The second generation of the Kia Niro is based on the third generation of the “K” platform, an architecture that has allowed the engineers to derive a wheelbase of 2,720 millimeters from a car that is 4,420 mm long, respectively 20 and 65 more than before.
For the Korean manufacturer it is the interpretation of “accessible electrification”, even if it is not yet known what the prices will be. Intended to hit the market later in the year, the new Niro will be offered as a hybrid (HEV), as a plug-in (PHEV), up to 65 kilometers of range, and as pure electric (BEV) with an estimated 463 kilometers of mileage. possible thanks to the 64.8 kWh battery.
The rear pillar (Aero C-Pillar) characterizes the lines of the renewed Niro, delivered in Europe in 310,000 units from 2016 onwards. It is an aerodynamic solution because it reduces turbulence and contributes to the drag coefficient of 0.29 and aesthetics. Optically it is a solution that does not convince in every color, but Italy has already made precise choices in line with the tastes of customers.
For the hybrid variants, which have a braking towing capacity of up to 1,300 kg, 550 more than the electric one, Kia confirmed the GDI Smartstream 1.6-liter petrol, also redesigned and with new low-friction bearings, combined with the automatic transmission 6-speed dual clutch. The engineers have reduced the weight of the gearbox by 2.3 kg by eliminating the gear on the rear, which takes place exclusively with zero emissions, limiting the environmental impact in spaces that are often also “domestic”. The new Green Zone driving mode is available on both models, which automatically engages electric propulsion in urban areas or on roads near schools or hospitals, reducing noise pollution.
On the HEV declination (1.32 kWh battery), the system power reaches 141 Cv, including the 44 of the permanent magnet synchronous electric unit, while on the PHEV (the accumulator is 11.1 kWh) it is 183 thanks to the 86 HP of the zero-emission engine. The Niro plug-in also features Hyundai Motor Group’s first 5.5 kWh high-voltage positive temperature coefficient radiator. The component was developed expressly for PHEV models with the aim of increasing the mileage with zero emissions in cold environments.
The engine of the electric version, the top of the Niro range, remains at 204 Hp with 255 Nm of torque and a declared acceleration from 0 to 100 of 7.8 ” and a maximum speed of 167 per hour. With the fast DC system, charging times from 10 to 80% have been filed down to 43 minutes.
The Niro BEV is the one with the most capable trunk with seats in normal configuration (475 liters plus another 20 in front), while the hybrid reaches 1,455 when they are reclined.
Inside the updated cockpit, two 10.25 ” screens and a 10 ” head-up display appear in a functional, well-finished and more environmentally sustainable context. Other solutions include vegan leather seats with organic fabrics made from eucalyptus fibers.
There is no shortage of connectivity and driving assistance systems, included in Kia’s DriveWise package. Among the innovations are the Remote Smart Parking Assist, which completes the parking maneuver in place of the driver who can get off just by pressing a button, and the Vehicle-to-load to supply energy to external electrical appliances, such as a bike, a portable fridge or a scooter. The hybrid Niro will arrive in Italy between June and July, followed a few months later by the two rechargeable versions.