Kia Motors has released a couple of renderings, showing off an upcoming Hybrid Utility Vehicle (HUV). It is not a concept, though. Kia Niro is a production compact SUV, aka crossover, scheduled to hit overseas markets in late 2016.
The renderings of Kia Niro – a name, we suspect, inspired by actor Robert De Niro – are very telling and show pretty much all of the car. The design of Niro is fine, but there is nothing particularly special about it. The Niro seems to be a larger, more muscular, and of course, hybrid version of the new Sportage. Not that that’s a bad thing.
Underneath the familiar skin though, Kia Niro boasts an all-new platform which has been engineered in isolation from existing Kia models with environmental concerns in mind. It is designed to accommodate current and future green powertrains and technologies.
The system Kia is proposing for the first edition of the car is a compact hybrid unit consisting of a 1.6-litre ‘Kappa’ petrol direct injection (GDI) engine with105 ps and 147 Nm of torque, coupled with a 1.56 kWh lithium-polymer battery pack and 32 kW electric motor. They are both connected to a highly-efficient six-speed double-clutch transmission, resulting in class-leading fuel economy and sub-90 g/km CO2 emissions.