2019 Kia Niro PHEV Review & Changes – On preliminary assessment, the Kia Niro PHEV (brief for a plug-in hybrid electric vehicle) seems to be an unassuming member of the quickly increasing compact crossover SUV portion. But tiny details such as the extra fuel door on the front fender and the “electric” blue exterior trim sections hand out what this car is camouflaging: A fuel-efficient gasoline-electric powertrain that can be plugged in and incurred to enable up to 26 miles of all-electric driving. True world SUV practicality, blended with a very good powertrain and delightfully thrifty gas usage can make the Niro PHEV a worthy contender to challenge the sector-leading Prius Prime PHEV. Getting the PHEV version of the Niro is a $4,000 responsibility for the regular hybrid model which begins at $23,340. PHEV prices start at $28,840 (which includes a $940 spot charge) for the base LX, though our top-trim EX Premium tester arrived in at $35,575, including destination and some carpeted floor mats.
The added features discovered in the EX Premium deliver the Niro PHEV to a greater price bracket. But compared to competitor vehicles like the Toyota Prius Prime and Chevrolet Volt, the Niro PHEV’s pricing fits in just fine. Kia was also positive to pack in a respectable volume of equipment with each trim-level update, making the EX Premium’s increased price tag a worthy thing to consider.
If you’re looking for an additional pinch of livening in the Niro PHEV formula, then never appear at this plug-in’s mug. Some electrified vehicles have the capacity to turn heads on the road (take the BMW i3, for example), but the Niro is not one of them. The design comes after the compact crossover playbook quite closely, with minimal coloring outdoors the outlines. The Niro is small, way too, without much of an elevation advantage over a standard sedan. The Stinger is definitely the looker in the Kia family, and you can easily see Kia tries its most challenging to provide some of the four-door coupe’s style to the front-end of the Niro. Whereby Kia maybe tumbles simple is in the small specifics. No significant character lines grace the Niro’s body panels, and the rear hatch is as flat as a pile of pancakes. The Niro PHEV may be useful, but it’s definitely not remarkable. The Niro’s grab-and-go interior is a nice compared to the usual alien details that include countless electric vehicles (like the unusual move selectors in the Prius and the Leaf). In the Niro, you transfer straight down to “D” and drive – no space-era design to overcome, in this article. The determine bunch and center bunch buttons are equally walking and easy to use, and little details like the “driver only” air conditioning option are pleasant alerts this is an eco-pleasant crossover.
Our test car got equipped with EX Premium treats such as heated and cooled leather seats, which organized their particular in the popular Fl sun. The seats have been helpful and provided adjustability in all the proper places. Whilst I couldn’t locate a volunteer ready to test the warmed up steering wheel, I’m specific it can its career just fine. Front passengers have a lot of room in all guidelines, but these seated in the back have significantly less liberty to shift about. Each legroom and headroom are tight, but this is no surprise considering the overall size of the Niro. Abandon the seats upright, and the Niro gives 19.4 cubic feet of cargo space to work with – 54.5 cubic feet if the rear seats are flattened down. A lot of room for a small family on the shift.
If there is a knock in opposition to the interior, it’s certainly the massive pieces of plastic-type material overtaking the dash and side sections. Plastic-type is no total stranger to this sector, but at $35,000, some option options could liven points up a bit. Commit a couple of moments with the Niro PHEV’s 8.-inch UVO touchscreen infotainment system and you will spot just how much of a strong point it is. Although the menus layouts are odd, UVO’s performance will not make you want to pull the hair out. If you are not an enthusiast of Kia’s navigation system, then CarPlay and Android Auto are there to help as standard equipment. Scrolling in between UVO’s choices is a breeze with almost no delay or hesitation. Cooked into the car’s options is an enjoyable tree-shaped display that reveals precisely how successfully you’re driving. In many instances, this was a pleased advancement record for us right behind the wheel. Though a lot of highway on-ramps or velocity bursts easily eliminates the plant graphic and revokes your eco-driving accolades.
The recommended Harman Kardon audio system qualified prospects you to believe you’re seated in something more expensive than a $35,000 Kia. UVO’s program and sound system become a member of in sugary equilibrium to make the Niro’s interior a good place to hypermile on the highway. Using this type of vehicle section, any other power or torque is more than appreciated without reducing efficiency. And, thankfully, the Niro PHEV has electrical power on its side to allow for both. The powertrain is produced up of two principal components: a 104-horsepower 1.6-liter Atkinson-cycle four-cylinder engine and a 60-horsepower AC electric motor. Combined output is 139 hp, however the 195 lb-ft of torque is what you enjoy most. Getting off the line is no chore, thanks largely to the plug-in’s bigger electric motor. While the Niro PHEV is by no implies fast, you in no way feel like you are simply being penalized for buying an economical car when driving it. Fortunately, the ride is not compromised by the car’s more battery weight. The suspension is just soft sufficient to bathe up spots on the road – of which Fl has several – without the need of limiting an excessive amount of on managing capability.
In combined highway/city driving, the electric motor takes over when, and for as long as, it could. But push relatively on the throttle and you will feel the gas engine appear in to preserve the day. The move involving gas and electric driving settings happens quite seamlessly and almost undetectable. Sports mode kicks in when the products selector is knocked over to manual mode. This is in which the Niro does its very best perception of a sportier car, detailed with a beautiful orange tachometer in front of the diver. Sports mode is always there if necessary, but, with the Niro PHEV, your excitement will probably be located at the water pump, not behind the wheel. Kia earns praise with advanced safety tech, both as standard and optional equipment. Every trim level arrives equipped with autonomous crisis braking and adaptive cruise control. Each nonetheless features you may spend additional for, even in more costly vehicles.
The radar-well guided cruise system did just fine on highways, slowing down appropriately to accommodate traffic, as properly as last-second lane changes from around vehicles. Blind-spot tracking and rear cross-traffic alert feature the center-tiered trim level. Our EX Premium car emerged equipped with each and every available safety feature, and the standout hero was undoubtedly the rear cross-traffic alert system. It can make backing out of any parking space that much less difficult thanks to its simple-but-purposeful beep that announces the discovery of a moving car. You will be saying thanks to oneself in the mall parking great deal on Black Friday for ticking that choice box. Fuel economy and electric range are exactly where the Niro PHEV has to make its strongest case from the more affordable, and nonetheless efficient, Niro Hybrid. Yet again, is it well worth the $4,000 premium over the regular hybrid model to gain plug-in ability? For individuals with a speedy travel to the office, the plug-in feature may, in fact, justify the more money. A full charge is obtained in two to three hours, and the Niro can travel on electric power by itself for an EPA-rated 26 miles. This number bests the Prius Prime’s 25-mile EV range but drops significantly simple of the Chevy Volt’s 53 miles. After the liquid goes out, the EPA reports that managers should expect a put together 46 miles per gallon – exactly what the Niro’s on-table computer explained we averaged during our week with the car. Compared to the Chevy Volt’s merged 42 put together MPG and the Prius Prime’s 54, the Niro PHEV is situated properly in the center.