What to Expect at a Kia Ride and Drive Event

I have been given compensation for this post by Kia Motors. However, all thoughts and opinions expressed are my own.

The other week, I packed my bags for a quick jaunt to the Charlotte Auto Show. To be specific, I was invited by Kia to check out their Ride and Drive event during the show. Thanks, Kia!

Charlotte is about a four hour drive from where I live, which I didn’t mind at all because since last September I’ve been riding in style in my first new car — the 2016 Kia Soul I purchased. It’s just a happy coincidence that I already drive a Kia and got to attend this event!

Kia Ride and Drive Charlotte Auto Show

I didn’t know what to expect because I’d never attended an auto show or a Ride and Drive event before, but luckily it wasn’t intimidating at all. As far as I could tell, the crowd was mostly families, which was a relief as I was expecting to be surrounded with hardcore car enthusiast dudes.

I headed over to the Kia Ride and Drive booth and checked in with the friendly staff there, letting them know I wanted to do some test drivin’. They gave me a card with a list of the models that were available to test, I chose one, and then a staff member breathalyzed me (my first one!), took some information from my drivers license, and led me through a brief survey about my thoughts on the Kia Brand.

Kia Ride and Drive Charlotte Auto Show

Hangin’ with the Kia Soul hamster at the Kia Ride and Drive booth

There was a brief wait while my chosen car returned from its previous test drive, and then a Kia representative walked me out to the car. Like a good blogger, I made sure to make him wait while I took a bunch of pics. 🙂

Kia Ride and Drive Charlotte Auto Show

2018 Kia Niro

The car I chose to drive was the new Kia Niro in the top trim level. It was STUNNING with its sporty shape and deep jewelbox teal color, and because it’s a hybrid it gets excellent gas mileage and is friendly to the environment to boot.

We spent one glorious city block together, and we fell in love. Wish I didn’t have to say goodbye. *sniff*

Kia Ride and Drive Charlotte Auto Show

Luxury trim inside the Kia Niro

Before I headed back inside to give another model a whirl, I embarrassed my friendly Kia rep by making him take this picture of me:

Kia Ride and Drive Charlotte Auto Show

After driving the Niro, I took another survey to measure whether my thoughts on the brand had changed, and I received a Target gift card for my participation!

The second vehicle I decided to try was the Kia Sedona — a super sporty minivan that, to me, looks more like an SUV.

Now, I’d never driven a minivan before or really taken the time to explore the features of one, but the Sedona pleasantly surprised me. Its passenger area was wildly spacious. Like CRAZY spacious — the second row seats reclined and had leg rests. I was shook. As I told the Kia rep when I was done driving the Sedona, “Now I see why people like minivans.”

Kia Ride and Drive Charlotte Auto Show 2018 Kia Sedona

If you’re in the market for a new Kia and have the chance to attend a Kia Ride and Drive event, I highly recommend it. It’s a great way to get a feel for the different models and have your questions about the cars answered without any pressure from sales staff. Actually, it’s fun even if you’re not in the market for a new car. 🙂

Thanks again to Kia for sponsoring my participation in the Ride and Drive!

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