General

I drove the new Kia Niro – it’s an electric car for everyone

I drove the new Kia Niro - it's an electric car for everyone

IF you were to ask me to list the best cars of the year so far, at least three would be a Kia.

While other household brands have seemingly stalled, failing to release new models or get new cars to customers, Kia is definitely bouncing.

4

There’s a Kia Niro for everyone – wherever you live or wherever you need to go

Sales are up 27 PERCENT — in a market that is down 12 percent — and Kia will surpass 100,000 sales for the first time this year.

It’s all about a good product, right?

You have Sportage, an all-in-one SUV that doesn’t cost the earth. And looks great. It is the fifth bestseller in the UK.

You have EV6 GT, which offers Porsche Taycan 4S performance and charging speed, but costs £23k less.

Test drive £65k Hyundai Genesis GV60 electric car and interior may surprise you
I took a test drive with the Fiat 500e La Prima car, endorsed by opera legend Andrea Bocelli

And then you have the car I drive now: Niro.

Henceforth Super Niro.

Available as a self-charging hybrid (without cable), plug-in hybrid or pure electric.

That means there’s a Niro for everyone, no matter where you live or where you need to go.

The outgoing electric Niro is already the second best-selling EV after the Tesla Model 3.

But this new one is even better.

It goes a little further – 285 miles – thanks to that “aero C-pillar”.

Sorry. That’s a bit geeky. Speak English, Roberto.

See that gray trim thing on the back?

Air passes through it to improve aerodynamic performance and add another three miles of range.

Key Facts: Kia Niro EV

Price: £36,245

Battery: 64.8 kWh

Current: 201 hp

0-62: 7.8 seconds

Top speed: 103mph

Range: 285 miles

To upload: 80% in 43 minutes

Out: August

It’s not particularly pretty, but it does the job.

Niro also charges nine minutes faster than before, has a larger trunk, a frunk (front trunk) for cables, plus a three-prong outlet.

Use it to inflate an air mattress. Or turn on a microwave. Or whatever.

The most obvious improvement, though, is the cabin, which is next-level and lifted straight out of EV6 and Sportage.

It has the same Merc-esque curved dual screens and a super-slim touch panel that switches between radio and air-conditioning at the touch of a button. It’s a nice piece of design.

Other things you like: comfortable seats. Giant cup holders. Apple CarPlay. Wireless phone charging. Buttons to warm and cool your back. USB-C ports in the side of the front seats for those in the back. Head-up display.

Kia also uses eco-friendly materials if that’s important to you.

The headliner is made from recycled wallpaper. The seats are made of eucalyptus leaves. BTX-free paint is used on door panels.

Kia vans next

KIA has already pushed Ford and Vauxhall into electric cars.

Soon they will have Kia-shaped rivals for electric vans.

The Koreans will start selling purpose-built vehicles (PBVs) from the end of 2025.

Kia UK boss Paul Philpott said: “We will be bringing PBVs into the van space in the coming years.”

So what’s it like to drive?

Comfortable. Press and go. All electric cars are quiet and punchy and single-speed. Impossible to stop.

Niro has paddles on the steering wheel to adjust regenerative braking levels to slow the car and replenish the battery.

If you can anticipate the flow of traffic, you hardly need to touch the brake pedal.

The steering is light. Body control is excellent. Progress is smooth and stress-free.

As for pricing, Niro Hybrid starts at £27k (financing from £359 per month) and Niro Plug-in Hybrid is £33k (£467 per month).

Both use 1.6-litre petrol engines in combination with a six-speed automatic transmission. Both reverse electric.

The hybrid does 60 mpg. The plug-in hybrid does up to 40 miles as an EV.

That is a good company car with a tax in kind of eight percent.

It’s also faster. But you lose a bit of boot space.

The all-electric version starts at £36k (£509 a month), but costs pennies to run.

Whichever you choose, the Niro is a thoroughly modern family car that is way ahead of the rest.

My children's school fined me £120 after their mother took them on holiday... I had no idea
I am a mother of triplets and a toddler - I am always ashamed of my mother

Kia recently introduced low-interest zero deposits for its latest models to help Sun readers fight the cost of living crisis.

He said: “We have already put our focus on the PCP product because the residuals are so strong right now.”

The hybrid does 60 mpg and the plug-in hybrid does up to 40 miles as an EV

4

The hybrid does 60 mpg and the plug-in hybrid does up to 40 miles as an EV
Niro charges nine minutes faster than before, has a larger trunk, a frunk (front trunk) for cables, plus a three-prong outlet

4

Niro charges nine minutes faster than before, has a larger trunk, a frunk (front trunk) for cables, plus a three-prong outlet
It also has comfy seats, giant cup holders, Apple CarPlay, wireless phone charging and much more

4

It also has comfy seats, giant cup holders, Apple CarPlay, wireless phone charging and much more

Ten things you should know as a car owner

!function(f,b,e,v,n,t,s){if(f.fbq)return;n=f.fbq=function(){n.callMethod?
n.callMethod.apply(n,arguments):n.queue.push(arguments)};if(!f._fbq)f._fbq=n;
n.push=n;n.loaded=!0;n.version=’2.0′;n.queue=[];t=b.createElement(e);t.async=!0;
t.src=v;s=b.getElementsByTagName(e)[0];s.parentNode.insertBefore(t,s)}(window,
document,’script’,’https://connect.facebook.net/en_US/fbevents.js’);
fbq(‘init’, ‘752905198150451’);
fbq(‘track’, “PageView”);