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Kia boosts Rio’s image with GT-Line trim. Image by Kia.

Kia boosts Rio’s image with GT-Line trim
Kia Rio GT-Line uses sporty styling inside and out for sharper looks, due to debut in Geneva.
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2018-01-08: Driven: Kia Rio T-GDi

What's all this about?

We've got a new range-topping trim for the Kia Rio supermini. It's called the GT-Line.

Aah, is this like M Sport, S line, AMG Line, R-Line, R-Design, R-Sport, F-Sport, ST-Line, VX-Line and so on?

Cripes, you've listed nearly the whole lot, there! But yes, if what you mean is 'does the Kia Rio GT-Line have sporty exterior styling and interior finishing, only there are no differences to the mechanical oily bits', then you're spot on. Outside, the Rio now benefits from a gloss black and chrome 'tiger nose' grille, unique GT-Line 17-inch alloys and, of course, the Kia GT trademark 'ice-cube' LED fog lamps. There are also twin exhaust tips, LED daytime running lights, chrome window surrounds, and gloss black highlights for the roof spoiler, rear bumper trim and side skirts.

OK, and within?

Well, you might wish to avert your eyes from the rather clumsy carbon fibre-effect dashboard trim, but otherwise it's black synthetic leather and cloth with contrast grey stitching for the seats, a 'D-cut' leather steering wheel for the driver, and a metallic finish for the trims surrounding the door switches and gear lever, for, er... well, everyone; in the case of the switches, at any rate. Anyway, all the usual driver assist safety systems fitted to the Rio, as well as interior equipment including (but not limited to) seven-inch display infotainment, heated seats and steering wheel, cruise control and a rear-view parking camera, will be available on the GT-Line.

And what's powering it?

The same top engine you get in the regular Rio line-up, namely the 120hp/171Nm, three-cylinder turbocharged T-GDi petrol unit. This 1.0-litre gem is teamed to a six-speed manual transmission with Intelligent Stop and Go functionality, making the Kia capable of up to 60.1mpg and 107g/km CO2. This autumn, the GT-Line ranks will swell with the addition of the 1.25- and 1.4-litre MPi normally aspirated petrol motors, but we have no idea why you'd opt for those inferior mills ahead of the T-GDi.

Have we got a price for any of this?

Not as yet. UK prices and exact specs will be revealed some time in March, as the Rio GT-Line is making its debut at the Geneva Motor Show.

Anything else to add?

Just a soundbite from Michael Cole, chief operating officer for Kia Motors Europe, who said: "The Rio is one of Kia's best selling cars globally, and we have already sold more than 54,000 units of the new model in Europe after it went on sale in the first quarter of 2017. The new GT-Line specification enhances the car's desirability and will help grow Rio sales in 2018 and beyond, thanks to its range of comfort and safety features, superb versatility, and confident, sporty styling.

Matt Robinson - 24 Jan 2018

2018 Kia Rio GT-Line revealed. Image by Kia.2018 Kia Rio GT-Line revealed. Image by Kia.2018 Kia Rio GT-Line revealed. Image by Kia.     - Kia road tests
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