The Kia Niro EV, which is currently one of the best budget EV models in the U.S., received a complete makeover and entered its second generation with the 2023 model year update. In a few months, most likely during the third quarter of 2023 (between July and September), the vehicle will transition to the 2024 model year. Here’s everything we expect from the 2024 Kia Niro EV. Kindly note that the information and images provided in this article correspond to the current model year, and as new details emerge, this page will be revised.
The Kia Niro EV received a redesign a little over a year ago and was well-received by both the media and customers. As such, there is no pressing need for a cosmetic surgery. As a result, we do not anticipate any visual tweaks with the MY2024 update.
The second-gen Kia Niro EV has an unmistakable road presence with a bold design inspired by the Kia HabaNiro concept presented during the 2019 New York International Auto Show. In addition to being significantly more premium, its exterior is quite funky, with a strong focus on tapping the interest of young customers. The silhouette is largely similar, but there is a greater degree of extremity at the rear, explained later in this section.
Compared to the first-gen Niro EV, the second-gen model’s Tiger nose grille is slimmer, edgier, and noticeably wider, covering the width of the SUV. The headlamps and their striking ‘heartbeat’ LED DRL provide a confident look. The lower grille is sizeable, adding to its assertiveness. Kia says the second-gen Niro EV uses the third-generation K platform and that it has a clean-sheet design that incorporates the brand’s new ‘Opposites United’ theme.
On the sides, the edgy mirrors, 17-inch wheels, an ‘Aero Blade,’ and a distinct steel gray and black body cladding are among the main features. The Aero Blade makes the Niro instantly recognizable, and it’s not just an aesthetic feature. It enhances airflow and improves the vehicle’s aerodynamics.
The rear windscreen is raked at a steeper angle than the first-gen Niro. Another noticeable change is relocating the registration plate area from the bumper to the tailgate. Where the first-gen model has rounded elements for soft styling, the second-gen model has sharp lines for edgy and aggressive styling, and this applies to the rear windows and quarter glasses, too. The draft coefficient (Cd) is 0.29, which is noteworthy for a boxy SUV.
The 2024 Kia Niro EV is likely to be available in the same nine colors:
- Steely Gray
- Snow White Pearl
- Graphite Gray
- Aurora Black Pearl
- Runway Red
- Fire Orange Metallic
- Cityscape Green
- Mineral Blue
- Snow White Pearl with Gray Aeroblade
2024 Kia Niro EV Interior & Features
Kia has been making great progress in the past decade in interior design, and the second-gen Niro EV is an example showcasing that achievement. The design takes inspiration from Hyundai Motor Group’s latest parametric design language, which is seen on the EV6 also. Like the exterior, the interior should remain unchanged for the 2024 model year.
The cabin of the Niro EV is aesthetically pleasing. The slim and fluidic dashboard with its stylish off-center curves, the sleek panel merging the fully digital instrument cluster and the touchscreen infotainment system, the chic center console, the dial-type electronic gear selector, and the luxurious two-spoke steering wheel borrowed from the EV6 make the second-gen model a more upmarket SUV than the first-gen model. The rising door armrests for the front occupants go well with the new curvy dashboard design. The smaller switches and other physical controls complement the new minimalist interior theme.
Digital Key 2.0 enables a host of remote functions using Apple or Samsung devices. A 10-inch heads-up display helps drivers avoid distractions by showcasing essential driving information. The HUD not only displays navigation directions, but also projects safety warnings, speed, and infotainment data directly in the driver’s line of sight.
Kia has used several eco-friendly materials in the redesigned Niro EV, such as recycled wallpaper (for the headlining), Bio PU with Tencel from eucalyptus leaves (for the seats), and BTX-free paint (for the door panels). Below are the interior color, upholstery, and trim options, which we expect to be carried over to the 2024 model year:
- Charcoal Vegan Leather & Cloth Seat Trim
- Gray Vegan Leather & Cloth Seat Trim
- Perforated, Charcoal Vegan Leather Seat Trim
- Perforated, Gray and Charcoal Vegan Leather Seat Trim
Active Sound Design and 10.25-inch screens
10-inch head-up display, 10.25-inch fully digital instrument cluster, 10.25-inch touchscreen infotainment system, Digital Key 2, and cabin air purifier are some other equipment highlights of the second-gen Kia Niro EV. The ambient lighting strip in the cabin is a fine touch, making the cabin feel like a lounge on wheels. Kia has played around with acoustics on the Niro EV. The vehicle features Active Sound Design, which lets the driver digitally alter the electric motors’ whine.
The electric crossover comes with optional Harman Kardon audio and heating and ventilation for the front seats. Moreover, Kia offers Natural Voice Recognition to control temperature and audio simply by saying a few commands for Niro EV customers. Buyers also get Kia Connect—the brand’s version of connected car features where owners can remotely access charge status, make route plans, and view vehicle health information, among other functions.
Vehicle-To-Load (V2L) support makes bi-directional charging possible in the second-gen Kia Niro EV. Like the Hyundai Ioniq 5, Kia EV6, and Genesis GV60, the Niro EV allows using its battery to charge other EVs and power electronic appliances, electronic equipment, and more. However, V2L can only be used until the battery range falls to 10%, beyond which the system auto-cuts the external power supply. Hence, it would be prudent to use bidirectional charging only when the battery has enough charge.
V2L is a practical feature, especially in emergencies. The 6.4 magnitude earthquake that struck Eureka, California, on December 20, 2022, caused a wide-scale power outage, leaving tens of thousands without electricity. Harper Motors used a Ford F-150 Lightning and a Kia Niro EV to keep its operations running. The local auto dealership had shared pictures of the V2L feature powering its facility, on Facebook.
The 2024 Kia Niro EV should have the same dimensions as the current model, which is 174.0 in. long, 71.8 in. wide, and 61.8 in. tall. It should have a 107.0 in. wheelbase and offer 6.0 in. of ground clearance.
The 2024 Niro EV should have 22.8 cu. ft. of luggage capacity, expandable to 63.7 cu. ft. by folding down the rear seats. There’ll likely be a frunk, too, offering 20 liters (0.7 cu. ft.) of additional cargo space. The passenger volume, which we expect to be 99.7 cu. ft., will likely be the best in its segment. Kia claims the second-gen Niro EV has 8 more cu. ft. of passenger cabin room and 50% more cargo room than the Tesla Model 3.
Nexen Tire America
The top-end 2024 Kia Niro EV will likely feature 17-inch wheels wrapped with 215/55R17 N Priz S grand-touring tires sourced from Nexen Tire America. The OEM tire supplier says that its N Priz S grand-touring tires deliver reduced energy consumption, exceptional ride comfort, and everyday safety and reliability.
Motor & Battery Pack
The U.S.-spec 2024 Kia Niro EV should be propelled by an electric motor tuned to deliver 150 kW (201 hp) and 255 Nm (188 lb.-ft.) of torque. We expect the 0-60 mph acceleration time and top speed to be 7.1 seconds and 167 km/h (104 mph), respectively. Powering the single motor will likely be a 64.8 kWh lithium-ion polymer battery pack that provides an EPA-est. range of 253 miles. A heat pump and battery warmer to preserve range in cold weather will likely be optionally available.
i-PEDAL & Smart Regenerative Braking System 2.0
One-pedal driving should be possible in the 2024 Niro EV in an ‘i-PEDAL (Intelligent Pedal)’ mode. With i-Pedal, the driver can perform acceleration, deceleration, and braking by modulating the accelerator pedal. The Smart Regenerative Braking System 2.0 automatically adjusts the amount of regenerative braking depending on the traffic data from the navigation system and the driver’s deceleration pattern. The driver will likely be able to change the intensity of regenerative braking to the desired level using the paddle shifters behind the steering wheel.
The 2024 Kia Niro EV should have a maximum charging input of 85 kW and allow completing a 10-80% DC fast-charging session in 43 minutes. New customers will likely get 500 kWh of complimentary charging at Electrify America charging stations in the U.S., valid for three years from the date of purchase. Kia expects the charging credit to allow owners to drive up to 1,950 miles. As of May 5, 2023, the company has a coast-to-coast charging network of 806 stations.
|Aspect||2024 Kia Niro EV Specification|
|Power||150 kW (201 hp)|
|Torque||255 Nm (188 lb.-ft.)|
|0-60 Acceleration Time||7.1 seconds|
|Top Speed||167 km/h (104 mph)|
|EPA-est. Range||253 miles|
|EPA-est. MPGe (combined)||113|
|Battery Size||64.8 kWh|
|On Board Charger Power||11 kW|
|Normal Charging Time (on AC, to 100% SoC)||6 hours 5 minutes (with an 11 kW charger)|
|Fast-charging Time (on DC, to 80% SoC)||43 minutes (with a 350 kW charger)|
|Towing capacity (braked/unbraked)||1,653 lbs./661 lbs.|
|Luggage capacity (SAE)||22.8 cu. ft. (rear seats upright)/63.7 cu. ft. (rear seats folded)|
|Passenger Volume (SAE)||99.7 cu. ft.|
The U.S.-spec 2024 Kia Niro EV should come equipped with a raft of standard advanced driver assistance systems (ADAS), including Forward Collision Avoidance Assist – Junction Turning (FCA-JT), Lane Keep Assist System (LKAS), Lane Departure Warning (LDW), Lane Following Assist (LFA), Driver Attention Warning (DAW), Blind Spot Collision Warning (BCW) with Parallel Exit, Highway Driving Assist (HDA), and more.
Blind Spot Collision Avoidance Assist – Rear (BCA-R) with Parallel Exit, Highway Drive Assist 2 (HDA 2), Parking Distance Warning – Forward (PDW-F), Parking Collision Avoidance – Rear (PCA-R), and Remote Smart Park Assist – Entry (RSPA) should be available optionally.
Structural improvements in the second-gen Kia Niro EV
Kia says the torsional rigidity of the second-gen Niro EV (international-spec) is higher than that of the first-gen model. There’s an impressive 22% increase in advanced high-strength steel use, while the body in white weight (weight before the motor, chassis components, and interior trims) is 20.3 kg (6%) lesser. The improvements in rigidity should lead to enhanced ride and handling characteristics. Rigid unibody structures offer tight body control and are less prone to getting unsettled because of road imperfections. Kia has reinforced hot-stamping structural members in the main part of the bodywork to make the Niro EV safer in the second generation.
Battery pack safety measures
Kia has made the Niro EV’s battery pack safer by using aluminum reinforcement on its underside. Complementing this structural upgrade is a battery conditioning function, which keeps the temperature of the battery pack at an optimal level. It preheats the battery pack when the external temperature is low to deliver maximum output. Moreover, it pre-optimizes the battery pack temperature when the driver sets a fast-charging station as the destination in the navigation system.
NHTSA hasn’t tested the second-gen Niro EV, but a 5-star overall rating is not out of reach. The U.S. safety agency rating had awarded the first-gen model a 5-star overall rating, and the all-new model is safer on paper.
The 2024 Kia Niro EV’s prices will likely start at around USD 40,000. The Niro EV competes with its cousin, the Hyundai Kona EV, which will be renewed for the 2024 model year. It rivals the Chevrolet Bolt EUV, too, but the troubled model will go out of production at the very end of 2023.
Unlike the first-gen Niro EV, the second-gen Niro EV isn’t eligible for a federal tax credit of up to USD 7,500. On August 16, 2022, President Joe Biden signed the Inflation Reduction Act into law, deeming electrified vehicles made outside America ineligible for the incentive. This was sudden and quite disruptive to Kia’s operations in America.
As a contender for the mass-market electric SUV crown, the Kia Niro EV may struggle to compete against the VW ID.4, at the current prices. The German SUV is more spacious, more powerful, and a whole lot cheaper, thanks to local production and the expected eligibility for federal tax credits, gets AWD capability, and a higher range. Furthermore, the Niro EV may face an existential crisis due to competition from the Chevrolet Equinox EV (starting price of USD 30k) in late 2023. In a segment where such disruptive launches are looming, Kia will require government incentives to stay in the race.
2024 Kia Niro EV FAQs
What is the 2024 Kia Niro EV release date?
The 2024 Niro EV will likely be launched in Q3 2023.
What will be the 2024 Kia Niro EV price?
The base variant (U.S.-spec) of the 2024 Kia Niro EV may retail at approximately USD 40,000.
Which SUVs will be the 2024 Kia Niro EV competitors?
The 2024 Kia Niro EV will compete with the Hyundai Kona EV, Chevrolet Bolt EUV, and the future Chevy Equinox EV.
Featured Image Source: Kia