More on the Niro PHEV and a sharp looking wagon PHEV for Europe. Wayne Gerdes – CleanMPG – Mar. 10, 2017 2018 Kia Niro PHEV – Pricing and full details for the North American TBA. Geneva, Switzerland – At this year’s Geneva International Motor Show, Kia unveiled two models that make a whole lot of sense. They formally introduced the Niro Plug-in Hybrid CUV and an Optima Sportswagon PHEV. The new Niro PHEV combines the popular CUV platform with excellent efficiency from its 1.6L GDI and full hybrid drivetrain plus all-electric driving off of the 8.9 kWh Li-Ion pack. The new battery pack is paired with an even more powerful 44.5 kW electric motor compared to the 32 kW in the base Niro Hybrid. The total power and torque output for the Niro Plug-in Hybrid’s powertrain will continue to provide the same as the standard Niro HEV at 139 hp and 195 lb-ft of torque. Straight-line performance from 0 to 60 mph is now 10.7 seconds, 0.7 seconds quicker than the std. Niro HEV. Power is applied to the road through the Niro HEVs 6-speed double-clutch transmission (6DCT) with a manual mode. The Niro PHEV features a new satin chrome grille surround, as well as special chrome brightwork with metallic-blue finish, applied to thin ‘blades’ in the front and rear bumpers. The Plug-in Hybrid model is available with 16-inch alloys, new full-LED headlamps, and dedicated ‘Eco Plug-in’ badging. 2018 Kia Niro PHEV Interior The interior of the Niro PHEV is upholstered in single-tone black leather, or two-tone light grey and black leather, with blue contrast stitching, as well as a new blue surround for the dashboard air vents. The new derivative features a new 7.0” driver instrument cluster. According to Kia, the Niro’s cargo volume will be unchanged with the installation of its 8.9 kWh pack beneath the rear seats and under the rear hatch cargo floor vs. the HEVs 1.56 kWh unit. Although it is doubtful we will receive this, Europeans will be able to purchase an optional Towing kit allowing owners to tow braked loads of up to 2,800 lbs. Remember the Niro has just 139 hp total output and the PHEV is not expected to have much more. The Niro PHEV includes the Eco Driving Assistant System (Eco DAS) with Coasting Guide Control (CGC) and Predictive Energy Control (PEC). The system suggests through an on-screen prompt when to coast or brake, plus automatically adjusts the packs SoC to maximize efficiency when climbing and descending. The displays show the current SoC, AER, and locations of nearby charging stations. The Niro Plug-in Hybrid will go on sale across Europe and in the U.S. during the Q3 of 2017. On the mythical NEDC, the Niro PHEV is rated at 34 miles so maybe 22 to 23 miles of all-electric range (AER) on our own EPA as a guess? 2018 Kia Optima Sportswagon PHEV Sharp looking PHEV. The all-new Optima Sportswagon PHEV was the second car unveiled in Geneva with an even more advanced hybrid powertrain. Due on-sale across Europe this summer, the new Optima Tourer provides a wagons utility a hybrids efficiency on gasoline, and a plug-in hybrids efficiency on the pack powered off the plug. The wagon will be a European only offering with 30 percent more cargo volume than the 2017 Kia Optima PHEV. Like the Optima PHEV, the Wagon will incorporate the same atkinsonized 2.0L GDI I4 with a 50 kW electric motor between it and the 6-speed AT plus an 11.26 kWh Li-Ion battery pack providing over 37.2 miles on the NEDC. Again this is the NEDC so take that to be worth half to 2/3 of that range in the real world. 0 to 60 in about 9.5 seconds is just fine. 2018 Kia Optima Sportwagon PHEV The Optima Wagon PHEV will be equipped with an 8.0” touchscreen w/ Android Auto and Apple CarPlay, and Kia Connected Services powered by TomTom, providing live traffic updates, speed camera alerts and weather forecasts. The Optima Sportswagon PHEV is available with Kia’s wireless smartphone charger, letting users charge mobile devices on the move. Like the Niro PHEV, the new Kia Optima Sportswagon PHEV will go on sale across Europe this fall. While wagons do not sell that well, it sure would be a great addition to the U.S. Kia model lineup. All-in. a little more on the Niro PHEV and what a cool intro in the form of the Optima Wagon PHEV for the Europeans.