A reality for too many motorists, the necessity of automotive ownership has becoming a crunch time in the pocketbook. With near zero flexibility related pricing for a gallon of gasoline, the need achieve tangible savings through daily driving has resulted in cost savings to be found in other areas.
For some, taking the time to compare auto insurance rates could be a short-term savings on operating a motor vehicle. A longer-term solution for new car buyers is to buy a more efficient car. Thanks to an American auto industry that has been brought to realize the presence of high quality, smaller vehicles on United States roadways, a selection of fuel-efficient subcompact cars offers a fresh line of choices for the 2012 model year.
Debuting as a sketch during the start of the new year, the up-and-coming Kia Motors exhibited a greater sense of style for their value-leading Rio. Considered a convenient vehicle package for fuel-efficient travel, the 2012 Kia Rio adds additional technology to further maximize each gallon of gasoline. The 2012 Rio will be the first North American B-segment vehicle to feature Idle Stop and Go technology configured to place the engine on a stand-by mode automatically when the vehicle is not in motion. The 2012 Kia Rio’s completely revised 1.6 liter inline-four powerplant (producing 138 horsepower) adds gasoline direct injection. Despite higher horsepower, improved engine technology and 6-speed manual or automatic transmission choices allows the 2012 model year Kia Rio to travel an estimated 35 miles per gallon average (about 3-4 miles per gallon further than the 2011 car).
In keeping with Kia’s bang for the buck reputation, air conditioning, tilt steering wheel as well as a full array of safety equipment including four-wheel disc brakes and six airbags are standard for every 2012 Kia Rio model. For the top-tiered 2012 Rio SX model at $17,500 MSRP, a rich set of standard features includes 17-inch wheels, Bluetooth connectivity, power-folding outer mirrors and Kia’s UVO in-vehicle infotainment system.
Import from S1 Gen2 systems
It took the Kia Racing program just two seasons and 20 starts to capture Kia Motors America’s (KMA) first-ever championships in the 2011 Continental Tire Sports Car Challenge, and today at the Los Angeles Auto Show the company announced a major motorsports expansion for 2012 with two turbocharged Optimas set to enter the Pirelli World Challenge Championships. Continuing KMA’s successful partnership with Kinetic Motorsports, the World Challenge Optima SXs will compete in the Grand Touring Sport (GTS) class alongside established nameplates such as Mustang and Camaro at world-class race tracks across North America, including Road Atlanta, the street circuit in Long Beach, Calif., and Infineon Raceway in Sonoma, Calif.
“As a brand with no previous racing experience in America, for Kia to win two motorsports championships in just its second year is an incredible accomplishment, and expanding our motorsports footprint with the turbocharged Optima entering World Challenge will continue to build passion and enthusiasm for the brand with an entirely new fan base at different race tracks across the country,” said Michael Sprague, vice president, marketing & communications, KMA. “With its aerodynamic styling and outstanding driving dynamics, the Optima SX should be well suited to the ultra-competitive environment of World Challenge racing.”
Sanctioned by SCCA Pro Racing, World Challenge features world-class drivers and race-prepped versions of production vehicles from many of the world’s most popular manufacturers. The Kia Optimas will be the first Korean vehicles to compete in the series – which includes a suspenseful standing start rather than the more common rolling start – and is known for exciting door-to-door action throughout the 50-minute sprint races. For 2012, World Challenge races will be broadcast on the NBC Sports Network.
Maintaining continuity in the Kia Racing program’s third-year, Kinetic Motorsports will build, develop and campaign the two Optima World Challenge cars while continuing Kia’s Forte Koup efforts in the Continental Tire Sports Car Challenge. Drivers for both programs will be announced in the near future.
The Optima is not the only Kia vehicle being summoned for race track duty in 2012. At the recent Specialty Equipment Market Association (SEMA) Show in Las Vegas, Kia announced that the all-new Rio 5-door will compete in the newly created B-Spec showroom stock series, while a tricked-out Optima Hybrid will serve as the USTCC’s official safety car beginning in March 2012.
Race fans can follow Kia’s motorsports program, including the development of the Optima race cars, and receive live updates from the track at <a href="http://www.facebook.com/kiaracing.
Design-Led Transformation and Product Line
Kia Motors has undergone a dramatic, design-led transformation, which has been delivering dynamically styled vehicles in several important segments at exactly the right time, contributing to the brand’s continued gains in U.S. market share. Kia is poised to continue its momentum and brand growth through design innovation, quality, value, safety features and new technology. Kia’s commitment to the U.S. market is represented by its U.S.-based manufacturing facilities in West Point, Georgia – KMMG – which is responsible for the creation of more than 10,000 plant and supplier jobs and added the critically-acclaimed Optima midsize sedan1 to its production line in September. Kia’s model year 2012 vehicle line includes the Sorento CUV, Sportage compact CUV, Optima midsize sedan, Optima Hybrid, Soul urban passenger vehicle, Forte compact sedan, Forte 5-door compact hatchback, Forte Koup two-door coupe, all-new Rio and Rio 5-door sub-compacts and Sedona minivan.
Courtesy of Kia