Anyone test drove the Niro, Clarity & Ioniq PHEVs? - Kia Niro Forum
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post #1 of 25 (permalink) Old 08-19-2019, 02:53 PM Thread Starter
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Anyone test drove the Niro, Clarity & Ioniq PHEVs?

My family is shopping for a new car with the following requirements:

  • Plug in with a range of at least 25 miles (I have a 22 mile round trip commute with free charging at work)
  • Decent cargo space - good family car
  • Affordable
  • Good efficiency
  • Is fun to drive

I test drove the Niro PHEV last weekend and liked it a lot. Because of our cargo requirement we weren't thinking of either the clarity or ioniq but in looking at them more they're both bigger than the niro. With it's lower price tag, longer EV range, and hatchback style I'm really wondering about the ioniq. I'm going to try to test drive both this week but am curious to hear others experiences if they've tried these cars. If they're functionally smaller than the niro I think we'd just go ahead with the niro as we both really liked it.
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post #2 of 25 (permalink) Old 08-19-2019, 03:46 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by AHM View Post
My family is shopping for a new car with the following requirements:

  • Plug in with a range of at least 25 miles (I have a 22 mile round trip commute with free charging at work)
  • Decent cargo space - good family car
  • Affordable
  • Good efficiency
  • Is fun to drive

I test drove the Niro PHEV last weekend and liked it a lot. Because of our cargo requirement we weren't thinking of either the clarity or ioniq but in looking at them more they're both bigger than the niro. With it's lower price tag, longer EV range, and hatchback style I'm really wondering about the ioniq. I'm going to try to test drive both this week but am curious to hear others experiences if they've tried these cars. If they're functionally smaller than the niro I think we'd just go ahead with the niro as we both really liked it.
for me, ride height, ease of exit and entry, won it for the niro

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post #3 of 25 (permalink) Old 08-19-2019, 04:16 PM
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If you are thinking of the Honda Clarity here is an article that may be of interest to you
See this link
https://insideevs.com/news/363526/ho...es-california/
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post #4 of 25 (permalink) Old 08-19-2019, 05:48 PM
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The Ioniq is longer and technically can carry more styrofoam peanuts. The Niro has better rear legroom and headroom. If you are going to doing mostly EV miles, the Ioniq aero advantage is largely irrelevant.

I don’t remember the reasons why, but is seems most cross shopping these cars reject the Honda.
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post #5 of 25 (permalink) Old 08-19-2019, 05:51 PM
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I think I remember. Total range something like 300 miles.

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post #6 of 25 (permalink) Old 08-19-2019, 06:42 PM
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I looked at the Ioniq and went with the Niro. Most important is I liked the ease of entry and exit due to the height. It seemed roomier in the rear seat area (I put a 60# Labrador on the floor regularly). And the ability to carry bigger loads with the back seats down won over the slightly bigger CF of the Ioniq trunk.
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post #7 of 25 (permalink) Old 08-19-2019, 08:46 PM Thread Starter
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Thanks for all the responses. There's a 2019 Honda Clarity at a dealer near me (East Coast) so at least for now they're not limited to California.

I have a small child, who is most often going to be the only passenger in the back. I occasionally drive other adults but I'm from a short family and very few people I'd be driving around are tall, so while I'd like it to be comfortable in the back that's not on the top of my list. With this vehicle I'm hoping to get the most storage space for camping and weekends away. I currently have an older honda accord and the only time it's too small is in those instances.
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post #8 of 25 (permalink) Old 08-19-2019, 08:56 PM
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I didn't look at the Clarity, I didn't even bother considering how small the Civic and Accord interiors are. I assumed the Clarity would be just as bad.
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post #9 of 25 (permalink) Old 08-19-2019, 09:12 PM
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I drove the Clarity a couple of times, and my son-in-law has an Ioniq HEV (not plug-in).

For me, the Ioniq isn't as comfortable a place to be. It feels a little more cramped in the seating area, the infotainment system has a smaller screen (he has the mid-level trim), and I really don't like the view out the back window in the mirror. During braking, it makes little noises that I don't hear in the Niro, even though the Ioniq and Niro PHEV is basically the same powertrain. Overall, I just don't feel as comfortable driving it. I don't think it would be any different for me if his was the PHEV version. But he likes it, and even with his lead foot he gets over 50 MPG.

The Clarity is a much larger car, but I discovered that when the rear seats are folded down the opening between the seating area and the trunk isn't full size, so capacity isn't as good as it could be. When the Clarity has a charged battery, it drives pretty nice. The first one I drove had zero battery charge, and between the CVT and the droning engine, I couldn't stand the racket. After about 2 miles it calmed down, but it's a completely different animal with a charged battery. Also, the Clarity has zero electric information on the dash, both while driving and while charging. Other than the battery range indicator (and probably a regen gauge, I can't remember) it tells you nothing. When you plug it in, there's a little green light by the plug telling you its charging. No dash display of any kind telling you time to charge, nothing. Oh, and the infotainment screen is both not very attractive and is also quite sluggish when touching the screen.

That said, the Clarity certainly has the best EV range short of a Volt. But I decided it was larger than I needed, I didn't care for its uncharged operation, and frankly it isn't as nice looking as the Niro (in my opinion, obviously). After three months, I am still certain I made the right choice.
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Last edited by atc98092; 08-20-2019 at 05:43 PM. Reason: typo
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post #10 of 25 (permalink) Old 08-20-2019, 12:43 PM
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The Niro is a great car and at the top of my short list, primarily due to its form factor -- I love wagons!

However, since the Chevy Volt has been mentioned -- it may be heresy to say this here you -- might want to consider that also. It is actually quite a good car that has double electric only the range of the Niro.

It's form is closer the Ioniq which means that it is lower & doesn't have the same ease of entry & exit that the Niro has -- a major factor for many Niro buyers. Less of a factor for those who have smaller stature and are younger.

Actually the cars mentioned here very good cars. It comes down to what fits your family needs and budget best. Of course the Korean models have the 10 yr warranty advantage. A great source for detailed info and real world comparisons of these models is Alex on Autos. He has a great videos that run 25-30 for each model. Well worth your time IMO.

We would love to hear what you choose and why!
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Last edited by Dovidan; 08-20-2019 at 12:46 PM.
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