In simple terms, energy is stored in a large battery, which drives a powerful electric motor. Easy. To charge it, simply plug it into a home chargepoint, or a public charger when you’re out and about, and the car will take care of the rest. Plug it in at home, and you wake up every morning with a ‘full tank’ – in the case of the e-Niro, that’s a potential 282-mile range! The car then drives on battery power alone, there is no need to add petrol or diesel. It can even add charge to the battery while you are driving by recovering energy that would normally be lost – when braking for example.
A self-charging hybrid car works just like a conventional car – there is no need to plug in – simply fill up with petrol at the pumps, and off you go! So what does hybrid mean? It’s pretty simple, along with a petrol or diesel engine, hybrid cars also have an electric motor that is powered by a small battery. The aim of the electric motor is to assist the engine and occasionally drive very short distances on battery power. The battery is charged by recovering energy that would otherwise be wasted – when slowing down for example. The battery then feeds this energy to the electric motor to help with acceleration or to drive the car at low speeds.
A plug-in hybrid electric vehicle (PHEV) works in a similar way to a self-charging hybrid– there is a petrol engine that works with an electric motor and a battery. In a plug-in hybrid, the battery is much larger than in a self-charging hybrid. This means the car is able to travel around 30 miles on battery power alone – more than enough for the UK average daily commute – but it can also call on the petrol engine for longer trips. Like a self-charging hybrid, the battery can be charged a little while driving, but for the full benefit, you will need to plug in. Charging a PHEV should take less than three hours.
A mild hybrid car works in a very similar way to a self-charging hybrid car, but it has a smaller battery. Because the battery is smaller, a mild hybrid cannot drive on battery power alone. Instead, the petrol or diesel engine does the majority of the work and the electric motor is there to provide assistance. This means the engine doesn’t have to work as hard, which means lower emissions and increased fuel economy. The battery is charged by recovering energy that would otherwise be wasted – when slowing down for example. There is no need to plug-in a mild hybrid, simply keep it topped up with petrol or diesel.
Hybrid and electric cars are most commonly charged at home, but can be charged at work, or at thousands of public chargers. In the UK, the vast majority of electric car charging is done at home. This is usually the most convenient and cost-effective way to charge. Get home, plug in, wake up with a full charge. Brilliant! To charge from home, it is best to get a home charge point installed. A dedicated home EV charger will charge your car much faster than using a three-pin plug – up to three times quicker! It’s safer, too. A home chargepoint from Pod Point – Kia’s charging partner – is weatherproof, so you can of course charge when it’s raining. The charge point is also smart, and WiFi enabled which means it can keep track of how much you have spent on charging – so you can invoice for travel costs for example. It can even save you money by charging when electricity is cheapest.
How much does an electric car cost? That depends on which one you buy, but whichever you choose, there are some government incentives that make it cheaper to buy a new EV. There is a government grant for electric cars called the Plug-in Car Grant – this reduces the price of a battery electric vehicle by £3,500. So a new Kia e-Niro – WhatCar?’s Car of the Year 2019 – costs just £32,995 after the £3,500 grant. There is also a £500 homecharge grant to help you with the cost of a home charger.
With the Niro Plug-in Hybrid you will experience the top qualities of a modern crossover: compact exterior, roomy and refined interior, harmoniously blended with the best talents of a true hybrid, highly efficient engine with great fuel economy and low emissions.
With the Kia Niro you will experience the top qualities of a modern crossover: compact exterior, roomy and refined interior, harmoniously blended with the best talents of a true hybrid.
Discover a world of smart convenience and amazing sensations. The All-New Kia e-Niro gives you instant acceleration, easy charging and long-range driving. All in the comfort of a spacious, stylish and extremely quiet cabin. And all of this with zero emissions. Sustainable driving has never felt so good.
The Kia Optima Sportswagon Plug-in Hybrid proves that you can cut back on emissions – and still deliver on performance. Thanks to the advanced powertrain, it manage to balance efficiency with dynamics, providing a fast and smooth transition from electric mode to hybrid (petrol/electric) operation – in both city traffic and on the motorway.
The All-New, all-electric Kia Soul EV steers clear of the status quo – taking bold to a whole new level and bringing a fresh perspective to zero-emission driving.
The New Sportage lineup now includes Kia’s new ‘EcoDynamics+’ mild-hybrid powertrain options. EcoDynamics+ supplements acceleration with power from a 48-volt battery, extends engine ‘off time’ and can even help reduce CO2 emissions by up to 4% on the Worldwide harmonized Light vehicles Test Procedure (WLTP).