Premier Limited has launched the petrol version of the Rio 5-seater, compact SUV with prices starting at Rs. 4.90 lakh (ex-showroom, Delhi).
So far, Premier offered the Rio only with BS III compatible diesel engine. But now, the petrol engine of Rio is BS IV compatible and hence, is available across all the cities including the metros in the country.
The Rio petrol is powered by a 1,173 cc motor that makes 75.5 bhp of power and 103.9 nm of torque. According to the specifications, the petrol motor should offer better acceleration because the power to weight ratio of Rio petrol is 69 bhp/tonne while that of Rio diesel is 55.7 bhp/tonne. High power to weight ratio will improve drivability.
The Rio petrol has a claimed mileage of 15 kmpl while the Rio diesel has a claimed mileage of 16 kmpl. The Rio petrol seems to offer mileage close to that of the Rio diesel. However, the running cost of Rio diesel will be substantially lower (Rs. 2.75/km) than the Rio petrol (Rs. 4.45/km).
The Rio petrol is equipped with all the features available in the diesel version. Here is the table containing the list of features available in the top-end variant, the GLX.
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Based on the Chinese-made SUV called the Zotye, the Premier Rio’s design is quite old school. Viewed in profile the Rio looks like a hatchback on steroids, as it is narrow and tall, but under 4 metres in length. It rides on large 15-inch wheels and has excellent ground clearance.
The Rio has a smiling grill with a pair of dual-headlamps on either side. The exterior dual color theme makes the Rio have a sporty road stance. At the rear, the Rio gets typical SUV treatment, with tall tail-lamps beside the rear windscreen and a tail-gate mounted spare tyre.
The inside of Rio has contemporary layout with easy to read instrument cluster and a central console housing AC controls ad music system. The SUV is not roomy for it offers limited leg room at the front and just adequate shoulder room at the rear especially if three adults are seated.
Variants and Prices
The Rio petrol is available in four variants namely: GX with grey interior, GLX with grey interior, GX with beige interior and GLX with beige interior. Both the GX and GLX are equipped with standard features such as power steering, central locking and music system. The top-end GLX has additional safety feature including ABS with EBD (Electronic Brake force Distribution) and alloy wheels.
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What we think?
If you are in the market for a small, affordable SUV, you have no option other than the Premier Rio which is priced at the level of most premium hatchback cars. However, there are few dealers and service stations across the country, so you are not going to get Maruti-level of access to service with the Rio.
You could also wait a bit for the facelifted version of the Premier Rio, which we had earlier reported on. It is also being speculated on the internet that a new BS-IV complaint diesel engine will beat under the face-lifted Rio’s hood.
For Potential buyers: As the facelift version is due for launch, it is better to wait for a couple of months more and buy the latest version.