Kia Niro makes Chicago Auto Show debut

The Niro, which made its global debut on Thursday, aims to highlight the marque's greener future direction by combining crossover looks with hybrid efficiency.

AFP Relaxnews| Last Updated: Feb 13, 2016, 04:53 AM IST

The Niro, which made its global debut on Thursday, aims to highlight the marque's greener future direction by combining crossover looks with hybrid efficiency.

Kia calls the new car an un-hybrid hybrid because as well as cutting pollution -- the car emits 89g/km CO2 -- the electric and traditional motors work in unison as well as individually to increase horsepower and acceleration as well as cut noise and conserve fuel.

"The Niro hits the sweet spot by offering the best combination of outstanding mpg, an engaging driving experience, utility, and most importantly, a stunning design that doesn't shout ‘hybrid'," said Orth Hedrick, vice president product planning Kia Motors America (KMA). "The subcompact CUV market continues to be one of the fastest-growing segments in the world, and the Niro offers a uniquely alluring yet practical package that consumers haven't seen before."

Keen drivers will appreciate the car's dual clutch, paddle-operated six-speed transmission and the fact that the electric motor sends its power purely to the front wheels for better traction off the line.

However, the rest of the family will be happy that there is room for four passengers, generous luggage space and that a raft of latest-generation active safety features, including emergency autonomous braking, blind spot monitoring and smart cruise control are offered as standard or as optional equipment.