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I don't care for the view out the back window in my son-in-law's Ioniq. I think he's had it over 2 1/2 years now, and it's been a solid car. His is the standard HEV, as the plug-in and BEV versions have never been available in WA state, and still aren't. Portland OR is the closest available from the Seattle area.
 

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So, what ever was the final result, and reasoning? I am trying to make the PHEV vs. HEV decision now.
Thanks
it's different strokes for different folks.

If you don't have an easy way to plug-in and charge a PHEV, then it doesn't make sense to purchase one and you're better off with the hybrid. If you do have a place to plug it in.... are you sure? Some people have been surprised that their garage wiring wasn't up to snuff and their car refused to charge on the max setting... even if you have new 120v wiring in your garage, you might want to consider installing a 240v circuit and purchasing a 240 v charger (although I did not do that).

My garage wiring is pretty new and solid, and I don't drive a lot of miles, so the 120v charger that came with my PHEV works for me.

My PHEV works great for me, because I work form home, tend to do an occasional road trip, but the rest of the time, I'm driving one or two mile drives a few times a week for groceries, etc. It's actually a little "too great", because the annual Thanksgiving and Christmas road trips didn't happen last year (for various family reasons) and there haven't been any summer road trips this year (for COVID reasons). The bottom line is that the last time I filled my tank was mid-August of 2019 and I still have a 1/4 tank left. I'm tempted to burn off that gas just because it is old and old gas might cause fuel system problems. But on the other hand, it's pretty sweet that I haven't had to buy gas in almost a year.

Before I purchased the PHEV, I was driving a Honda CR-V and while that car gets reasonably decent fuel economy on the highway, I was needing to refill the tank every month or so because it gets horrible fuel economy when you make lots of short trips that don't even allow the engine to warm up to normal operating temperature before you arrive at your destination and shut the car off. With the PHEV this isn't even a consideration, because the ICE never starts on a short drive if you've charged the battery.

You didn't ask this question, but if you look at the reports on this site, you might want to ask if you should buy new or used. 2017 was the first year that the HEV was offered in North America, and there were a small number of bugs that needed to be worked out. 2018 was the first year that the PHEV was offered in North America, and I had some concerns about purchasing my 2018 PHEV because of that, but apparently I got lucky: there are nowhere near as many complaints logged against either the 2018 HEV or PHEV as there were in 2017. There have been some new problems afflicting a small number of owners of 2019 and 2020 models that don't seem to have been resolved yet. If I was shopping for a Niro today, I'd be including the idea that a used 2018 HEV or PHEV might be part of my deliberation.
 

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I don't care for the view out the back window in my son-in-law's Ioniq. I think he's had it over 2 1/2 years now, and it's been a solid car. His is the standard HEV, as the plug-in and BEV versions have never been available in WA state, and still aren't. Portland OR is the closest available from the Seattle area.
That's pretty close. Amtrak service too?
 

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That's pretty close. Amtrak service too?
I have to go either to Seattle or Tacoma to board Amtrak, even though they pass right through my town. And of course, once one gets to Portland, you still have to get to a dealer. Since the train stops downtown Portland, and all the dealers are on the outskirts, wouldn't be a cheap taxi/Uber/Lyft ride.

It's about a two+ hour drive, so not out of the question to just drive down and back. When he bought his Ioniq he wasn't interested in a plug-in at that time. Now of course they also have a Pacifica PHEV, so he understands now. :)
 

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it's different strokes for different folks.

If you don't have an easy way to plug-in and charge a PHEV, then it doesn't make sense to purchase one and you're better off with the hybrid. If you do have a place to plug it in.... are you sure? Some people have been surprised that their garage wiring wasn't up to snuff and their car refused to charge on the max setting... even if you have new 120v wiring in your garage, you might want to consider installing a 240v circuit and purchasing a 240 v charger (although I did not do that).

My garage wiring is pretty new and solid, and I don't drive a lot of miles, so the 120v charger that came with my PHEV works for me.
Many drivers would be just fine using the regular 120v outlet, even if it were only about 10 amps. That would charge the PHEV in a bit over 6 hours, so overnight is no big deal. I knew I wanted the ability to charge faster throughout the day, so I installed a 240v EVSE. That helps with most of the shorter drives I make to stay in EV mode as much as possible. Right now it's been about 6 weeks since I filled the tank, only one segment from full shows, and the display says 585 MPG. And I that time I've used maybe $15-20 worth of electricity tops.
 

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Great input, thanks to all! We have a Hyundai dealer and a Kia dealer about 100 yards apart. I drove an Ioniq before driving a Niro, so was particularly unimpressed with acceleration because I was not used to the drivetrain. I also did not like the skimpy view out the back, or sitting that low. And my wife doesn't like it because it looks like a "grandma car." But I was very tempted by the mpg's and leftover pricing.

Full disclosure, I am a mostly happy owner of a 2019 Niro S Touring HEV. Bought in a hurry in January when my 2007 Ford Focus needed work costing 10-20 times its net trade-in value of $200. There was limited local Niro stock available, and got a decent, but not super, end of year deal. Only have 2400 miles on it so far due to forced retirement and Covid, getting rated mileage of 43.7 actual (as opposed to the Happy Dashboard figure of about 50). Considering my Focus was getting 24-25 in local driving, I am pretty happy with 43. Finally getting past a decade of Prius Envy. :+)

The big BUT in all of this is buyer's remorse about not getting the driver assist safety features. I used to consider that just more stuff to break, but became a convert when the automatic braking in my wife's Subaru Forester saved us in a sudden highway traffic backup. It only takes one event to pay for itself. I also will not mind gaining back the extra 4-5 mpg of a non-Touring model, though that is not the driving factor. Since I am hoping to get the latest and greatest in safety technology, looking for 2020 rather than used.

While I am re-shopping, it seemed right to consider the PHEV, now that 2020's are finally arriving. I am down to PHEV EX, or HEV EX Premium (but REALLY hate being forced to pay for a sunroof I do not want). Naturally there are significant feature differences and crossovers on EX and Premium trims between PHEV and HEV, because, hey, let's confuse the customer into buying up.

My use case for a PHEV ain't what it used to be since I am no longer commuting, but this car will be mostly for local driving. And 120V charging would be fine, even if limited to 8 amp. The PHEV does appeal to the tech geek in me, and based on pricing I have seen between the two models mentioned, PHEV could actually be $4K cheaper after the tax credit. Seems wrong, but that is what the window stickers show.

Otherwise I would probably go with the HEV EX Premium for simplicity, and not lugging an unused 300 lb of battery if I do take a long trip. Still concerned about getting PHEV service from non-certified dealers.
 

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If your dealer has a brand new PHEV for sale, it seems like they should be able to service it. My local dealer told me twice that they couldn't service mine (despite having six new PHEVs for sale), but the person I was talking with was misinformed. He had been told that they couldn't work on the EV (and they weren't selling those either) and when I described my car as a plug-in hybrid, he evidently thought that meant the EV. Their management subsequently advised me that they have two technicians who have qualified to work on the PHEV.

I have heard that the safety features have improved for the 2020 model. I have no idea if the AEB in my car actually works: it has never even posted an alarm, but I don't tailgate the way some drivers do.
 

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If your dealer has a brand new PHEV for sale, it seems like they should be able to service it. My local dealer told me twice that they couldn't service mine (despite having six new PHEVs for sale), but the person I was talking with was misinformed. He had been told that they couldn't work on the EV (and they weren't selling those either) and when I described my car as a plug-in hybrid, he evidently thought that meant the EV. Their management subsequently advised me that they have two technicians who have qualified to work on the PHEV.

I have heard that the safety features have improved for the 2020 model. I have no idea if the AEB in my car actually works: it has never even posted an alarm, but I don't tailgate the way some drivers do.
Yes, selling dealer should, but they are about 20 miles away, and there are two Kia dealers much closer. Also thinking about emergency service on the road, as mentioned in a separate thread. In my small sample set, 2 out of 3 dealers say they will not touch the PHEV, though I agree there may be confusion between EV and PHEV.
 

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The big BUT in all of this is buyer's remorse about not getting the driver assist safety features. I used to consider that just more stuff to break, but became a convert when the automatic braking in my wife's Subaru Forester saved us in a sudden highway traffic backup. It only takes one event to pay for itself.
That was my theory on paying $2,000 more for the tech package (including going up to LX trim, not available on the FE). I have buyer's remorse for doing that! I hate smart cruise control (which I have to extra steps on every drive to get to regular cruise control), the AEB has only caused unnecessary braking, and lane keep assist sucks. While 2020 models no doubt have improved these features, I wish I had saved the money.

BTW, Subaru's system does outperform my 2018 Kia by all reports - Kia is perhaps 2 years behind the better makers.
 

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BTW, Subaru's system does outperform my 2018 Kia by all reports - Kia is perhaps 2 years behind the better makers.
I traded a 2018 Outback for my Niro, and I can't agree that Subaru outperforms the Kia. My adaptive cruise maintains the set speed much better, and the Outback had the powerful 6 engine. The lane keeping assist was no better than mine, and I also feel the Kia is better at unnecessary braking because of something in front of the car. It still does it, just not as often as the Sube did. And since Eyesight is camera dependent, heavy rain or fog will disable all forward safety functions. One place the Subaru shines is the auto-rear braking. I can state from real world experience it works great, and that's something Kia doesn't even have.

For both brands, all bets are off for 2020, because they both seemed to have made significant improvements for this model year.
 

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I also feel the Kia is better at unnecessary braking because of something in front of the car.
I agree completely! In fact, I said that explicitly. Did you really mean to phrase it that way?
 

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I agree completely! In fact, I said that explicitly. Did you really mean to phrase it that way?
Yes, I did. And your post I quoted made no mention about the Kia being better in any way. I do not feel that Kia is behind Subaru in any way with their safety functions, other than not having the auto-rear braking.

I don't feel any of the safety functions are 100% yet, and I don't think they ever will be until level 5 autonomy is available. But I still feel they are worth the cost today, just with the requirement that they must be monitored. I usually disengage the smart cruise when I see something ahead that might trigger the auto-braking unnecessarily. I don't use the Lane Keeping, because in the '19 it isn't that good. I leave the audio alert on, as it's something worthwhile, even though it is often tricked by tar lines in the roadway.
 

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Kia is better at unnecessary braking because of something in front of the car
Yup, it is definitely better at unnecessary braking. That is not a good thing. In fact, on my 2018, it is horrible. And is one reason I don't use smart cruise control because that increases sensitivity to turning cars off roadway that are not a threat. Mind you, I have not actually used a Subaru and am depending on reports online from this forum and the Ioniq forum that AEB and lane keep both work better than our cars. At least through the 2018 model year.
 

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Yup, it is definitely better at unnecessary braking. That is not a good thing. In fact, on my 2018, it is horrible. And is one reason I don't use smart cruise control because that increases sensitivity to turning cars off roadway that are not a threat. Mind you, I have not actually used a Subaru and am depending on reports online from this forum and the Ioniq forum that AEB and lane keep both work better than our cars. At least through the 2018 model year.
I'm speaking as a past owner of a 2018 Outback with Eyesight and a current 2019 Niro owner. I don't think the active cruise braking is horrible, but being a year newer they may have made improvements. The Subaru would brake harder and more often than my Niro in situations where I deem any braking as unnecessary. And compared to the Outback, the Niro does it far less often. I believe that's because Kia uses radar, and Subaru uses cameras. So Kia appears to be improving the technology each year. I love active cruise, and would never get a car without it again if at all possible. But I completely acknowledge that there are still situations that it will brake unnecessarily, and I just try to recognize those situations and not have it engaged at those times.
 

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I have read with interest a lot of posts about Adaptive Cruise Control. I thought it was something I would use more than regular CC, which I very rarely use, but will be wary of ACC. But this seems like an interesting hack to enhance AEB in fog: Adaptive cruise in fog

Thanks for the heads-ups about the potentially dangerous quirks and un-intuitive behaviors, esp from yticolev.
 

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I like the ACC and I use it all the time on highway driving. There are times when the traffic is too dense (or too competitive) to use it and there are times when it slows down unreasonably/unnecessarily, but for the most part, it works great.
 
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