The new 2017 KIA Niro breaks ground as the 1st dedicated hybrid crossover SUV. In other words, there’s no gasoline variant of Niro. This new model now enters the world’s limited roster of dedicated hybrids in which Hyundai Ioniq and Toyota Prius get a fair play.
Given the rising popularity of crossover utility vehicles, KIA Niro might find its audience among fanatics of small SUVs who crave for high fuel efficiency. This 2017 Niro now comes in 4 different levels. This levels are base FE, mid-level EX and LX, and range-topping Touring.
This 2017 KIA Niro uses a 1.6-liter 4-cylinder engine with direct injection that produces a maximum power output of 104 HP and a torque of 195 lb-ft. Then there’s a 32 kW (43 HP) electric motor which uses a 1.6 kWh lithium-ion battery pack that is placed under the rear seat.
Like all hybrids, this 2017 Niro can run on the combination of engine and electric power. During braking and engine overrun, the motor acts as a generator to the recapture the otherwise wasted energy. With a 6-speed direct shift automatic gearbox and a front wheel drive, the combined EPA ratings range from 43 mpg to 50 mpg. According to KIA officials, this engine is tuned to use the highly efficient Atkinson Cycle to put out almost 30% thermal efficiency.
There are 2 driving modes in the new KIA Niro; Eco and Sport. While the Sport mode allows the driver to go completely nuts on exhilarating performance, the Eco mode concentrates on fuel savings.
Exterior Styling and Updates
The new 2017 KIA Niro mates upscale style with an athletic appeal to push the limits of what a hybrid can be. This model’s overall design is adopted to make the most out of aerodynamics as it has been meticulously sculpted to minimize drag. Coefficient rates at an impressive 0.29 Cd.
Up in the front, Niro’s nose is low, wide and swept back. The grille’s design and shape is minimalistic with chrome highlights on the borders. Headlight’s design beef up the hood which project a muscular appeal. These revised headlights consist of HID projectors, turn signals and LED daytime running lights.
2017 KIA Niro Interior
The interior cabin is comfortable for 4 to ride in but can even handle 5 passengers. This cabin is also good at suppressing engine and road noise. The front seats offer heating as optional on the base model and standard in some higher trims. The driver’s seat also allows a 10-way power adjustment and the IMS (Integrated Memory System) remembers previously adjusted settings.
Safety and Price
2017 Niro does great on safety as well. Its Iso-Structure construction itself is designed to be shock absorbent. This hybrid crossover comes standard with 7 airbags and a rear-view camera. Other optional safety features include – Blind Spot Monitoring, Adaptive Cruise Control, Automatic Crash Braking, Parking Sensors and Lane Departure Warning.
Pricing for this 2017 KIA Niro starts from $23,000 for the FE trim while the range-topping Touring costs almost $32,000.