Mike Stevens | Jan 13, 2011

2012 KIA RIO

Confirming speculation earlier this week, Kia has announced plans to unveil its all-new Rio light car at March's Geneva Motor Show, ahead of its mid-year Australian debut.

In an effort to drum up anticipation for its sub-Cerato offering, Kia has today released a trio of Rio sketches.

While much of the artwork's low-slung lines, heavily flared guards and giant wheels will be simplified before the production model's unveiling, these new illustrations offer a glimpse of what lies beneath the camouflage of the recently spied 2012 Rio test car.

Like the new Korean-market (and possibly Australian) Kia Picanto city car, the new Rio will feature headlights that sweet back toward the A-pillars, along with a front bumper that sports large, wide-open intakes and foglight housings.

The new Rio will take a giant leap beyond its predecessor's position as a humble and unassuming commuter. According to Kia, the new Rio has been designed to "inject emotional appeal" into the light-car segment, aimed at customers looking for a progressive and stand-out design.

"Downsizing is becoming more and more of a trend these days and a B-segment car as attractive as all-new Rio, with its driver-oriented cabin and interior trim options, will no doubt help consumers to be more comfortable making that switch," Kia said in a statement today.

"New Rio is the ‘next big step’ in Kia’s design revolution and we anticipate this model becoming even more popular than the current vehicle."

Kia has yet to offer details on the new Rio's powertrain and trim levels, but it is known that the new model will benefit from a longer wheelbase and an all-new platform shared, for now at least, with no other car in the Hyundai-Kia family.


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