2018 Kia Niro Plug-In Hybrid Crossover Makes Debut at LA Auto Show
Revealed by Kia Motors at the Los Angeles Auto Show, the 2018 Kia Niro Plug-In Hybrid (PHEV) looks and feels a lot like the Kia Niro Hybrid, yet it features some exceptional attributes making it a standout in Kia Motors’ lineup of alternative-fuel vehicles.
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According to Kia, the 2018 Niro Plug-In Hybrid (PHEV) boasts a remarkable estimated 26 miles of All-Electric Range, a high-voltage battery capacity +7.34 kWH greater than the Niro Hybrid, a 105 MPGe rating, and an “8.9 kWh (59 kW) lithium-polymer battery pack and a powerful 60 horsepower (44.5 kW) electric motor. Plus, it features an output of zero emissions when set to all-electric mode.
The crossover also features a 1.6-liter GDI (gasoline direct injection) four-cylinder engine, which is mated to a six-speed dual-clutch automatic transmission (DCT); this powertrain can generate 139 horsepower and 195 lb-ft of torque.
Unique to the 2018 Niro PHEV are hybrid blue exterior accents, a charge port door on the left front fender, “ECO/Plug-In” badges, an available 7-inch color meter cluster with digital tachometer, and available LED headlamps, as well as Driver-Only Air Conditioning, an energy-saving system designed to force cool air only in the driver’s direction.
“The Niro Plug-in is the exciting next step in Kia’s progression toward offering more alternative fuel vehicles by 2020,” said Orth Hedrick, vice president, product planning, Kia Motors America (KMA). “Consumers who are intrigued by the Niro hybrid’s fantastic versatility and design, but want even more EcoDynamics technology and the ability to drive only using electric power, will find more to love in the Niro Plug-in Hybrid.”
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The Niro PHEV features three trim options — LX, EX, and EX Premium — room for five, and standard driver assist technologies such as Smart Cruise Control (SCC), Forward Collision Warning (FCW), Lane Keep Assist System (LKAS), and Autonomous Emergency Braking (AEB).
“The Niro Plug-in Hybrid also includes UVO eco which extends Kia’s award-winning connectivity service by offering convenience and safety features tailored to eco-minded drivers. With UVO eco, drivers can remotely monitor and charge their vehicle’s high-voltage battery; setup charging schedules to take advantage of off-peak utility rates; preset the vehicle’s cabin temperature, turn on window defrosters, and heat the steering wheel, lock or unlock doors, and find their vehicle from their smartphone or web enabled device,” reports Kia.
Available driver assist technologies in the Niro PHEV include Lane Change Assist (LCA), Blind Spot Detection (BSD) with Rear Cross Traffic Alert (RCTA), and rear and front parking sensors.
According to Kia, the 2018 Niro PHEV should be hitting showrooms by the close of 2017.