GO
Avg. Price Paid:$4,978 - $6,501
Original MSRP: $12,895 - $16,995
MPG: 23 City / 30 Hwy
Search Used Listings:

2008 Kia Spectra Interior

This interior review was written when the 2008 Kia Spectra was new.

Our analysis shows that the Spectra’s interior is comfortable and well-equipped, with a surprising amount of cargo room for its size and class. Edmunds observes that the Spectra’s five seats are "comfortable" and the "storage cubbies and cupholders are generous in size."

In 2007, Kia revised the Spectra's seat fabrics, upgraded the audio system, and restyled the dashboard.

See More Photos »

Seating

Most reviewers agree that the Spectra has good, even spacious seating for four (but not five) adults, and that seats are generally comfortable in all four corners of the car though they could use somewhat more support and padding. The Washington Post points out that the seats were by no means "shoddy, cheap or poorly made", but "at least three of us in the Spectra SX agreed that its seats could have had more cushion." This feeling was shared by reviewers at Cars.com, who observed, "You get plenty of headroom, elbowroom and legroom,", but, "The seat bottoms are short, and cushioning feels adequate but not abundant." Some test drivers did have issues with the seating materials, such as Consumer Guide, which commented, "Seat fabric feels low budget."

In looking more closely at the front seats, reviewers were broadly pleased, only noting a few shortcomings. Consumer Guide speculates, "Long-legged drivers will likely want more rearward seat travel", and Consumer Guide adds, "Front seat bottoms could be deeper, however, with more thigh support."

The rear seats in the Spectra, while generally comfortable, are really appropriate for two passengers, though there is a seat belt to accommodate three. Entering and exiting the Kia is widely seen as easy, with wide-opening rear doors. Kelley Blue Book reflects the review of many, claiming, "Most would find the rear-seat accommodations acceptable for even a longer road trip." New Car Test Drive adds "Rear seats aren’t as contoured as the front, but occupants enjoy good legroom and headroom." However, the same reviewer also adds a caution, "One problem with the Spectra’s rear seat is the proximity of the rear wheel well to the door opening; inattention when climbing out can leave traces of road dust and dirt on slacks or skirt." However, owners should probably not consider this car normally a five-seater. MSN cautions, "The quiet, nicely designed interior provides impressive room for four adults. Five fit in a pinch, but the firm center of the back seat is only comfortable for short trips."

Interior Features

The LX comes standard with a four-speaker stereo system with a CD player, power Steering, auto-off headlights, a six-way adjustable driver’s seat, 60/40 split-folding rear seats, and a tilt steering column. Edmunds counsels, "The base LX is pretty light on features; go with the EX to get air-conditioning, full power accessories, keyless entry and rear cup holders." In addition to air-conditioning, the EX comes standard with floor mats, power mirrors and door locks, keyless entry, and the above-mentioned cup holders. Cars.com notes, "For 2008, there's a revised gearshift knob design, and LX and EX Spectras get a new gauge cluster." The SX gets cruise control, sport seat trim, a leather-wrapped steering wheel and shift knob, and metal-finish trim and pedals.

In 2007 the audio system was upgraded to add the competitive necessity of auxiliary iPod/MP3 players. Kelley Blue Book observes, "Aesthetically, the only blemish is an AM/FM/CD player that isn’t physically or stylistically well-integrated into the otherwise cohesive interior."

Cargo

Most reviewers agree that the Spectra makes good use of its limited space to provide plenty of cargo room. In the cabin, "a vast selection of trays, bins, pockets and containers provides a spot for anything you happen to be carrying, while six large cupholders make road-trip dehydration a thing of the past," reports Carz Unlimited. Consumer Guide adds that the "usefully shaped trunk has fairly small opening, but adequate volume that’s expandable." MSN observes the trunk to be "large, with a low, wide opening", noting that the rear seat in the Spectra flips down conveniently to expand cargo space. With the seats in place, cargo volume is 12.2 cubic feet.

Review Last Updated: 2/17/09

Next Steps: Kia Spectra

  • Search used Kia Spectra for sale (1,495 listings)
  • Calculate monthly payment and apply for a loan
  • See Affordable Small Cars rankings