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It’s the brakes, man. Automakers need to get these regenerative brakes sorted out. Only some makers do them nicely, and off the highest of my head, I can’t bear in mind any of them. This Niro pedal has no really feel throughout the regen a part of the stroke, after which the pedal will get arduous on the backside. It’s disconcerting. Apart from that, it’s a superb hybrid.

I feel the Niro appears to be like cool. The form is regular, and it has type of a sporty look. It doesn’t scream hybrid, which I like. It simply appears to be like like a daily compact SUV.

Inside, it appears like a daily Kia, moreover the additional battery gauge. The sprint is clear, and the corporate’s infotainment system is straightforward to make use of. The seats didn’t go as little as I’d like, however there are a bunch of changes for getting a snug seating/wheel place.

You’ll have to hammer it to get any momentum going. However like most of those hybrids, there’s a bit satisfaction when maintaining it within the “eco” portion of the ability meter. I didn’t discover that it had a dual-clutch transmission, which suggests it will need to have been clean.

The RAV4 Hybrid and Prius would most likely be its closest rivals. I feel the RAV appears to be like goofy, however the brand new Prius is rattling good. I don’t know if the additional utility of this compact will push it above the ur-hybrid from Toyota; for me, it doesn’t. However once more, this appears to be like much less “hybrid” than nearly every other devoted hybrid. I feel that’ll assist its gross sales.

–Jake Lingeman, highway check editor

Automobile Opinions

Gallery: 2017 Kia Niro inside

OTHER VOICES:

I suppose I used to be anticipating a bit higher gasoline economic system from the Niro. Our blended common was within the 37.5-mpg vary — not unhealthy, however it’s nicely shy of the 43-mpg mixed quantity Kia advertises. Nonetheless, it is a very properly geared up compact wagon with wonderful economic system, and it is a good different to one of many ute-like crossovers. The Niro ought to attraction to VW TDI Sportwagen prospects who’ve been ousted from their autos of alternative — the area, worth and options all examine favorably, although German automobile followers must recalibrate to the Kia’s extra comfort-tuned journey and dealing with.

As for Jake’s observe on the hybrid brakes, the important thing on all these regenerative programs will not be to consider the brake pedal as a standard brake with the only function of stopping the automobile. On a hybrid/EV just like the Niro, there are two modes: “Look, I am producing electrical energy,” and “I wish to cease now.” Linearity is not the robust swimsuit of any hybrid brake system, however it’s type of just like the clutch pedal whenever you’re studying to drive stick: If you consider what the pedal is doing — the way it’s affecting the mechanical programs within the automobile — the really feel begins to make extra sense.

I dunno. Possibly I am a hybrid apologist; I would not need a Niro on the monitor, however I like the thought of creating electrical energy whereas I commute. Studying to make use of these “brakes” to their most benefit in visitors will not be in contrast to discovering how late I can cost right into a flip with an enormous set of carbon ceramics, and the two-stage really feel truly helps with a hybrid.

–Andrew Stoy, digital editor

Automobile Opinions

Gallery: 2017 Kia Soul

On Sale: Now

Base Worth: $30,545

As Examined Worth: $32,445

Drivetrain: 1.6-liter DOHC I4, FWD, six-speed DCT, everlasting magnet AC synchronous motor

Output: 104 hp @ 5,700 rpm (42 kW electrical) (139 hp internet); 109 lb-ft @ four,000 rpm (125 lb-ft electrical) (195 lb-ft internet)

Curb Weight: three,274 lb

Gas Economic system: 46/40/43 mpg(EPA Metropolis/Hwy/Mixed)

Noticed Gas Economic system: 37.5 mpg

Choices: Superior Expertise Bundle with HID headlights, autonomous emergency braking, ahead collision warning system, land departure warning system, good cruise management, 115-volt inverter, wi-fi telephone charger ($1,900)

Professionals: Does not really feel like a hybrid, apart from the brakes

Cons: We anticipated higher mileage

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