Kia Niro EV concept with 238-mile range debuts at 2018 CES

CES 2018: Kia Unveils Niro EV Concept With 383 Km Range

This week at the 2018 Consumer Electronics Show (CES) in Las Vegas, the company presented the Niro EV Concept. It is, we're assured, built using new production technology earmarked for "near-future EVs" from the South Korean giant. The all-electric Niro will use the same lithium-ion battery pack and electric motor as the Ioniq Electric, which provides an on-paper range of 174 miles. While the existing production Kia Niro has donated some of its styling language to the concept car's profile, the rear is more streamlined for making sure airflow can cleanly pass across it. The biggest change is at the front where the traditional grille has been replaced by a smooth interactive display panel. That last bit is joined by a drive mode selector as well as Kia's Virtual Engine Sound System (VESS). These include new advanced driver assistance technologies and pioneering HMI functions, as well as the world's first in-car 5G connection. An array of eight speakers and noise-cancellation technology create two sound zones in the auto, and the technology was developed in-house. To assist with the grill in communicating with pedestrians, the Niro EV concept is also equipped with an Active Pedestrian Warning System.

Should the system detect a pedestrian or cyclist crossing in front of the auto, the speakers sound an alert targeted specifically at that person, warning them of the car's presence. The vehicle also packs a new interactive lighting system, which is said to offer users and pedestrians an intuitive visual communication with the vehicle.

Kia is laying out its electric vehicle plans at CES 2018 and it's not playing it safe, with a total of 16 EVs expected to be on the market by 2025.

The manufacturer already has one of the largest plug-in hybrid and electric vehicles presences of any manufacturer, and is looking to further this with the announcement of 16 new electric vehicles by 2025. Dr Woong-chul Yung, the head of Kia's R&D centre, called it a manifesto "where everyone has the opportunity to enjoy the infinite value that future mobility will bring".

In fact, with so many carmakers pledging a raft of new EV cars in the years to follow, surely we now have to think about the various noises each will have to make? These "Smart City" autonomous vehicles will commence testing later in 2021.

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