A real bestseller from the manufacturer (+7.9% in 2021 all engines combined), the Kia Niro nevertheless begins to show the weight of the years with a slightly dated design and its J Eco-Car multi-engine platform. To face an increasingly fierce competition, Kia has decided to revamp it from top to bottom while still offering it with three powertrains: hybrid, plug-in hybrid and electric.
Not to leave anyone indifferent, the new Niro confirms its style and muscular silhouette. The SUV is working on its front end design based on the latest version of the Tiger Face specific to the new Kia. Wider than its predecessor, it now extends from the hood to the lower part of the front fenders. The headlamps are fitted with Full LED headlamps and LED fog lamps. The imposing shield is distinguished by its two-level design with top and bottom fairings. The electric version differs from the hybrid and plug-in hybrid versions by a two-tone closed grille and exclusive side mouldings. In addition, this version’s charging port is now centered on the front.
The profile of the new Kia Niro has also been refined, with a slightly profiled C-pillar and a line that gains aerodynamics with a drag coefficient (Cd) of 0.29. The design of the rims is also part of this logic. At the rear, boomerang lights reinforce the bond with the new EV6. Customers can choose from nine exterior colours, three of which (Pearl White, Cityscape Green and Mineral Blue) allow the C-pillar to be painted in a different colour. The new Kia Niro will be at least 6.5 cm long, 2.5 cm wide and 1 cm high. The wheelbase is also 2 cm longer.
The passenger compartment also underwent a thorough refurbishment and benefited from the integration of sustainable materials. The seats are decorated with artificial leather, the boot cover is made from 75% recycled fabric and the headliner is made from 56% recycled materials. The cockpit has been improved, with a dual screen of 10.25 inches each for the onboard instrumentation and infotainment area. A new multi-control system also allows passengers to operate multiple functions with a single control. Through the Kia Connect app, drivers of the all-electric Niro can view and track their vehicle’s charge status and even plan a route using online navigation, sync calendars and access in-vehicle features such as the location of nearby charging stations and real-time weather forecasts and traffic alerts.
The new Niro benefits from many other convenience features, including the Remote Parking Assistance System (RSPA) and the two-way charging function (V2L). Among the driving aids we also find the anti-collision system with blind spot detection, rear traffic detection, emergency braking and adaptive cruise control, linked to navigation and assistance on the highway. The whole interface also benefits from OTA updates. Finally, the boot volume gains 15 l compared to the previous version in hybrid (451 l) and even 24 l in PHEV and electric (343 l and 475 l respectively).
On the road, handling has been revised with different chassis and steering settings. The rear structure has been reinforced to reduce vibration and the ground connections have been optimized for better road holding. Comfort should also win with reworked sound insulation.
The hybrid and plug-in hybrid versions are equipped with the 1.6-litre Smartstream GDI petrol engine mated to the six-speed dual-clutch automatic transmission (DCT6), which also gains 2.3 kg. On the hybrid version, the four-cylinder develops a combined maximum power of 141 hp in conjunction with the 32 kW (43 hp) permanent magnet synchronous motor. The plug-in hybrid version is equipped with a 62 kW (84 hp) electric motor that contributes to delivering a maximum combined power of 183 hp, and offers a range in all-electric mode of 65 km (combined cycle WLTP) . The hybrid and plug-in hybrid versions offer a Green Zone mode, which automates the use of electrical energy in certain zones based on guidance from the navigation system, driving habits or driver choices.
Finally, the electric version, the new Niro EV and no longer e-Niro, is equipped with an electric motor that produces 204 hp for 255 Nm of torque, powered by a 64.8 kWh lithium-ion polymer battery that allows you to travel 463 km ( in WLTP bike). Unfortunately, even on fast charging, it takes 43 minutes at best to go from 10 to 80%, which is a shame. The Niro EV can tow up to 750 kg.
The final prices for the new Kia Niro vintage 2022 are not yet known, but the information should be made public soon. The first deliveries should arrive in July and the all-electric version will be available from September.