Kia, Motoring News, new models

Kia Rio GT-Line: First images of Korea’s hot new baby

  • Rio joins Kia’s sporty new GT-Line family
  • Powered by one-litre, 88kW, turbocharged T-GDi engine
  • Special alloy wheel rims, ‘sporty’ exterior trim
KIA RIO GT-LINE: Image: Kia Motor / Nrewspress
KIA RIO GT-LINE: Image: Kia Motor / Nwspress

SEOUL, South Korea – Kia has released the first images of its Rio GT-Line ahead of its public debut at the 2018 Geneva auto show – the latest range to join GT-Line specification/

The others are the Sportage GT-Line, Picanto GT-Line and Sorento GT-Line.

The Rio GT-Line, the automaker says, ”boasts versatility, a responsive turbocharged engine, engaging handling and a sporty look and cabin”.

Power comes from a one-litre T-GDi (turbocharged gasoline direct injection) engine, an 88kW said to provide ”willing acceleration” while contributing to the cars’ handling characteristics thanks to its light weight.

KIA RIO GT-LINE: Image: Kia Motor / Nrewspress
KIA RIO GT-LINE: Image: Kia Motor / Newspress

Michael Cole, Kia Motors Europe;s chief operating officer, told Carman’s Corner in a media release: “The Rio is one of Kia’s global top-sellers. We’ve sold more than 54 000 in Europe since it went on sale in the first quarter of 2017.

NEW DESIGN FEATURES

”The GT-Line spec has enhanced the car’s desirability and will help grow Rio sales through 2018 with its comfort and safety features, versatility, and sporty styling.”

The right-hand drive range will arrive in UK showrooms by April 2018 (we’re awaiting confirmation for South Africa).

The five-door shell has new design features – gloss-black and chromed ‘tiger-nose’ grille, GT-Line 17” alloy wheel rims, ‘ice-cube’ diode fog lights recalling those of the Cee’d GT and Pro_Cee’d GT, and the exterior is finished with twin exhaust tips, diode daytime running lights, chromed window trim, gloss black roof spoiler, and sill highlights.

READ MORE Kia features on Carman’s Corner

The seats are upholstered with black synthetic leather and cloth with grey contrast stitching, there’s a new ‘D-cut’ (means flat-bottomed) leather-clad steering-wheel, metallic trim around the door switches and gear-shifter, and the dashboard complements this with a new carbon fibre-effect finish.

The light and compact three-cylinder one-litre T-GDi engine makes 88kW at 6000rpm, 171Nm from 1500-4000rpm and, Kia says, the small-engine’s mass, makes the car fun to drive thanks to the minimal inertia allowing responsive, engaging handling.

KIA RIO GT-LINE: Image: Kia Motor / Nrewspress
KIA RIO GT-LINE: Image: Kia Motor / Newspress

Kia claims 4.73 litres/100km with sensible use of the six-speed manual transmission.

By the end of 2018 the Rio GT-Line will get a non-turbo 1.25 or 1.4-litre petrol MPi (multi-point injection) engine and a seven-speed double-clutch transmission.

The Rio GT-Line will have features familiar to current Rio owners: aluminium pedals, bi-projector headlghts which swivel for cornering, a 19cm ‘floating’ touchscreen for satnav and smartphone integration with options being a rear parking camera and steering-wheel and seat heating.

‘SAFEST B-SEGMENT CAR YET’

The latest Rio, its maker claims, will be the safest B-segment car Kia has yet thanks to  high-strength body construction, six crash bags and a five-star Euro NCAP crash protection (when fitted with optional ADAS technology).

Collision-avoidance assistance uses radar to detect a potential collision with a vehicle or human, lane-departure warning and (by year-end) lane-keeping.

The boot can take 325 litres.

The Rio GT-Line will be delivered with  the brand’s seven-year or 160 000km warranty. Full specifications are still to be released.

KIA RIO GT-LINE: Image: Kia Motor / Nrewspress
KIA RIO GT-LINE: Image: Kia Motor / Newspress

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