2023 Niro EV Wind Review: Kia’s Entry Level Electric Car Is Excellent

I have driven several different electric cars and SUVs over the past 12 years. My first electric car was a 2011 Nissan Leaf and my current electric cars are a 2018 Tesla Model 3 and a 2022 Kia Sorento Plug-in Hybrid (PHEV). I also owned a 2017 Chevy Volt for about 4 years. Getting behind the wheel of the new Kia Niro EV was immediately familiar (the interface is very similar to my Sorento PHEV) and slightly different (because it feels like driving a peppy compact hatchback). It feels great and feels like I’m driving a supple sports sedan like my Tesla.) Familiarity helps people feel comfortable and not everyone wants or needs to drive a sports car, so those feelings are good for both reasons.Kia in 2023 The Niro EV is a great all-around vehicle that happens to be an electric car. This is my impression when I drove Kia’s latest EV for the first time.

All the acceleration you really need, and some.

The Niro EV isn’t going to win any bragging rights on the drag strip, but it can still hit 60 mph. 6.5 seconds According to Motor Trend (0.6 seconds faster than Kia advertises). That’s slightly faster than your average compact car or wagon (which the Niro can easily outrun) and definitely fast enough for anyone who isn’t a speed junkie. In fact, it’s no slouch, as it easily beats cars like the Honda Civic EX (gas-powered, of course) and the Nissan LEAF EV to 60, according to Car and Driver. As for handling, the Niro’s steering is snappy, with a bit of body lean in tight corners, reasonably soft suspension, and a nice chunky steering wheel (although the center cross member was replaced in 1985). It conjures up nostalgic thoughts of his best friend’s factory steering wheel he owned). Jetta and other imports of the time). If you want a more responsive driving experience, or if you’re feeling a little sluggish, switch this car to Sport mode. Run around with a little more juice (as soon as I switched from Eco to Sport, the estimated range dropped him by 10 miles). Whether it’s eco or normal, you can fully demonstrate the power of the single motor by stepping on the go pedal. In Sport mode, however, its ease of use stands out, and the torque feels more free-flowing.

Spacious and comfortable for tall people

I’m just over 6 feet tall and weigh about 195 pounds, but I found all the seats in the Niro EV to be comfortable and roomy front to back (although there is a slight hump when sitting in the middle of the back bench). bottom) ). The three of us could sit side by side on the back bench. Even with his front seat moved back for long drives, it was comfortable enough for short to medium drives and legroom. The class feels bigger than that.

Standard safety and entertainment features are great

I love my gadgets and technology, and if it were my car, I would likely have bought the top-of-the-line Wave version of the Niro EV, but I’m impressed with how much comes standard on the Wind model of the Niro EV. received. It comes with all safety features regardless of trim (and it’s an excellent value). The dual screens are fast and responsive (seems to be faster and more responsive than similar screens on my Sorento PHEV). Automatic wipers (something the top-of-the-line Sorento PHEV lacks) are also standard. Other journalists stink about the climate control and the stereo controls (Kia toggles the same buttons to control different functions for each), but with a little practice you’ll quickly find yourself getting used to it. I was. Still, I can understand why they annoy some.

Range and charging speed are great (don’t let other reviewers fool you)

This is probably the most important part of my review, and if that’s the only thing I remember about all the words I spilled on the screen, you’ve done yourself a favor. , doesn’t charge as fast as other more expensive EVs, but if that really matters (charging at home or level 2, 240V stations), this EV is one of the fastest charging EVs. Before you accuse me of clowning or comical lack of perception, hear me out. increase. Any EV designed for long road trips is more expensive than the Niro. Niro has a charging rate of up to 85 kW with a 480V fast charger, but can be charged up to 11 kW with his 240V charger in the garage or public. That’s faster than many other EVs that can charge at 240V, especially EVs under $40,000, and can go over 40 miles per hour at an 11 kW charging rate. This means you can charge your Niro EV more quickly in everyday use (especially useful if you have a long commute and can charge it when you arrive, or if public 240V charging options are cheap to use). am) ). On days when you need to drive around your home frequently, such as traveling with family and friends all day, you can drive an extra 40-80 miles (about 40-80 miles) just by having lunch or resting at home for a few hours. miles). Of course, 480V charging is even faster, but it usually costs more and is only needed if you drive more than 300 miles a day.

Stay tuned for a follow-up article on my experience with the Niro EV. Please leave your questions or comments below.

Image courtesy of Justin Hart.

Justin Hart has owned and driven electric vehicles for over 15 years. This includes the first-generation Nissan Leaf, second-generation Chevrolet Volt, Tesla Model 3, e-bikes, and most recently the Kia Sorento PHEV. He is also an avid his SUP rider, poet, photographer and wine lover. He enjoys long EV and PHEV road trips to beautiful and quiet places with his loved ones.follow justin twitter Daily Kia EV news coverage.

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