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Thinking about buying the Kia Rondo
Old 05-21-2010, 10:07 AM   #1
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Thinking about buying the Kia Rondo

DW's car is on its last legs, and we are car shopping. We are leaning towards the very small SUV/crossover vehicles do to their decent gas milage and ability to carry extra people and cargo when the need arises.

The Kia Rondo appears to be way cheaper than the competitors.

It looks like I can get a 2008 with about 35k miles for under $11k.

Does anyone have any strong reasons that this is a bad idea?
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Old 05-21-2010, 10:19 AM   #2
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Kias have a 10 year 100,000 mile warranty. They are owned by Hyundai, I think Hyundai has a majority stake in them. If you read reviews of them, they are good little cars, not fancy but they work.

$11,000 is not a lot of money, you'd pay double that for a Honda CRV with the same miles.........
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Old 05-21-2010, 10:28 AM   #3
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Here's a vid from Consumer Reports. Looks like a decent vehicle. It appeals to my utilitarian attitude about cars.

Consumer Reports Video Hub - Cars - SUVs & Minivans - Kia Rondo Review
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Old 05-21-2010, 11:11 AM   #4
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My only reservation is a big one (to me), and is whether or not its reliability is adequate. I usually believe Consumer Reports about reliability, so check out whatever they said (since I didn't click on Purron's link, being lazy this morning).

A friend is very happy with her Honda Fit, but I don't know how much they cost and I don't think anything can beat Kia on price. Due to my own biases, I would expect a Honda Fit to last twice as long as a Kia. But logically Consumer Reports has tested them and I have not.
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Old 05-21-2010, 11:29 AM   #5
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I haven't been in a Kia Rondo before but have been in a Kia Spectra and I really liked that. The only reseveration I'd have about getting a Kia is that if you get repairs outside of the dealer, Kias aren't as popular serviced as american or japaneses autos.
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Old 05-21-2010, 11:44 AM   #6
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Yeah, the reliability is a big question mark that the cars are really too new to answer.

If money were no object, I'd probably rather get a Honda or a Toyota, but they don't get much cheaper used anymore.

The Kia has a massive drop-off in price when you buy it used. It seems to be the type of car that the old logic of never buying a new car was built around.

With the Hondas and the Toyotas, I would lean towards buying them new, since their resale value stays so much higher.


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My only reservation is a big one (to me), and is whether or not its reliability is adequate. I usually believe Consumer Reports about reliability, so check out whatever they said (since I didn't click on Purron's link, being lazy this morning).

A friend is very happy with her Honda Fit, but I don't know how much they cost and I don't think anything can beat Kia on price. Due to my own biases, I would expect a Honda Fit to last twice as long as a Kia. But logically Consumer Reports has tested them and I have not.
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Old 05-21-2010, 12:07 PM   #7
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With the Hondas and the Toyotas, I would lean towards buying them new, since their resale value stays so much higher.
I agree. I just checked Edmunds.com - - it looks like (in my area) a bare bones brand new Honda Fit is generally sold for around $15,111 in my area. So, that more than $4K extra compared with the used Kia you mentioned.
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Old 05-21-2010, 03:33 PM   #8
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And the Fit isn't really a comparable vehicle. It's a small car/hatchback while the Rondo is a small SUV/station wagon/minivan thingie.

The standard Rondo has seating for five, plus a fairly substanial storage space in back. If you fold down the seats you could probably move some real furniture. There is actually a version of the Rondo that includes two small back seats in a third row in this storage space. You could then move probably 4 adults and 3 children. We haven't been able to find this version with the V6 used though.

You have to look at least the Honda Element or even the CRV to get a comparable vehicle from Honda. The used Elements are at least 6-7k more than the Rondo, and they don't have the back storage space.


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I agree. I just checked Edmunds.com - - it looks like (in my area) a bare bones brand new Honda Fit is generally sold for around $15,111 in my area. So, that more than $4K extra compared with the used Kia you mentioned.
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Old 05-21-2010, 04:49 PM   #9
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Consumer's liked the Rondo, actually. It is on the "crap, someone hit me and totalled my car" list for me. Reliable, handy, cheap, what's not to like? The only real downside I can see is that it is about as cool as driving a washing machine, but I could really care less about that sort of thing.
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Old 05-21-2010, 04:59 PM   #10
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Yeah, its a pretty good value feature for feature.

The only real concern I have is that it may not end up being very durable.

The dealer I talked to when I test drove one said that you don't get the 10-year/100000 warranty when you buy used, you just get the 5 year/60000 one. Given that most of them have about 35k on them, that leaves me with about 2 years of warranty.

I expect a new Honda or a Toyota to have around a 15 year useful life with modest repair bills. I figure if the 2008 Rhondo makes it to 2016 for me its pretty much a wash cost wise.

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Consumer's liked the Rondo, actually. It is on the "crap, someone hit me and totalled my car" list for me. Reliable, handy, cheap, what's not to like? The only real downside I can see is that it is about as cool as driving a washing machine, but I could really care less about that sort of thing.
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Old 05-21-2010, 05:17 PM   #11
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Originally Posted by Hamlet View Post
DW's car is on its last legs, and we are car shopping. We are leaning towards the very small SUV/crossover vehicles do to their decent gas milage and ability to carry extra people and cargo when the need arises.

The Kia Rondo appears to be way cheaper than the competitors.

It looks like I can get a 2008 with about 35k miles for under $11k.

Does anyone have any strong reasons that this is a bad idea?
Make sure you test drive it at highway speed. I rented a Kia Sportage several years ago and swore I'd never drive one again. But things change so if you like it go for it.
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Old 05-21-2010, 07:50 PM   #12
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OK here is my experience with Kia vehicles. I shopped for either a Rondo or a Sportage about a year ago. I liked the way the Rondo drove (with the v6 engine) but happened on a used 2008 Sportage and bought it about a year ago (June 2009). The Sportage is a basic 4 cylinder rear wheel drive only car with no options. I bought it with 4,000 miles on it for $12,750 and it has been far and away the best car purchase I have ever made. The car has had no problems and I have put about 8000 miles on it both long distance highway driving (with full loads) and around town. To say its a bit underpowered is a bit of an understatement so you have to plan your moves into heavy traffic carefully. But except for that and maybe 1 or two small design issues I would change, I think this is a great vehicle and would recommend Kias to anyone. Everything works the way you would expect to work and it has all the basic features that are needed in standard car transportation mode. Do not be afraid of buying a Kia. I would suggest you shop carefully as they do drop in value a lot in the first couple of years but there are some fabulous buys out there with some patience.
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Old 05-21-2010, 11:40 PM   #13
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I have no experience with the Rondo, but my Mom has a 2004 Kia Spectra that she bought new. I drive it quite a bit in town and on the highway, and it drives and handles quite well. She's had absolutely no problems whatsoever with it, other than a defective battery that only lasted less than a year, and was promptly exchanged and replaced free of charge. Overall I think Kias are built and perform well...especially for the low price! I had looked at and test drove the Sportage, Sorento, and Sedona a few years ago and liked them all, but then I decided to hold off buying a new vehicle for a another year.
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Old 05-22-2010, 09:16 AM   #14
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It is a disposable throw away car. If you want longterm reliability and resale, and I am talking 200k miles +, go with Honda or Toyota.
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Old 05-22-2010, 05:14 PM   #15
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Well, the wife and I just bought a 2008 Kia Rhondo today. It's the 6-cylinder, had 36k miles on it. It was $11.4k including all the taxes and fees.

I figure that if it lasts us 6 good years, its a wash moneywise to buying a comparable Honda or Toyota.

We will see.

At any rate, it was nice to be able to just write a check for it.
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Old 05-22-2010, 05:53 PM   #16
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Well, the wife and I just bought a 2008 Kia Rhondo today. It's the 6-cylinder, had 36k miles on it. It was $11.4k including all the taxes and fees.

I figure that if it lasts us 6 good years, its a wash moneywise to buying a comparable Honda or Toyota.

We will see.

At any rate, it was nice to be able to just write a check for it.
Cheap wine or fine wine?
But your are not considering resale value. I guess it comes down to, do your prefer hamburger or a good steak?
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Old 05-22-2010, 07:30 PM   #17
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I bought my car a long time ago and at the time went with Toyota for no good reason (heard it would last longer)... but for a while since then I wondered
(a) why people don't buy the cheaper Kia's, and
(b) if Kia's are really not as reliable, why do they have best warranty around? Are they trying to go broke?

I still wonder... (I hope) it will be a long while before I need my next car, but when the time comes, I would give Kia's a good look... unless I can buy a brand new Tata for $2k :-)
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Old 05-22-2010, 07:45 PM   #18
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Cheap wine or fine wine?
But your are not considering resale value. I guess it comes down to, do your prefer hamburger or a good steak?
Meh, I think that OP will be happy with his purchase for a long time. When I was just about out of college, DW and I bought a Ford Escort wagon ('95). IIRC, even power steering was an option, so this was the cheap seats. We would have much preferred a Honda Civic, but just could not afford it. Well, so much for the cheap model of the less regarded brand: we ran that thing for a solid 10 years, got hit twice, put a truly tiny amount of money into maintaining it and then when we needed a bigger car gave it to my sister. She and her husband ran it another 5 years, were hit wo more times and finally decided to upgrade. They gave it to a friend and the last I heard the damn thing is still puttering around Brooklyn. Even the cheap cars are generally well made these days.
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Old 05-22-2010, 08:19 PM   #19
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buy a car with a larger american content. It will create a job.
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Old 05-22-2010, 09:59 PM   #20
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buy a car with a larger american content. It will create a job.

Like my Subaru (built in Indiana)?

Like my Ford (designed by Mazda, tranny made in Japan)?
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