The Kia Niro EV has been one of the most popular compact EVs since its launch in 2019, however, the first generation vehicle had no towing capacity at all. However, we now have the second generation Kia Niro EV which can tow. Granted, not a lot at 750 kg but it definitely adds to the practicality/capabilities of the vehicle. So let’s discuss the capabilities of the latest Niro EV and how it stands up to the current competition.
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Key Kia Niro EV Specs
- Official Towing Capacity – 750 kg
- Availability – Late 2022
- Price – Starting £36,000
- Range (EV Database) – 235 miles
- Estimated Towing Range (50%) – 118 miles
- Maximum DC Charge Rate – 80kW
- Rapid Charge 10% to 80% – 41 min
- Check Used Kia Niro EV Specs
Kia Niro EV HP & Torque
- FWD with 201 HP and 188 lb-ft of torque
Kia Niro EV Towing Capabilities
So on the towing sides of things, no, with a towing capacity of 750kg you’re not going to be able to pull a typical touring caravan. There may be a couple of teardrop caravans/trailer tents the Kia Niro EV can tow though. Really, with a 750kg towing capacity its going to be small cargo trailers for going to the tip and doing small DIY jobs etc.
I suspect there are many people who for an electric car of this size that would meet their towing requirements, and its obviously better than the zero towing capacity of the first-generation Kia Niro EV. However, this second-generation car has more competition as I’ll discuss below.
Tough Competition For The New Kia Niro EV
When the first-generation Kia Niro EV launched for around £35K and a real-world range of around 230 miles and quite a bit more in the dry summer months it really was market-leading. So has this second-generation Kia Niro EV improved significantly? Not really.
This second-generation Kia Niro EV will have a similar real-world range of around 235 miles and exactly the same power output of 201 HP from a front-wheel-drive setup. The DC rapid charging speed has slightly increased from 77kW up to 80kW.
In terms of price, due to the current inflationary pressure on the economy, you may be pleasantly surprised to hear that the new Niro EV is expected to cost only slightly more at £36K. However, the problem is the MG ZS Long Range.
The MG has a similar real-world range of 230 miles, faster DC rapid charging up to 92kW and while down on horsepower compared to the Kia, it does actually produce more torque from its electric motor. When it comes to towing it is less at 500kg, but really at these weights, the towing capabilities of the two vehicles are very similar.
However, its the price point of the MG ZS Long Range which stands out, starting at £29,500. Coming in at more than £6K cheaper than the Kia Niro EV is significant for similar capabilities/specifications.
First Look At The New Kia Niro EV
As the new Niro EV won’t be on the market until later in 2022 I don’t have any automotive journalist reviews I can reference. However, I found a walk around video of the new Kia Niro EV by Electrifying.
I must admit, I’m not quite sure about the styling of the new Niro, especially that a blade on the rear quarter painted in a different colour. Apparently, Kia states its for aerodynamic purposes to aid efficiency, but as far as I can tell comparing the figures from the first generation Niro EV, that doesn’t appear to be the case.
My Thoughts On The Kia Niro EV…
I always thought the first-generation Kia Niro EV was one of the best electric cars on the market for its price point and range. I do still think this second generation is going to meet many people’s needs in terms of range and the added towing capacity is good to see, at the same time I’m a little disappointed.
While there is a little bit of tech trickle down from the impressive Kia EV6 in the form of some V2G functionality in the new Niro EV, there is none of the impressive 800v DC rapid charging tech going up to 230kW.
Really, the second generation Niro EV appears more of a face-lifted version of the first-generation car. This new Niro is still a very good EV, however, there is now more competition and more on the way, and I think the 80kW rapid charging speed on this new Niro EV is not sufficient.