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2022 Niro Hybrid LX
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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Before I bought a Niro, I looked at a lot of photos online that showed what it looked like with the rear seat folded down: not perfectly flat, but with a gentle slope up onto the folded-down seat.

I just got my 2022 Niro Hybrid LX, and this is what it looks like folded down:

Vehicle Motor vehicle Car seat cover Hood Automotive design


I'm a little disappointed because I'm hoping to be able to sleep in the back on road trips. But are the LX models different? Should I just count myself lucky that I have a few extra inches of vertical space, and start shopping for foam blocks to build up the trunk area?
 

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2020 Niro HEV EX+
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Before I bought a Niro, I looked at a lot of photos online that showed what it looked like with the rear seat folded down: not perfectly flat, but with a gentle slope up onto the folded-down seat.

I just got my 2022 Niro Hybrid LX, and this is what it looks like folded down:

View attachment 7542

I'm a little disappointed because I'm hoping to be able to sleep in the back on road trips. But are the LX models different? Should I just count myself lucky that I have a few extra inches of vertical space, and start shopping for foam blocks to build up the trunk area?
Yes, my 2020 does not look anything like that but rather, like you said, "gently slope" upward.
 

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Wow that is a big difference. I have a 2018 barebones LX HEV and mine fold flat with just a little upward slope, nothing like your pic.
 

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We have a 2022 phev and they fold almost flat, now they have been down for 2-3 weeks I think they have gone nearly all the way flat. The HEV may have a larger battery under the back seat vs the plug-in with a large battery under the trunk floor, where the spare tire would go.
 

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2022 Niro Hybrid LX
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Discussion Starter · #10 ·
I just looked on the Kia web site, and found this on the page that compares all the HEV trim levels:

Rectangle Font Material property Parallel Screenshot

So I guess that explains it: in the LXS (and up), they give you this extra storage thing, which raises the floor to seat level. (I wonder if that "under floor storage tray" could be purchased somewhere.)
 

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I have a 2022 Niro EX EV fully electric and it has a gentle slope when the seats are down.
 

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There are extra batteries under the load area on the PHEV, thus the load floor is higher allowing (requiring) a better integration with the folded rear seats. On the HEV, the load floor was lifted in prior model years allowing for a full sized spare wheel (and better integration with with folded seats).

In my 2018 HEV, lowering the load floor was just a matter of a dozen bolts or so removing the plastic height extenders. I removed the rear seats completely and fabricated a new level load floor. This allowed a bicycle to fit in upright without modification, and still allowed me to sleep fully stretched out (5'10") next to it.

I doubt my load floor height extenders would fit in the 2022 model from your pictures, but you are welcome to them if they do. Your idea of foam blocks is great, and would likely cut down on rear wheel noise as well. If you never have rear seat passengers, removing the rear seats is not difficult either. Removing just the seat backs (or just one) might be another way to go. If you remove just one, you can retain your ability to have a rear seat passenger.

Don't do it to save significant weight, those seats are super light. Left seat back is 32 pounds, right seat back is 15.5 pounds, and the bench seat is 16.35 pounds. Still, weight is weight! 64 pounds minus about 4 pounds or so of plywood and carpet to extend the load floor.
 

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I had this same experience! Had been looking at a 2019 LX Niro HEV but ultimately went with the new 2022 (same price, crazy market) and was disappointed when I found the back seats were not at all flush with the trunk space.

When I bought the car the mat for the trunk was described as "low load," so I figured there had to be a "high load" trunk of some kind, right?

Did a quick search and this video on Youtube seems to show someone taking out a trunk cargo tray in order to get more space in the trunk, so it's just a matter of getting the tray back in.

Based on kiapartsnow it looks like it consists of three pieces: 85780D, 85780M, and 85780L. These are diagrams for the 2020 Niro, but I think it's likely there's no considerable difference between the years:
White Font Parallel Auto part Automotive exterior


You can buy those parts from them, it will cost you ~$200, plus the hardware that goes with them (which they also sell). Maybe worth it if you don't want to spend the time/resources crafting your own floor for the trunk, plus now you have all that cargo storage space, neeeeeat.

Product Azure Rectangle Font Material property


Here's what the 2022 LX looks like underneath the floor cover, in case anyone is curious:
Rectangle Gas Automotive exterior Auto part Bumper


Mmm look at all that empty.
 

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Discussion Starter · #14 · (Edited)
Yeah, I eventually found those on another Kia parts site. You left out the very important center piece, so the actual total cost comes in at around $300... so that ain't happening. I'm currently thinking a simple platform of plywood and 2x4s.

For the record, the height difference between the two levels (trunk floor and seat backs) is about 5 inches, but that's kind of a variable measurement that depends on how you define the bottom and the top.
Trunk Purple Vehicle Motor vehicle Auto part
 

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Yeah, I eventually found those on another Kia parts site. You left out the very important center piece, so the actual total cost comes in at around $300... so that ain't happening. I'm currently thinking a simple platform of plywood and 2x4s.

For the record, the height difference between the two levels (trunk floor and seat backs) is about 5 inches, but that's kind of a variable measurement that depends on how you define the bottom and the top.
View attachment 7563
Just looks like a hard Styrofoam insert to me. I'd use the money for that piece to buy a spare tire instead, could come in handy on a road trip and would probably prop the floor up just enough in the center.

Would love to see any build you make, though. It annoys me that they didn't include those pieces to begin with but I guess they're saving as much money as they can.
 

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Bottom line is that when Kia removed the spare tire, this allowed them to lower the cargo compartment floor (which does provide more storage space behind the rear seats). Of course, they could not lower the rear seats (although an especially crafty engineer might have been able to re-design that area (at added development costs).

I added a spare from an Optima to maintain ride height should I ever need to use it. That tire/wheel in the compartment raises up the cargo floor about an inch or so. I also have a box with lug wrench, jack, and compressor/sealant kit. The extra weight doesn't seem to have much of an effect on MPG (on my '21 LX) so the entire "kit" (which I had intended for only highway trips) just stays in the car all the time.
 

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Before I bought a Niro, I looked at a lot of photos online that showed what it looked like with the rear seat folded down: not perfectly flat, but with a gentle slope up onto the folded-down seat.

I just got my 2022 Niro Hybrid LX, and this is what it looks like folded down:

View attachment 7542

I'm a little disappointed because I'm hoping to be able to sleep in the back on road trips. But are the LX models different? Should I just count myself lucky that I have a few extra inches of vertical space, and start shopping for foam blocks to build up the trunk area?
I bought my 2022 Kia Niro Touring Special with the idea of traveling and sleeping in the back too! You need to think LEMONDADE, not Lemons! I went hog wild shopping on Amazon's camping section and bought 1 and 2 inch self-inflating air mattresses (selected over foam blocks because they fold small and flat) and I can stack them for sleep or reading in bed. My Niro, aka "Archie" has a rear outfitted for true comfort and now I've forgotten a flat folding seat was part of my initial purchase agenda. I also love the extra ceiling space (great for more comfort or more storage).
 
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