Edmunds Answers



  • colin_l 08/14/09 12:07 am PST

    A Kia Rio?

    I don't think it is even rated and it's a very small car with a 1.6L engine. Let's assume maybe 200lb tongue weight and a 1500lb trailer. I just can't see a Kio Rio safely towing that.

    I've seen crazy stuff in Europe though. They would do it. :) I wouldn't!

  • colin_l 08/14/09 9:58 am PST

    Oh, 600lb is *much* lighter than I was anticipating. Make sure to verify that because most teardrop camping trailers I've seen are 1000-1500lb.

    Look at the trim plate inside the driver's door sill. It will show GVWR -- Gross Vehicle Weight Recommendation. The car itself is 2405lb for the manual and 2485 for the automatic, then add the weight of persons and cargo, and your 600lb trailer. If you're under the GVWR you should be ok. Here are some things that will make you more successful:

    - If it's an automatic, I recommend that you install a transmission cooler. Find a generic one, and a good independent servicer, and they'll smile a bit but they will install it for you. :) This will keep your transmission healthy when you load the vehicle down, especially in hilly terrain.

    - If it's a manual, you might need a new clutch or even just a heavier clutch. Because the Rio isn't really used by the performance enthusiast market or towing (hehe!), you might not be able to find a stronger clutch. But it's worth researching.

    - Make sure your brakes are up to snuff: good pads and rotors, proper bleeding, high performance fluid. Not racing brake fluid, but for example Valvoline SynPower DOT4+ fluid boils at over 100 degrees higher than cheap Prestone DOT3-- and it's like $3 more per 12oz. Your brake pads, rotors and brake fluid will get hotter when towing.

    Have fun!

  • bretdelman 11/09/11 9:55 pm PST

    Yes it will be no problem, you just have to get a run on some of the hills. I towed a trailer with a fatboy harley that weighs about 700 probably to Sturgis SD and Daytona FL. It compares to a semi truck. You are little slow out of a stoplight sometimes but you can pass people all day if you want especially downhill and on flat areas. The trailer I have was a flatbed but its now an enclosed trailer about 5 ft. wide and 7 foot long. On way to Daytona I go thru Nashville and Atlanta so some mountain area and same going to Sturgis.

  • hannalee 01/28/12 3:15 pm PST

    Hi Roadrocketta,

    How is it going with the Rio? I have a Rio too and I'm getting ready to tow a 450-lb Little Guy trailer. Just wondered how it worked out for you.

  • doc_hm1 11/03/15 11:46 am PST

    I was just researching whether my 2013 Rio would be okay to tow a DIY trailer I am planning out and while it's not normally rated, U-Haul sells a tow conversion bar you can attach to your car sepcifically for this vehicle. The Rio seems to fall (somewhat) safely into a Class I rating, which is a max of 2,000 lbs, including the 200-300 lb tow bar attachment I am looking at.

    It's a great idea to undercut the tow weight by as much as possible because of the obvious limitations for these kind of gas-saver-type vehicles. The 400-800 lb teardrop and mini-campers are most likely fine but personally I probably won't exceed 1,000, due to the added weight of stuff stored in the camper I'm going to make.


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