2012 & 2013 Kia Hatchback Reviews & Ratings

Reviews & Ratings for Kia Hatchbacks

Kia Hatchback Review

The flagship products of Kia Motors, the spacey Kia hatchbacks were previously infamous as being unremarkable and dull. It was even remarked by Peter Schreyer, former head of design at Kia Motors, who once commented on the neutrality of the Kia cars saying that it was so much that if someone saw a Kia on the road it would be very difficult to notice if it was a Japanese or a Korean car. This all began to change with the release of the 'tiger nose' front grille in 2009, which the company's sig... (full review continues below)

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Kia Hatchbacks

Kia Soul Hatchback

Kia Soul Hatchback
Year
2012
MSRP
$13,900
Fuel Economy
27 City / 35 Highway
Engine
1.6L 4C
Seats
4
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Rating: 2.5/5
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Kia Hatchback Reviews

The flagship products of Kia Motors, the spacey Kia hatchbacks were previously infamous as being unremarkable and dull. It was even remarked by Peter Schreyer, former head of design at Kia Motors, who once commented on the neutrality of the Kia cars saying that it was so much that if someone saw a Kia on the road it would be very difficult to notice if it was a Japanese or a Korean car. This all began to change with the release of the 'tiger nose' front grille in 2009, which the company's signature hatchbacks - the Kia Picanto, Kia Forte, Kia Soul and Kia Rio - now all feature.

Now that Kia has a distinctive image, have they also graduated into becoming a distinctive name in the global car market for performance? Various reviews say that the competition is fierce with long established Asian competitors like Honda, Toyota, Mazda and Subaru chomping at their heels. The Kia Rio is currently the best-selling car in South Korea based on market reviews, and retails in the United States for around $15,000. Sporting a 138-hp 1.6-liter gasoline direct injection (GDI) four-cylinder engine, the Rio is certainly no slouch in terms of power for such an economic car. Also favored in reviews are this car's impressive fuel efficiency, interior design and safety features round off the package.

The other flagship Kia hatchback, the Kia Forte, is the company's take on a compact hatchback. Again, the distinctive tiger grille is present. This Kia hatchback sells new for around the $18,000 price mark. More powerful than the Rio, the Forte possesses a standard six-speed automatic and 173-hp 2.4L four-cylinder. As well a flash interior featuring heated leather seats, a power sunroof, and automatic climate control (if one opts for the EX trim). Safety features include stability control, side and side curtain airbags, traction control, anti-lock brakes with brake assist as standard.

Needless to say, both cars are met with a wealth of long established competition. The Mazda3 offers a similar package to the Kia Forte SX trim, but with a far more fun ride at the expense of fuel efficiency. The Honda Fit is a far roomier alternative if you're looking for a plain, spacious 5-door hatchback. A few reviews also take the Honda Fit's side when it comes to performance and handling. Where they can't compete with the Kia Forte is price: brand recognition and a long established history come with a price.

Likewise the Kio Rio is far cheaper than its competitors. Based on reviews, the Ford Fiesta is the most obvious challenger, being an affordable small car that can come in either a sedan or a hatchback. While the Fiesta is long established, and may have the more fun reputation of the two, it cannot compete with the Kia hatchback in terms of fuel economy, averaging a total of 30 to 40 miles per gallon in the city to the Fiesta's high 20s to low 30s. A range of nice extras such as standard steering wheel mounted controls and USB and audio jacks also set it apart.