Five-Point Inspection: 2014 Kia Rondo

Five-Point Inspection: 2014 Kia Rondo

3. Efficiency replaces power

The new Rondo no longer has a V6 engine option, and in fact downsizes the four-cylinder unit as well. A 2.0-liter engine with 164 hp and 156 lb-ft of torque is the sole powerplant.  That is a reduction of 11 hp and 13 lb-ft of torque compared to the old 2.4-liter four cylinder. Kia also replaced the old four-speed auto-box with a pair of six-speed transmission; either an automatic or a manual.

On the road power is a bit weak, especially when loaded up with passengers. Response is good though, and the extra gears help keep the engine in its power band. Merging and passing are not a problem with this drivetrain; just don’t expect to beat any Grand Caravans in a dash to leave soccer practice.

The advantage of the downsized engine is improved fuel economy. With the automatic transmission, fuel economy is officially improved 16 percent in the city and 12 percent on the highway. During our week with the Rondo, we averaged 23.8 mpg during city-biased driving.

  • MistyGreen

    Or just fly to Canada and come back with one! No one would ask any questions, I’m sure..

  • smartacus

    Coincidentally; i helped drive someone’s Kia Rondo to Atlantic City for Miss America Pageant weekend last month (somehow managed to get a 51st floor room in the Resorts Tower)

    It was a 2.4/auto and one of the last new 2010’s in the country.

    I really have nothing negative to say about it whatsoever, except perhaps fuel economy and power not so good from 75-95MPH. But for its intended purpose; it did its job.

  • Soundboy

    Several years back, I drove the previous Ronda as a rental in San Diego for a week. This was a V6 model and I was very impressed, except for the fuel economy. Technologies have changed much since then, and I think Kia is missing out if this new Ronda isn’t available in the US.

  • MistyGreen

    Hey, maybe if Kia brought it to the US, it would convince Mazda to keep the 5!

  • Mike

    Most other reviews complain that the ride and handling are still below par. Autoguide don’t seem to agree with this sentiment.

  • Mazda5 Owner

    No sliding side doors, no care… even if it does look pretty good.