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Kia unveils the new Niro, bringing updated looks to this family favourite

(Pocket-lint) – Kia has pulled the covers off the new Niro, a popular model for those looking for a compact SUV.

The new Niro is actually a complete redesign, from the ground up, but will still be offered much as it was previously, with a choice of hybrid, plug-in hybrid and fully electric powertrains.

The Kia e-Niro remains one of our favourite electric cars on the road, but this refresh – due to be available in 2022 – appears to modernise and address many of the issues of the incumbent model.

For all the technical skill of the Niro, the design did look a little dated, both inside and out and this new model moves to address that.

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KiaKia Niro photo 4

On the exterior, you’ll see that the nose has changed, with the “Tiger Grille” radically different. But the biggest design change is around the side of the car, with a side rear pillar, incorporating the rear lights – and in the images we’ve seen so far – in a contrasting colour.

The last time we saw this sort of detail was the Audi R8’s blade on the side. It certainly makes this car distinctive and does lend it more of an SUV look.

The interior has had a considerable change, shifting to a single display unit encompassing both the central and driver displays, with a dash that slopes away to one side.

Kia has slimmed down some of the interior trims to increase the sense of space, while there’s a modernisation going on here. The doors, for example, have sloped elements that seem to wrap into the dash at the front, a marked departure from the normal horizontal sections you’d find in these areas.

KiaKia Niro photo 8

The steering wheel hub has also slimmed down, while Kia says that it uses a lot more sustainable materials on the interior.

What we don’t know at the moment is the sort of power configurations that Kia is going to offer on the new Niro. We can see that the electric version has the charging port front and central on the nose of the car – but beyond that, we’ll have to wait until closer to launch to get firm details.

“The all-new Kia Niro makes it simple to practice a sustainable lifestyle with its eco-friendly materials, advanced technology and electric powertrains while it also fulfils the practical needs of customers,” said Ho Sung Song, president and CEO of Kia.

Writing by Chris Hall. Originally published on 25 November 2021.

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