Midsize car; Built in South Korea
  • 4-door wagon
  • transverse front-engine/front-wheel drive
Good condition price range: $7,300 – $12,000*


2007 Kia Rondo


2007 Kia Rondo


2007 Kia Rondo


2007 Kia Rondo


2007 Kia Rondo

Pros:
  • Cargo room
  • Quietness
  • Ride
  • Seat comfort
Cons:
  • Acceleration (4-cyl)
  • Engine noise (4-cyl)
  • Back doors difficult in tight parking spots

Kia has called Rondo a crossover vehicle, but its car-like design and lack of available all-wheel drive land it squarely in the wagon camp. Judged in that mode, its roomy interior, flexible cargo accommodations, and attractive new-car pricing make Rondo worth a look. Compared to its likely rivals, the Rondo scores around average in resale value, so used models may be reasonably-priced but not necessarily huge bargains.

Overview

Launched as a brand-new 2007 model, in size and price, this midsize front-wheel-drive wagon slotted between Kia’s compact Spectra5 hatchback and midsize Sorento SUV. Derived from Kia’s Optima sedan platform, the Rondo came in LX and EX trim levels, both of which were available with a four-cylinder or V6 engine. Unlike Kia’s Sportage and Sorento, the Rondo was not offered with all-wheel or four-wheel drive. In the music world, Rondo means “forward motion.”

Five-passenger seating was standard. An optional 60/40 split-folding third-row bench could increase seating capacity to seven. With the third row installed, the 60/40 split second-row seat could slide forward more than a foot. Kia claimed 32 distinct seating configurations. Four-cylinder models had 162 horsepower and a four-speed automatic transmission. Kia’s V6 engine produced 182 horsepower, mating with a five-speed automatic. Both automatics permitted manually-selected gear changes. Large door openings rival those on minivans.

Antilock braking and an antiskid system were standard. All Rondos contained front side airbags and curtain side airbags that covered all seating rows. Power windows, locks, and mirrors were standard. Air conditioning, a CD player, and 16-inch alloy wheels were standard on the LX model. The EX added 17-inch alloy wheels, chrome highlights, fog lamps, cruise control, and an upgraded audio system. Leather upholstery was available for EX models as part of a package that included heated front seats. Rondo’s rivals included the Chevrolet HHR, Chrysler PT Cruiser, Mazda5, Pontiac Vibe, Subaru Outback, and Toyota RAV4 or Matrix.

Yearly Updates

2008 Rondo
Except for the addition of an auxiliary input jack for MP3 players, little changed for the 2008 model year.
2009 Rondo
Both the LX and EX were available with a 175-hp 2.4-liter 4-cylinder or a 192-hp 2.7-liter V6 engine. These represented gains of 13 and 10 hp, respectively. A new Base model arrived for 2009 only in 4-cylinder form. A navigation system was newly available on the EX.
2010 Rondo
The 2010 Kia Rondo saw a few changes, including newly standard 7-passenger seating. A 60/40 split-folding 3rd-row bench that increases seating capacity to 7 was newly standard on all Rondo models; it previously was optional on the LX. A rearview camera was also newly available.

Engines

transverse front-engine/front-wheel drive

Two powertrains have been available: a 2.4-liter four-cylinder engine and four-speed automatic transmission, and a 182-horsepower, 2.7-liter V6 with a five-speed automatic. All Rondos have front-drive. For 2009, both the LX and EX were available with a 175-hp 2.4-liter 4-cylinder or a 192-hp 2.7-liter V6 engine. These represented gains of 13 and 10 hp, respectively. A new Base model arrived for 2009 only in 4-cylinder form.

dohc I41
Engine Size (liters/cubic inches) 2.4/144
Engine HP 162-175
Engine Torque (lb-ft) 164
Avail. Trans. EPA MPG (city/hwy) MPG avg. as tested
4-speed automatic

19/26

dohc V6
Engine Size (liters/cubic inches) 2.7/163
Engine HP 182-192
Engine Torque (lb-ft) 182
Avail. Trans. EPA MPG (city/hwy) MPG avg. as tested
5-speed automatic

18/26

20.6

1. EPA Note: Figures shown are for 2008 models. The Environmental Protection Agency changed its procedure for 2008 to yield more realistic estimates. Therefore, estimated mileage is lower than for prior years.

Road Test

With the four-cylinder engine, Rondo has adequate power from a stop, but struggles to gather speed for passing and merging. The V6 is modestly more potent around town and at highway speeds, but midrange power could be better.

Fuel economy isn’t the best. Test V6 models have averaged 23.2 mpg in mostly highway driving. An extended-use EX V6 averaged 20.6 mpg overall. Rondos use regular-grade gasoline.

Expect a composed and comfortable ride, even over larger road imperfections. Some floatiness is noted at highway speeds. Rondo handles like a midsize front-drive wagon-precisely what it is. That means it’s more than competent, with direct steering, though Rondo exhibits some body lean in fast corners.

Quiet running at cruising speed is a virtue, as Rondos are well isolated from road and wind noise. Kia’s four-cylinder engine lacks refinement and sounds coarse at moderate to full throttle. The more refined V6 is less intrusive overall.

Large gauges are easily read, and major controls are logically placed. Interior materials and assembly quality are impressive for this price class, with leather seating appearing especially upscale. Two quibbles: the LCD clock can be hard to read in some lighting conditions, and the dome light illuminates the rear-seat area but leaves front occupants in the dark.

Front occupants get ample legroom, coupled with a high roof, chair-height seats, and large glass area to give the cabin a spacious, airy feel. Visibility is generally good, though thick rear roof pillars obscure over-the-shoulder views.

Headroom and legroom are good in the backseat. Large doors aid entry and exit, but are cumbersome in tight parking spots. The second-row seat splits 60/40, and adjusts fore and aft on models with the optional third-row seat. Back-row seats are easy to access with second row fully forward, and offer tolerable short-trip comfort for two adults.

A large rear opening and low load floor make the most of available cargo space, though the hatch does not rise far enough for six-footers to stand beneath without stooping. Second- and third-row seats fold flat. So does the front passenger seat, forming eight continuous feet of cargo space. Below-floor bins in models without the third-row seat provide handy small-item storage. The glovebox has adequate space, but the two-tiered center console is too small for anything beyond a few CDs.

Ratings

Model Tested: 2008 Rondo EX V6

Ratings values are on a 1-10 scale, with 10 being the best. With the exception of Value, these numbers reflect how the vehicle compares against the universe of vehicles, not just against rivals in its class.

Performance

Acceleration - 5
50%
Fuel Economy - 5
50%
Ride Quality - 6
60%
Steering/Handling - 5
50%
Quietness - 7
70%

Accommodations

Controls/Materials - 7
70%
Room/Comfort Front - 7
70%
Room/Comfort Rear - 6
60%
Cargo Room - 6
60%

Other

Value - 10
100%

Total: 64

Specifications

4-door wagon
Wheelbase (in.) Length (in.) Width (in.) Height (in.) Weight (lbs)
106.3 179.0 71.7 65.0
Cargo Volume (cu/ft) Payload Capacity (cu/ft) Fuel Capacity (gal.) Seating Capacity
35.0 15.8 7
Headroom Legroom
Front Rear Front Rear
41.6 40.2 41.3 38.2
Safety Ratings

Model Tested: 2008 Kia Rondo 4-door wagon

NHTSA

(5 is the highest rating)

Front Impact Test

Driver Injury - 5
100%
Front Passenger Injury - 5
100%

Side Impact Test

Driver Injury - 5
100%
Rear Passenger Injury - 4
80%

HLDI

(A score of 100 is average. Lower is better)

Collision N/A
Injury N/A
Theft N/A

Trouble Spots

Starter
Description: The 2.0L or 2.4L engine may be hard to start, or may not start at all, due to throttle stuck shut from deposits. (2006-09)
Vehicle noise
Description: Noise may come from the front end on rough roads unless the upper strut mount bolts were torqued to a higher setting. (2009)
Check-engine light
Description: On vehicles with the 2.7L V6 engine, the check engine light may come on due to an erroneous air intake temperature signal requiring update to the powertrain control module. (2007)

Recall History

2007 Rondo
Description: The stop lamp switch in the affected vehicles may malfunction and cause the brake lights to not illuminate when the brake pedal is depressed or may cause the brake lights to remain illuminated when the brake pedal is released. A stop lamp switch malfunction may also affect the operation of the brake-transmission shift interlock feature so the transmission shifter would not be able to be shifted out of the park position. Dealers will replace the stop lamp switch free of charge.
2007-2008 Rondo
Description: Clock-spring contact assembly could become damaged by use over time and could prevent the driver’s airbag from deploying.
2008-09 Rondo LX and EX with 2.4L
Description: The fuel pump may not operate properly resulting in not enough fuel getting to the engine. Poor engine starting, engine hesitation, and other impairment may result, and the check engine light may illuminate. Dealers will replace the fuel pump sub-assembly with an improved part.

Equipment Lists

Equipment lists are only viewable on larger screen sizes.

Pricing

Used-car pricing varies widely depending on local market conditions. Therefore, we recommend visiting websites that list used cars for sale to get a better idea of what a specific model is selling for in your area.