Kia has announced familiar pricing and range details for its newest electric vehicle, the 2024 Niro crossover.
When it releases this fall, the electric vehicle will represent the third installment of the South Korean automaker’s revitalized Niro lineup. But while its predecessor improved on a variety of technical aspects, the upcoming model seems to have undergone little revision in its development. Like the 2023 version, the 2024 Kia Niro features a 253-mile EPA-estimated driving range and a 201 horsepower engine. Charging rates are unchanged, with the battery taking just over an hour to replenish itself when coupled with a fast charger. The only major difference between the two models is the newer iteration’s dual-level cargo floor, which the company says will come installed by default.
While the lack of innovation may disappoint some buyers, the price tag is likely to be more welcome news. The 2024 Niro electric vehicle comes in two trims, Wind and Wave, which cost $39,600 and $44,600 respectively. This represents a marginal cost increase of $50 from the previous model’s trims, although Kia drivers will still need to cover a $1,325 destination fee.
While the automaker was right to maintain its previous price range, there are few compliments or insults to hurl at the 2024 Niro EV that were not already directed toward the 2023 model. As customers reacted positively to the last version, there was little need for Kia to change the formula. However, the underwhelming next-gen electric vehicle may be more than a safe bet; it could also be a calculated move to outlast competitors in the EV segment. Battery-powered cars remain a niche product, with demand stifled by technological limitations, affordability issues and inadequate charging infrastructure. Until those challenges are overcome, some OEMs may elect to keep innovation to a minimum so as to avoid wasting money on models that no one will buy. Larger brands, like Toyota and General Motors, that continue to make the latest and greatest are taking a gamble on the segment’s future that other companies, like Kia, can less afford to make.