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Kia is not new to the EV market. There’s plenty to get excited about with the new 2022 Kia EV6. But how does it compare to the automaker’s previous EV introduction, the Kia Niro EV? For anyone who’s considering either model, how can you decide between these two great electric SUVs? When you look at the specs and compare a few key categories, the choice becomes clear. Here are five data-driven and convincing reasons you should choose the 2022 Kia EV6 over the 2022 Kia Niro EV.

1. A better fuel economy equivalent for the Kia EV6

A silver 2022 Kia EV6 indoors.
Kia EV6 | Getty Images

When comparing the EPA combined mpge for the 2022 Kia EV6 and the 2022 Kia Niro EV, there are clear distinctions in fuel economy equivalents. Edmunds says the EV6 earns 117 mpge. In the same specs and features breakdown for the Niro EV, Edmunds points to the 112 mpge for its standard powertrain variation.

2. Available AWD with the Kia EV6

On the drivetrain front, the 2022 Kia Niro EV comes in a front-wheel drive. The 2022 Kia EV6 is the better choice because of its standard rear-wheel drive and optional all-wheel drive with higher trim levels. As Consumer Reports points out, engaging all four wheels using two motors makes this electric SUV a more robust choice.

3. More available range than the Kia Niro EV

You’re not buying an electric SUV or hatchback without considering the EPA-estimated miles of capable range. With the 2022 Kia Niro EV, you can expect 239 miles of total range, which is semi-impressive for its class. Its 64.0 kWh battery capacity is comparable.

Entry-level Kia EV6 models, outfitted with their 58 kWh battery, come in with a 232-mile rating. But with the all-wheel drive versions, the EPA gives the EV6 a 274-mile rating. With the larger 77.4 kWh battery pack, the EV6 rear-wheel-drive earns a whopping 310-mile rating.

4. More available horsepower and torque at higher trim levels

There’s just more power when you opt for the Kia EV6. There are four available engine configurations and four trims, Light, Wind, GT-Line, and 1st Edition, each harnessing more horsepower as you bump up to the higher-level trims: 167 hp with 258 lb-ft, 225 hp, 320 hp with 446 lb-ft of torque, and 560 hp GT coming in 2023. With the Kia Niro EV, you’ll only have one engine capable of achieving 201 horsepower and 291 lb-ft of torque. 

5. Faster charging times with the Kia EV6

Kia promotes the 2022 EV6’s charging times with “ultra-fast DC fast charging” capabilities. With both the 400v and 800v DC fast chargers, you can expect to do “more driving and less charging.” And with the 800v DC fast charger, you can charge 217 miles of range in 18 minutes. Kia says the Niro EV, with its 120v and 140v DC fast chargers, adding 100 miles of range will still take about an hour. 

For the standard powertrain, it only takes about 6.3 hours to charge the 2022 Kia EV6 fully. The upgraded powertrain will charge in 8.4 hours. These charging times are vastly better than the 9.5 hours to charge the 2022 Niro EV. Even Consumer Reports points to the long charging times for the Kia Niro as a “low” along with its unintuitive gear selector.

With EVs on your radar, Kia has a couple of worthy contenders to consider. But in comparing power, range, charging times, fuel economy equivalents, and drivetrains, the 2022 Kia EV6 is a hands-down better option than the 2022 Kia Niro EV.


Every Electric Kia Model Available Now