The Kia manufacturer has expanded its Niro lineup with the newest all-electric version which should go on sale sometime in the beginning of 2019 alongside the PHEV and other models. So, this time we will review the upcoming 2019 Kia Niro EV and PHEV. The Kia Niro EV won’t differ much from the other versions except the engine, some small adjustments on the front fascia and an upgraded infotainment screen.
2019 Kia Niro EV and PHEV powertrain and performances
The 2019 Kia Niro PHEV will return with the same engine as its forerunner while the EV version will be introduced for the first time for 2019 model year. So, the 2019 Kia Niro PHEV will use a 1.6-liter Atkinson cycle inline-4 unit which can produce 104 hp and 109 lb-ft of torque. This unit will be combined with an electric motor of 44.5 kWh which will have the output of 60 hp and 125 lb-ft of torque. So, the total output of this unit will be 139 hp and 109 pound-feet of torque. The engine will work with a 6-speed direct-shift automatic transmission. Furthermore, this engine will provide an all-electric range of 26 miles. As for the fuel economy, this engine is rated at 43 mpg combined and 105 MPGe when going all electrically.
On the other hand, the 2019 Kia Niro EV has just been presented to the world. And although we have assumed that it will use the same unit which is found in the Hyundai Ioniq, it seems that the Niro EV will use its own powertrain. It will be powered by an electric motor which can develop 201 horsepower and a battery pack of 39.2 kWh. As well, the Niro EV should be able to go around 238 miles on a single charge. However, it is expected to arrive with a more powerful battery of 64 kWh also which should provide the range of around 280 miles on a charge.
Redesign of the exterior of 2019 Kia Niro EV and PHEV
As far as the exterior design is concerned, the 2019 Kia Niro EV and PHEV will feature the same design as the current model. It is a small wagon which uses the same underpinnings as the Hyundai Ioniq. The Niro looks attractive and sleek; it features a rounded hood and familiar swept-back headlights. With the black plastic wheel arches, roof rails, and rear skid plate, the Niro looks taller and gets a more rugged appearance.
However, the 2019 Kia Niro EV shouldn’t differ much from the hybrid and plug-in hybrid version. But based on the spy photos, it might get some minor adjustments. While the profile, roof, and rear taillights should stay unchanged, the front fascia could receive some minor upgrades. And those could be a slightly revised grille and refreshed lower fascia on the rear end. We could also expect new badges, revised fog lights, and lighter wheels.
The interior of the 2019 Kia Niro EV and PHEV should remain pretty much untouched. However, this time we might see revised infotainment screen and an all-digital instrument cluster. The whole design of the cabin is clean and simple and features quality materials. Its cabin is sufficiently spacious and can carry up to five passengers. The front seats are highly comfortable while on the rear seats can be placed two adults without any discomfort. Behind the seats, there is a cargo room of 19.4 cubic feet. With the rear seats folded down, the Kia offers the room of 54.5 cubic feet which is generous. Furthermore, there is a standard 7.0-inch inch touchscreen for infotainment system.
Equipment of the 2019 Kia Niro EV and PHEV
The standard features in all the models include LED headlamps, a rearview camera, a 60/40 split folding rear seat, Apple CarPlay and Android Auto connectivity, two 12-volt outlets, 16-inch alloy wheels, a 4.2-inch digital display, dual-zone climate control, cloth upholstery, and a 7.0-inch touchscreen.
The FE and LX trim levels will add blind-spot monitors, cloth and leather upholstery, integrated turn signals, a leather-wrapped steering wheel, USB, and heated front seats.
The Hybrid will add 18-inch wheels, a premium Harman Kardon audio with 8 speakers, leather upholstery, front and rear parking sensors, a 10-way power adjustable driver’s seat, and memory settings for the driver’s door mirror and seat.
The plug-in hybrid will add more safety features which include active lane control, automatic emergency braking, and adaptive cruise control. A rearview camera will be standard on all models while the EX and Touring trim levels will add blind-spot monitors. These models will also be available with adaptive cruise control, automatic emergency braking, and lane-departure warning.
Release date and expected price
The newest 2019 Kia Niro EV and PHEV should go on sale early next year. The PHEV version should be around $29,000 while an EV model should be somewhere between $30,000 and $40,000.