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In the past twenty years hundreds of infants and young children have died after being left in vehicles, usually by accident. When turning the vehicle off, drivers of the Versa SV/SR are reminded to check the back seat if they opened the rear door before starting out. The Rio doesn’t offer a back seat reminder.
Over 200 people are killed each year when backed over by motor vehicles. The Versa has standard Rear Automatic Braking that uses rear sensors to monitor and automatically apply the brakes to prevent a rear collision. The Rio doesn’t offer backup collision prevention brakes.
The Versa’s lane departure warning system alerts a temporarily inattentive driver when the vehicle begins to leave its lane. The Rio doesn’t offer a lane departure warning system.
The Versa SV/SR’s blind spot warning system uses digital cameras monitored by computer to alert the driver to moving objects in the vehicle’s blind spots where the side view mirrors don’t reveal them. The Rio doesn’t offer a system to reveal objects in the driver’s blind spots.
To help make backing safer, the Versa SV/SR’s cross-path warning system uses wide-angle radar in the rear bumper to alert the driver to vehicles approaching from the side, helping the driver avoid collisions. The Rio doesn’t offer a cross-path warning system.
The Versa SV/SR’s driver alert monitor detects an inattentive driver then sounds a warning and suggests a break. According to the NHTSA, drivers who fall asleep cause about 100,000 crashes and 1500 deaths a year. The Rio doesn’t offer a driver alert monitor.
Both the Versa 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 daytime running lights.
The Versa’s 5 year corrosion warranty has no mileage limitations, but the corrosion warranty on the Rio runs out after 100,000 miles.
There are over 41 percent more Nissan dealers than there are Kia dealers, which makes it easier should you ever need service under the Versa’s warranty.
The Versa stops shorter than the Rio:
60 to 0 MPH
For better traction, the Versa has larger standard tires than the Rio (195/65R15 vs. 185/65R15). The Versa SV’s tires are larger than the largest tires available on the Rio (205/55R16 vs. 185/65R15).
The Versa SR’s tires provide better handling because they have a lower 50 series profile (height to width ratio) that provides a stiffer sidewall than the Rio’s 65 series tires.
For better ride, handling and brake cooling the Versa SR has standard 17-inch wheels. The Rio’s largest wheels are only 15-inches.
The Versa has a standard easy tire fill system. When inflating the tires, the vehicle’s integrated tire pressure sensors keep track of the pressure as the tires fill and tell the driver when the tires are inflated to the proper pressure. The Rio doesn’t offer vehicle monitored tire inflation.
The Versa has standard front and rear stabilizer bars, which help keep the Versa flat and controlled during cornering. The Rio’s suspension doesn’t offer a rear stabilizer bar.
The Versa has vehicle speed sensitive variable-assist power steering, for low-effort parking, better control at highway speeds and during hard cornering, and a better feel of the road. The Rio doesn’t offer variable-assist power steering.
For a smoother ride and more stable handling, the Versa’s wheelbase is 1.5 inches longer than on the Rio (103.1 inches vs. 101.6 inches).
The Versa’s front to rear weight distribution is more even (59.7% to 40.3%) than the Rio’s (61.9% to 38.1%). This gives the Versa more stable handling and braking.
The Versa has .6 inches more front headroom, 2.4 inches more front legroom and .3 inches more rear shoulder room than the Rio Sedan.
The Versa has a larger trunk than the Rio Sedan (14.7 vs. 13.7 cubic feet).
To help each driver find a more comfortable driving position, the Versa has a telescoping steering wheel. Much better than just a tilt steering wheel or adjustable seat, this allows a short driver to sit further from the steering wheel while maintaining contact with the pedals. The Rio doesn’t offer a telescoping steering wheel.
The Versa’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 power windows’ switch has to be held the entire time to close it fully.
The Push Button Ignition standard on the Versa allows you to start the engine without removing a key from pocket or purse (Versa SR’s Intelligent Key will also allow unlocking the driver’s door and trunk without taking your keys out). The Kia Rio doesn’t offer an advanced key system.
While driving with high beams on, sensitive light sensors standard on the Versa detect other vehicles which could be blinded and automatically switch to low beams. The Rio doesn’t offer automatic dimming high beams.
The Versa SR offers optional heated front seats, which keep the driver and front passenger extremely comfortable in the winter. Heated seats aren’t available in the Rio.
The Versa SR’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.
To keep a safe, consistent following distance, the Versa SR offers an optional Intelligent Cruise Control, which alters the speed of the vehicle without driver intervention. This allows the driver to use cruise control more safely without constantly having to disengage it when approaching slower traffic. The Rio doesn’t offer an adaptive cruise control.
With standard voice command, the Versa offers the driver hands free control of the radio by simply speaking. The Rio doesn’t offer a voice control system.
The Nissan Versa outsold the Kia Rio by almost three to one during 2019.
© 1991-2018 Advanta-STAR Automotive Research. All rights reserved.
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