2022 Kia Niro Electric Crossover Revealed
The new, second-generation Kia Niro, one of Europe’s most popular crossovers, was introduced at the Seoul Motor Show, with a dramatic new look on the inside and exterior.
Six years after the current-generation Niro debuted, the new Niro has been unveiled for the first time, demonstrating how the Nissan Juke competitor has been brought in line with Kia’s developed design language.
The 2022 Kia Niro is heavily influenced by Kia’s eccentric HabaNiro concept from 2019, with a distinctive two-tone colour scheme, tough 4×4-inspired design cues, and a fresh version of the company’s famous ‘tiger face’ grille. The hefty C-pillar, which is believed to assist aerodynamics and contains boomerang-shaped rear light clusters similar to those found on sibling company Hyundai’s new Bayon, is a distinguishing feature.
Aerodynamics are being prioritized as part of a larger effort to improve the Niro’s efficiency and sustainability credentials. The new cabin is primarily made of recycled materials – the headlining is made of recycled wallpaper, and the chairs use eucalyptus leaf fibers – and the door panels are covered in water-based paint that is devoid of BTX petrochemicals.
The asymmetrical center console and dashboard show the influence of Kia’s latest models. An electronic gearshift dial, ambient mood lighting, and thin, lightweight front seat designs with a coat rack below the headrests are among the significant upgrades from the previous model.
Kia has announced that, as the current model, the new Niro will be available with hybrid, plug-in hybrid, and pure-electric powertrains. It will, however, be distinct from the company’s range of ‘EV’-badged customized electric cars and will not use the E-GMP platform designated for those models. The existing e-single-motor, Niro’s front-wheel-drive engine is likely to evolve, while the shorter-range car may be retired due to increased demand for the 454km, 64kWh battery option.
Kia has previously confirmed that the plug-in hybrid car now utilizes data from the navigation system to transition between combustion and EV power when appropriate – turning down the engine outside schools, for example – with efficiency and performance benefits predicted across the range. The 1.6-liter petrol engine now utilized in the combustion-powered Niro models will almost certainly be retained, although it will not provide the same 265hp total output as the new Sportage PHEV.
The 2022 Kia Niro is slated to arrive in India, although in all-electric form. Kia and its sibling company Hyundai plan to release up to six all-electric cars (three each) by 2024. These include the purpose-designed Kia EV6 and Hyundai Ioniq 5 – both based on the automaker’s new E-GMP platform – as well as made-for-India mass-market EVs set to arrive in 2024.
The 2022 Kia Niro electric, like the Hyundai Kona Electric, is planned to be built on a CKD platform and will be on sale in 2023.