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Kia Rondo Owner Reports

Karen_SKaren_S Posts: 5,092
How is your Rondo performing?


  • conwelpicconwelpic Ontario, CanadaPosts: 600
    to start this thread off by giving my impressions on the 2.4L engine. I have now covered over 10,600 km (6500 miles for our US cousins) and extremely pleased with its power and economy. It accelerates onto freeways without hesitation and lots of power to pass at 100-110kmph (60-65mph) It has that typical four cylinder idle if you listen carefully but its quiet.
    It is very economical for its size and my mileage has ranged from a low of 26mpg (imperial gallons) in the dead of winter to a high recently of 39mpg with my average in the 31 - 32mpg range.
    The transmission is smooth and kicks down nicely for passing. The steptronic manual shift availability is terrific (and easy to use) and is a real help in driving in bad winter conditions.
    I cannot speak more highly of the combination of the two. Some people have wished it was a 5 speed but so far I can't see the point, unless of course it give improved fuel mileage and not simply just an extra gear.

    2008 Rondo EX, 5-seater, 2.4L, Aqua Silver with gray interior
    Prince Edward County, Ontario, Canada
  • ramblinmoramblinmo Posts: 38
    Spent $680 to replace the AC condenser after it was punctured by a rock. Two front wheel alignments in the last 5 months with a hefty adjustment each time. Drivers seat kills my back without a pillow in place. All the glass is nice until you cook for days on end under the hot sun on long trips. Beige interior seems to stain easily.

    Love the way it drives, love the better fuel economy over the Sedona van. Love the cargo space. Driving through the mountains recently with the 4 cylinder was a struggle at times, but I'll take the economy over the 6 cylinder. Where I live mountain driving isn't an issue.

    If I had to do it all over again, I would buy a 4 cylinder Camry. That is not really an option as even with a hefty down payment I would take such a hit on the trade in that it would not be worth it.
  • garnermikegarnermike Posts: 72
    First, thanks, Karen, for starting this thread, and trying to end the warfare over at Mazda5 vs. Rondo.

    Encapsulating various other posts I've made since taking delivery in October 2007, I have been nothing but impressed with my Rondo LX I-4. Very good mpg (25 mpg average), a very smooth & quiet ride, great visibility, great room/functionality/versatility, about the smoothest braking I've ever experienced.

    I had been a bit disappointed in the car's acceleration, but got a little boost in that by switching air filters. The fabric seats do tend to take on stains easily, but I've gotten every stain out, basically USING just water.

    One thing I've noticed is that the engine bay tends to gather an inordinate amount of debris/dust. If you are one that isn't so anal, that's a non-issue. But I am fussy and like to keep the engine bays in all my cars clean. There must be something with the front end (lower front end?) design of the car that allows road grit/debris to enter.

    That's about it. Love the Rondo!
  • emrondoemrondo Posts: 1
    Hello, I bought a Rondo in Sept. ' 07. I like the car, but....There is NO storage at all! I have 5 kids. Fits them all perfectly, however, they forgot to add trunk space! I can't even put a stroller inside the car !! I didn't realize it until after I bought the car! YIKES! Also, I'm on my 3rd warranty issue! First the Oxygen sensor had to be replaced, then the sway bar, and now I have to bring it back in for the speed sensor! I'm wondering what else is going to go wrong! So far the dealership has covered all expenses, but what a huge incovienence! I've noticed that sometimes when I put gas in the car, the check engine light goes on, it's very picky about how you tighten the cap. So you have to open the gas cap and re close it often to get the check engine light to go off. As far as the light tan entierer, well yes it's going to show dirt/stains.........but it does seem to clean easy. I purchased a black leather car bra when I bought the car, and it really makes the Kia Rondo look pretty classy! Shop around, between two Kia deaerlships, the difference in price for the car bra was about $30.
  • bgwbgw Posts: 116
    My wife and I bought a 2007 Rondo EX V6 Luxury in August. It has been the best vehicle we have ever owned, waaaay better than the lemon Honda Civic we once owned, any of my Fords, my Dodge, my Chevy and even better than our beloved 1998 Legacy Brighton wagon, which we traded on the Rondo.
    We cross-shopped a Mazda5 but found it too sparse inside (too cold and uninviting) plus it was not rated to tow at all (so said the owner's manual). But we did like it's 5 speed manual and sporty nature.
    The Rondo won out for us, due to it's unbeatable combination of safety features, practicality, efificiency, pleasant exterior (classy even, with our Urban Grey) and so so useful interior.
    Emrondo notes that it has no room for his 5 kids AND cargo. He should not have bought a Rondo (or M5 or Dodge Journey) if he needed to carry so many people and cargo. That's what a mini-van is for.
    However, the Rondo excels at carrying 2 adults/2 kids/a load of cargo OR 2 adults and 4 or 5 kids without cargo. Example - my wife and I, with our 2 kids, have lots of room for traveling with a load of gear, and on rainy days I can pick up the 2 kids and their 2 friends from school by utilizing the 3rd row seat.
    Our Rondo has needed no attention from the dealer - zero, zip, nada. The check engine light was frequent during the 1st month we had the Rondo, but we learned to twist the gas cap 3 clicks, not just 1, and the CEL did not show again.
    We have the grey leather, and it wipes clean with just a damp cloth. Great for hauling the kids around.
    We love the V6/5sp auto combo (sure wish we could get a manual trans though) and the fuel economy has been exceptional - 33 mpg per Imperial gallon on the highway (with the 4 of us, a load of stuff, and cruise on at 115 km/h). Around town, we consistently get 24-25 mpg Imperial, and could get more if I would stop doing jackrabbit starts...
    So far, we have not towed anything, as we have been waiting on a hitch from our dealer for almost 3 months (!). Tow rating is 2,000 lbs with a trailer hitch. Oddly, the European Carens version is rated to tow higher.
    We have found that the A/C does not really blow cold, but rather cool, just like our Legacy wagon. I have had to add a piece of carpet to the cargo area, since the grey carpet there is just too light in colour to carry any cargo without risk of staining. And the ABS is too intrusive in the winter, even with our studded winter tires installed.
    Overall, we love it and enjoy it. Currently, it has 15,000 kms and is due for it's second oil change any day now. Smooth, really quiet on the highway, decent ride, good handling for a tall car, safe, great warranty, decent price, practical, efficient, organized, flexible, reliable, well-built, comfortable and good-looking.
    What else can I say! A much better vehicle than the Mazda 5, I think.
  • garnermikegarnermike Posts: 72
    With all due respect, you have 5 kids, and you didn't figure out, pre-purchase, that using the third seat would mean no trunk space?
  • conwelpicconwelpic Ontario, CanadaPosts: 600
    I was thinking the same thing garnermike, just before reading your comment.
  • eric51eric51 Posts: 4
    :mad: We just bought a Kia Rondo. Wish we hadn't. Anytime we drive the car it makes a noise like the window is cracked. Took it to the dealership to be fixed. After speaking with Kia and the Dealership we were told that all Kia Rondo's make this noise. The car was advertised as a quiet well insulated ride, but Kia has told us that this noise is designed into the vehicle. It makes no sense to me. Stay away from this car unless you like loud whistling noises. :lemon:
  • ..."like the window is cracked"? You mean "cracked open"?

    My Kia is the quietest car I've ever owned. Riders I take in it remark especially on that point.
  • conwelpicconwelpic Ontario, CanadaPosts: 600
    something seriously wrong and not normal, my Rondo is very quiet at all speeds.

    You didn't say specifically where the noise is coming from and at what speeds it happens? There is procedures in your warranty manual to follow if you are not happy with the results from your dealer.
    As this forum is poor for info we don't know whether you are in the US or Canada?

    I think they are "cracked" if they say the noise is designed into the vehicle. Makes no sense to me either. Also if they are saying this, exactly what specific thing are they referring too?

    I should also add that I am on a few forums and this is the first reference to this problem I've come across.

    2008 Rondo EX 2.4L
    Ontario, Canada
  • Hi all,
    Happy new purchasers of a Kia Rondo. (You can see my other post on the "buying experienc" board.
    BUT... there is a wind noise coming from both the driver's and passenger's side windows, audible at speeds > 50 mph (and sometime less).
    I took it into the dealer and they said, unfortunately, that it is typical. I had rented a Rondo that did not exhibit this problem so I challenged them to take me on a test drive of a Rondo that was sitting on their sales lot. It ALSO had this issue.
    I wonder how many customers need to speak up before Kia takes action? The service tech told me that Kia would not ever do a recall unless it was forced to, so they are probably "laying low" and hoping it will fade away.

    This is not a deal killer for me...I still like the Kia. But it does mean that the radio will need to be on when I'm on the highway. :-(
  • No such wind noise from the windows on mine.
    Some auto writer reviews of the Rondo that I have read have stated that there is more than average "wind rush" noise from the side windows. I actually listened for it on my test drive, but didn't really detect it. Perhaps I am not noticing because the Rondo generally drives so much more quietly than my Vibe and Miata......
  • We bought our Kia in Maine. For us the noise begins at 30 mph. It is difficult to tell where the noise is really coming from. The technicians at the dealership couldn't figure it out. They had to file with Kia's head office for direction. It sounds like it is coming in through the seal at the top of the window. The noise is a high pitch wind noise. Kia's claim is that the noise is generated by wind passing by the driver and passenger outside mirrors. Moving the mirrors or turning them in doesn't change the noise. They stand by their claim that the vehicle is designed to do that. Unfortunately they don't stand behind their product. I have a 5 year bumper to bumper warranty that isn't worth the paper it is written on. I would not recommend a Kia to anyone. Customer service is difficult to deal with. They don't return calls or have any follow through. It took three months of weekly calls for them to put their decision in writing. I have contacted an attorney and the better business bureau. I believe the noise is loud enough to cause permanent hearing damage. I am going to purchase a decibel meter and find out. I bought the Rondo for transporting children. Poor design is no excuse for poor customer service. Kia knows there is a problem but it is cheaper to ignore it and tell unbelievable lies to explain away their mistakes. More disappointed with the response of the company than the car. This problem started the minute we drove off the lot. If they design problems intentionally into the car I can only imagine how much time the car will spend in the shop.
  • Yes like the window is cracked open or not sealed properly. Very annoying any time we go over 30mph. It is loud enough to be heard over the radio.
  • Our '07 EX is so quiet it's sometimes annoying! Honestly, we and others riding in it always remark about the silence, especially for a vehicle in this price range.

    Now, I gots ta ask: Do those of you with wind noise issues have your crossbars mounted on your racks? I do not.

    Any of you with whisper-quiet ones using the crossbars?

    The reason I ask is I have had two vehicles that made just obnoxious noises when the crossbars were mounted. With our '05 Sedona, there was a certain spacing or position of the bars that was very quiet, and some made it noisier then a small jet. Took some playing around.

    There will be no "recall" on noise issues like this because recalls are for SAFETY issues! They issue recalls when parts fail or fall off or systems act out in ways that cause accidents, or could. Otherwise you have a quality issue, and that may or may not fall under warranty. My bet is it will not since there is no claim made about noise levels.

    Yes, I know, there are claims made about fuel economy and we all know there are vehicles that don't meet these claims. BUT - the manufacturer boldly advertises and boldly claims that some drivers may NOT get this economy and some vehicles under some conditions may not as well.
  • bgwbgw Posts: 116
    Our 07 EX V6 Luxury does not have the crossbars and is VERY quiet at highway speeds. It's quietness is one of the top reasons why we bought it.
    We took a vacation two wks ago and rented a 2008 Town and Country with crossbars (but did not actually use the rack). Now that was a vehicle whose crossbars made an annoying noise!
  • We do have the crossbars on. I will have to play around with them to see if that eliminates the noise. I hope so. That would be a great relief.
    Thank you for the tip. I will let you know how it turns out.
  • bgwbgw Posts: 116
    Have you been able to eliminate the noise? Did you remove the crossbars?
  • The wind noise that *I* hear is from the windows, and definitely not from the crossbars (as my cars doesn't have any).

    This just might be a design flaw. In recent weeks, I rented a Sedona and that one's window noise was also bad. Our neighbor tells us their Spectrum (or whatever the little car is called) "leaks" on the highway too.

    I think part of the thing here depends what kind of car you currently drive---we have a Toyota that is really quiet and our Rondo is annoying by comparison. So, if you are used to a truck, then the Rondo is fine. could be that only some Rondos have this problem.

    The car is whisper quiet at lower speeds. I suggest any prospective buyer should really test it out thoroughly on the highway before deciding on this car.
  • bgwbgw Posts: 116
    I owned a Subaru Legacy for 9 yrs before the Rondo, a Mitsu Galant before that, a Honda before that, and so on, but I have never owned a truck. So I can't compare a truck with a car.

    My 91 Civic Si was maddenly loud on the highway, the Mitsu was fairly quiet, the Legacy (a wagon) was fairly quiet, but the Rondo is really quiet.

    I guess, like you say, it is a matter of "some Rondos have this problem". The 07 Caravan I test drove was quite loud at speed, and the 07 Mazda 5 was a bit noisy too. But a friend's M5 is almost as quiet as the Rondo, and I have ridden in fairly quiet Caravans.

    Maybe it is a difference between a 4 cyl/4 speed Rondo versus a 6 cyl/5 speed Rondo? Mine is the V6 with 5 speed.
  • I see lots on Rondo performance and mpg but nothing on how effective the heater is in such a large vehicle. Since I live in Oklahoma where air conditioning is a must how good is the air conditioner in this large interior? Having had an old 80 model Subaru wagon with one of the most pitiful airconditioners ever made I would like some of you folks to dwell on effectiveness of both the heater and the airconditioner because, like the Subaru, there is a lot of space to heat or cool and down here we have extremes of both. Also ease of operation of both as well as all accessories. What I am looking at is the every day operating stuff not just mpg. Switchgear quality and all that. Thanks for the practical operational stuff.
  • telesavetelesave Posts: 5
    i have a 2007 rondo that i am happy with, EXCEPT that find the heater and air conditioning inadequate.

    ..takes too long to warmup/cooldown, and doesn't really get cold on v hot days or toasty warm on v cold days.

    i have a 04 sienna minivan (with a much larger interior) that is much better than my rondo wrt warmup/cooldown.

  • garnermikegarnermike Posts: 72
    Am in NC where 90-100 degree days are common May - Sept. Rondo A/C does just fine. Our winters are likely not as cold as OKLA's, but heater seems to be more than adequate.
  • conwelpicconwelpic Ontario, CanadaPosts: 600
    here in southern Ontario, Canada - I have used my Rondo over two winters and have no problem with the heater, heats up quick and provides lots of heat, but while I'm waiting I just turn on the heated seat which works fast and can feel it within 1 km from turning it on. It feels so good and goes right up to my shoulder blades as well as warmer your seat - one of the best features on this car. Also on the subject of heat, the heated side mirrors work very efficiently and fast and also the wiper de-icer is great in iced up conditions.

    I haven't had to use the a/c as much as people in some of these southern hot locations but from what I've used it functions very well. Also the controls to operate these feature are easy to use and straight forward. I've just recently had all the windows tinted which will help in this area too.
  • iluvmysephia1iluvmysephia1 Alamogordo, NMPosts: 7,615
    are you a fan of Ontario's Tragically Hip? They are indeed my 3rd favorite rock band of all time. Singer/writer Gordon Downie is a poetic genius and songwriting genius as well. Love 'em!

    Are you still loving your Kia Rondo? Planning on any new car purchases in the near future at all?

    2011 Kia Soul Sport 5-speed

  • larrytbmlarrytbm Posts: 10
    I can't really comment about the heater since we just bought it in March, but the AC is great. Living in Tx, I insisted on light exterior and interior colors and I have added window tint, but not the real dark limo tint. Anyway, around town, like any car parked for a while, it does take some time to cool down. But on long trips it works too good. Last trip in mid to upper 90s, I could not keep the AC on Max, it was too cold even with a fan speed of 2 or 3. Also had to close off the vent nearest the steering wheel to keep my hands from getting too cold.

    I really like the large dead pedal for my left foot, best on any car I have owned. I also like the gas filler button being on the driver's door rather than buried low under the dash. Overall layout of the controls is good, everything in ez reach. Only thing lacking is front seat oversized cup holders that can handle a large insulated cup, but most cars have that problem.
  • conwelpicconwelpic Ontario, CanadaPosts: 600
    don't know much about the Tragically Hip, I'm afraid not my type of music - to each his own.

    The Rondo is great, its just turned over 30,000 km and I've owned it for nearly 20 months, so no plans for any changes for a long time to come. Will be taking it on a 14,000 km trip in less than two weeks.
  • iluvmysephia1iluvmysephia1 Alamogordo, NMPosts: 7,615
    I bet you're excited to take your baby on a long trip. I recently flew from Tucson to Seattle and rented a 2009 Toyota Camry. Nice car, but a bit boring to drive and the car "floats" with it's soft suspension. I found myself hitting Washington state "zipstrips" near the foglines constantly. But I can see why people like the Camry-it is a quiet and "safe" feeling car. I felt good taking two of my sisters to go see Randy Bachman and Burton Cummings of Guess Who fame in Kelowna, B.C. on Saturday the 20th of June. Great show, but about as important was the safe ride there from the Okanagon, WA, area to Kelowna, B.C. and back. It's a well-made midsize car worthy of plenty of commendation.

    2011 Kia Soul Sport 5-speed

  • go59go59 Posts: 9
    When changing the oil & filter on my '08 2.7, I discovered that Kia had made an change (in the middle of the model year) requiring a different oil filter than what was listed in the Purolator book. Anyone have any idea what, other than the oil filter, changed on the engine?


  • leochenleochen Posts: 1
    We just got our new Rondo. Although I can hear some wind noise coming from the side mirrors at highway speeds, it's far from being an annoyance. It's there if you really listen for it, it's very small, it's not a problem in my opinion.

    I won't say that the car is absolutely quiet and noiseless as some people state. Don't get me wrong, the car is very quiet, but you can definitely hear the engine working leaving from a stop, even at mild acceleration. It's not a luxury car after all.

    So far, we've been quite happy with the car. The ride is comfortable, it has tons of space and features. Nothing to complain about.
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