The 2021 Kia Rio 5-Door Hatchback Is an Affordable and Reliable Pick as Car Prices Skyrocket

The biggest difference between a new and used vehicle has always been the price, and that’s still true, but now the situation has flipped. Buying a used car doesn’t make as much sense anymore. Purchasing a brand-new model might be the way to go, especially if it’s a little gem like the Kia Rio

According to MotorTrend, the 2021 Kia Rio five-door hatchback could be a game-changer this year, when used car prices have skyrocketed.

When you’re better off buying new instead of used

A blue metallic 2021 Kia Rio 5-Door Hatchback parked on a street overlooking a body of water at sunset
2021 Kia Rio five-door hatchback | Kia

Thanks to the pandemic, automakers have had to resort to some shuffling of this year’s lineup. The chip shortage has made a pretty big dent in the new car industry, which means consumers are turning to the used market to find the vehicles they want. 

However, the higher the demand for used cars, the higher their purchase prices go. If you’re looking for a specific vehicle, you might find one that’s lightly used with low mileage. But it’s not likely to come cheap. Expect to pay a higher price than you would’ve paid before the chip shortage. So if you want a good vehicle, you’re better off choosing a new one instead of a pre-owned one. 

Used cars are what most dealers are making their money from, which means you’ll probably pay higher interest rates on car loans. If you buy new, the dealer might be more willing and flexible to get you a decent deal, especially if you have a trade-in to sweeten the pot. 

Why choose a 2021 Kia Rio 5-door hatchback?

Searching for a brand-new vehicle, you probably never considered the Kia Rio. It isn’t exactly a high-performance sports car or a rugged off-roader, but it offers plenty for those who want a solid, reliable car. What would you get with the Rio?

First, it’s a great option for fuel economy. Who wouldn’t want to save money on fuel nowadays? The 2021 Kia Rio will help you do just that with its EPA-estimated 33 mpg in the city and 41 mpg on the highway. The previous model year didn’t have quite as good numbers. It got only 28/37 mpg city/highway. 

Another plus is the Kia Rio’s value. The starting MSRP for the 2021 model is only $17,985. For that price, you get a decent number of features. It boasts seating for five, a smooth-shifting continuously variable automatic transmission, and a modest amount of cargo space in the hatchback, Car and Driver reports.

Is the 2021 Kia Rio really worth it?

Well, if a good, solid vehicle is what you need, the 2021 Kia Rio is a worthy choice. Under the hood is a 1.6-liter four-cylinder engine that can push this subcompact hatchback from 0 to 60 mph in 8.6 seconds. Though it isn’t the fastest vehicle out there, it holds its own with 120 hp and 112 lb-ft of torque. It’s certainly enough to cruise the highway on long-distance trips. 

The base model is bare-bones, but that’s enough to get the job done for most people. However, you can add a few packages to get some impressive tech features. If you go with the $1,800 Technology package, you get an 8.0-inch screen, wireless Apple CarPlay and Android Auto connectivity, automatic climate control, push-button start, LED headlights, and proximity-key entry. For all of that, you’ll still pay just under $20,000 for a brand-new Kia Rio before taxes. 

Sure, you could go for a used model, like the 2015 Kia Rio, which offers a bit more power than the 2021 model. But with the soaring prices in the used vehicle market, you’d likely pay almost as much or even more than the 2021 model. According to Jalopnik, the Rio is a suitable replacement for the Honda Fit or Toyota Yaris hatchback.

The Kia Rio offers just enough features for those who don’t need much in a vehicle. You get a decent number of amenities and excellent fuel economy for a low price. What more could you ask for?

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