With Electric Vehicles (EVs) continuing to grow in popularity, there are several choices to consider when exploring alternative fuel vehicles. Two exciting electric vehicles are the relatively new Kia Niro EV with its Plug-In Hybrid options, alongside the veteran Nissan Leaf. These two cars are fairly standard and act as excellent introductory electric vehicles that perform with astounding versatility. But which one is more worth your time and money?
Kia Niro Breakdown
The Kia Niro is relatively new to the EV scene and only has a few fully electric models. More than likely, you will need to explore new options rather than a limited pool of preowned vehicles when considering the Niro. The Niro comes in three flavors: a hybrid model with regenerative braking technology, a plug-in hybrid that functions as a pseudo-electric vehicle, and the premier EV model. For this comparison, we will look exclusively at the EV models, as the Leaf only has an EV option. For the EV Kia Niro, it comes with the following:
- New Starting Price: $39,550 MSRP
- Range: 253 Miles on a full charge
- Motor: 201 Horsepower & 188 lb-ft of torque Electric Drive
- Displays:25-inch Digital Instrument Display and 10.25-inch Touchscreen Display w/ Navigation, Kia Connect, and SiriusXM® Satellite Radio
- Charging Time: Around 7 hours on a standard DC outlet.
Nissan Leaf Breakdown:
The Leaf is a veteran of the EV market and has been around since the 2011 model year. Each iteration of the Leaf has improved upon the last, and it proudly stands as the most affordable EV available in the US. There are two distinct models of the Leaf, with the Plus adding more range and features for a slight bump in price. Essential specifications of the Nissan Leaf are:
- New Starting Price: $28,040 MSRP for the standard model and $36,040 MSRP for the Plus.
- Standard Motor: 147 horsepower with 236 lb-ft of torque
- Plus Motor: 214 horsepower with 250 lb-ft of torque
- Range: 149 miles on standard and up to 212 miles on the Plus with a full charge.
- Displays: 7-inch gauge cluster and 8-inch touchscreen infotainment system.
- Charging Time: Around 8 hours on a standard outlet and around 40 minutes on a fast charger.
Both vehicles seat five and have a relatively similar interior style. The Niro can store more and has larger cargo space thanks to its crossover design, while the Leaf is a smaller hatchback. In terms of performance, the Leaf Plus is equal to or greater than the Niro, although the standard Leaf model flags a bit in the speed and range department. Price-wise, the Niro is far and away the more expensive model, without much to incentivize the price gap, with the Leaf Plus being roughly $3,000 cheaper than the base Niro EV.
So, which is better? While neither is perfect for everyone, the Leaf Plus, with its decent range and low price tag, is our choice for the better EV. Further, if you are searching for a smaller, 'city driver' kind of vehicle, the standard model of the Leaf is the best price for a new EV. It doesn't try to be flashy, trading functionality for form, yet performs well for routine day-to-day activities and home charging at night.
Winner: Nissan Leaf
Test Drive A New Or Preowned Nissan Leaf At Charlie Clark Nissan
Charlie Clark Nissan of Brownsville connects you to a brand-new or preowned Nissan Leaf EV. Call us at (956) 303-8234 to schedule a test drive or see our wide assortment of Nissan vehicles available online.