Kia Niro Hybrid

Kia Niro review (2016-2022)

The Kia Niro is a family hatchback with an SUV look, lots of interior space and hybrid or pure-electric power. It’s excellent value and all versions give you low running costs.

Pros

  • Low running costs
  • Lots of standard equipment
  • Plenty of passenger space

Cons

  • Smaller than average boot
  • Styling is a little unexciting
  • Not as fun to drive as some rivals

Summary

"A practical family car that's great value and cost-effective to own."

By Cazoo editorial team

The Kia Niro is a family hatchback that gives you SUV-style looks and a roomy interior within a fairly compact package. It feels well built and has lots of standard equipment, including an easy-to-use touchscreen infotainment system with support for Apple CarPlay and Android Auto.


All Niro models are either hybrids or fully electric. The Niro hybrid models give you responsive performance and low emissions, while the e-Niro pure electric model has zero tailpipe emissions and is one of the best-value electric cars around.

We're focusing here on the first-generation Kia Niro, which was introduced in 2016 and replaced by an all-new model in 2022.

What's the interior like?

"Good space for passengers and lots of useful equipment as standard."

Inside, the Niro is quite traditionally designed, but it does feel solidly built. The dashboard is angled towards the driver, which helps you minimise the time you spend distracted from the road ahead when using the large centrally mounted infotainment system. This touchscreen system is intuitive, which is an added bonus.

A wide range of seat and steering wheel adjustment controls make it easy to get comfortable, and there’s good headroom and legroom for five passengers, making the Niro a good choice for families.

The self-charging (conventional) hybrid version has a 437-litre boot capacity, which is better than you’d get in an ordinary family hatchback such as a Ford Focus, but less than mid-size SUVs such as than you’d find in either the Peugeot 3008 or Skoda Karoq. Owing to where its batteries are placed, the plug-in hybrid version has a smaller 324-litre boot capacity. The fully-electric e-Niro version offers the most, at 451 litres.

The Niro was updated in 2019 with a slightly redesigned interior. Higher-spec models received a larger 10-inch infotainment screen. Some higher-spec versions also have a digital display in place of the traditional dials.

What's it like to drive?

"The Niro gives you a smooth and low-stress driving experience, whichever model you go for."

The Niro is a comfortable car rather than one which offers a particularly sporty driving experience. But if you’re in the market for a hybrid SUV, then driving fun probably isn’t your top priority. Where the Niro excels is in the smoothness of the driving experience – both plug-in hybrid and self-charging hybrid models switch seamlessly between electric and petrol power, helped along by a smooth and quiet automatic gearbox. This means that even busy urban traffic is a much less stressful experience in a Niro.

Standard-fit parking sensors and a rear-view camera make manoeuvring in tight spaces easier, too.

Plug-in hybrid versions can travel up to 36 miles on pure-electric power according to official figures, but what you get in real-world driving will depend on your driving habits and the level of battery charge when you set off. The fully electric e-Niro can manage up to 280 miles on a single charge, depending on which version you choose.

Is it cost-efficient to buy and run?

"Hybrid or electric power and strong value for money make the Niro a cost-effective choice."

Kia Niros are priced competitively compared with other hybrid SUVs, although conventionally engined rivals such as the Skoda Karoq can be less expensive. However, low emissions for the hybrid mean reasonably low tax costs – and there is no vehicle tax at all until 2025 for the fully electric e-Niro.

Fuel efficiency should be impressive whichever model you choose. The self-charging hybrid has an official average of nearly 60mpg. The plug-in hybrid version has an official average of over 200mpg, but what you get in the real-world will depend on your driving and charging habits. For the lowest potential running costs and the least environmental impact, the fully electric e-Niro is the one to pick.

An easier way to find or sell a car

You’ll find lots of used cars for sale at Cazoo, all available to buy through our trusted dealers.

Cazoo makes selling a car just as easy – just enter a few details for an instant online valuation. If you accept the offer our partners will get in touch to arrange payment and collection of your car at a time that suits you.

Which one is best for you?

You have a choice of self-charging hybrid, plug-in hybrid or pure electric power, all of which deliver low running costs . And if you are looking to buy a used electric car, then the e-Niro is one of the best options, offering lots of interior space and an impressive 280-mile range.

The Niro comes with plenty of standard equipment whichever trim level you go for, including a reversing camera, dual-zone climate control, DAB radio and smartphone integration, and all but the base-level trim has integrated sat nav.

If your budget can stretch to it, there are models with more equipment, such as a larger infotainment screen, keyless entry, a heated steering wheel and an electric sunroof.

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