Kia will be bringing significant updates to its Niro hybrids at the Geneva Motor Show next week.
Both the Niro Hybrid and Niro Plug-in Hybrid adopt refreshed styling inspired by the e-Niro electric vehicle (aka Niro EV in North America), improved interior materials, and new interior color options. In addition, the facelifted Niro models get Kia’s new UVO Connect telematics system.
On the outside, the 2019MY Niro hybrids gain new bumpers, redesigned headlights featuring an “ice-cube” design (optionally available as full LED), new LED DRLs with a unique double-arrow layout, as well as optional LED fog lamps. At the rear, the crossovers adopt redesigned LED taillights, a silver skid plate, and new light reflectors and rear fog lamps.
The Niro Hybrid offers a choice of two 16-inch alloy wheel designs, as well as an all-new 18-inch dual-tone diamond-cut rim. The Niro Plug-in Hybrid features new 16-inch alloys with dark grey inserts.
Inside, Kia says both Niro models now offer a more upscale atmosphere with enhanced quality. The top of the dashboard gets a soft-touch coating, while the dash and instrument panel gain new gloss black trim with silver or satin chrome highlights. An 8.0-inch touchscreen infotainment system and 4.2-inch TFT instrument binnacle are offered as standard, with a 10.25-inch touchscreen and 7.0-inch digital instrument cluster being available.
The Niro range also gains two color packs for the 2019 model year in Europe: Red-Orange or Plum. Other modifications include the adoption of paddle shifters for the six-speed dual-clutch transmission and a new electronic parking brake with larger rear brakes.
The UVO Connect telematics system becomes available on the Niro hybrids. Compatible with the optional 10.25-inch touchscreen and a smartphone, UVO connect offers access to live traffic information, weather forecasts, POIs, fuel prices, parking, charging station information, and more.
The upgraded Niro range also sees the introduction of new active safety tech such as Stop & Go functionality for the Smart Cruise Control system and Lane Following Assist.
No changes are made to the powertrains, which combine a 1.6-liter GDi gasoline engine with a 1.56 kWh lithium-ion polymer battery in the Niro Hybrid and the same ICE with an 8.9 kWh battery in the Plug-in Hybrid. The Hybrid’s CO2 emissions are as low as 99.8 g/km (WLTP combined cycle) while the Niro Plug-in Hybrid is rated at 31.3 g/km. The PHEV can be driven in EV mode for up to 49 km (30 miles).
Kia will start European sales of the Niro Hybrid and Niro Plug-in Hybrid start during the second quarter of 2019.