Hybrids & Electrics

The 2020 Kia Niro Is a Thrifty Buy For Eco-Conscious Drivers

Most people would love to save money by getting behind the wheel of a fuel-efficient hybrid. But these fuel sippers are too expensive, right? Not all hybrids abide by this stigma. Such is the case of the 2020 Kia Niro subcompact SUV.

The Niro isn’t one of the very best hybrids on the market. However, it delivers satisfactory performance, and it’s ultra-affordable with a starting MSRP of $24,590. This combination makes the 2020 Kia Niro a smart purchase for frugal, eco-conscious shoppers.

Those who want to reduce their carbon footprint on a budget are likely dying to know more about the 2020 Niro. Let’s examine what’s under the hood, what features it offers, and how it stacks up against other hybrids.

The 2020 Kia Niro punches above its class

An orange 2020 Kia Niro on display in a parking lot with trees in the background
A 2020 Kia Niro on display | Photo via Kia

It would be fair for one to be skeptical of a hybrid with such a low entry price. However, this subcompact SUV is even more fuel-efficient than many of its pricier competitors.

Its 1.6-liter four-cylinder engine and electric motor work in tandem with a six-speed dual-clutch transmission and a front-wheel-drive system. This hybrid powertrain doesn’t deliver much excitement, producing a meager total system output of just 139 hp. However, its gas mileage more than makes up for its lack of thrills. The EPA estimates that the 2020 Kia Niro gets 52 MPG in the city and 49 MPG on the highway.

Other affordable hybrid SUVs can’t match this efficiency. The best competitors to the 2020 Kia Niro are actually hybrid cars, such as the Toyota Prius, Hyundai Ioniq, and the Honda Insight. These compact cars put up similar fuel-efficiency numbers, but the Kia Niro offers more versatility.

This Kia subcompact SUV is quite spacious compared to the rest of its segment. The Niro offers 54.5 cubic feet of cargo room with its rear seats folded down. Meanwhile, the gas-powered Hyundai Kona subcompact SUV only provides 45.8 cubic feet of storage space.

Upscale features are available for those who want them

Don’t expect to find the finest luxuries in the automotive industry when you get behind the wheel of the 2020 Kia Niro. That doesn’t mean this budget-friendly hybrid doesn’t have features that you’ll love.

Those committed to buying the most affordable version of the Niro should eye the LX trim level. It comes standard with dual-zone automatic climate control, a rearview camera, Bluetooth, a USB port, and four speakers. It also houses an easy-to-use infotainment system with an eight-inch touchscreen display compatible with Apple CarPlay and Android Auto.

However, it’s worth it to upgrade to the next trim up, the LXS, which is loaded with driver-assistance technologies. These include forward-collision warning, automatic emergency braking, driver drowsiness monitoring, blind-spot monitoring, lane-keep assist, and rear cross-traffic alert.

Shoppers can also treat themselves to a little more luxury with the 2020 Kia Niro’s premium trims. Some available features include leather upholstery, a navigation system, adaptive cruise control, wireless device charging, and more.

The 2020 Kia Niro is a winner amongst savvy shoppers

RELATED: Why the Kia Niro Might Not Deserve to Be Called an SUV

If you want a hybrid but don’t want to pay a lot of money or be stuck in a compact-size car, then the 2020 Kia Niro might be right for you. This affordable subcompact SUV is rich in space and fuel economy, making it a smart buy for budget-conscious shoppers.

Those willing to spend more can get a better hybrid, such as the value-packed Toyota RAV4 Hybrid. However, the Niro might save you more in the long run, thanks to its low price.