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Discussion Starter #1
Hey guys, I’m a Pilot Escort Driver following Oversized Loads in Florida. Mileage always goes way up regardless of what I drive behind a load. Anyone have experience drafting that can report mileage? I’m averaging about 60-70K miles/year now. The fuel savings alone pays for the Niro and then some, especially considering the reliability of a new vehicle over my old 95 Town Car with 160K. 26K this year alone...
 

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I try not to draft any Pickup Trucks, SUVs or Riggs, I don't like Stars or Chips in my Windshield..............................
 

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I'm not sure soft is a good word to describe how a pane of glass might chip. Usually glass is described having a general hardness of 5.5 Mohs, but can go up to perhaps 7 Mohs for the glass used by cellphones. But hardness describes how difficult a material is to scratch, not chip. That seems to me a different metric, perhaps crystalline structure, or shear strength.

A quick Google didn't come up with any real differences between windshield manufacturers, but I did find a coating treatment that promises everything will be ten times better:
Diamon-Fusion® automotive and RV protective windshield coating

Dunno, heard of ceramic paint coatings that promise the moon (no interest), but I'd do a windshield treatment if it just promised just 50% better with no downside (other than cost). I especially dislike the sandblasted effect that windshield acquire. The link above says it is used on military Hummers to reduce just that.
 

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Discussion Starter #6
Pilot Escort vehicles get the brunt of pretty much every piece of debris either coming off of or being sucked up off the road. This vehicle is going to get nailed every time so I expect it. Typically, we have to replace the windshield at least once but usually twice a year. That’s why I was looking for a used Niro and the cheapest model, the FE.
 

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Well a model with the Tech Package would be perfect for you, the Smart Cruise you'd be able to set the distance from the back of truck and it would keep that distance.
 

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Discussion Starter #8
Well guys, it's been 1 year and two weeks now since I first used the Niro for Escorting. After 93,800 miles, I'm very comfortable and so far pleased with this vehicle.

Original tires and brakes but I did have to replace a cracked and severely etched windshield and drivers headlight due to work conditions. The headlight was struck by a wood wedge from the load. What is interesting is that the clear lens didn't brake but the plastic parts inside cracked and shattered. The bulb continued to function for about two weeks. I replaced both bulbs and all is good.

I ended up with 88,852 miles on May 15, 2019. I stay current with recall items. I've followed Kia's 7,500 mile interval maintenance schedule and I've only had one minor issue during this time. Driving at 55 mph, the engine ran rough for about two minutes and cleared up, it coded but never duplicated. Other than that, the rear spoiler mounting hardware nut fell off and is still floating around inside of the lift-back door. Simple fix.

Today, I received a new set of tires to be mounted and balanced on Monday. I'm staying with the Michelin Energy 205/60R16 92H OEM tires. They've lasted to my current miles which is WAY beyond the 65K warranty. I attribute that to strict rotate and balance intervals, Florida driving conditions, highway driven mileage, driving style....apparently good equipment helps too. BTW, there's still reasonable tread left but I want that warm fuzzy on those 1100 mile days.

Issues.. The Apple Carplay is buggy but works pretty good most of the time with my 6S. I still hate the cruise control and want some one-on-one time with the guy who finalized it's factory settings...just saying. The front passenger seat belt warning started randomly going off around 75K. Aside from the mileage, most everything is as you'd expect on a one year old car. Low speed braking is less than graceful. It gets knochy and grabby....like it can't decide if you're stopping or going. It's definitely manageable, just annoying at times.

I wish there was a HOBBS meter on the engine that the info center can show. For all those miles, there are many days sitting and waiting for various reasons. 2-4 hours a work day with some days being 16 hours or more. Unless I'm home, I rarely shut the Niro off while working. My oil always looks good at service time. Although, the cabin air filter gets gnarly very quick Escorting diesel powered equipment. I've learned to deadhead with the vent open and circulate when behind a load. It helps.

I wish I could remote video to the Niros screen when in Park.

I love the air conditioner too. I'm a polar bear living in freakin Florida and this unit delivers! It's been in the low 100's this week and still chilling. Great job to those cool cat engineers.

Miles per gallon varies greatly with speed. While drafting a load at 65 mph, I typically get 65 mpg. My best tank was Escorting a 130 ft concrete pole from Claxton, Ga down to Fort Myers, Fl. It's 530 miles there, where I drove another 100 miles to collect a check and had 40 miles remaining when I topped off the tank. That's 670 miles on one tank of gas. 51 mpg stops after 70 mph normal driving.

Hey drive-train guys, what's going on at around 83 mph?

Overall, I'd buy another Niro to discover it's end of life limits. It's got range, reasonable comfort for a 300 pound 5'11" driver, cheap to operate, DEPENDABLE, and $21K is cheap for a new hybrid. Untill something better comes along anyway. My alternate vehicle would be a Chrysler Pacifica Hybrid but that's a $45K vehicle. The rigs that I Escort all have sleepers, the Pacifica would be my sleeper. Although, I prefer to be home every night.
 

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Being new to the Kia brand and a Niro I so much enjoy hearing these reports of trouble free ownership with this great vehicle. It helps to reinforce buying this vehicle was the right decision.
 

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Rear spoiler nut

Well guys, it's been 1 year and two weeks now since I first used the Niro for Escorting. After 93,800 miles, I'm very comfortable and so far pleased with this vehicle.

Original tires and brakes but I did have to replace a cracked and severely etched windshield and drivers headlight due to work conditions. The headlight was struck by a wood wedge from the load. What is interesting is that the clear lens didn't brake but the plastic parts inside cracked and shattered. The bulb continued to function for about two weeks. I replaced both bulbs and all is good.

I ended up with 88,852 miles on May 15, 2019. I stay current with recall items. I've followed Kia's 7,500 mile interval maintenance schedule and I've only had one minor issue during this time. Driving at 55 mph, the engine ran rough for about two minutes and cleared up, it coded but never duplicated. Other than that, the rear spoiler mounting hardware nut fell off and is still floating around inside of the lift-back door. Simple fix.

Today, I received a new set of tires to be mounted and balanced on Monday. I'm staying with the Michelin Energy 205/60R16 92H OEM tires. They've lasted to my current miles which is WAY beyond the 65K warranty. I attribute that to strict rotate and balance intervals, Florida driving conditions, highway driven mileage, driving style....apparently good equipment helps too. BTW, there's still reasonable tread left but I want that warm fuzzy on those 1100 mile days.

Issues.. The Apple Carplay is buggy but works pretty good most of the time with my 6S. I still hate the cruise control and want some one-on-one time with the guy who finalized it's factory settings...just saying. The front passenger seat belt warning started randomly going off around 75K. Aside from the mileage, most everything is as you'd expect on a one year old car. Low speed braking is less than graceful. It gets knochy and grabby....like it can't decide if you're stopping or going. It's definitely manageable, just annoying at times.

I wish there was a HOBBS meter on the engine that the info center can show. For all those miles, there are many days sitting and waiting for various reasons. 2-4 hours a work day with some days being 16 hours or more. Unless I'm home, I rarely shut the Niro off while working. My oil always looks good at service time. Although, the cabin air filter gets gnarly very quick Escorting diesel powered equipment. I've learned to deadhead with the vent open and circulate when behind a load. It helps.

I wish I could remote video to the Niros screen when in Park.

I love the air conditioner too. I'm a polar bear living in freakin Florida and this unit delivers! It's been in the low 100's this week and still chilling. Great job to those cool cat engineers.

Miles per gallon varies greatly with speed. While drafting a load at 65 mph, I typically get 65 mpg. My best tank was Escorting a 130 ft concrete pole from Claxton, Ga down to Fort Myers, Fl. It's 530 miles there, where I drove another 100 miles to collect a check and had 40 miles remaining when I topped off the tank. That's 670 miles on one tank of gas. 51 mpg stops after 70 mph normal driving.

Hey drive-train guys, what's going on at around 83 mph?

Overall, I'd buy another Niro to discover it's end of life limits. It's got range, reasonable comfort for a 300 pound 5'11" driver, cheap to operate, DEPENDABLE, and $21K is cheap for a new hybrid. Untill something better comes along anyway. My alternate vehicle would be a Chrysler Pacifica Hybrid but that's a $45K vehicle. The rigs that I Escort all have sleepers, the Pacifica would be my sleeper. Although, I prefer to be home every night.

Kia knows about the loose nuts in the rear gate, there is a service bulletin for repair, quite common for the 2017 model, covered under warranty and fixed with a drop of Locktite.
 

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Re. The guy that came up with Kias cruise control...

You hold him down and I'll kick his ass.

By far the worst cruise control of ANY vehicle ever made. I mean, how hard is it to stay at 62 mph? Todays commute, set to 62, saw as low as 60 and as high as 64...on perfectly level roads.

Its the only thing I hate about this car, and might make me get rid of it.
 

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Re. The guy that came up with Kias cruise control...

You hold him down and I'll kick his ass.

By far the worst cruise control of ANY vehicle ever made. I mean, how hard is it to stay at 62 mph? Todays commute, set to 62, saw as low as 60 and as high as 64...on perfectly level roads.

Its the only thing I hate about this car, and might make me get rid of it.
fwiw, I like the niro's cruise control. The best cc I've ever had.
 

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Re. The guy that came up with Kias cruise control...

You hold him down and I'll kick his ass.

By far the worst cruise control of ANY vehicle ever made. I mean, how hard is it to stay at 62 mph? Todays commute, set to 62, saw as low as 60 and as high as 64...on perfectly level roads.

Its the only thing I hate about this car, and might make me get rid of it.
Any chance traffic ahead affected speed? Not sure why it would go higher than set speed though. You might have a sensor issue.

I've never seen this issue but I only use standard CC. In my use, I've never seen overshoot, but sometimes a quickly increasing gradient will briefly drop one mph from set speed.
 

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Re. The guy that came up with Kias cruise control...

You hold him down and I'll kick his ass.

By far the worst cruise control of ANY vehicle ever made. I mean, how hard is it to stay at 62 mph? Todays commute, set to 62, saw as low as 60 and as high as 64...on perfectly level roads.

Its the only thing I hate about this car, and might make me get rid of it.
I don't think I've seen a cruise control on any brand of car that didn't go slightly over or under the set speed. It doesn't take much incline to make a minor change in engine load. That +/- 2 MPH cushion is to keep the overall response smooth. If it was trying to nail the speed at all times, you would certainly notice an unevenness in power application. And of course if it's an active cruise control, it can often detect another car ahead of you and make a slight correction.

I've been on roads that I could swear were completely level, but in reality had a bit of a grade (in either direction). They only way I knew was the instant MPG display in the car would show a very high number on the downhill segment and a lower than expected number on the uphill. Again, I thought the road was level. :)
 

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I have only normal cruise control, none of that automatic crap.

If this is the best cruise control you have ever had, you must have turned 16 last month and never driven before. I don't mind "slightly over or under" but 4 mph is ticket territory and just wasteful on gasoline.

My Fusion Hybrid would not change at all on the exact same commute. Set it to 62 and stay at 62 for the entire 30 miles. The Kia is all over the place and "Resume" is merely a suggestion, it might go back to a set speed, or it might stay at the speed that I was moving when I pressed resume or it might pull the gas pedal all the way to the floor for 2 or 3 seconds and overshoot the "set" speed by 4 or 5 mphs.

ITS MADDENING!!!!!
 

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The Niro has adaptive cruise control (ACC) on by default every time the car is turned on. To get to standard CC, you have to switch to it every drive. Unless you have a 2017, then ACC is not available. Maybe the lower trim levels don't have it either unless you bought the tech package (I did on my 2018 LX).

I will say that no CC system I have used can hold a speed as well I can do manually (with close attention). That just seems nuts, especially in this age of drive by wire, cheap accelerometers and incline gauges, and computers running millions of calculations per second. It just shouldn't be that hard!
 

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Miles per gallon varies greatly with speed. While drafting a load at 65 mph, I typically get 65 mpg. My best tank was Escorting a 130 ft concrete pole from Claxton, Ga down to Fort Myers, Fl. It's 530 miles there, where I drove another 100 miles to collect a check and had 40 miles remaining when I topped off the tank. That's 670 miles on one tank of gas. 51 mpg stops after 70 mph normal driving.

Hey drive-train guys, what's going on at around 83 mph?
Look at your power gauge on the left, usually at 80-85 MPH, you'll cross from being able to drive engine only in the high fuel economy regime of the engine, the Eco section, to power. The reason is because of a measurement of engine capability called brake specific fuel consumption or BSFC. Atkinson cycle engines like the Niro's, produce their best fuel economy at 60-80% of their maximum brake mean effective pressure (BMEP) [that's average cylinder pressure divided by horsepower] and 1800-3100 RPM. As you increase horsepower demand, the RPM will climb out of this sweet spot. To help minimize this, the system tries to compensate with additional electric motor usage to keep you in the sweet spot for a little longer, until battery state disallows this. At that point, the electric motor will disengage and the engine will increase RPM to make up the missing horsepower to maintain speed, creating the illusion of a surge. To prevent this, stay below 80 miles an hour.
 

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I have only normal cruise control, none of that automatic crap.

If this is the best cruise control you have ever had, you must have turned 16 last month and never driven before. I don't mind "slightly over or under" but 4 mph is ticket territory and just wasteful on gasoline.

My Fusion Hybrid would not change at all on the exact same commute. Set it to 62 and stay at 62 for the entire 30 miles. The Kia is all over the place and "Resume" is merely a suggestion, it might go back to a set speed, or it might stay at the speed that I was moving when I pressed resume or it might pull the gas pedal all the way to the floor for 2 or 3 seconds and overshoot the "set" speed by 4 or 5 mphs.

ITS MADDENING!!!!!
On standard Niro FE/LX cruise control, if your current speed is more that 12 mph under the set speed, it will reset it to the current speed. It's designed to conserve momentum and minimize fuel consumption more than be a pure exact speed match system, and since standard cruise doesn't have reader to measure distance, it's unsafe and a liability to allow the vehicle to accelerate more than that speed without remote sensing.

The smart cruise system is more precise and can accelerate from 20 all the way back up to 80 on it's own without overshooting. Perhaps you might want to look at an LX with the tech package next time?
 
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