Sunday, February 15th 2015. | Auto & Motor, Car

Launched in 2001 with a 96-horserpower four-cylinder, the Kia Rio is one of a handful of cars that has helped guide the brand from obscure and untrusted to a legit alternative to the pricier Japanese brands. As we head into the 2016 model year, the Rio is about midway through its second generation, so Kia saw it fit to give the sedan a light refresh to better match its hatchback counterpart, which showed off its new styling at the 2014 Paris Auto Show.

In 2014, the Rio saw a drop of more than 11 percent in sales, so the Korean automaker needs to pull off a little magic to prevent falling even further. It has no hope of catching the likes of the Fiesta, Sonic or Versa, but it needs to at least maintain its position. Does this refresh have what it takes to stop the bleeding?

Click past the jump to read my full review to find out.

Kia Rio Sedan originally appeared on topspeed.com on Sunday, 15 February 2015 12:00 EST.

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5 / 5 stars
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