The 2012 Kia Rio sedan will be unveiled at the 2011 New York International Auto Show in around three weeks ahead of the vehicle’s Australian debut in the fourth quarter of this year.

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The news of the all-new four-door sedan comes exactly one month after the five-door Kia Rio hatch was revealed at the 2011 Geneva Motor Show.

Kia Motors Australia’s Kevin Hepworth today confirmed the five-door hatch would be the first Rio model to arrive in Australia, with a local launch expected in August. The sedan will follow before the end of the year, while a three-door hatch variant will complete the line-up in the first quarter of 2012.

Mr Hepworth also confirmed there will be a five-door Rio display vehicle on the Kia stand at the 2011 Australian International Motor Show in Melbourne, which opens on July 1.

The fourth-generation Rio promises to be a significantly more upmarket offering than the outgoing Rio.

The new design is confident and sophisticated with a strong European influence.

Four engines have been confirmed for Europe, including two petrol engines and two diesels. Australian specifications will be finalised closer to the vehicle’s local launch.

The entry-level 1.25-litre Kappa petrol engine produces 63kW of power and 118Nm of torque. Combined cycle fuel consumption is an impressive 4.8 litres/100km.

The larger petrol engine is a 1.4-litre unit with 80kW and 136Nm of torque, and a 0-100km/h acceleration time of 11.5 seconds.

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The larger 1.4-litre diesel engine produces 66kW of power and a punchy 216Nm of torque at 1750rpm.

A six-speed manual transmission will be standard on all but the 1.25-litre model, which will come with a five-speed manual gearbox. A four-speed automatic transmission will be available with the 1.4-litre petrol engine.

Depending on model and market, the Rio will offer smart key entry with start button, USB connectivity, Bluetooth handsfree with voice recognition, heated seats and steering wheel, satellite navigation, stability control, six airbags, cornering headlamps, LED daytime running lights, rear parking sensors and hill start assist.

Meanwhile, Mr Hepworth said Kia Motors Australia was still waiting on a definitive answer regarding the local introduction of the Kia Picanto sub-light hatch.

He confirmed the proposal was still before Kia Motors head office in Korea, with the local arm eagerly waiting on a reply.

“It’s dragging on a bit, but it’s very much still on the ‘we want you’ list,” Mr Hepworth said.