
  • LATCH

2020 Kia Rio Hatchback Competition

7.3/10

Kia Rio Hatchback vs. Chevrolet Sonic Hatchback

Besides being a bit faster and slightly more accommodating, the Chevy Sonic Hatchback hardly makes a case for itself against the overall well-rounded Kia Rio Hatchback. For a less expensive price than the Sonic hatch, the Rio hatch offers better practicality, improved efficiency and a more premium feel.

2020 Chevrolet Sonic Hatchback

Kia Rio Hatchback vs. Honda Fit

Both the Kia Rio Hatchback and Honda Fit Hatchback are constantly at each others’ throats, and why shouldn’t they? While the Kia makes a strong point with its bigger boot and fuel tank, the Honda gets a more accommodating cabin and sportier performance. But both deliver the same level of efficiency and are similarly priced too.

2020 Honda Fit Hatchback

 

2020 Kia Rio Hatchback Final Verdict

8.2/10

A simple yet sophisticated subcompact that is well-equipped with features to take care of all your everyday needs. That is what the 2020 Kia Rio Hatchback is. It combines the lively drivability of a comfortable city ride with the practicality of an everyday commuter. Also the addition of several features as standard for the year 2020, further improve this subcompact’s worth and presence.