Are you in the market for an affordable vehicle that is a plug-in hybrid, it is an ideal city vehicle, great on gas, and just enough to take you around to run errands? Then say no more because the 2023 Kia Niro PHEV is a great option.
The 2023 Kia Niro Phev has a 1.6 GDI 4-cylinder engine that is assisted by a plug-in hybrid electric powertrain. It produces a combined 180hp and 195lb-ft of torque (134 kW & 264 Nm). The Niro Phev is equipped with a 11.1kWh battery which is larger than last year’s model and has an electric only range of about 55km (34 miles). 0-60 mph (96 km/hr) is done in a little over 7 seconds. During my time with the Niro Phev, I averaged 3.6 L/100km (65 MPG) but it is rated for 4.8 L/100km (49 MPG) gasoline only and 2.1 Le/100km (112 MPGe) combined. The Kia Niro Phev is paired with a 6-speed DCT and is a front wheel drive only crossover.
If you were expecting an exciting drive, then this isn’t it. It’s far from an engaging drive. This is a very practical car and is easy to maneuver around the city. This is a perfect car for commuting to and from work and running errands. From a stop, the Niro Phev does not pick up speed quite fast but once you are on a highway and need to overtake a vehicle, you can do so but you need to double check your distance as it still won’t be as fast as you’d want. Although the Kia Niro Phev has a sport mode, I honestly was not able to tell a whole lot of difference other than a slight difference when accelerating. But then again, if you are looking at the Kia Niro Phev as an option, I would assume an engaging ride is not a priority. The Niro Phev has really strong brakes and so there is no issue if you need to brake suddenly. I do like the regenerative brakes on EV vehicles but I found it a bit odd with the Niro Phev. You have 3 levels to chose from, but I kept it at level 2. Level 3 just felt too jerky, and you had to release the gas pedal extra slow otherwise it almost felt like a manual car on 1st gear at super slow speeds. If you know, you know what I mean by that.
The 2023 Kia Niro Phev is comfortable enough to sit for a couple hours. The front seats are manually adjustable so nothing too fancy going on, but it can be adjusted to meet your seating position needs. Back seats have decent space for your legs. It will not feel so squished, and headroom is also decent. Of course, this is dependent on your height so I would say anyone that is average height will have no issues fitting in the back. Road noise is minimum when cruising on a highway, the only bit of noise you will hear louder is the engine when you accelerate harder.
The interior of the Niro Phev is not as luxurious but has some features that make it feel less basic. It is equipped with a 10.25-inch touchscreen with navigation, it has a wireless cellphone charger, and push button start. The Niro Phev has quite a few features that would normally be considered luxury such as heated steering wheel, leatherette & cloth seats, dual climate control, and a few others. The only downside of it was the manual seat adjuster for the front seats. The touchscreen is user friendly and the access to the climate control, media and navigation is quick with just one touch to the panel to switch between all three.
The Kia Niro has an interesting look, I don’t love it but I also don’t hate it. It does have a nice look to it, and I think it looks great in black or interstellar grey. It does not look like it is from outer space like most new EV vehicles so that is a win-win for me. It also does not sit so low to the ground, so it is easier to get in and out of the Niro. It is equipped with 16-inch alloy wheels. It has LED daytime running lights in the front and LED taillights which adds a nice touch.
The starting price for a 2023 Kia Niro Phev EX is $37,995 CAD ($33,840 USD). Overall, the Kia Niro Phev is a great crossover SUV. It is priced affordably for a plug-in hybrid, it is great to drive around town, it looks and feels great both on the inside and outside. After a week of driving the Niro Phev, I am still not a fan about its looks, but I did enjoy driving on electricity only to and from work and using gasoline for longer drives. It is cheap on gas. Cargo space is just about right for a small family or for singles, it has got plenty of features that you need and want in a new car. EV vehicles are not on the cheap side, and if you are wanting one but are on a budget, the next best thing would be a plug-in hybrid. The only downside I found on the Niro Phev was the amount of power it has and that it does not have an AWD option. A little more power and an AWD would make it a perfect affordable plug-in hybrid in my opinion.
Thank you to Kia Canada for providing the vehicle. www.Kia.ca