Kia Niro hybrid and PHEV refreshed with Niro EV's looks and tech for Geneva

1 March 2019 - autoblog

Kia Niro hybrid and PHEV refreshed with Niro EV's looks and tech for Geneva

And we're eager to get a look at the Plum interior

Two years ago, Kia unveiled the Niro hybrid at the Geneva Motor Show. This year, Kia will bring updated versions of the Niro hybrid and PHEV to Geneva, putting the battery electric crossovers under the influence of the Niro EV.

The powertrains don't change, but the looks do. New projector headlights adopt what Kia calls its "ice cube" design above a new bumper. The DRLs turn into double arrows beneath, mimicking the single arrow DRL on the Niro EV. LED fog lights are optional. In back, new LED taillights pair with new light reflectors and rear fog lamps that sit between a silver skid plate. Two new 16-inch wheel designs will be standard fit, a new 18-inch wheel on the options sheet.

The interior get a serious spruce in color and technology, especially with the optional color packs. A soft-touch coating covers the instrument panel, gloss black or satin chrome highlight the rest of the cabin. Paddle shifters for the six-speed double-clutch have been grafted onto the steering wheel. The handbrake lever gives way to an electronic parking brake, and there are larger rear brake discs.

Depending on market, Kia will offer Red-Orange or Plum color packs. The former merely splashes hues about the cabin, as in the red contrast stitching and red-orange dash trim. Plum turns the interior fruity, adding perforated plum-colored leather to the seats, "warm purple stitching," and a plum armrest on the doors.

Standard digital touches include a 4.2-inch TFT screen in the binnacle, and an eight-inch infotainment screen. The optional system installs a seven-inch TFT panel in the binnacle and a 10.25-inch TFT infotainment window. That upgraded spec will run Kia's new Uvo Connect, which uses a SIM card to retrieve and update live data.

The lengthy list of driver assistance and safety features Kia's known for welcomes two optional features. The new adaptive cruise control adds a stop and go function, able to restart on its own after stopping in traffic. Lane Following Assist will follow the vehicle in front.

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