Kia has announced full specs, images and a UK price for the new Niro hybrid, which will go up against the Toyota Prius and Hyundai Ioniq.
The Kia Niro – unveiled at the 2016 Geneva Motor Show – features a 1.6-litre petrol with 104bhp and an electric motor with 43.5bhp mated to a 1.56kWh lithium ion battery. Peak torque is 265Nm while the peak output is 139bhp. A six-speed dual-clutch automatic takes care of the gears.
In terms of eco-friendliness, Kia claims the Niro can manage CO2 emissions as low as 88g/km (making it exempt from road tax) and a fuel economy rating of up to 74.3mpg combined. A plug-in hybrid version is planned for 2017.
Boot space comes in at 427 litres with the rear seats up (373 litres with the luggage undertray) rising to 1,425 litres (1,371 with undertray) with the 60:40 rear seats folded down. By locating the fuel tank and battery pack beneath the rear bench, interior space has been maintained.
Kia has built the Niro on a platform used by no other vehicle in the range. Generous use of high-strength steel and aluminium keep the weight down, while its class-leading drag coefficient of 0.29Cd helps it cut through the air.
Four trim levels will be available: 1, 2, 3 and First Edition. All models come with Lane Keep Assist, Hill-start Assist Control, Cruise Control, DAB digital radio with Bluetooth connectivity and a speed limiter.
The entry-level 1 grade comes with 16-inch alloy wheels, high-gloss black radiator, dual automatic air conditioning, automatic windscreen de-fogging system, LED daytime running lights at the front and rear, electric windows all-round, electric mirror adjustment and USB/AUX ports.
Grade 2 adds a seven-inch touchscreen navigation system with European mapping, reversing camera, high-gloss black trim highlights, leather steering wheel and gearshifter, black cloth and leather upholstery, roof rails, privacy glass on the rear windows and tailgate, rain-sensing wipers, heated and folding door mirrors with LED indicators and reversing sensors.
Grade 3 ups the touchscreen screen to eight inches, while adding a wireless mobile phone charger, eight-speaker premium sound system with external amplifier, 18-inch alloys, black leather upholstery, front parking sensors, heated front seats and steering wheel, power-adjustable driver’s seat and stainless steel scuff sill plates.
Atop the range is the First Edition, which adds Autonomous Emergency Braking, Blind Spot Detection with Rear Cross Traffic Alert, Smart Cruise Control, unique grey leather trim, heated outer rear seats, ventilated front seats, smart key and engine start/stop button and a sliding sunroof.
Those who want a touch of autonomous braking action should know it can be specced on all trim levels as part of the £350 Advanced Driver Assistance Systems (ADAP) package, which has helped it secure a five-star Euro NCAP rating.
The 1 1.6GDi costs from £21,295, with the 2 mode costing £1,500 more. A 3 will set you back from £24,695, while all First Edition costs another £2,300. All models come with a 100,000 or seven-year warranty. For comparison, a Toyota Prius starts from £23,295.