2021 Kia Rio price and specs: new SX trim joins range

The Rio is Kia's entry into the shrinking light car segment, with prices starting from $19,090 before on-road costs.

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William Stopford
William Stopford
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The 2021 Kia Rio range has grown to include a new SX variant, which adds some luxury niceties to the base S trim.

Rio prices range from $19,090 before on-road costs for the S manual to $24,990 before on-roads for the GT-Line auto.

Kia offers nationwide drive-away offers, however.

UPDATE, 3/6/2021 A new SX variant has joined the range, while the rest of the range received a $500 price increase earlier this year. We’ve updated this article and brought it forward.

The company added a larger 8.0-inch touchscreen infotainment system with wireless Android Auto and Apple CarPlay for 2021.

The Sport has also picked up autonomous emergency braking and lane-keeping assist, previously exclusive to the flagship GT-Line.

The new SX grade doesn’t include these additional safety features.

Based on the entry-level S, it adds features like leatherette trim for the steering wheel, shifter and seats, as well as a sunroof, privacy glass and cruise control.

A full list of features for each grade is located further down in this article.

Though a Rio sedan was available in the past and is sold in other markets, the current, fourth generation is sold only as a hatchback in Australia and battles rivals such as the Mazda 2, MG 3, Suzuki Swift and Toyota Yaris.

Pricing

  • 2021 Kia Rio S manual: $19,090
  • 2021 Kia Rio SX manual: $20,090
  • 2021 Kia Rio Sport manual: $20,590
  • 2021 Kia Rio S auto: $21,390
  • 2021 Kia Rio SX auto: $22,390
  • 2021 Kia Rio Sport auto: $22,890
  • 2021 Kia Rio GT-Line auto: $24,990

All prices exclude on-road costs.

Kia is currently offering the following nationwide drive-away pricing:

  • 2021 Kia Rio S manual: $20,490
  • 2021 Kia Rio S auto: $21,490
  • 2021 Kia Rio SX manual: $21,990
  • 2021 Kia Rio Sport manual: $22,490
  • 2021 Kia Rio SX auto: $22,990
  • 2021 Kia Rio Sport auto: $23,490
  • 2021 Kia Rio GT-Line auto: $25,990

If you are looking for a more accurate idea of pricing, you can build and price one of these up on the official website to determine drive away pricing. It’s also worth keeping an eye on the Kia offers page to see if there are any deals on at the moment.

Engines

The 2021 Kia Rio range comes with a choice of two engines.

The S, SX and Sport use a naturally-aspirated 1.4-litre four-cylinder with 74kW of power and 133Nm of torque, mated to either a six-speed manual or six-speed automatic transmission.

The range-topping Rio GT-Line has a turbocharged 1.0-litre three-cylinder engine with 74kW and 172Nm. It’s mated exclusively to a seven-speed dual-clutch automatic transmission.

If you’re looking for details on different engines offered, you can find a side by side comparison of these within the official brochure, or visit the Kia Rio specifications page.

Fuel Economy

The 2021 Kia Rio consumes 5.6L/100km on the combined cycle when equipped with the six manual transmission and 6.0L/100km with the automatic.

The punchiest powertrain is also the thriftiest. The range-topping Rio GT-Line has a combined fuel economy rating of 5.3L/100km.

All models have a 45L fuel tank and run on 91RON regular unleaded fuel.

Dimensions

The 2021 Kia Rio measures 4065mm long (4070mm in the GT-Line), 1450mm tall and 1725mm wide on a 2580mm long wheelbase.

The Kia Rio’s total luggage space is 325L or 980L with the rear seats folded.

You can view the official specifications page to get a visual idea of dimensions.

Servicing

All 2021 Kia Rio models with the 1.4-litre require servicing every 12 months or 15,000km, whichever comes first. The Rio GT-Line requires servicing every 10,000km.

Kia offers seven years of capped-price servicing. The GT-Line has an average service cost of $471 over seven years, while all other Rios have an average cost of $421.

Safety

When the Kia Rio was tested by ANCAP in 2017, it received a rating of five stars. That was based on a frontal offset crash rating of 14.52 out of 16 and a side impact score of 16 out of 16, while whiplash and pedestrian protection were rated Good and Acceptable, respectively.

All 2021 Kia Rio models come standard with anti-lock brakes and front, front side, and curtain airbags.

Sport and GT-Line models add autonomous emergency braking with pedestrian and cyclist detection, as well as lane-keeping assist and driver attention monitoring.

Features such as blind-spot monitoring and rear cross-traffic alert can be found on Rios in other markets but aren’t available here.

You can find more details and highlights on all the safety features on the official Kia Rio page.

Standard Equipment

The base Rio S comes with the following standard features:

  • 8.0-inch touchscreen infotainment system
  • Wireless Apple CarPlay and Android Auto
  • Reversing camera with rear parking sensors
  • Automatic headlights
  • Power windows
  • Tilt and telescopic adjustable steering column
  • 15-inch steel wheels

The Rio SX adds the following over the S:

  • Cruise control
  • 17-inch alloy wheels
  • Heated, power-folding exterior mirrors
  • Premium shift knob and steering wheel
  • Leatherette upholstery
  • Sunroof
  • Privacy glass
  • Illuminated vanity mirrors

The Rio Sport adds the following over the S:

  • Cruise control
  • 17-inch alloy wheels
  • Heated, power-folding exterior mirrors
  • Premium shift knob and steering wheel
  • 4.2-inch instrument cluster display
  • Autonomous emergency braking
  • Lane-keeping assist

The range-topping GT-Line replaces the 1.4-litre four with a turbocharged 1.0-litre three-cylinder engine and adds:

  • Single-zone climate control
  • Automatic stop/start
  • LED daytime running lights and front fog lights
  • GT-Line exterior package with body kit, rear diffuser and dual exhaust outlets
  • Alloy sports pedals
  • Flat-bottomed sports steering wheel
  • Rain-sensing wipers

You can see a side by side comparison of all the various options and inclusions across the various trim levels by downloading the official brochure or visiting the official Kia Rio Page.

MORE: Kia Rio news and reviews

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William Stopford
William Stopford
William Stopford is a Journalist at CarExpert.
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