The 2023 Kia Niro debuts at the New York auto show with available hybrid, plug-in hybrid, and EV powertrains.
The 2023 Kia Niro Hybrid advertises 588 miles per tank of fuel.
The second-generation Niro hits US dealers this summer.
Everyone knew the second-generation Niro was coming, but it wasn’t exactly clear which forms, and what powertrains were headed stateside. Well, those questions are all put to rest at this year’s New York auto show. The upcoming Kia Niro will be available as a hybrid, plug-in hybrid, and battery-electric vehicle when it hits dealers this summer.
Starting from the bottom, the entry-level Niro sports a standard hybrid powertrain that combines a 1.6-liter I4 with a 32-kW electric motor to make 139 hp and 195 lb-ft of torque. Stepping up, the plug-in hybrid features a similar 1.6-liter mill with a more powerful 62-kW electric motor to crank the figures to 180 hp and 195 lb-ft of torque. The all-electric Niro uses a 64.8-kWh battery to feed a 150-kW electric motor. For those curious, that translates to 201 hp.
Of course, these powertrains are more than just the horsepower and torque figures. Kia expects its hybrid Niro to return an impressive 588 miles per tank of fuel and 53 combined miles per gallon. The plug-in hybrid Niro can eschew using fuel for 33 miles. The all-electric Niro is targeting 253 miles per charge, and Kia is offering an optional heat pump and battery warmer to preserve range in cold-weather climates.
Joining every Kia Niro is an expanded safety suite. While this is common, it’s still worth noting the upcoming Niro will feature a forward-collision avoidance system, lane-keep assist, and a blind-spot collision avoidance system. The Niro will also include Kia’s driver attention warning to let you know when you’re tired and a safe-exit warning to let you know when it's unsafe to open a door and exit your vehicle. You can tack on Kia’s Smart Cruise Control with Stop & Go for an extra charge.
All of this fits under the reshaped sheetmetal for ’23. Kia teased the overall shape of this new Niro with its aggressive HabaNiro concept from 2019, though this Niro doesn’t have the outlandish door openings. While it doesn’t have everything from the wild HabaNiro concept, the styling does look significantly more modern and mature than the outgoing Niro.
Kia hasn’t mentioned price but does note that the Niro EV does qualify for the $7,500 federal tax credit to help ease the upcoming sticker shock. Considering the constantly evolving new-car marketplace, you can be nearly certain the Niro’s price is going up when this starts rolling into Kia showrooms later this summer.
Do you think the new Niro will sway buyers away from other compact crossovers? Let us know your thoughts below.