2020 Kia Rio: prices, specs and release date

New Kia Rio supermini launched with £13,395 starting price

  • Mild-hybrid technology features for the first time
  • New Rio gets a larger touchscreen
  • On sale now

The Kia Rio hatchback has been updated for 2020 and is now available to buy. The design of Kia’s rival to the Ford Fiesta and SEAT Ibiza is largely unchanged but there are more significant updates under the surface. A more economical petrol engine, better connectivity and more driver assistance technology all feature. Prices start from £13,395 and there are four trim levels to pick from.

2020 Kia Rio prices and specifications

Kia Rio trims start with entry-level ‘1’, which features air con, Bluetooth, heated mirrors, lane-keeping assist and collision avoidance systems. The ‘2’ trim starts from £15,595, and brings alloy wheels, DAB radio, a touchscreen and a reversing camera.

Best reliable small cars to buy this year

‘3’ adds sat nav, auto wipers and heating for the front seats and the steering wheel. The top-spec GT-Line S models gets a sporty look, front parking sensors, blind-spot monitoring and keyless start. The 3 model starts at £18,895, while GT-Line S costs £1,000 more.

Interior and technology

Inside, a new eight-inch touchscreen will replace the current car’s seven-inch screen (although the ‘1’ trim makes do with a smaller button-operated display). The eight-inch screen features Bluetooth multi-connection - two phones can connect at the same time - plus wireless Apple CarPlay and Android Auto, and sat nav on higher trims.

Kia is also rolling out the second phase of its UVO Connect live features in the Rio. You’ll be able to access live traffic information, weather forecasts, fuel prices and local on- and off-street parking details. Users can also download an accompanying smartphone app that lets them send sat nav directions straight to the car, check for diagnostic notifications and see where the car’s parked.

There’s more safety technology on board now, too. The forward collision assist now recognises cyclists as well as pedestrians, while everything from intelligent speed limit recognition to adaptive cruise control is available. The latter can be specified on automatic cars, and this - alongside the Lane Follow Assist function - means the Rio can essentially drive itself for short periods, such as on the motorway. Kia has also introduced a Leading Vehicle Departure Alert function, which warns you if you fail to notice that the car in front has moved off.

Engines and mild-hybrid power

The 2020 Kia Rio hatchback gets new engine choices, including a brand-new ‘Smartstream’ 1.0-litre turbocharged petrol with 48-volt mild-hybrid technology. A small battery, recharged from the energy normally lost in braking, essentially allows the stop-start system to shut down the engine sooner to save fuel. The Rio’s fuel economy currently isn’t as good as that of rivals, so the new tech should help it catch up. The 118bhp engine manages 0-62mph in around 10 seconds and 51-52mpg, whether you choose the manual or the automatic.

The new 1.0-litre engine is also available in 99bhp form without mild-hybrid tech, and an entry-level 83bhp naturally aspirated 1.2-litre engine. Kia’s given the 1.0-litre engine a six-speed manual gearbox for the first time (instead of a five-speed) and you can also choose an automatic with seven gears for £1,000 extra.

Different trim levels essentially get different engines: the ‘1’ is limited to the 83bhp engine, ‘2’ unlocks the option of the 99bhp engine, and ‘3’ and GT-Line S are both exclusively offered with the 118bhp version.

Styling

You might need a magnifying glass to spot the Rio’s changes but the grille is a little slimmer and the lower air intakes are reshaped. All models now feature LED headlights, while two new paint colours and a new set of 16-inch wheels are available.

See where the Kia Rio features in our guides to the best cheap cars to insure and best used small cars.

Recommended

Kia Rio hatchback review
Kia Rio hatchback
In-depth reviews
12 Aug 2022

Kia Rio hatchback review

Kia Ceed Sportswagon estate review
Kia Ceed Sportswagon estate
In-depth reviews
10 Aug 2022

Kia Ceed Sportswagon estate review

Peugeot 208 hatchback review
Peugeot 208 hatchback
In-depth reviews
5 Aug 2022

Peugeot 208 hatchback review

Skoda Fabia hatchback review
Skoda Fabia Monte Carlo - front
In-depth reviews
4 Aug 2022

Skoda Fabia hatchback review

Most Popular

Nissan Ariya vs Volvo XC40 vs Volkswagen ID.4 - which is best?
Hero image
News
11 Aug 2022

Nissan Ariya vs Volvo XC40 vs Volkswagen ID.4 - which is best?

Best new car deals 2022: this week’s top car offers
MG HS
Deals
12 Aug 2022

Best new car deals 2022: this week’s top car offers

Top 10 best electric family cars 2022
MG ZS EV - front
Best cars
8 Aug 2022

Top 10 best electric family cars 2022

Tips & advice

View All
Car dashboard warning lights: the complete guide
Car dashboard symbols and meanings
Tips and advice
23 Mar 2022

Car dashboard warning lights: the complete guide

Electric car charging stations: a complete guide
Electric car charging station
Tips and advice
5 Nov 2021

Electric car charging stations: a complete guide

PCP vs HP – which type of car finance is right for you?
PCP vs HP
Car buying
17 May 2022

PCP vs HP – which type of car finance is right for you?

Average speed cameras: how do they work?
Average speed cameras: how do they work?
Tips and advice
20 Jun 2022

Average speed cameras: how do they work?

Best cars

View All
Top 10 best car interiors 2022
Peugeot 208 hatchback
Best cars
25 Jun 2021

Top 10 best car interiors 2022

Top 10 best electric cars 2022
Ioniq 5
Best cars
12 Jul 2022

Top 10 best electric cars 2022

Top 10 best cheap-to-run cars 2022
Nissan Leaf front
Best cars
12 Jul 2022

Top 10 best cheap-to-run cars 2022

The UK's top 10 fastest hot hatchbacks 2022
Audi RS 3 driving - front view
Hot hatches
24 Jun 2022

The UK's top 10 fastest hot hatchbacks 2022