Bjorn Drives Kia Niro EV 310 Miles On A Charge


Compares efficiency with Hyundai Kona Electric

We just watched electric vehicle YouTuber Bjorn Nyland give us a pretty thorough rundown on the interior of the upcoming Kia Niro EV. Now that we are all caught up on everything associated with the cabin, it’s time to stretch the crossover’s legs on the highway. (If you haven’t seen that first one yet, go ahead and watch it now. We’ll wait.)

Though most driving tests might focus on the vehicle’s dynamics — the handling, braking, and other performance metrics — our host here has other things on his minds: questions that are more likely to arise in the minds of prospective EV buyers. This means that instead of acceleration runs and circles around a skid pad, the video starts in a humble parking garage in the heart of Seoul, South Korea. Well, maybe not so humble. As Nyland points out, the place is lousy with charging stations. There are a number of DC fast chargers as well as a ton of the slower level 2 variety. It’s like this bit of South Korea already lives in the future.

Basically, the plan is to drive the Kia Niro EV from the parking garage all the way to the coast and then back again. Accompanied by his lovely wife, our protagonist, fully charged, gets the motor running and heads out on the highway.  If your definition of looking for adventure includes testing Lane Following Assist (LFA) and frequently checking efficiency figures, that’s good, because that’s what’s coming your way.

As they make their way to the coast, we notice a few things. One, the LFA driver’s assist seems to work quite well on the nicely maintained highway. We can also see that it seems like the Kia Niro EV is slightly less efficient than the Hyundai Kona Electric. That makes sense because, although they are built on the same platform, the Kia is actually a bit bigger. We can’t make a direct comparison, though, because the conditions were quite different from those when he tested the Kona Electric.

If you don’t have the 20 minutes it takes to watch the entire video, (spoiler alert) he arrives back safely after traveling a total of 310.8 miles (500.2 km) on a single charge of the 64 kWh battery and had an indicated 6.8 miles (11 km) of range left. His speed averaged about 56 miles per hour (90KPH)  most of the trip. The expected average range of the Niro EV in everyday use is expected to be about 236 miles. We have to say, we’re pretty impressed with its performance.

Finally, if you’ve read all this instead of taking the time to watch the video, please reconsider. It might not have the action and drama of the Bourne Conspiracy, but it does feature plenty of shots of Korea countryside, Mario Kart rainbow road tunnels, and the coolest roadside rest areas ever. Enjoy!


Source: YouTube

Categories: Kia, Videos

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27 Comments on "Bjorn Drives Kia Niro EV 310 Miles On A Charge"

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Finally a good and cheaper Model X contender!

Uh, more a Bolt and hopefully a 2019 Leaf contender.

If they send these to the US in quantities I’ll regret our recent Bolt purchase. Probably good for the next year or two though.

It could have been worse. You could have bought an ICE vehicle. By end of 2020, ICE vehicle resale prices will PLUMMET. The bolt will go down, but not like what I expect to see from ICE vehicles. Heck, in 2020, you might be able to trade your bolt for a newer audi A8 and still get money out of the deal.

Methinks you are a bit unrealistic about 2020, maybe 2030 but the ICE and petroleum have been declared on the way out many times in the last 45 years

But the difference this time is that there are real and viable alternatives. Don’t forget that the other side of the coin is the implicit plummeting in value that is going to occur for all ICE vehicles, which will hit sales hard because leases will get more expensive and loans will be harder to come by.

in the same way that the leaf is a model X contender.

Model X is considerably larger and is intended to appeal, methinks, to an entirely different buyer group.

420-440 kms are pretty much feasible at a [more] reasonable speed.

Yeah, at 80 km/h average you could probably drive for 5+ hours straight. I wonder when range isn’t the defining critera of EVs anymore.

When you can drive for 4 hours straight with AC on at 105-110 km/h on a vehicle that can be purchased for less than 30k.

That sounds about right and then recharge in 15-20 minutes.

Well, the Kona is here and can be purchased for £30k I think.

Do you have any price information of Niro EV in Europe ?

No, just guesses that it might be slightly more expensive than Kona EV

Yes, in terms of market positioning (as least for the markets I’ve seen), Kia is slightly more of a budget brand than Hyundai. Since they have the exact same drivetrain, a slightly larger vehicle with (apparently) slightly better standard equipment should cost a little more:
It’ll be a while until it show up here (Israel) unfortunately… Too bad, because this is probably the very first BEV I could see myself realistically buying. The ICE Niro is actually the 2nd-best selling car in the country so far this year, after the (non-plug ) hybrid Ioniq.

They don’t sell the PHEV versions there?

After the big failure of the Better Place experiment, EVs are pretty much dead here.
The Leaf & Ioniq BEV were supposed to start being imported mid-year, but nothing’s happened so far. The Zoe, i3 and Outlander PHEV are available, but otherwise the only EVs sold are the PHEV version of the ultra-expensive luxury cars like S500e and 740e (because they get a big break on import duties); the owners don’t actually plug them in.

…or heat in winter…

Shows how different people are. I would never do that. For me, 3 hours driving at 120 km/h

I wouldn’t do that either, but apparently it is important to some to drive non-stop.

I thank the man. This is a hundred times better than the Mercedes thing in Stockholm. Also the car is many times better than the Mercedes.

Mercedes is likely to be much better and in a different class altogether. Far bigger, more comfortable, much faster and probably quieter. But for the money, the Niro is hard to beat. It is a nice small hatchback with very good range and nicely done interior.

I appreciate Bjorn’s energy and production values. Just I’ve also looked at and test driven a Hyundai/Kia, the Ioniq Blue, and found it wanting. Since we are looking at 1-2 years before they arrive in Huntsville, I’ll withhold judgement. I’m not holding my breath.

Low speed is a contributing factor. When I drive between superchargers, I am at 85-90 mph most of the time. That would be a totally different ball game for the Niro.

The Highway Mode and speed control zone features are both great. If this charges as fast as the Ioniq EV and Soul EV, it’s a real option.

We have driven a 2012 Toyota RAV4 EV for 6 years. I think the original range was 106 miles. The range has not dropped in 80K miles. It has been a great car with virtually no maintenance cost. I will purchase a KIA Niro by early next year to almost triple my miles. I always charge at home because chargers are not readily available. Great videos. They are entertaining and informative.