Kia Niro: Overdose of character with ecology

Kia Niro: Overdose of character with ecology

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4.42 meters long and a reasonable height for a more crossover design than before, but still compact.

Profound change in one of the most reasonable and most successful ecological cars on the market, with a hybrid, plug-in hybrid and electric version with prices starting at 24,200 euros

Alex Champion

The Kia Niro was born in 2016 with rather modest claims. Made on a new platform from the Hyundai-Kia group, the brand opted for a compact format, a pleasant design with crossover lines and mechanical efficiency as the main objective. The hybrid model was destined to be the best seller, with 140 hp and very low consumption, followed by the electric one, with two battery versions in a market that is still not very mature due to the lack of recharging points and, finally, the plug-in hybrid. But the ‘boom’ of ecological cars in the last three years has made the Niro a best seller globally – and also in Spain – so the new model is capital for the brand.

The modesty of the original model is history, and the new Niro captivates with a characterful design, a size of 4.4 meters long that fits well in the city and an interior and trunk space that make it well suited for road use. It maintains its three mechanical versions and has all the ingredients to be the brand’s future best seller, and in fact it has already surpassed the compact Ceed.

The new design is obvious, with a very square and imposing front that gives way to a somewhat longer bodywork in which the large size of the rear doors and a much more SUV rear stand out, with vertical pilot lights, great light brake and, as a novelty on the market, a side piece that we can order in different colors in combination with the nine offered by the bodywork.

A lot of technology, but little sporty design and focused on comfort.

Technology and quality

As for the interior, this is a scale reproduction of the current ‘Car of the Year in Europe’, that is, the Kia EV6. Steering wheel, dashboard, gearbox control and buttons are directly inherited from this model, which has a higher price. In the new Niro, there is more size in the rear seats, very well treated in this car, and in the trunk, which comes out ahead with 350 liters for the plug-in hybrid, 450 for the hybrid and 470 for the electric one, which also has a 20 liter drawer under the front hood. On a technical level there are no very profound changes because the original model is still competitive. In the hybrid, the 105 hp 1.6 gasoline engine is maintained combined with an electric one for a total power of 141 hp. It is a model with modest benefits, especially if we compare it with the hybrid mechanics of the Sportage SUV, which has a turbo engine and 230 hp, but in return consumption is record high, with an average of 4.4 liters on approved routes and very little more in real use, which together with the eco label make it very appealing. Prices start, with offers, at 24,200 euros in the Concept version, the cheapest.

The plug-in hybrid is the one that changes its mechanics the most, with a battery that goes from 8 to 12 kilowatts and an electric range of 65 kilometers in the homologation route, 16 more than before. It becomes one of the most interesting cars in this class, it has a zero label, it loses some trunk volume but it can take advantage of the 5,000 euros of aid from the Moves Plan, which leaves its access price at 26,400 euros to become a clear alternative if we are going to ‘scrap’ a car in the purchase.

The trunk has 390 to 470 liters, with a flexible tray.

The most interesting and the one that we liked the most is the electric one, which will end in a few years becoming the best seller in the range. It has 204 horsepower, front-wheel drive and a 64-kilowatt battery, with an approved range of 460 km. Its approved consumption is only 16 kilowatts per 100 kilometers, and in real use we can be around 18 kilowatts if we drive smoothly.

Its only weak point is the recharge, 11 kilowatts in slow mode and 100 kW in fast mode, enough for today, but far from the 270 kW at which the EV6 charges, which can use chargers on high speed routes. power. In addition, the front loading socket is very exposed, especially if we park on the street.

The electric Kia Niro comes out for 42,000 euros in the Concept version and 46,000 in the Drive version, which will be the best seller, but with the brand’s offers and the Moves Plan, they stay at 30,200 and 35,000 euros respectively, rates that are already very attractive .

Resounding and original design on the back, with a colored side piece that we can customize.

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