Kia has quietly transformed itself from a bargain brand that only sold cars on price to a genuinely desirable marquee thanks to the hard work of chief designer Peter Schreyer. It helps that the driving dynamics of Kia’s products have matured rather quickly, but good looking cars certainly bring people to a dealership in hopes of a test drive. Both the Rio and Picanto look great on the show floor.
Looks are important in every market, but Europe is especially sensitive to CO2 emissions and fuel economy and the new Rio scores very well on both of these key metrics. Despite being larger than the Picanto, the Rio scores 88 mpg on the European combined cycle and emits only 85 grams of CO2 per kilometer driven when equipped with the 1.1-liter diesel three cylinder engine. The output of the little diesel is a respectable 69 hp and it comes with a six-speed manual transmission.
For more on all the world debuts from Geneva, including more photos, videos and information, be sure to click over to Automobile Magazine’s 2011 Geneva Motor Show coverage.