Kia rondo with title throwback thursday kia rondo

Throwback Thursday: Kia Rondo

Kia Rondo Model History and Photos

We’ve talked about it before on this blog, but in case you didn’t know we’re huge fans of the minivan at Friendly Kia. Even if you don’t have seven or eight passengers you’re looking to seat, the ability to fill over 120 cubic feet of space with material and still enjoy a comfortable and safe ride is second-to-none in these vehicles.

Kia’s current minivan, the Kia Sedona is one of our favorites. Offering class-leading cargo storage, a full suite of active and passive safety features and entertainment technology to make road trips seem like jaunts across town. But did you know that Kia once sold a mini minivan?

[See our Throwback Thursday Kia Models Archive Here!]

While the Kia Sedona has become a standout model for its sophisticated style, huge cargo volume and a plethora of driver and passenger-focused features, the Kia Rondo took a different approach to full-family transportation. Possessing a smaller body-style, optional third-row and a less-powerful standard 4-cylinder engine, the Rondo gave families a choice.

Kia Rondo Model History

The Kia Rondo is the North American name of the second-generation Kia Carens, a small MPV (multi-purpose vehicle) that had been available in the European and Southeast Asian markets since 1999.

Debuting at the 2006 Los Angeles International Auto Show, the inaugural 2007 Kia Rondo went on sale in early 2007 and managed to exceed sales forecasts for its first two years, selling over 20,000 models a year.

Unfortunately, the shift toward more efficient vehicles in 2008/2009 meant people were looking for hybrids and compacts that offered less power but greater efficiency than the Rondo. Following a disappointing 2009 model year, Kia pulled the plug in 2010 along with the also short-lived Kia Borrego.

If you get to the end of this post and decide you simply must have one, you may find it interesting to know that Kia never stopped selling the Rondo to Canada. The current model is an attractive little crossover that offers similar capacities to the Niro, and slots in between the Soul and Sportage.

Road trip, anyone?

Kia Rondo Photos

Like many Kia models designed in the early Peter Schreyer era, the Kia Rondo is tidy and simple. The North American model was engineered prior to Kia adopting the now-iconic “Tiger’s Nose” grille, so instead of the modern elegant flourish possessed by Kia vehicles, it possesses simple and uncomplicated minivan proportions.

Still, we were able to dig up some photos on Instagram that show off this dynamic little van’s simplistic and utilitarian character. As always, feel free to click through and view the original posts. We’re not sure what else you may find on the poster’s Instagram and we’re not responsible for anything posted by these users.

A post shared by Roper KIA ( on Jan 4, 2018 at 6:39am PST

A post shared by 廖玮维 (@weiwei376) on Dec 22, 2017 at 4:02am PST

A post shared by 廖玮维 (@weiwei376) on Dec 9, 2017 at 9:47pm PST

A post shared by Muhd Firdaus (@firdz3063) on Sep 13, 2017 at 7:31pm PDT

The Legacy of the Kia Rondo

The name Kia Rondo comes from the musical term Rondo, which is used to describe a piece of music with persistent themes or refrains. In that area, the Kia Rondo lived up to its name. Although the Rondo’s verse is finished in this market, many of its enduring themes continue.

These themes include a focus on driver and passenger comfort with models like the Kia Optima, offering more in a smaller package with models like the Kia Rio and Forte and giving drivers something new and unexpected, which they do every day a Kia Soul rolls off the factory line.

For more information on the Kia Rondo, modern Kia models or to schedule a test drive with one of the vehicles that have carried these themes into 2018, contact us today!

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