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2018 Kia Niro Hybrid

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2018 Kia Niro Hybrid

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After seeing the 2019 Ram 1500 Rebel at Unique Chrysler Dodge Jeep Ram, I was inspired to go see what else the Car Nation Canada group have to offer. One vehicle that caught my eye yesterday was a 2018 Kia Niro Hybrid. The Niro sells well across all our Kia dealerships but I had yet to get up close and personal with the PHEV version. The car I saw was a demonstrator, with us only a couple of days, but I had a good look around.

The 2018 Kia Niro Hybrid is exactly what you want from a hybrid. It is reasonably priced, contains very few of the compromises such a system usually requires and delivers a positive driving experience with fewer trips to the gas station. By keeping things simple, Kia has created a hybrid that really works.

Plug in and go
The design of the 2018 Kia Niro Hybrid is the same as the standard version. It is a crossover design with very rounded edges and a friendly persona. It is a sensible size, with a fairly high seating position for great visibility. With only a small ‘Eco plug-in’ badge and a slightly larger fuel cap to differentiate the PHEV from the casual observer, things are looking good.

The design is very rounded. The tiger nose is front and centre with a very soft-looking hood and fender setup. A set of neat headlights fit into that profile perfectly and offer a modern, yet traditional look. A raked windshield and slightly sloping roof ends in a rooftip spoiler at the back and a hatch with a nice light cluster and subtle badging.

Inside, the 2018 Kia Niro Hybrid is spacious and well laid out. As mentioned, the driving position is elevated and offers great visibility all round. The seats are comfortable and the entire cabin is ergonomically pleasing. Controls are solid and reactive and the touchscreen is the same. The display is clear and offers the usual features, including an EV range indicator.

PHEV
The 2018 Kia Niro Hybrid uses a 1.6-litre four cylinder engine that produces 104 hp and 109 lb-ft of torque. It also has an electric motor that is good for 60 hp and 125 lb-ft of torque. The motor is powered by an 8.9 kWh lithium-ion battery pack. The built-in 3.3 kW charger can charge those batteries within 2.5 hours with a commercial charger or around 9 hours with a 120v wall socket.

The Niro uses a six speed dual clutch transmission to drive the front wheels.

As PHEVs are all about gas mileage, the 2018 Kia Niro Hybrid achieves 48 mpg city, 44 highway and 46 mpg combined (US figures). In EV mode, the Niro achieves 105 mpge and can travel up to 26 miles on electric power alone. As you run out of EV range, the engine will fire up automatically to continue to power the vehicle. It cannot recharge the battery as it goes though. Charging is through the plug-in only.

Like the Rebel, I couldn’t play too much with the 2018 Kia Niro Hybrid as it wasn’t our vehicle. Having a good look around was all I could do. However, from what I saw and felt, I think this green Niro continues the trend of Kia delivering solid cars that look and feel good.

The 2018 Kia Niro Hybrid is available to order from Kia of Hamilton, 1885 Upper James St, Hamilton ON, L9B 1K8.

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