Posts Tagged ‘kia niro hybrid’
Kia Motors has always been an automaker quick to embrace change it seems. Their lineup is one of the most expansive and welcoming of alternative fuel vehicles. They have the Kia Soul EV, the Kia Niro hybrid, and Kia Niro Hybrid Plug-in. The 2020 Kia Telluride went into production, and one day Kia Motors spoke of turning it into a hybrid SUV. We thought Kia was going to take a break from alternative fuel after they made a lot of commotion at the 2018 Los Angeles Auto Show with the 2020 Kia Soul EV, and the 2019 Kia Niro EV finding its way to city streets soon enough. Why take a break with all that success? Kia Motors teases a new electric concept for the 2019 Geneva Motor Show.
That’s right, Kia Motors is also bringing a new concept to Geneva. Oddly enough, Kia Motors in Mitsubishi Motors seem to be in-sync these days. Both automakers brought new autonomous technology to the 2019 Consumer Electronics Show, and now Kia will be debuting a new model at the 2019 Geneva International Motor Show alongside Mitsubishi. Maybe it’s just a coincidence?
During fall of 2018, we received more news about the three Kia Niro crossovers. There’s the original Kia Niro hybrid crossover, released in 2017, followed by the Kia Niro plug-in hybrid crossover by the end of 2018. Coming soon is an all-electric version of the Kia Niro, the Kia Niro EV. We got some great news about the interior of the Kia Niro EV and its all-electric range. Now with news about its recent recordings for the Europe model, we wonder if Kia Motors is still running tests and optimizing this electric crossover, or have the numbers for the U.S. been solidified?
Last time we discussed the Kia Niro EV, the powertrain had changed a bit from its original debut. For the Niro EV, Kia developed a next-generation electric vehicle powertrain with two options for consumers to choose from. The standard setup was a 39.2 kWh battery system that can travel 150 miles emissions free, but consumers can opt-in for the high-capacity 64 kWh lithium-polymer battery pack for 280 miles! That’s pretty great for an electric vehicle.
When we said Kia Motors is Quickly Becoming the Safest Car Brand in America, we weren’t kidding. Back then, Kia Motors had just been ranked as one of 2018’s “Most Trusted Automotive Brands” by AMCI Global, a reliable name in the industry, and their Cadenza mid-size car was named by U.S. News & World Report on their list for “The Safest Cars of 2018”. With studies continuing to conclude into the summer as we hit the middle of the year, more vehicles are being analyzed for technology, affordability, style, and safety. Most recently, two names we’ve been hearing a lot, the U.S. News & World Report and the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety have both named two more Kia vehicles for their safety features and security.
2018 Kia Niro Hybrid and the IIHS
Well, this is a surprise, though we’re not actually surprised. With all the acknowledgements Kia Motors has been winning, and with their award-winning lineup of vehicles of all sizes and fuel types, the Kia Niro hybrid crossover is not only the first hybrid crossover in the world but also one of the vehicles that is putting Kia Motors in top honors with big names like J.D. Power and Associates. We also know that the Kia Niro was recently named as a “Great First Time Alternative Fuel Vehicle” by U.S. News & World Report.
Now, the Kia Niro has just earned its first-ever Top Safety Pick+ from the IIHS. Only in its second model year, this is quite the achievement, much of which can be attested to its high-strength structure and optional add-ons for visibility and safety. Remember, for a vehicle to earn a Top Safety Pick+, a vehicle must receive good ratings in all six crashworthiness tests conducted by the IIHS – driver- and passenger-side small overlap front, moderate overlap front, side, roof strength, head restraints, and seats. They must also receive an advanced or superior rating in the crash avoidance and mitigation category, and good rated headlights.
A little while after Kia Motors released the Kia Niro, a hybrid crossover, they also started to tease the upcoming 2018 Kia Stonic and a plug-in hybrid variant of the Niro. There was no set release date, really very little talk about a Niro plug-in hybrid electric vehicle (PHEV), so Kia Motors pulled a fast one when they released the 2018 Kia Niro PHEV over the holiday break. Now officially a part of the lineup, the Niro isn’t the only great crossover hybrid anymore.
The 2018 Kia Niro Plug-in Hybrid
Whenever a vehicle is called a plug-in hybrid, that means the vehicle can operate solely on gas from the internal combustion engine, an electric motor powered by a battery, or a combination of both. Because of that, the Niro PHEV has a larger battery than its counterpart, the Kia Niro. The Niro is equipped with a a 1.56 kWh lithium-ion polymer battery, whereas the Niro PHEV has an 8.9 kWh battery powering its motor. The internal combustion engine found in the Niro is the same engine in the Niro PHEV. Together, the engine and the motor produce 139 horsepower combined and 195 lb-ft of torque.
Kia has been kicking some auto industry butt hasn’t it? When they unleashed the Kia Stinger, we were all pretty impressed. Then came the Niro, a hybrid crossover, and we were happy to see another green vehicle. Now they’ve unveiled a Kia Niro PHEV, and we couldn’t be more stoked about its debut.
When turning a hybrid vehicle into a plug-in hybrid electric vehicle (PHEV), two of the biggest changes is how you charge the battery and the size of the battery itself. In terms of the Kia Niro PHEV, the vehicle gets a bigger 8.9 kWh battery. The battery will be paired with its standard 1.6-liter gasoline direct injection engine, and due to a larger battery, its electric-only driving range is currently said to lie somewhere between 25-34 miles on a single charge in tandem with regenerative braking.
PHEVs tend to have two or three charging ports, with the third usually set up to charge a majority of the battery in half an hour. There is no word on the set up the Kia Niro PHEV will have yet, but rest assured it will have the usual Level 1 (120v) charging port for overnight charging and a Level 2 (240v) charging port for quicker (about 3 hours is the standard) charging at public stations. Although not a lot of news on the PHEV yet, there is one surprise Kia gave us that might interest crossover drivers that use it to carry equipment.
Crossovers and types of alternative fuel are the future of the automarket. CUVs not only offer safety and capability, but today they also offer convenience, entertainment, and fuel efficiency. With vehicles like the new 2018 Kia Niro, a hybrid that may also be available as a PHEV in the future, it seems that automakers are combining CUVs and alternative fuel technologies to create the perfect vehicle.
Kia has several hybrid and electric vehicles in the lineup – Kia Optima Hybrid, Kia Optima Plug-in Hybrid (PHEV), Kia Soul EV, and the all-new Kia Niro. The specs aren’t definite for the Niro PHEV, however it was debuted at the 2017 Geneva Motor Show, and many were given a glimpse of what it could be capable of. Let’s take a look at the Kia Optima PHEV and see if Kia really made a crossover PHEV that can match a sedan PHEV.
Kia Optima PHEV
The third variation of the Kia Optima, the Optima PHEV is powered by a 2.0-liter GDI engine and an electric motor that is powered by a 9.8 kWh lithium polymer battery. This is known as a full parallel hybrid system, and its combined battery and engine power produce 202 horsepower with an amazing fuel economy – 38 miles in the city, 43 miles on the highway. That’s just the beginning of its capabilities though.’
Kia has been coming out with a lot of new vehicles lately. This year we were treated to the debut of the Kia Stinger, and at SEMA, we got a glimpse of some autonomous vehicles Kia is developing. However, until autonomous vehicles become the norm, automakers need to focus on where the money is, and right now that’s crossovers, SUVs, and hybrids. No wonder Kia has four of their own, including the 2017 Kia Niro Hybrid Crossover.
SO, where did it all start? We’re thinking the Kia Optima Hybrid set the stage, a variation of the original Optima, followed by the Optima PHEV and Kia Soul EV – another variation of an original model. The 2017 Kia Niro is the most recent of the trend.
Kia Optima Hybrids
The 2017 Kia Optima Hybrid and PHEV are both variations of the original Kia Optima. They may look the same and share similar characteristics, but the powertrain is much different. Starting with the Kia Optima Hybrid, a 2.0-liter I4 Full Parallel Hybrid System runs things with a 2.0-liter GDI engine with CVVT and a 38 kW motor powered by a 1.76 kWh lithium polymer battery. It may not seem like much, but the engine designs GDI and CVVT completely change the game.
“GDI” stands for gasoline direct injection, a type of fuel injection system that injects highly pressurized fuel directly into the cylinders of an engine during the combustion cycle. Due to its resulting optimization of horsepower and fuel economy, it’s starting to replace other injection systems. “CVVT”, or Continuously Variable Valve Timing, like “CVT” transmission, can alter the timing of air intake and exhaust valve lift events to suit all speeds and conditions, without losing fuel or power. Together, this leads to a total output of 193-horsepower for the Kia Optima Hybrid, with a fuel economy of 39/46 mpg city/highway.
Unlike the Kia Optima Hybrid, that relies on regenerative braking to charge the battery (a process of transferring the power used to top a vehicle (braking) into a generator for the electric motor), the Kia Optima PHEV is a plug-in hybrid-electric vehicle. This means drivers can rely on regenerative braking or just charge the battery via an electrical outlet/charging station. With that comes the ability to drive on electricity-alone with zero emissions.
The Kia Optima PHEV is powered by a 156-hp 2.0-liter GDI engine and a 50 kW electric motor, powered by a 9.8 kWh lithium-ion polymer battery pack. The combined fuel economy currently sits at 40 mpg, and that’s when it is in hybrid mode. If running on electricity-alone, drivers can cover over 30 miles before needing power from the engine. It has three ways to charge the battery: regenerative braking, a Level 1 (120v) charger that receives a full charge in 9 hours, and a Level 2 (240v) charger for use at public station to charge up in less than 3 hours.
Breaking a record in the Guinness Book of World Records used to be a huge thing back in the day. Kinda like setting the new high score on old arcade games, it was always a source of pride for those who achieved them. Today, it might seem like getting in the Guinness Book for a record is a thing of the past, but that doesn’t mean people or companies have stopped trying. Take the Kia Niro for instance – it just set earned the Guinness World Record title for the lowest fuel consumption driving across the U.S. from coast to coast in a hybrid car.
The Niro crossover will be Kia’s first dedicated hybrid automobile, and although they have yet to be released, drivers and Kia fans will be pleased to know that the fancy CUV shown off at SEMA has a hybrid version with as much bark as bite. With an EPA-estimated 50 mpg combined, that’s enough to set it apart from other hybrids in its class. In fact, to make things official, Kia got together with Guinness and created a new record category just for this – a sort of “come at me bro” from Kia to the rest of the auto industry.