First came Kia Motors New Zealand’s launch of the Niro Hybrid and Plug-in Hybrid models in March, and now the company reports strong interest in the all-electric Niro EV recently unveiled in Korea.
Priced at $24,990, the Rio CRDi is powered by a 1.4L engine and Kia’s EcoDynamics package including ‘idle stop & go’ technology to cut fuel consumption and carbon emissions. Fuel use is 4.3L/100km (55mpg) and CO2 level 113g/km.
The engine was developed for Kia in Europe. It has double overhead cams and the latest common-rail high-pressure fuel injection. Engine capacity is 1396cc, and a wastegate turbocharger gives a more compressed forced-air charge for greater efficiency and responsiveness.
Derived from Kia’s U2 diesel family, it develops 66kW at 4000rpm and 220Nm of torque across a 1750-2750rpm range.
The EcoDynamics package also includes low rolling-resistance tyres, a drag-reducing front grille, a gearshift indicator and rear spoiler. Six-speed manual transmission is standard.
Kia Motors New Zealand general manager Todd McDonald says the new diesel model further boosts the Rio range, now one of the brand’s best sellers here.
“Rio is going remarkably well for us in New Zealand, [with] sporty design, high specification level and attractive price.”
The CRDi suspension is based on European specifications, giving “sporty” handling. Brakes are discs, and the car has ESC stability control and ‘hill assist control’ to prevent rolling backwards during starts on steep gradients.
Equipment includes daytime running lights, reverse warning sensors, heated/powered door mirrors, remote locking with in-built car alarm, height-adjustable driver’s seat, two-way steering column adjustment, split folding rear seats, rear luggage cover, trip computer, Bluetooth and MP3-compatible/radio/CD audio.