2019 Mitsubishi Mirage vs. 2019 Kia Rio

Detailed Review, Specifications & Comparison

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Safety

Both the Mirage and the Rio have standard driver and passenger frontal airbags, front side-impact airbags, side-impact head airbags, front seatbelt pretensioners, front wheel drive, height adjustable front shoulder belts, four-wheel antilock brakes, traction control, electronic stability systems to prevent skidding, rearview cameras and available rear parking sensors.

Warranty

The Mirage’s corrosion warranty is 2 years longer than the Rio’s (7/100,000 vs. 5/100,000).

Reliability

A reliable vehicle saves its owner time, money and trouble. Nobody wants to be stranded or have to be without a vehicle while it’s being repaired. Consumer Reports rates the Mirage’s reliability 20 points higher than the Rio.

Fuel Economy and Range

On the EPA test cycle the Mirage Hatchback gets better fuel mileage than the Rio:

 

 

Mirage

Rio

 

 

Manual

33 city/41 hwy

n/a

 

 

Auto

36 city/43 hwy

28 city/37 hwy

Auto

On the EPA test cycle the Mirage G4 gets better fuel mileage than the Rio:

 

 

Mirage

Rio

 

 

Manual

33 city/40 hwy

n/a

 

 

Auto

35 city/41 hwy

28 city/37 hwy

Auto

Environmental Friendliness

In its Green Vehicle Guide, the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) rates the Mitsubishi Mirage higher (5 out of 10) than the Kia Rio (3). This means the Mirage produces up to 16.5 pounds less smog-producing pollutants than the Rio every 15,000 miles.

Transmission

The Mirage offers a manual transmission for better acceleration, control and fuel economy. The Rio doesn’t offer a manual transmission.

The Mirage offers an optional continuously variable transmission (CVT). With no “steps” between gears, it can keep the engine at the most efficient speed for fuel economy, or keep it at its peak horsepower indefinitely for maximum acceleration. The Rio doesn’t offer a CVT.

Tires and Wheels

The Mirage GT/LE/G4 SE’s tires provide better handling because they have a lower 55 series profile (height to width ratio) that provides a stiffer sidewall than the Rio’s 65 series tires.

Suspension and Handling

For better maneuverability, the Mirage Hatchback’s turning circle is 3.3 feet tighter than the Rio’s (30.2 feet vs. 33.5 feet). The Mirage G4’s turning circle is 2 feet tighter than the Rio’s (31.5 feet vs. 33.5 feet).

Chassis

The Mitsubishi Mirage may be more efficient, handle and accelerate better because it weighs about 500 to 700 pounds less than the Kia Rio.

The Mirage is shorter than the Rio, making the Mirage easier to handle, maneuver and park in tight spaces:

 

Mirage

Rio

Sedan

169.5 inches

172.6 inches

Station Wagon

149.4 inches

160 inches

Passenger Space

Because it has more passenger and cargo room, the EPA rates the Mirage Hatchback a Compact car, while the Rio 5-Door is rated a Small Station Wagon.

The Mirage G4 has .2 inches more front headroom and 3.7 inches more rear legroom than the Rio Sedan.

The Mirage Hatchback has .2 inches more front headroom and .5 inches more rear legroom than the Rio 5-Door.

Cargo Capacity

The Mirage Hatchback has a larger trunk with its rear seat folded than the Rio 5-Door with its rear seat folded (47 vs. 32.8 cubic feet).

To allow full utilization of available cargo room, the Mirage’s trunk lid uses gas strut supported hinges that don’t intrude into the trunk. The Rio’s useful trunk space is reduced by its intrusive beam hinge (except wagon).

The Mirage’s standard rear seats fold to accommodate long and bulky cargo. The Rio LX doesn’t offer folding rear seats.

Ergonomics

The Mirage’s standard power windows allow the driver or passenger to lower and raise the windows without leaning over or being distracted. Power windows are only available on the Rio S/EX.

The Mirage’s driver’s power window opens or closes with one touch of the window control, making it more convenient at drive-up windows and toll booths. The Rio S/EX’s power windows’ switch has to be held the entire time to close it fully.

FAST-Key standard on the Mirage SE/GT allows you to unlock the driver’s door, trunk and start the engine all without removing a key from pocket or purse. This eliminates searching for keys before loading groceries, getting in the vehicle in bad weather or making a hurried start to your trip. The Kia Rio doesn’t offer an advanced key system.

The Mirage GT, G4 SE and LE has standard heated front seats, which keep the driver and front passenger extremely comfortable in the winter. Heated seats aren’t available in the Rio.

The Mirage G4 has a standard center folding armrest for the rear passengers. A center armrest helps make rear passengers more comfortable. The Rio doesn’t offer a rear seat center armrest.

The Mirage SE/GT’s standard automatic temperature control maintains the temperature you set, automatically controlling fan speed, vents and temperature to maintain a consistent, comfortable environment. The Rio doesn’t offer automatic air conditioning.

For greater rear passenger comfort, the Mirage has standard rear heat vents to keep rear occupants more comfortable. The Rio doesn’t offer rear vents.

To direct the driver from any location to a given street address, a GPS navigation system is available on the Mirage ES. The Rio doesn’t offer a navigation system.

Economic Advantages

According to The Car Book by Jack Gillis, the Mirage is less expensive to operate than the Rio because it costs $162 less to do the manufacturer’s suggested maintenance for 50,000 miles. Typical repairs cost much less on the Mirage than the Rio, including $7 less for a muffler and $202 less for a fuel pump.

Recommendations

The Mitsubishi Mirage outsold the Kia Rio by 6% during the 2018 model year.

© 1991-2018 Advanta-STAR Automotive Research. All rights reserved.

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