2018 Kia Niro Plug-In Hybrid

2018 Kia Niro Plug-In Hybrid
Save up to $1,400
MSRP range
$27,900 - $34,500


  • High fuel economy and respectable all-electric range
  • One of the more affordable hybrids in the segment
  • Conventional SUV-like styling
  • Batteries under the rear seat don't cut into cargo space


  • Sluggish acceleration in default driving mode
  • All-wheel drive isn't available despite crossover styling
  • Interior cargo volume smaller than a true SUV

Which Niro Plug-In Hybrid does Edmunds recommend

The Niro PHEV comes in three trim levels. The LX is a particularly good deal because it comes with plenty of standard features. But consider stepping up to get the midgrade EX. Its heated seats and blind-spot and cross-traffic monitoring will be valuable to have over the course of ownership.

Edmunds' Expert Review

overall rating

3 / 5

The 2018 Kia Niro Plug-In Hybrid is a new addition to Kia's Niro lineup. It's just like the regular Niro Hybrid, but it comes with a bigger rechargeable battery pack that allows you to drive an estimated 26 miles on pure electric power before the vehicle switches over to normal hybrid operation. At that point you're looking at a still frugal 46 mpg. And it costs less than most rival plug-in hybrids.

Kia describes its Niro as a crossover SUV. But without an available all-wheel-drive system and only 1 more inch of ground clearance than Kia's own Optima sedan, it's better to think of the Niro as a four-door hatchback rather than a true SUV. Also, take note of how the Niro allocates interior space. Compared to its mechanical sibling, the Hyundai Ioniq, the Niro has a significantly smaller cargo area behind the rear seats. In return, though, the Niro has slightly more legroom and headroom in back, and much of that space can be converted to cargo room when the rear seatbacks are folded.

The 2018 Niro Plug-In Hybrid joins a growing selection of plug-in hybrids this year that includes the Chevrolet Volt, the Honda Clarity Plug-In Hybrid and the Toyota Prius Prime. If you want an easy-to-drive and efficient car with understated SUV-like styling, you'll find a lot to like in the Niro.

trim levels & features

The 2018 Kia Niro Plug-In Hybrid is available in three trims. It starts off with the LX, which comes with a nice set of features, including a 7-inch touchscreen display and many advanced driver safety aids. The EX provides more convenience-oriented and safety features, while the top EX Premium adds luxury items such as leather upholstery and premium audio. All three trims are powered by the same 1.6-liter four-cylinder hybrid electric powertrain (139 horsepower, 195 pound-feet combined output) that sends power to the front wheels through a six-speed dual-clutch automatic transmission. Note that the regular 2018 Niro Hybrid is reviewed separately.

The base LX comes standard with 16-inch wheels, dual-zone climate control, 60/40-split folding rear seats, keyless entry and push-button start, a 7-inch infotainment display, Android Auto and Apple CarPlay connectivity, two USB ports, and a four-speaker sound system with satellite radio. Also standard are a rearview camera, front collision warning and mitigation with automatic emergency braking, lane keeping assist and adaptive cruise control.

Niro Plug-In Hybrids in the EX trim level add blind-spot monitoring, rear cross-traffic alert, rear air vents, leather and cloth upholstery, a power-adjustable driver's seat and heated front seats. The EX Premium also has LED headlights, front and rear parking sensors, a bigger driver information display, an 8-inch touchscreen with navigation, a Harman Kardon eight-speaker surround sound system, a wireless phone charger and ventilated front seats.

trim tested

While we have yet to fully test the Niro Plug-In Hybrid, the following evaluation is based on the functionally similar 2017 Kia Niro Hybrid (1.6L inline-4 plug-in hybrid | 6-speed dual-clutch automatic | FWD).


The Niro's biggest weakness is its everyday driving demeanor. It accelerates tepidly unless you floor it; the steering is vague yet well-weighted. Its emergency braking performance is subpar.


When driven in the default Eco mode, the Niro feels wholly unmotivated. Sport mode sharpens it up so that it feels more like a normal driving car. It's less efficient, though. We need an in-between mode.


The braking feels completely natural under normal conditions, and the switchover from electric regeneration to conventional braking is imperceivable. Under panic braking, however, the pedal goes to the floor and the test's best stopping distances are subpar.


The steering is direct and responsive with a good level of assist. And there's a clear difference in the degree of assist when you switch between Normal and Sport mode. But this car lacks a clear sense of on-center feel or feedback, which can be disconcerting because it demands constant attention.


The Niro handles more like a car than a crossover because it's essentially a hatchback. It stays planted through turns better than expected, and it carries its weight lower thanks to batteries mounted beneath the rear passenger seat.


Driving in the default Eco mode reveals some unpleasant characteristics. Its anemic takeoff power and lazy first-to-second shift are only remedied by driving in Sport mode.


The Niro Plug-In Hybrid may not feel luxurious, but there's a good level of comfort for the daily commute. The seats have sufficient support and powerful heaters, with ventilation available at the Touring level. The biggest strike against it is road noise, which could get tiresome on long drives.

seat comfort

The seats aren't anything fancy but have good padding and decent lateral and lumbar support. The EX model comes with very effective seat heaters with three levels of intensity. The max heat level is hotter than most, which is really nice in freezing climates.

ride comfort

Ride comfort for the most part is agreeable. While we didn't experience any harsh crashing over bumps, we wouldn't call the Niro Plug-In plush either. On the other hand, body movement felt well-controlled and carlike instead of floppy like a tall SUV or crossover.

noise & vibration

Around town, the Niro Plug-In is pretty quiet when in all-electric mode. There is a fair amount of road noise and the occasional sound of loose gravel pinging against the underbody at higher speeds. Wind noise is better isolated.

climate control

The dual climate controls are straightforward and easy to reach, with the usual assortment of buttons and knobs for fan speed, temperature, etc. The system performs well to maintain pleasant cabin temps.


The cabin of the Niro Plug-In Hybrid is easy to get in and out of and scores high marks for interior passenger space, driver accommodation and a simple user interface.

ease of use

The touchscreen infotainment menus take a little familiarization but are easy enough to figure out and have shortcut buttons. When using the stalks to change headlight or wiper settings, a prompt appears in the gauge cluster showing your selection and others that are available. It's a nice feature.

getting in/getting out

The doors open wide, almost to 90 degrees, with nice-size openings and comfortable seat heights. You still sit down into the seat rather than slide in because the bottom seat cushion height is around knee level. There's a small stepover, but it should be easy for most, including elderly passengers.

driving position

The tilt-and-telescoping steering column has a lot of adjustment, and the optional power driver's seat has two-way lumbar adjustment and height adjustment. It's pretty easy to find a comfortable driving position thanks to copious amounts of head- and legroom to suit a wide range of drivers.


There is good head- and legroom both front and rear, but the hard plastic front seatbacks don't leave much of a buffer if sitting behind an especially tall driver. The middle passenger will appreciate the relatively flat floor, but sitting three adults in back will be a little tight.


Even with the raked front roof pillars, forward visibility is pretty good. The thick rear pillars create a bit of a blind spot when you're looking over your shoulder, but the view directly back is decent and relatively unobstructed by the rear headrests. A rearview camera is standard on all trims.


A lot of hard plastic covers the lower half of the doors, dash and center console. In the light gray color scheme, it makes the interior look cheap. Even the soft-touch surfaces on the upper parts of the dash lack a quality feel. The armrest padding isn't bad but could be more ample on the doors.


Compared to a small sedan, the Niro offers an appealing amount of utility for its size. But when compared to other hybrid hatchbacks or crossover SUVs in the class, it doesn't offer quite as much cargo space or clever cabin storage for small items.

small-item storage

There's convenient storage for personal items forward of the gear shifter, where you would charge your phone wirelessly if so equipped. The door pockets will hold a 16-ounce water bottle and a couple of other small items, but they are on the narrow side. The center armrest bin is average size.

cargo space

The 60/40-split rear seats fold perfectly flat, and the optional underfloor storage adds a bit more utility. Yet, at 19.4 cubic feet with all seats in place (54.5 cubic feet with them folded), the Niro doesn't have as much space as most of the other hybrid hatchbacks.

child safety seat accomodation

LATCH anchors are tucked away in between cushions where the rear seatbacks fold down, which makes access kind of difficult. Each outboard rear seat has a pair of anchors and an easy-access top tether on its back.


The Niro Plug-In is strong on the technology front, with Apple CarPlay and Android Auto included as standard equipment and a host of available advanced safety systems that aren't even offered on some cars above its class. The Uvo navigation system could use a design update, but it functions well.

audio & navigation

The Uvo navigation system is the same as in other Kia models, easy to use but beginning to look dated compared to other systems on the market. The base stereo system won't impress the more musically savvy; the optional Harman Kardon system will.

smartphone integration

With Apple CarPlay and Android Auto standard in all models, you likely won't miss the upgraded system with navigation. The EX Premium trim also comes with wireless charging for smartphones.

driver aids

The adaptive cruise control (called Smart Cruise Control) works pretty well to maintain a distance between the Niro and the car in front, but it only brings the Niro to a complete stop for a moment before relinquishing control.

voice control

Native voice controls are available for navigation, radio, phone and even Google search (if equipped). The prompts are straightforward, and voice recognition works pretty well. And with Apple CarPlay standard, you have the power of Siri through the car's voice control button.

Consumer reviews

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2018 Kia Niro Plug-In Hybrid video

Features & Specs

48 city / 44 hwy
Seats 5
6-speed automated manual
139 hp @ 5700 rpm
48 city / 44 hwy
Seats 5
6-speed automated manual
139 hp @ 5700 rpm
48 city / 44 hwy
Seats 5
6-speed automated manual
139 hp @ 5700 rpm
See all 2018 Kia Niro Plug-In Hybrid features & specs


Our experts’ favorite Niro Plug-In Hybrid safety features:

Blind-Spot Detection
Detects and alerts you with visual and audio warnings when a vehicle in the adjacent lane is in your blind spot.
Smart Cruise Control
Maintains a set speed and distance to the car ahead and will bring the car to a stop briefly before relinquishing control.
Lane Departure Warning
Identifies lane markings and alerts you if you begin to drift out of your lane.

2018 Kia Niro Plug-In Hybrid for Sale

Kia Niro Plug-In Hybrid 2018 EX 4dr SUV (1.6L 4cyl gas/electric hybrid 6AM)
New 2018
Kia Niro Plug-In Hybrid
King Kia
16.8 mi away
Est.Loan: $606/mo
Great Deal!
Great Deal!
View Details
Dealer Notes
Silky Silver 2018 Kia Niro Plug-In Hybrid EX FWD 6-Speed Dual Clutch 1.6L 4-Cylinder Electric Niro Plug-In Hybrid EX, 1.6L 4-Cylinder Electric, 6-Speed Dual Clutch, Silky Silver, Charcoal Cloth.Recent Arrival!Awards:* ALG Residual Value Awards
Kia Niro Plug-In Hybrid 2018 EX 4dr SUV (1.6L 4cyl gas/electric hybrid 6AM)
New 2018
Kia Niro Plug-In Hybrid
Hersons Kia
18.3 mi away
Est.Loan: $660/mo
Good Deal!
Good Deal!
View Details
Dealer Notes
Herson's Kia includes a Two year or 24,000 mile maintenance package with every new Kia purchased or leased. The maintenance package includes oil changes and all regularly scheduled maintenance according to the vehicles maintenance minder system. This offer is exclusive to Herson's Kia. For more details visit our website www.hersonskia.com or call 301-340-3100 and speak to our service consultants.
Kia Niro Plug-In Hybrid 2018 EX 4dr SUV (1.6L 4cyl gas/electric hybrid 6AM)
New 2018
Kia Niro Plug-In Hybrid
Laurel Kia
34.3 mi away
Est.Loan: $668/mo
Fair Deal!
Fair Deal!
View Details
More about the 2018 Kia Niro Plug-In Hybrid

The all-new 2018 Kia Niro Plug-In Hybrid was designed from the ground up to be a gas-electric hybrid rather than an adaptation of an existing model. Its attractive styling doesn't shout "hybrid" from the rooftops. The Niro's strength is that it offers crossover SUV-like utility and hybrid efficiency while meeting the needs of the many shoppers who simply need an affordable, practical around-town vehicle.

For ease of entry, it sits lower than an SUV. For better visibility, it's higher than a sedan. The Niro is, essentially, a wagon with better ground clearance and the ability to haul slightly taller cargo. It shares a platform with the new Hyundai Ioniq lineup — which is composed of hatchback hybrid, plug-in and electric models — but possesses a slightly muscular stance that marks it as a sleekly styled crossover.

The heart of the Niro's hybrid system is a 1.6-liter gasoline engine that pairs with a lightweight electric motor for a combined 139 horsepower and 195 pound-feet of torque. And, unlike many hybrid powertrains that mate to a continuously variable automatic transmission (CVT), Kia opted for a six-speed dual-clutch automatic gearbox, which it says provides a more engaging driving experience. An 11.4-gallon fuel tank and an 8.9-kilowatt-hour lithium-ion battery provide a total claimed range of up to 560 miles, or up to 26 miles on electric power alone.

The EPA rates fuel economy for the Niro PHEV at 105 miles per gallon equivalent or a combined 46 mpg when under combustion power alone. The numbers are nearly identical to those for the Chevrolet Volt plug-in hybrid, though the Volt gets more than double the Niro PHEV's electric-only range.

The Niro has been designed to deliver an understated, conventional ride, and it accomplishes that mission admirably. The hybrid system is generally unobtrusive and delivers decent acceleration, although selecting Eco mode causes a noticeable reduction in zip. Conversely, shifting to Sport mode can pep things up a bit at the expense of a few mpg. And with its low center of gravity and well-balanced suspension system, the Niro handles well on the highway and in the city.

Although set up for five passengers, the Niro is best able to transport four in comfort. Though not exactly luxurious, the interior is well-designed with good-quality materials and solid-feeling controls. And even tall drivers will find the multi-adjustable seats easy to live with. Cargo capacity with the rear seats in place is 19.4 cubic feet, and with the seats folded that expands to 54.5 cubic feet. What that means is that the Niro can haul more than the average sedan but less than many competing small SUVs.

The base Niro LX PHEV comes very well-equipped with such niceties as automatic headlights, dual-zone automatic climate control, a rearview camera and a 7-inch touchscreen infotainment system. The midlevel EX trim adds more safety, comfort and convenience features. The top-of-the-line EX Premium model brings on more appearance and comfort features. Whatever your preference, let Edmunds help you find the 2018 Kia Niro that best meets your needs.

2018 Kia Niro Plug-In Hybrid Overview

The 2018 Kia Niro Plug-In Hybrid is offered in the following submodels: . Available styles include EX Premium 4dr SUV (1.6L 4cyl gas/electric hybrid 6AM), EX 4dr SUV (1.6L 4cyl gas/electric hybrid 6AM), and LX 4dr SUV (1.6L 4cyl gas/electric hybrid 6AM).

What do people think of the 2018 Kia Niro Plug-In Hybrid?

Consumer ratings and reviews are also available for the 2018 Kia Niro Plug-In Hybrid and all its trim types. 0 Edmunds consumer reviews allow users to sift through aggregated consumer reviews to understand what other drivers are saying about any vehicle in our database. Detailed rating breakdowns (including performance, comfort, value, interior, exterior design, build quality, and reliability) are available as well to provide shoppers with a comprehensive understanding of why customers like the 2018 Niro Plug-In Hybrid.

Edmunds Expert Reviews

Edmunds experts have compiled a robust series of ratings and reviews for the 2018 Kia Niro Plug-In Hybrid and all model years in our database. Our rich content includes expert reviews and recommendations for the 2018 Niro Plug-In Hybrid featuring deep dives into trim levels and features, performance, mpg, safety, interior, and driving. Edmunds also offers expert ratings, road test and performance data, long-term road tests, first-drive reviews, video reviews and more.

Edmunds Scorecard

Overall3.0 / 5.0


3.0 / 5.0

Acceleration3.0 / 5.0
Braking2.5 / 5.0
Steering3.0 / 5.0
Handling3.5 / 5.0
Drivability2.0 / 5.0


3.5 / 5.0

Seat comfort3.5 / 5.0
Ride comfort3.0 / 5.0
Noise & vibration3.0 / 5.0
Climate control4.0 / 5.0


4.0 / 5.0

Ease of use4.0 / 5.0
Getting in/getting out4.0 / 5.0
Driving position5.0 / 5.0
Roominess3.5 / 5.0
Visibility4.0 / 5.0
Quality2.5 / 5.0


3.0 / 5.0

Small-item storage3.0 / 5.0
Cargo space3.0 / 5.0


3.5 / 5.0

Audio & navigation3.0 / 5.0
Smartphone integration4.5 / 5.0
Driver aids3.5 / 5.0
Voice control4.0 / 5.0
Our Review Process

This review was written by a member of Edmunds' editorial team of expert car reviewers. Our team drives every car you can buy. We put the vehicles through rigorous testing, evaluating how they drive and comparing them in detail to their competitors.

We're also regular people like you, so we pay attention to all the different ways people use their cars every day. We want to know if there's enough room for our families and our weekend gear and whether or not our favorite drink fits in the cupholder. Our editors want to help you make the best decision on a car that fits your life.

What's a good price for a New 2018 Kia Niro Plug-In Hybrid?
2018 Kia Niro Plug-In Hybrid EX 4dr SUV (1.6L 4cyl gas/electric hybrid 6AM)

The 2018 Kia Niro Plug-In Hybrid EX 4dr SUV (1.6L 4cyl gas/electric hybrid 6AM) can be purchased for less than the Manufacturer’s Suggested Retail Price (aka MSRP) of $32,700. The average price paid for a new 2018 Kia Niro Plug-In Hybrid EX 4dr SUV (1.6L 4cyl gas/electric hybrid 6AM) is trending $1,400 below the manufacturer’s MSRP.

Edmunds members save an average of $1,400 by getting upfront special offers. The estimated special offer price in your area is$31,300.

The average savings for the 2018 Kia Niro Plug-In Hybrid EX 4dr SUV (1.6L 4cyl gas/electric hybrid 6AM) is4.3% below the MSRP.

Available Inventory:

We are showing 17 2018 Kia Niro Plug-In Hybrid EX 4dr SUV (1.6L 4cyl gas/electric hybrid 6AM) vehicle(s) available in the in the Ashburnarea.

Which 2018 Kia Niro Plug-In Hybrids are available in my area?

Shop Edmunds' car, SUV, and truck listings of over 6 million vehicles to find a cheap new, used, or certified pre-owned (CPO) 2018 Kia Niro Plug-In Hybrid for sale near. There are currently 34 new 2018 Niro Plug-In Hybrids listed for sale in your area, with list prices as low as $32,700 and mileage as low as 0 miles. Simply research the type of car you're interested in and then select a car from our massive database to find cheap vehicles for sale near you. Once you have identified a used vehicle you're interested in, check the Carfax and Autocheck vehicle history reports, read dealer reviews, and find out what other owners paid for the 2018 Kia Niro Plug-In Hybrid. Then select Edmunds special offers, perks, deals, and incentives to contact the dealer of your choice and save up to $1,400 on a used or CPO 2018 Niro Plug-In Hybrid available from a dealership near you.

Why trust Edmunds?

Edmunds has deep data on over 6 million new, used, and certified pre-owned vehicles, including rich, trim-level features and specs information like: MSRP, average price paid, warranty information (basic, drivetrain, and maintenance), features (upholstery, bluetooth, navigation, heated seating, cooled seating, cruise control, parking assistance, keyless ignition, satellite radio, folding rears seats ,run flat tires, wheel type, tire size, wheel tire, sunroof, etc.), vehicle specifications (engine cylinder count, drivetrain, engine power, engine torque, engine displacement, transmission), fuel economy (city, highway, combined, fuel capacity, range), vehicle dimensions (length, width, seating capacity, cargo space), car safety, true cost to own. Edmunds also provides tools to allow shopper to compare vehicles to similar models of their choosing by warranty, interior features, exterior features, specifications, fuel economy, vehicle dimensions, consumer rating, edmunds rating, and color.