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Kia offers more detail on the new Niro

Kia offers more detail on the new Niro

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We have been intrigued by the upcoming Kia Niro ever since we saw it at the Chicago Auto Show. The Korean automaker’s first Hybrid Utility Vehicle (HUV), looks good and, if the new Kia delivers on what it promises, could offer something truly interesting in an ocean of ordinary.

The name ‘Niro’ apparently comes from two words, ‘Near Zero’ to indicate its near flawlessness and ‘Hero’ a somewhat overused term nowadays that in this case indicates the hero product of the CUV market. So what do we know about the new Niro?

According to Kia Buzz, the new CUV will feature a cutting-edge Kappa 1.6-litre GDI four-cylinder engine as part of a hybrid platform. It will connect to a 1.56kWh lithium-ion battery pack placed under the rear seats and a new six speed dual clutch transmission. According to Kia, this new drivetrain has been specifically tuned to offer a smooth ‘non hybrid’ driving experience.

To help keep emissions to a minimum and increase gas mileage, the Kia Niro will also have a new set of driving assistance technologies called Eco-Driver Assistance System (Eco-DAS). This system features Coasting Guide, a driver alert that allows drivers to coast with maximum efficiency. It also features Predictive Energy Control, a technology that apparently assess the topology of the road and decides when it would be optimum to recharge the battery or use motor assistance.

Here is a video of the Kia Niro in action.

Kia Niro design
Kia goes to great lengths to tell prospective buyers that the design of the Kia Niro makes no compromises to its hybrid drivetrain. While we would say that no automaker does anymore, the design of the Niro is most definitely a good one.

It echoes the family traits of other Kia cars with soft edges, a friendly face, rising beltline, sloping roof and a premium look that belies the value it offers. It is a good looking car and will look right at home on Canadian highways.

The cabin is also looking good. Kia said they have packed in some noise and vibration cancelling features into the cabin to reduce road noise. While we haven’t seen the inside yet aside from those glimpses in the video, current Kia interiors really are a step forward for the brand. We don’t expect the Niro to offer anything less.

The Kia Niro is due later this year across North America so we don’t have long to wait until we get to see first-hand just what this HUV is capable of. In the meantime, visit Georgetown Kia, 199 and 314 Guelph Street, Georgetown, Ontario for some great deals on the current Kia stable of cars.

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