The PHEV, offered first in Europe, utilizes a 1.6-liter direct-injection four-cylinder, electric motor and 8.9 kWh lithium-polymer battery pack to attain its green credentials. Kia claims the new hardware will deliver more than 35 miles of all-electric range.
The battery pack, a step up from the 1.56 kWh battery used in the regular hybrid, powers a 44.5 kW electric motor. Paired with the 104-horsepower GDI engine, the subcompact crossover has a total output of 139 horsepower and 195 lb-ft of torque.
A six-speed dual-clutch automatic transmission helps the greenest Niro achieve 62 miles per hour in 10.8 seconds, but it’s doubtful that performance will be a high priority for buyers.
The plug-in hybrid will feature Eco-DAS (Driver Assistant System), which informs the driver on how to drive with maximum efficiency. Predictive Energy Control gathers information from the vehicle’s navigation and cruise control systems to tell the driver when to let off the throttle, allowing the battery to recharge through regenerative braking. It also lets you know when your gas-free range will come to an end.
Autonomous emergency braking with forward collision-avoidance assist, lane keeping assist, driver attention warning, smart cruise control, blind spot warning, and rear cross-traffic collision warning are some of the notable safety features on the PHEV.
Kia Niro PHEV – Image: [Kia Motors America]” width=”610″ height=”407″ />
Exterior differences are purely cosmetic. The front and rear bumper receive blue accents, along with a satin chrome grille surround, 16-inch alloy wheels, all-LED headlights, and special badging.
The blue accents continue inside, appearing on the air vents, and there is a choice of black leather or two-tone gray and black leather with blue stitching on both. An eight-inch infotainment touchscreen joins a seven-inch full-TFT instrument cluster.
While we won’t get the PHEV when it goes on sale this summer, we will see it eventually. According to Motor1, we could see it brought over as soon as October 2017. Steve Kosowski, Niro project manager, told Autoblog that it could be 2018 or later.
We also expect a Niro EV in the future.
[Source: Auto Express] [Images: Kia Motors]