All-New KIA Niro PHEV sets a new benchmark.
All-New KIA Niro PHEV sets a new benchmark.
Kia’s popular Niro crossover has been entirely redesigned from the ground up to meet the complex and diverse needs of today’s environmentally-conscious car users. Two state-of-the-art electrified powertrains (Plug-In Hybrid and Full Electric), sustainable interior materials, and exceptional safety performance combine to ensure the all-new Niro surpasses customer expectations. The redesigned Niro is an intrinsic model in Kia’s growing eco-friendly line-up, which will include 14 BEV (Battery Electric Vehicles) models by 2027. A perfect blend of form and function ensures that the new Niro provides a safe, family-friendly vehicle with favourable economic and environmental credentials that will encourage many people to take a meaningful first step into electrification.
Even More Spacious.
The new platform that underpins this second-generation car is longer than the previous model’s, but the Niro still doesn’t feel too large from behind the wheel. It has brought a huge improvement when it comes to interior space, however. Kia has also reduced the depth of the front seatbacks, so there is a lot more rear legroom than its predecessor. The old Niro was relatively cramped in the back, but that is not the case in the new car. The new Niro is full of clever features, too. The old Niro had an extendable load cover, but the new car has a foldable parcel shelf that takes up less space when it is not in use. One reason for this is that there is no space to put a conventional load cover now, because Kia has created more boot space for this new car. Even though the sub battery is located under the boot floor (with the main battery located under the rear seats), there is still a respectable 358-litres of space available. When the need arises, the rear seatbacks can be folded to reveal up to 1,342-litres of usable space.
Two Trim Levels.
The new Niro PHEV is available in two trim levels, ‘K3’ and ‘K4’, both of which enjoy a suite of new safety systems that bring the latest advancements in protection to this family-friendly crossover. Standard equipment for the ‘K3’ includes 18” alloy wheels, LED headlights with bi-function projection, heated front seats, a 10.25” touchscreen navigation, Kia Connect Telematics, wireless phone charger, and Apple CarPlay and Android Auto with voice control. Safety features include Lane Keep Assist, Lane Follow Assist, Smart Cruise Control, and Blind-Spot Collision Avoidance. Upgrading to the ‘K4’ trim adds shift-by-wire functionality (rotary dial for drive, reverse and park), power adjustable front seats, heated rear seats, driver heads-up display, a 10.25” LCD driver display screen, and a power tailgate.
Sharper & Sportier New Look.
The new Niro’s exterior design looks sharper and sportier than before, and in keeping with Kia’s fully-refreshed SUV model range it feels more modern and desirable than ever. Buyers looking to personalise their Niro can opt for a contrasting colour for the sleek side blades on the car’s C-pillars if they so wish (K4-only). Premium-effect recycled materials adorn the cabin of the new Niro to underline its sustainable credentials. The dash and driver controls feature minimal clutter and smooth lines to ensure a distraction-free, yet intuitive, user experience.
Petrol/Electric Plug-In (PHEV).
The Niro PHEV benefits from Kia’s Smartstream 1.6-litre GDI petrol engine paired with Kia’s second-generation six-speed dual-clutch automatic transmission. Innovations on the second-generation GDI engine include low-friction ball bearings, gears optimised for transmission efficiency, and the removal of the reverse gear that saves 2.3kg alone. Reverse motion is instead drawn solely from then electric motor, helping to eliminate tailpipe emissions during reverse manoeuvres. A 62kW e-motor results in combined maximum power of 183PS (180bhp) and provides an electric-only range covering up to 59km (WLTP combined driving cycle) of zero-emission journeys, adequate for most daily commutes. The Niro PHEV debuts Hyundai Motor Group’s very first 5.5kWh high-volt Positive Temperature Coefficient (PTC) heater for Plug-In Hybrid models, enhancing electric-only performance in colder conditions. The self-regulated ceramic elements provide cabin heating to complement the car’s heating core and ensure a continuous flow of warm air. The 11.1kWh Lithium-ion polymer battery in the Niro PHEV can be fully charged from empty in just under 3 hours, with the charging port located on the passenger side rear quarter panel.
My test car was a Niro PHEV ‘K4’, which was finished in elegant Interstellar Grey metallic paintwork, with stylish 18” two-tone alloy wheels. Producing 180bhp and 265Nm of torque, the petrol/electric hybrid powerplant can propel the car from 0-100km/h in just 9.8-seconds, on its way to a top speed of 161km/h (where permitted). The engine is nicely muted when driving around town, and the car can get up to motorway speeds in a fuss-free manner. The light steering is a pleasure to use, while the handling is soft and comfortable, allowing the Niro to transport occupants to their destination in a calm and relaxed way. The combination of a heads-up display, blind spot warning lights in the door mirrors and straightforward driving controls, along with comfortable and supportive seats made every journey enjoyable. The Niro PHEV emits just 21g/km of CO2, and is capable of consuming as little as 0.9l/100km when used with a fully charged battery at the start of every journey.
Pricing, Options & Warranty.
The all-new Kia Niro PHEV is so much better than its predecessor in virtually every area, it enjoys generous equipment levels, and it benefits from a spacious and comfortable cabin too. The new Niro PHEV ‘K3’ is priced at €38,500 with the range-topping ‘K4’ priced at €41,500 (excluding delivery & related charges). Metallic paint is an additional €600 and a contrasting side blade on the car’s C-pillars (K4 only) costs €700. All Kia cars are covered by a 7-year/150,000km warranty, which is transferrable between owners.
Visit www.kia.com for further information.