Well, isn’t this a bit awkward? Kia will launch the new Niro for the US market at this month’s New York Auto Show. However, Kia has a tendency to introduce new models in its home country first, which it did with the 2023 Niro. It debuted last November, but that hasn’t stopped the company from teasing the model’s reveal for America.
The Kia America Twitter account posted a short video that attempts to tease the crossover’s bold design, but it doesn’t look too different from the one that debuted late last year. The short video highlights the Niro’s unique taillights and rear pillar, a portion of the interior, and the angular daytime running lights, all of which we’ve seen before, including the revamped interior that likely won’t change much for North American tastes.
Kia will offer the Niro in three flavors, which the company has detailed already. It will arrive in hybrid, plug-in hybrid, and battery-electric configurations. However, it’s unclear if the company will tweak the different powertrains for the US market. The hybrid pairs a which we’ve seen before for a combined 139 horsepower (103 kilowatts). The Niro plug-in hybrid gets a larger 62-kW electric motor that makes 180 hp (134 kW).
Gallery: 2022 Kia Niro EV
Kia even revealed specs for the Niro EV, which will likely deliver 201 hp (149 kW) and 188 lb-ft (255 Newton-meters) of torque in the US. The electric motor pairs to a 64.8-kilowatt-hour battery that offers 287 miles of range on the forgiving WLTP test cycle. The Niro EV will likely receive a lower rating from the US EPA.
Kia will reveal the Niro alongside the facelifted Telluride and Hyundai Palisade. However, unlike the Niro, the two larger SUVs are debuting for the North American market first as we love our large vehicles. The brand’s new Niro will go on sale in the US for the 2023 model year; however, the company hasn’t announced exactly when that will happen. We hope to learn that at its reveal on April 13. It’ll be interesting to see how US consumers respond to its unique styling choices.