The Niro will get a modest visible upgrade, like chevron LED working lights.

Emme Hall/Roadshow

The Kia Niro assortment is basically fairly intriguing. It really is a trio of hatchbacks, all of which are electrified. You will find the traditional hybrid for individuals just dipping their toes in the inexperienced room, or the comprehensive EV, for those people who are taking the plunge. For me, even though, I believe the greatest of all worlds is located below, in the Niro plug-in hybrid.


  • Very affordable value
  • Plenty of capabilities
  • Loads of cargo room

You should not Like

  • No all-wheel travel obtainable
  • Not super pleasurable to travel

For 2020 the Niro will get a modest mid-cycle refresh, with a new entrance fascia with a redesigned grille and LED working lights. The rear lights also will get an update and there is a new Horizon Blue color on present, much too. Normally, the Niro is the very same as it ever was, but that isn’t really a terrible detail.

Plug-in energy

The Niro PHEV is determined by a 1.6-liter inline four-cylinder motor and a forty four.5-kilowatt electric powered motor. Jointly they make 139 horsepower and a healthful 195 pound-feet of torque. An 8.nine-kilowatt-hour lithium-ion polymer battery suppliers adequate electrons for 26 miles of electric powered driving assortment. And when the gasoline motor comes on, it can be mated to a 6-velocity twin-clutch automatic relatively than a droning constantly variable transmission, like the Niro’s rival, the Subaru Crosstrek PHEV. This would make the Niro significantly far better to travel.

Nevertheless, the Niro PHEV isn’t really specifically thrilling powering the wheel — not that it demands to be. There is a Sport method that adds some pep to its move, but this hatchback is all about effortless effectiveness higher than all. It really is at home in the town, seamlessly switching between pure EV and hybrid modes. Of class, I can plan the auto to help save all my electric powered miles right up until I want to use them, but I believe the Niro operates really nicely when remaining to do its individual detail.

The Niro has paddle shifters, but they don’t generally manage the transmission. When the auto is in Sport method the paddles perform as gear shifters, offering me a very little bit far more manage of the auto, but in Eco method they manage the regenerative braking. Stage 1 is barely noticeable, whilst Stage three is a very little much too jarring. Stage two is just correct, even though the regen isn’t really potent adequate to convey the auto to a entire prevent.

On the freeway the Niro PHEV accelerates just fantastic many thanks to its torquey powerplant and I like the adaptive cruise manage and lane-retaining assist systems. The tech keeps the Niro in the center of its lane, sweeping as a result of turns with no ping-ponging or sudden actions. I also like that I can dial in the driver’s aids so I can have comprehensive intervention or just an audible inform for the lane-retaining assist.

On a Stage two home charger, the Niro PHEV will fill its battery in about two.5 several hours. When you are out and about, the Niro’s optional navigation method can route you to nearby charging stations, even though I will confess this tech did not generally function seamlessly. (Occasionally the plug wasn’t suitable, other instances it was nowhere to be located.) Nevertheless, annoying the GPS is in conditions of directing me to charging stations, it does have a few neat methods in its memory financial institution. It can forecast how a lot strength the auto will require to say, traverse a mountain move and help save up electric powered strength to prepare. I can also see the radius of my EV assortment from my current locale, which is beneficial if I want to keep on electric powered-only energy whilst I am out for the working day.

The Niro PHEV will get forty six miles per gallon blended or a hundred and five MPGe when you use the most electric powered and gasoline effectiveness. At the finish of my 7 days with it the laptop or computer confirmed an common of 63 mpg, which looks about correct due to the fact I relied on the gasoline motor an terrible large amount.

Updated Uvo tech joins the Niro’s cabin for 2020.

Emme Hall/Roadshow

Updated tech and a lot of room

Inside, there is a awesome tech upgrade for 2020, with Kia’s Uvo infotainment method working on an optional ten.two-inch touchscreen (the standard screen actions 8 inches). Uvo is fantastic, with crisp, distinct graphics and both Apple CarPlay and Android Auto are standard.

Ironically, interior charging ports are on the sparse aspect in my tester, with just the wi-fi charging pad, two USB-A ports and a twelve-volt outlet up entrance. There are no outlets in the armrest and none for rear-seat passengers, both.

I am not a super-lover of my EX Top quality model’s interior design and style. It really is just a bit dark for my tastes but the resources are of significant excellent and there are a great deal of standard capabilities like heated and cooled entrance seats, a heated steering wheel and wi-fi charging. The rear seats are a great deal roomy and with 22.four cubic feet of room powering the rear seats and 63.two cubes with them folded down, there is a great deal of utility to be experienced. The rear seats, even so, don’t fold fully flat and there isn’t really a large amount of modest storage room up entrance.

The Niro is a terrific way to dip your toe into plug-in hybrid possession.

Emme Hall/Roadshow

Frugal and useful

The only legitimate competitor to the Kia Niro PHEV is the in the same way sized Subaru Crosstrek PHEV. It starts off at just above $35,000 whilst the base Niro PHEV can be experienced for a few thousand pounds less. That claimed, no 1 at Roadshow has awesome things to say about the plug-in Crosstrek. Your only other selection for a plug-in crossover is the more substantial Toyota RAV4 Key, which offers 42 miles of all-electric powered driving assortment. You could also check out the Toyota Prius Key which expenditures a few grand less than the Kia Niro PHEV, or the Honda Clarity PHEV, which is about $four,000 far more and ten instances as unappealing.

The 2020 Kia Niro PHEV is for individuals who treatment about fuel financial state but may not nevertheless be ready to commit to a comprehensive EV. The magnificence of PHEV is that you can get a lot of your in-city driving completed on pure electric powered energy, but not be stuck having to recharge in the center of a very long highway journey. The Niro PHEV offers up a great deal of capabilities and driver’s aids for a awesome value, much too. All in, it can be a functional, very affordable plug-in.