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Hello Forum!

My 2017 Optima PHEV EX Prem lease is ending in August. (I live in MD, US) I installed a Lvl 2 EVSE in my garage during my lease, so a new PHEV/EV will be my next lease. I'd love a Niro EV with the Launch Edition package, but those dont exist anymore apparently. I think LED or HID lights are incredibly important, and it seems really bizarre to me that you can't get a Niro EV with LED low beams from the factory. While I could always get a PHEV EX Prem, and my commute is 23 miles r/t, I'm concerned about the slow acceleration of the PHEV. So, my questions:

1) Has anyone has long-term experience (>1 year) with LED replacement bulbs in the stock Halogen projectors? Heat soak issues/failures? Reliability?
2) Any leads on a Launch Edition package?
3) What are PHEV owners thoughts on accelleration issues and fuel efficiency with the increased weight?

Thanks!
 

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Ref #3. If you desire to stay in EV mode only, acceleration is "leasurely". Press the throttle far enough, and the ICE starts and it's actually quite peppy. Fuel economy is a bit lower than the HEV during a long distance drive, although the added EV range can still make the overall MPG quite good on a long trip. I went from my home south of Seattle, Over two mountain passes (Tiger and Snoqualmie), spent some time in Ellensburg, then returned home the same way. I kept the car in hybrid mode on the freeway, used EV all through Ellensburg, then back to HEV mode until I was close enough I knew I could reach home with the remaining charge. The trip was about 220 miles, and my gas mileage for the trip was 63 MPG.

With the lockdown, I'm obviously not driving a great deal. Still, we've gone over 600 miles since it was last filled on March 22, and there's still 2/3 tank of gas remaining. The need for heat is responsible for the majority of gas used since then, other than a 120 mile trip to pick up my Dad from a hospital and get him home. Right now the dash is indicating 150 MPG on this tank.

As far as the weight, I can't say I've ever noticed it. If anything, it simply makes the car a bit smoother on the road.
 

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Ref #3. If you desire to stay in EV mode only, acceleration is "leasurely". Press the throttle far enough, and the ICE starts and it's actually quite peppy. Fuel economy is a bit lower than the HEV during a long distance drive, although the added EV range can still make the overall MPG quite good on a long trip. I went from my home south of Seattle, Over two mountain passes (Tiger and Snoqualmie), spent some time in Ellensburg, then returned home the same way. I kept the car in hybrid mode on the freeway, used EV all through Ellensburg, then back to HEV mode until I was close enough I knew I could reach home with the remaining charge. The trip was about 220 miles, and my gas mileage for the trip was 63 MPG.

With the lockdown, I'm obviously not driving a great deal. Still, we've gone over 600 miles since it was last filled on March 22, and there's still 2/3 tank of gas remaining. The need for heat is responsible for the majority of gas used since then, other than a 120 mile trip to pick up my Dad from a hospital and get him home. Right now the dash is indicating 150 MPG on this tank.

As far as the weight, I can't say I've ever noticed it. If anything, it simply makes the car a bit smoother on the road.
Thanks for the insiight. 63mpg is amazing, and i'm glad you think there's little downside to going the PHEV route.
 

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Thanks for the insiight. 63mpg is amazing, and i'm glad you think there's little downside to going the PHEV route.
If you can qualify for the federal tax credit, or lease and you don't have to qualify, the actual price of the PHEV is almost the same as the HEV. Really no downside I can see, especially if you have the ability to plug it in. The tax credit for the PHEV is just under $5000.
 

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PHEV Pros: If your commute is 23 miles round trip, you could do pretty much the whole thing on on electricity, (depending on freeway speeds/long hills, etc.) If you need to go on a long trip and don't want to spend a lot of time recharging, the PHEV can go 500-600 miles on a tank of gas and refilling the gas tank is quick. No range anxiety.

EV Pros: No need to buy gas. Might be quicker off the line, but probably not much with added battery weight. Cool factor.
 

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No might be quicker about it. The BEV is absolutely quicker. The battery weight also has a pro in that it lowers the center of gravity and makes the car feel well planted while driving. Still not a sports car, but reviewers have noted how well the Niro EV drives.
 

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The battery weight also has a pro in that it lowers the center of gravity and makes the car feel well planted while driving.
The bigger battery does have a con, it takes up more room where the backseat passengers feet go. If your legs are on the longer side, your thighs might not be supported by the seat.:(
 

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If the seat is higher, that is more thigh support, not less. The battery does take up more room in the spare tire area, not allowing its use.
 

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If the seat is higher, that is more thigh support, not less. The battery does take up more room in the spare tire area, not allowing its use.
The video review I watched, the guy's knees were up in the air. If the seat was higher, your headroom would be less.
 

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The bigger battery does have a con, it takes up more room where the backseat passengers feet go. If your legs are on the longer side, your thighs might not be supported by the seat.:(
I actually watched a YouTube video review last night, and they pointed out the same thing. Since the rear seat isn't any higher, raising the floor did remove a little space for the toes under the front seats, and as you mention the thigh support is lacking for longer legged people.
 

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Wonder what they put under the floor. Diagrams and pictures I've seen do not show battery extending there. But yes, if they raised the floor, that reduces thigh support.
 

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act98092 comments in posts #2 & #4 mirror my experience. I've not driven the Optima PHEV but imagine the Niro's acceleration characteristics would be pretty similar

Actually tax credit is $4,543 (yeah, its a weird #).

RT range is in the PHEV sweet spot. You will probably use some gas when temps dip below 45 F or so, but otherwise very little unless you heat that cabin or accelerate fast. I'd say it sounds like Niro PHEV might be the perfect car for you.
 

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act98092 comments in posts #2 & #4 mirror my experience. I've not driven the Optima PHEV but imagine the Niro's acceleration characteristics would be pretty similar

Actually tax credit is $4,543 (yeah, its a weird #).

RT range is in the PHEV sweet spot. You will probably use some gas when temps dip below 45 F or so, but otherwise very little unless you heat that cabin or accelerate fast. I'd say it sounds like Niro PHEV might be the perfect car for you.
Thanks everyone for the replies.

The Optima PHEV 0-60 time is about 7.5 seconds. It is a larger car, but also has a larger electric motor (and more total system power). It also gets about 41mpg combined in my experience when using it as a HEV. It's been more than ample for my needs, but we're getting a baby soon, and I'm a fan of leasing vs. owning things that move :)

The Niro PHEV 0-60 time is around 9 seconds, so about 20% slower than the Optima. Not really a deal breaker, but something to consider in the overall calculations of PHEV vs. EV.

At the end of the day, it's going to come down to what is the better balance of monthly lease payments and performance. I'm currently paying $364/mo on the Optima. I'm willing to go up to $400 for the increased performance and cool factor of a full EV. I'd also feel better about the investment in the level 2 charger. But, if a PHEV Niro is less than my current payment (with incentives), it may be persuasive. Clear as mud, right? Isn't car buying fun?
 

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Thanks everyone for the replies.

The Optima PHEV 0-60 time is about 7.5 seconds. It is a larger car, but also has a larger electric motor (and more total system power). It also gets about 41mpg combined in my experience when using it as a HEV. It's been more than ample for my needs, but we're getting a baby soon, and I'm a fan of leasing vs. owning things that move :)

The Niro PHEV 0-60 time is around 9 seconds, so about 20% slower than the Optima. Not really a deal breaker, but something to consider in the overall calculations of PHEV vs. EV.

At the end of the day, it's going to come down to what is the better balance of monthly lease payments and performance. I'm currently paying $364/mo on the Optima. I'm willing to go up to $400 for the increased performance and cool factor of a full EV. I'd also feel better about the investment in the level 2 charger. But, if a PHEV Niro is less than my current payment (with incentives), it may be persuasive. Clear as mud, right? Isn't car buying fun?
Most likely neither of those 0-60 times are based on using only EV power. I can promise you my Niro can't hit 60 in 9 seconds without the ICE. Probably more like 14-15 seconds. :D

But you know what? 99% of the time that's more than sufficient for keeping up with the traffic. No need to buzz bomb up to the next stop light. If I really need quick acceleration, then call up the ICE. But real world use I rarely need the ICE for acceleration.
 
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