Kia has unveiled the second-generation Kia Niro which has been “entirely redesigned from the ground up” so that it stands out in an increasingly crowded segment, according to the automaker.
There is now a choice of three electric powertrains – HEV, PHEV and BEV versions to help ease the transition to electric mobility.
The Niro EV or BEV version (which has been rebadged from the e-Niro so it falls in line with other Kia models), has the same 201bhp electric motor as the previous model.
With a 64.8kWh battery, the Niro EV can travel up to around 287 miles on a single charge.
It can do 0-62mph in 7.8 seconds and has a drag coefficient of 0.29 to ensure minimal aerodynamic resistance.
Topping up the battery from 10-80% takes 43 minutes with a rapid charger.
For the first time, the upgraded Niro EV comes with a 20-litre ‘frunk’ to house the charging cables.
Both the HEV and PHEV model come with Kia’s 1.6 GDI petrol engine and six-speed automatic gearbox.
However, the HEV works with a 43bhp electric motor giving a total output of 139bhp, while the PHEV features the same engine but is paired with a larger 83kW electric motor, increasing the output to 180bhp. The PHEVs battery is 11.1kWh giving an EV range of 40.3 miles.
From a design perspective, the all-new Niro showcases the latest evolution of Kia’s signature ‘Tiger Face’ which has been enlarged to now extend from the hood down to the front fender.
This is complemented by angular ‘Heartbeat’ daytime running lights, while a bold skid plate and cladding enhance the vehicle’s “rugged” character.
The EV version is distinguished from the PHEV and HEV models by a two-tone closed grille and unique steel grey side cladding.
Technology wise, the second-generation Niro includes a package of Kia’s DriveWise intelligent Advanced Driver Assistance Systems (ADAS). This tech helps avoid potential hazards.
A 10-inch head-up display projects driving information, speed, ADAS data and navigation commands directly onto the front windshield.
There is also Natural Voice Recognition technology where occupants can control vehicle systems such as temperature and audio settings.
Further convenience features include the new Remote Smart Parking Assist (RSPA) and vehicle-to-load functionality. RSPA lets the driver leave the vehicle and park it at the touch of a button.
Jason Jeong, president of Kia Europe, said: “Kia has redesigned Niro to provide people with a clearer path to clean mobility. The range of eco-friendly powertrains will encourage even the most hesitant customers to make the switch to more sustainable forms of movement.
“The already popular Niro benefits from Kia’s latest tech advancements and can meet the mobility needs of all drivers, attracting new people to the brand. The current Niro family is Kia’s third best-seller, and the new version will further extend Niro’s position as a volume model within the Kia portfolio and help accelerate Kia’s global sales of eco-friendly vehicles to two million units in 2030.”
Pricing is yet to be revealed, but it will go on sale in the UK later this month, with first deliveries to take place in July. The BEV version is due to arrive on UK shores around August.