PostHeaderIcon Kia is Looking to Electrify the Niro Crossover

Kia recently opened a new flagship dealership in London and at the grand opening, Chief Operating Officer – Tae-Hyun Oh – spoke on the Niro and the possibility of its electric future. Since the Niro’s debut in Europe and the U.S. in August of this year, Kia has taken more than 1.000 orders for it, which in itself could be enough to convince the brand to go all electric. During an interview on the scene with Car Dealer Magazine, Oh said, “We have just launched Niro in Europe and the United States, but also we always need to meet [increased] local emission regulations. So, in this sense, we are looking at a feasibility study to develop a Niro which is electric.”

Kia’s sister company, Hyundai, already has the Hyundai Ioniq that will launch as a hybrid, plug-in hybrid, and an EV. So, Kia doesn’t have to spend too much in research and development to make an all-electric Niro happen. Oh went on to discuss that Kia is looking to avoid sticking to one kind of tech and expand its reach considerably. With a hybrid, and a plug-in hybrid already under the companies belt to go with the Soul EV, Kia has most bases covered, but Oh admitted that the brand is prepared to create a hydrogen-powered vehicle as well, saying, “In the coming years we are prepared to launch a fuel cell. In this sense, I think we are at a good stage to cover everything in the sector.”

It’s pretty clear that Kia has the ambition to really up its alternative-fuel game, but it’s still got some work to do to compete with the big players. But, that work is already underway as it has been said that the Soul will be taking a major update for 2018 that will significantly improve its all-electric range. The current model pulls about 93 miles on a full charge, but Kia is looking to compete with longer-range models like the Chevy Bolt and the Tesla Model 3. The all-electric Ioniq from Hyundai will hit U.S. dealers by the end of the year with a 28 kWh battery and a range of 110 miles.


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