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Purchased our Niro PHEV last weekend. This vehicle replaces my 20 year old Odyssey. So LOTS of new things. Still getting through manuals and downloading apps lol. I am interested in better understanding how to make the most of the EV/HEV modes and understanding how the hybrid and electrical charging systems work.
 

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Congrats.

Were you looking into a Honda before coming over to Kia? I bet those 20 years with a Honda gave you some pull towards owning another Honda.

Welcome to the forum!
 

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I have an 18 year old van which I plan to replace with a Niro PHEV as well. The dealer indicated they were flying off the lot. Did you manage to negotiate a price below MSRP?
 

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Discussion Starter #5
I purchased the EX. I was able to get $400 below MSRP. Yes, they all said they were flying off the lot. Not sure about that but I know from CarGurus that each dealer only had a few. I did get an enthusiastic response from dealers in the area when I listed my inquiry on the Kia site and requested responses. It's possible I could have paid a little less if I did not need to get a car now and could wait a to a bit later in the year.
 

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Edmonds Price Promise on Niro PHEV

These are hard to get at the moment and reviews are pretty good so bargaining will be tough for awhile. I did find an Edmonds “price promise” quote for an EX about $1,640 below MSRP that the dealer honored even though the day before they said no discount. One week on no regrets. Gonna be weeks before filling up again. Of course the dealer tried to add extended care, gap insurance etc to try and bounce it up a couple of grand. Polite no thank you’s and questioning everything they put on contract ended the pressure. Opted for the 0.9% Kia loan instead of a lease, so very low interest payments, mostly principal. Disappointed the EX does not have Nav and Carplay will not show Google maps but I hear Apple Maps has improved.
 

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Purchased our Niro PHEV last weekend. This vehicle replaces my 20 year old Odyssey. So LOTS of new things. Still getting through manuals and downloading apps lol. I am interested in better understanding how to make the most of the EV/HEV modes and understanding how the hybrid and electrical charging systems work.
Congrats. Did you get any discounts on your insurance because it is a PHEV or for the safety features? I am battling with USAA's company's computer system to recognize my VIN, but when that is resolved I am hoping I will get a break due to these features.

Also, you mind telling me who insures you? I can tell USAA that your guys figured this out.
 

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These are hard to get at the moment and reviews are pretty good so bargaining will be tough for awhile. I did find an Edmonds “price promise” quote for an EX about $1,640 below MSRP that the dealer honored even though the day before they said no discount. One week on no regrets. Gonna be weeks before filling up again. Of course the dealer tried to add extended care, gap insurance etc to try and bounce it up a couple of grand. Polite no thank you’s and questioning everything they put on contract ended the pressure. Opted for the 0.9% Kia loan instead of a lease, so very low interest payments, mostly principal. Disappointed the EX does not have Nav and Carplay will not show Google maps but I hear Apple Maps has improved.
I'm shopping Niro PHEV EX Premiums and according to several sources on the net the invoice is 32,744. Kia has a 3% of base invoice dealer holdback ($982.32) so the cost to the dealer to buy the car is $31,761.68. They don't even buy them outright, they just take a loan out on every single car and start paying it off monthly. You add 3% to this ($32,714.53) in order to give the dealer a fair offer not including destination/rebate. The best incentive I can find now for that vehicle is $750 cash back when you go with KMF: $31,964.53. Plus $940 destination you're looking at $32,904.53 as a fair price offer. MSRP is ~$35,440 so that's about $2,535.47 off MSRP. Any price lower than that is gravy, job well done.

BTW, don't believe the "invoice price" the dealer will show you in his dealer inventory search software (~$34,xxx). It's totally inflated BS, look up the true invoice price at the NADA website. And always factor in their 3% factory to dealer incentive of the 3% of base invoice holdback because they'll never tell you about it.

This info could be wrong but it's what I'm working with and it seems to be accurate during my negotiations. Never let $tealers get away with anything. Ever. :)
 

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We r in bay area & there are quite a few Kia Niro PHEVs on the lots. One dealer told me they couldn't hold onto them but he had 2 on his lot for over 4 mos before he sold them over Memorial Day weekend.


Now we have dealers within 50 miles with 22, 21, 23, 7, 4, 2, 6, & 10 yet they can't keep them in stock? I checked to make sure VINs are different.



I have followed KBB and it states a fair price on Niro PHEV LX trim is $26,867.



What is a best price gotten here for a Kia Niro PHEV LX?



I have been told dealers take a loss on EV/ HEV/ PHEV because they need to sell them according to govt guidelines plus they make up those losses with gas car sales.



My concerns are that Niro HEV & PHEV have major issues:
- in cold weather and hills where MPG has been reported as low as 20MPG

- STUTTER/JERKING after approximately 6,000 miles see other forums


Has anyone gotten a lease with maintenance included NOT paying additional money?
 

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I have been told dealers take a loss on EV/ HEV/ PHEV because they need to sell them according to govt guidelines plus they make up those losses with gas car sales
I believe you mean the manufacturer takes the loss, not the dealer. WAY too much profit margin for the dealers for that to happen.

But I have read on multiple occasions, especially in the early Prius days, that the manufacturers were not profiting well on hybrids. I'm not sure that's the case anymore, however.


My concerns are that Niro HEV & PHEV have major issues:
- in cold weather and hills where MPG has been reported as low as 20MPG

- STUTTER/JERKING after approximately 6,000 miles see other forums

I understand your concerns. I am personally unhappy with my MPG in my Niro - but I seem to be the only one at this forum with this complaint, and as bad as I feel my MPG has been, it has averaged WAY above 20MPG. (Overall 39.9 MPG avg over 14,000+ miles, averaged 36-37 in the cold weather at highway speeds.) Again, I believe I am the sole voice of dissent on this point at this forum - everyone else seems to get far better MPG than me, and they all seem to be satisfied.

Also note that the "stutter/jerk" problem *may* appear to be more widespread than it actually is, due to the normal "lurching" issue with the dual clutch being sometimes misinterpreted as a mechanical problem. From reading posts here over the last 9 months, it is clear that there IS a legitimate misfiring issue going on for some owners, but many people seem to think their clutch lurch is a misfire when it is not.
 

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Thanks RedWouldForrest for your insights.
Did you purchase or lease your Niro?

Have you experience the Stuttering/Jerking issue? Do you have the hybrid or Plug-In? There is a whole forum on Stuttering/Jerking.

I am curious if it is only Niro Hybrids & not PHEVs Stuttering/Jerking.



The lower MPG is in consistently colder climates. The higher mountains in North Cali, Lake Tahoe, etc in winter are most likely where there is cold enough climates to kill the EV efficiency of the Kia Niro HEV/PHEV.



This excerpt is one I found from reddit.com:
"So winter is here in western New York, and I've had my first opportunities to drive my Niro in the cold and moderate snow. Figured I'd share my observations! First, gas mileage took a solid hit (as expected). Colder temperatures mean that the engine takes longer to warm up, which the car mitigates by using engine power almost exclusively, even at low around-the-neighborhood speeds. Cold temps also mean that the battery pack is significantly less efficient (windchills are well below 0F at night, so assuming about 50% efficiency). These factors combined have dropped my average fuel economy to between 25-35 MPG, depending on the weather. For reference, my 10 mile commute to work is almost all expressway, and my fuel economy was easily 40-50 MPG in warmer weather. I found the decline predicable but surprisingly drastic."


I am hesitant to even lease because transporting Labradors for the no-kill rescue group is not always easy. I had one Lab eat a rubber cargo mat b/c of anxiety which I understood. I don't want a break down or have an accident with these Labs in tow. My heart worm positive fosters are also on steroids while undergoing treatment and it can make them aggressive. Don't want a first responder getting bit & then the dog might not be able to finish medical treatment.
 

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Thanks RedWouldForrest for your insights.
Did you purchase or lease your Niro?
Purchased.

Have you experience the Stuttering/Jerking issue? Do you have the hybrid or Plug-In? There is a whole forum on Stuttering/Jerking.
Hybrid, not plugin. 2017 LX with no options. I have NOT experienced the stuttering/jerking issue (misfiring); But I have experienced the dual clutch lurch - it did not take long to adjust to it, and to adjust my driving style to (virtually) eliminate it.

The lower MPG is in consistently colder climates. The higher mountains in North Cali, Lake Tahoe, etc in winter are most likely where there is cold enough climates to kill the EV efficiency of the Kia Niro HEV/PHEV.
In my experience, this is accurate. In fact, you hit the nail on the head. One of my worst MPG tankfuls was driving from the redwood coast east on route 20 past Tahoe and connecting to the I80, in March at near zero temps.

In reference to your quote from Reddit, I did drive my Niro cross country (including across NY state) and found that my MPG was pretty dismal throughout the trip in cold temps at highway speeds. My average was a little better than specified, but only on the bottom end (approx 29.5 - 35.5 MPG - driving in snow/slush was the absolute WORST on MPG, but I had to understand as conditions were so bad that my tires actually spun about twice the distance that my car travelled, and in any less of a car, I probably would've been stranded. The standard traction control was literally a lifesaver, and I have to give Kia credit on that point.)

I am hesitant to even lease because transporting Labradors for the no-kill rescue group is not always easy. I had one Lab eat a rubber cargo mat b/c of anxiety which I understood. I don't want a break down or have an accident with these Labs in tow. My heart worm positive fosters are also on steroids while undergoing treatment and it can make them aggressive. Don't want a first responder getting bit & then the dog might not be able to finish medical treatment.
A valid concern, but one upon which I could not possibly advise. You'll have to go with your gut. Any new car *should* be 100% reliable, but this is the real world, and that isn't always the case. It's a gamble, no matter what you buy.
 

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Thanks RedWouldForrest!
I have NOT experienced the stuttering/jerking issue (misfiring); But I have experienced the dual clutch lurch - it did not take long to adjust to it, and to adjust my driving style to (virtually) eliminate it.

How did you adjust it?


How do you drive it now i.e. driving style?


You'll have to go with your gut. Any new car *should* be 100% reliable, but this is the real world, and that isn't always the case. It's a gamble, no matter what you buy.
I agree no vehicle is 100%. I have an original Pacifica crossover wagon gas-guzzler. I have had zero issues going to Sacramento, Fresno, Stockton, Lake Tahoe & even Reno, NV. I can say I have been driving it - in bumper to bumper traffic for hours, 100F+ to 20F- temps, & mountains without any issues. My Pacifica is hitting 14yrs & repairs are costing more $ & time since it's a discontinued car.


We love our Ford Fusion Energi. Its reliable, great MPG, but it sucks for Labs space wise. We were hopeful about the Niro Plug-In but are very hesitant to pull the plug on even a lease because of so many hiccups being reported. I really appreciate your honest feedback.
 

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I have a 2018 Plugin EX and have not noticed any kind of lurch. We pull it into a tiny garage most days where inches are the difference between scratching up the car and not doing so and, believe me, we would notice the kind of DCT low-speed lurch that has been reported on the 2017 models. Not saying it doesn't exist, but possibly it's been fixed on PHEV models or maybe all 2018's?
 

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It has nothing to do with the DCT. It is how creep is programmed into the EV. The DCT is in gear at all times I believe. Some call the lurch a delay in pedal response when accelerating briskly from a stop. This is largely overcome by switching into Sport mode.
 

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Not saying it doesn't exist, but possibly it's been fixed on PHEV models or maybe all 2018's?
Do you have over 6000 miles on your 2018 PHEV?



Some owners state 6,000 & others it is closer to 7,000 miles when they experience the Stutter/Jerking.


Please read descriptions of the issue. Some had a lurch, whiles others state approximately 6000+ miles the Stuttering/Jerky occurs while driving.


See http://www.fuelly.com/forums/f35/kia-niro-hybrid-2017-start-market-year-comments-solicited-19435-2.html:
Problems -- Been a number of folks on NIRO Forum talk of Stutter, Jerk Operation, Whatever to call it.
One gent had it so bad, gas mileage dropped, etc. However, it was intermittent and took a couple times before dealer felt it. Then KIA Engineers got involved and said #3 Mis-fire (no code). Tried a couple fixes and could not fix. He ended up with a new car. Another guy recently reported having a serious symptom also. Most are like me and have felt it, but has been negligible. Perhaps, I am feeling it more often, noy sure. It has always been intermittent. (For INFO - I have 6000 + miles now).

This review experienced it too. See 2017 Kia Niro: What's A Crossover Supposed To Be?
Smash the accelerator pedal, and there isn’t much happening, except for a buzzy, unrefined, and seriously underpowered four cylinder drone accompanied by a vacuum-cleaner-like whirl coming from the electric motor. The transitions are smooth between gas and electric, but there are occasional jerks and hesitations. It’s overal decent, but the drivetrain simply feels crude in comparison to other hybrid systems. Acceleration is anemic at best. And overtaking requires straight out slamming the throttle straight to the floor.
 

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I really have no idea whether the low-speed lurch that has been reported on some 2017 models has anything to do with the DCT transmission, that's just a theory I've seen posited by others; I haven't experienced it and haven't thought much about it.

As for a lurch at higher speeds, haven't noticed that either. I do have only 1000 miles on mine so I suppose it's possible that for the few that have reported the problem that it might start at 6000 miles.

I read many reviews by professional reviewers and never paid much attention to their take on "performance". I drive for mpg and can't remember the last time I felt the need to "Smash the accelerator pedal" as in the review quoted above. Professional reviewers are always going to dislike this car, primary for them is "performance" and "handling" and "cornering". ;-) I don't really know much about those things because I take my corners easy and accelerate only as fast as I need to (not very). The Niro is not a high performance car, for me it's about getting good mpg with a comfortably sized and useful interior at a decent price, and I think those are some of the primary the concerns that Kia designed it for. If you are concerned about acceleration then maybe a chevy volt would be a better choice?

As for overall reliability, while it's a little early since the car is so new Consumer Reports did name it the most reliable car, not just as a hybrid or as a crossover, but most reliable of ALL 2017 vehicles. Not sure exactly how they know that, but I assume it is partly due to the data they have from all Kia vehicles and due to how they've matched up past patterns of reliability from other cars with a longer history with the data they have on the first year of the Niro.

Anyway, the shorter version is 2018 PHEV EX, no issues at all over 1000 miles, love the car!
 

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I can't speak to your other issues, but a little low speed lurch is a feature of a dual clutch transmission. Dual clutch transmissions are by far the most superior transmissions on the market in effectively every aspect. Longevity/durableness, efficiency, performance, etc. Kia/Hyundai's have agressively hired German designers/engineers from the big Euro brands chiefly Audi/BMW. Their head of design was an Audi guy before. He just got promoted to president of Kia. In other words Kia's senior designers and now its leadership are German.

The Audi guy is responsible for many things at Kia/Hyundai that mirror his success at Audi. Most notably the big increase in quality and design seen in Kia interiors of late. Have you driven an Audi then a Kia? I have. Audi's interiors are second to none....nobody is even in second place. They are arguably perfect in design. Audi-man is driving Kia in that direcition and Kia's newer interiors mirror Audi.

And that's where the dual clutch idea came from. This type of transmission, referred to on VW/Audi vehicles as a DSG, comes from racing as it is actually superior to both a manual and an automatic through combining the best of both types. And so that's how you end up with Kia launching a dual clutch transmission. It's just plain better. The little low speed jerks are a function of the computer playing the clutches in and out at extremely low speeds. It's the same thing you'd get if you have a full manual and had to release/depress the clutch repeatedly at crawl speeds.

It's a feature. Try driving it in manual mode at low speeds and it'll be fun not jerky.
 

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That might well be true of low speed starts with dual clutch and a regular car, but not a hybrid. On the vast majority of starts, the ICE is not engaged (separate hydraulic clutch) and the motor provides power to the wheel with first gear fully engaged. No need for DCT slipping when the ICE matches rpm to first (or higher) gear.

Before I bought the car, my presumption was that the ICE only kicked in at (effectively) second gear, making the transmission operate as a seven speed - with the motor handling all first gear tasks. Now I understand that would take a much larger motor to provide the brisk launches that are required for performance people expect.

Anyway, the DCT in a hybrid should last longer than in a non-hybrid as no slipping is required. The same can be said for the engine hydraulic clutch as the rpm matching should be perfect with most engagements. A fast launch might be an exception, and of course the manual warns against creeping or holding on a steep hill.

I think the lurch comes from programming. There is a pause when depressing the pedal from a stop. Stutter/jerking that has been reported likely comes from programming as well.
 

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Hey!!! Congrats!

Just wanted to give you some more in-sight on how the drivetrain works. I also have a NIRO PHEV! In the past Ive owned Nissan Leaf's, Prius' and a Chevy Volt, this is my first plug-in hybrid. Its much different than Full Electric or Extended Range Electric (EREV) cars...ie the Chevy Volt.

The Niro PHEV has the ability to plug in and extend non-emission range/EV range. This varies on temp, driving style and conditions like elevation and weather. If you drive conservatively, no hard accelerations, you can stay in EV mode. Making your ECO needle go to POWER will kick the engine on. Additionally, running the heater will start the engine just to run the heater, not power the vehicle. So in the winter you can still get your 20-26miles of EV mode but will burn a small amount of fuel if using the heater.

Another benefit of a Plug-In hybrid, is you DONT have to charge the car...if you don't want, like cross country trips or weather is just to unbearable to go out and plug the car in. You will still benefit from the 40-46mpg running the car as a normal hybrid.

As far as the EV/HEV mode buttons, you can conserve some battery (say your fully charged and going on a long trip and just want to run gas) click the HEV button and you will maintain the battery state for the duration of your trip, the car will drive like a Hybrid. Sport mode will be FUN. I use it around the hills here in Northern California, gives me an extra boost when I don't feel like pounding on the gas pedal to get moving. There is a small hit to fuel economy, but play with it, its fun. Take the Transmission selector and pull it to the drivers side and the dash will change from GREEN to Orange and youll see a S. (also you can manually tap shift gears in sport mode as well)

Charging the car. this is a big one, The L1 EVSE (electric vehicle supply equipment), some people call it a charger, the charger is actually on the car, this is just your power cable. Its rated at 12Amp and 110v. Takes around 7.5 hours to charge the car. If you want a higher powered EVSE, a Level2 (L2) runs at 220v (dryer plug outlet) you can use any L2 EVSE. The cars onboard charger limits you to use 16amp at 220v, what does that mean? its 3.3kw max power. using a public L2 EVSE is generally at 30-40amps (6.6-7.2kw) but wont charge the NIRO faster than 3.3kw. You can pick up a L2 EVSE for cheap! I mean around $200. DUOSIDA is a brand which will charge the NIRO PHEV in 2.5 hours and all it needs is a 20amp 220v circuit in your house. Very inexpensive and quick to install. No need to pay hundreds of bucks on an expensive EVSE, no benefit unless your future proofing for a TESLA or another EV in the house/future.


The battery is located in the trunk space below the floor mat, there is no active battery management for cooling or heating, so no coolant to worry about, but the car does have a small fan on the battery to blow heat off of it. You might hear it on warm days if the car was sitting in direct sunlight. (I have not heard mine)

I could go on forever, let me know if you want more info.
 
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