Kia e-Niro (2019) Review

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Kia e-Niro (2019) At A Glance


+Desirable electric crossover SUV. Very spacious. Impressive 282-mile range. Seven-year warranty.

-Expensive compared to the Hyundai Kona Electric and Nissan Leaf. Demand is likely to exceed supply.

Insurance Group 28

Just like the closely-related Hyundai Kona Electric, the Kia e-Niro is causing ripples in the electric car world. It's bigger than the Kona - more of a rival to the Nissan Qashqai and SEAT Ateca - but shares its 59kWh electric motor and can cover an impressive 282 miles between charges.

Unlike the Hyundai Kona Electric, Kia's not offering a lower-powered version of the e-Niro in the UK - and, for the time being, it's only available in one 'First Edition' trim level. As a result, it's a fair bit more expensive than the Kona, not to mention other electric vehicles like the Nissan Leaf and Volkswagen e-Golf.

You can see where your money is going, though. Its interior feels distinctly premium - more convincingly so than the Kona Electric. It's also well-equipped, with standard equipment including adaptive cruise control, a premium sound system and leather upholstery.

The e-Niro's boxy dimensions means there's plenty of space for four adults, with plenty of head, leg and shoulder room. The boot is usefully big and square in shape, with access easier than the Kona Electric.

To drive, the e-Niro's acceleration from low speed is impressive. As soon as you hit the accelerator pedal, it surges forward with no hesistancy. That's a perk of electric cars - you don't need to wait for the automatic gearbox to select the right gear or for the revs to build. It will just go, running from 0-62mph in 7.8 seconds. You do have to be careful not to spin the front wheels, however, even in the dry. 

It's a heavy SUV and, as such, it's not the most nimblest of handlers - but it's eager enough to change direction and it doesn't lean too much under cornering.

The e-Niro is at its best in town, where good visibility (aided by standard parking sensors and reversing camera) makes it easy to squeeze in and out of spaces.

What's most impressive about the e-Niro is Kia has beaten the more mainstream manufacturers to producing a genuinely useable electric car. It's practical enough for day-to-day family use, doesn't feel like a compromise to drive (actually it's quite fun) and represents reasonable value for money. Its closest competitor is the Hyundai Kona Electric, but both are subtly different enough to cater for different markets.

Looking for a Kia e-Niro (2019 on)?
Register your interest for later or request to be contacted by a dealer to talk through your options now.

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Ask Honest John

What's the best small, electric 4x4?
"I'm planning to use our 2008 Mini Cooper Clubman for a deposit on an electric 4x4, some kind of lease deal. The question is, what 4x4 do we need? We share our time between London and rural Suffolk, and the lanes have been particularly muddy and icy of late. It would also need to transport two cocker spaniels and have enough room in the back for baby seats as we have grandchildren (dogs and children not necessarily at the same time as we have access to other cars). So, as small as possible, decent off-road ability and ground clearance, funky, and able to travel between London and Suffolk easily in terms of range. Thanks."
The Jaguar I-Pace might do the job. It has an official range of up to 292 miles and is a fairly practical choice, but it's not cheap. Also consider the Audi e-tron or Mercedes EQC. Alternatively, if you're happy to compromise on the 4x4 requirement, consider the Peugeot e-2008 or Kia e-Niro. Both are very versatile small electric crossovers.
Answered by Andrew Brady
What winter or all-season tyres should I put on my electric car?
"I live in an area of Wales where we can get quite a lot of snow and ice in the winter. I have previously had 4x4s and fitted winter tyres but now have a Kia e-Niro with its original spec Michelins. I'm planning on fitting winter tyres soon but wonder if there is anything I need to be aware of in choosing for an electric car. Is there a specific winter tyre that you would recommend? I'm also wondering whether the Michelin Cross Climates may be as good as fitting specific winter tyres. Your advice would be much appreciated."
Michelin Cross Climates+ and other all-season tyres are a good middle ground for those who usually change between summer and winter tyres anyway. It saves the hassle and cost of getting them changed, as well as storing the alternate set for half of the year. There's nothing really worth considering in terms of buying tyres for an EV, though you could look at tyres that'll offer decent fuel economy. Here are the tyres I'd look at if I were you: Goodyear Vector 4Seasons Gen-2 are good in wet, dry and snowy weather. They're also quiet on the move. Continental AllSeasonContact are another great all-rounder for all-season performance, and they're good on fuel. But they aren't as quiet or refined as rivals. Goodyear UltraGrip 8 Performance are also great snow tyres. The Falken Euro All Season AS200 are good in the snow and they're quiet tyres, but not as good as rivals in wet weather. They're also not great on fuel economy. Michelin Cross Climate+ are good in dry and wet weather but aren't quite so good in the snow. But the Michelins aren't too pricey and there are lots of sizes available - which is a big plus.
Answered by Georgia Petrie
Why is there such a long wait for new electric cars?
"Just tried to buy a Peugeot e-2008 from my local dealer, it had done 250 miles and was their demonstrator. However, Peugeot has said they can’t sell me that particular car. There is a six to seven-month wait for a similar vehicle. Can you recommend a similar vehicle in the same price range?"
There's a lot of demand for electric vehicles at the moment so it's not surprising to hear of a long waiting list for the Peugeot e-2008. Also consider the Kia e-Niro, Hyundai Kona Electric or maybe the MG ZS Electric.
Answered by Andrew Brady
Will a Kia E-Niro's electric range suit long drives?
"I'm thinking of buying. Kia E-Niro. Can it be charged at home and how long will it take to charge? I travel 150 miles twice a week, is this car any good for long journeys?"
The Kia e-Niro is an excellent electric car. The long-range model can officially travel up to 282 miles between charges, so 150 miles should be comfortably doable. A home wallbox will take around 9.5 hours to fully charge it (from 0-100%) while a rapid charger (such as those found at motorway service stations) will top it up from 20-80% in a little over 40 minutes. You should be able to charge it at home for less than £10, depending on how much you pay for electricity.
Answered by Andrew Brady

What does a Kia e-Niro (2019) cost?

Buy new from £20,505 (list price from £25,105)