The sketches suggest that the latest version of the supermini, a rival to the Ford Fiesta and Vauxhall Corsa and globally the Korean brand’s best-selling model, will be a five-door model only – currently almost nine out of 10 Rios sold are five-door versions.
Sharper styling is prominent in the new car – compared to its predecessor the new Rio has an extended wheelbase, with a longer front overhang and bonnet, and more upright rear pillars that according to its creators provide the car with a more confident, balanced look.
Kia is currently providing few details of the new Rio, saying only that it will offer “class-leading practicality and safety technology, the latest connectivity features, and more assured and engaging ride and handling characteristics.”
Engines are likely, however, to include the new three-cylinder 1-litre turbo petrol unit recently offered in the Cee’d, while a performance GT version of the Rio is also likely at some point.
The Rio launched originally in 2000 as a replacement for the Pride, and the car unveiled in Paris will be the fourth-generation model.
The new car will be revealed on Kia’s Paris stand on 29th September. Production for Europe will start towards the end of 2016, though a UK on-sale date is yet to be released.
The arrival of the Rio will begin a busy year for Kia model launches, with the brand effectively renewing its small car line-up – among others due on the market being a new version of the Picanto city car.