Niro offers the best of what Kia has to offer in the areas of connectivity and advanced active driver aids. Every version has a Lane Keep Assist System, Hill-start Assist Control, Cruise Control and a Speed Limiter.
Grade ‘2’ adds a 7-inch touchscreen navigation system with European mapping, a Reversing Camera and Kia Connected Services featuring TomTom. Further additions for grade ‘3’ are an 8-inch touchscreen navigation system with European mapping, a wireless mobile phone charger and an eight-speaker JBL Premium sound system with a 320-watt external amplifier. Meanwhile the top-of-the-range ‘First Edition’ version also has Autonomous Emergency Braking, Blind Spot Detection with a Rear Cross Traffic Alert and Smart Cruise Control. A DAB radio able to support Bluetooth smartphone connectivity and music streaming is standard on all grades
Autonomous Emergency Braking and Smart Cruise Control are optionally available on grades ‘1’, ‘2’ and ‘3’ in an ADAS (Advanced Driver Assistance Systems) package. With these features fitted, Niro has been awarded a five-star crash-test rating by Euro NCAP.
Autonomous Emergency Braking with pedestrian detection brings the car to a halt if the driver fails to react to a potential accident. It uses short- and long-wave radars to monitor the proximity of vehicles in front of the car. If the sensors detect an imminent collision and the driver does not respond, the brakes are applied automatically. The system is split into three main categories:
City, which can avoid low-speed urban accidents at up to 13mph.
Inter-Urban, which operates between 31mph and 50mph.
Pedestrian, which detects pedestrians and other vulnerable road users such as cyclists at up to 44mph.
Smart Cruise Control maintains the distance to the car ahead, automatically slowing and accelerating Niro in accordance with the flow of traffic.
Lane Keep Assist uses a camera behind the rear-view mirror to 'film' the lane ahead of the car. It then passes this information on to an electronic control unit which detects the lane and markings. If the control unit recognises that the car has left its lane with no indicator activated, it issues sound and visual alerts to the driver and steers the Niro back into its lane if necessary.
The Blind Spot Detection system ensures the driver does not stray into the path of an overtaking vehicle, while the Rear Cross Traffic Alert prevents the driver from reversing out of a driveway or parking space when there is a vehicle approaching from the side. It achieves this by using sensors to monitor the sides of the car, using the Blind Spot Detection radar, to alert the driver.
From grade ‘2’ upwards, Niro owners have access to a 7- or 8-inch navigation touchscreen with European mapping and a Traffic Messaging Channel. These are linked to a reversing camera integrated with the navigation screen.
They also feature Kia Connected Services featuring TomTom, accessed through the owner's smartphone. This provides live traffic updates, refreshed once a minute, with suggested alternative routes to avoid congestion; local weather forecasts; local searches under 500 categories, from Kia dealerships and petrol stations to restaurants and supermarkets; and alerts for such things as speed cameras and accident blackspots. Kia Connected Services is free for seven years from the day the car is bought.
Every Niro is Bluetooth-enabled for hands-free phone calls and music streaming and has a DAB radio with MP3 compatibility, while an eight-speaker JBL audio system with subwoofer, external amp and front centre speaker is standard from grade ‘3’ upwards.
Grades ‘3’ and ‘First Edition’ also have a wireless mobile phone charger, located to the front of the centre console tray, which uses inductive charging to power-up the batteries of compatible electronic devices.
Niro is also the first Kia with Android Auto, which works with Android smartphones running 5.0 (Lollipop) or higher. Android Auto connects the user's smartphone to the car's infotainment system and, through pre-downloaded apps, gives access to a variety of services such as Google Maps navigation, Google Play music, hands-free calls and texts and voice recognition.