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2022 Kia Rio is still one of the least expensive new cars on sale today

Kia's plucky little subcompact starts at just over $17,000.

2022 Kia Rio
The Rio is available as a sedan or hatchback.
Kia

The average price of a new car is roughly $45,000 which, frankly, is insane. Thankfully, there are still plenty of solid, affordable cars out there for shoppers on a budget, and one of our favorites is the subcompact Kia Rio.

Kia confirmed pricing for its 2022 Rio lineup this week, and it continues to be one of the least-expensive new cars available today. The base price of a 2022 Rio LX is just $17,145, while the slightly more upscale Rio S comes in at $17,785. (Both prices include a $995 destination charge.) Kia offers the Rio as both a four-door sedan and five-door hatchback, and there's no price difference depending on body style.

The only big option is a technology package, only available on the Rio S. For an additional $1,800, this tech pack adds forward-collision warning, lane-keeping assist, lane-following assist, lane-departure warning, LED headlights, tire pressure monitoring, automatic climate control, pushbutton start, alloy wheels, rear disc brakes (instead of drums!) and more. This is definitely a worthwhile addition if you can swing it.

The Rio heads into 2022 with only a few small changes, the most notable of which is the fitment of Kia's new corporate logo. Both LX and S models are powered by a 1.6-liter I4 engine, making 120 horsepower and 112 pound-feet of torque. But what the Rio lacks in power it makes up for with great fuel efficiency; both the sedan and hatchback are estimated to return 33 mpg city, 41 mpg highway and 36 mpg combined.

Despite its ultra-low price, there are still several cars that slide in under the Rio's starting MSRP. The Mitsubishi Mirage G4 sedan comes in at $16,290 including destination, and the Nissan Versa undercuts that by a few hundred bucks, at $15,955. The cheapest new car in the US is Mitsubishi's five-door offering, the 2021 Mirage hatchback, priced from $15,290. The Rio's a much nicer car than all of these, though, and it's available to check out at Kia dealers now.