Kia Niro Years to Avoid and The Best Years

Kia Niro Years to Avoid – Are you considering the Kia Niro as your next vehicle? With its stylish design, fuel efficiency, and an array of features, the Kia Niro has become a popular choice for eco-conscious drivers. However, as with any car, it’s important to be aware of potential issues that may arise with certain model years.

In this article, we will explore Kia Niro’s performance over the years and highlight the ones to avoid, ensuring you make an informed decision and enjoy a worry-free ownership experience.

Kia Niro Years to Avoid

The Kia Niro has been on the market since 2016, offering hybrid, plug-in hybrid, and all-electric variants to cater to diverse driving preferences.

While the Niro has generally received positive reviews for its spacious interior, comfortable ride, and advanced safety features, there have been a few model years that stand out as less desirable.

When it comes to Kia Niro years to avoid, it’s essential to consider the potential issues reported by owners and automotive experts.

By steering clear of these specific model years, you can significantly reduce the likelihood of encountering troublesome mechanical problems or performance-related concerns.

Our aim is to guide you through this process and help you choose a Kia Niro that brings you satisfaction and peace of mind for years to come.

While it’s important to note that Kia has a reputation for producing reliable vehicles, there are a few model years of the Niro that have been associated with a higher frequency of issues.

By being aware of these years, you can take proactive measures to avoid potential headaches down the road.

In the next sections, we will delve into the specific model years of the Kia Niro that are generally regarded as less favorable.

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We’ll discuss the reasons behind their inclusion in this list and provide insights into the concerns reported by owners and experts alike. Armed with this knowledge, you’ll be better equipped to make an educated decision when shopping for a Kia Niro.

Kia Niro Years to Avoid

Kia Niro Years to Avoid

When considering the Kia Niro as your next hybrid SUV, it’s essential to be well-informed about potential issues associated with specific model years.

By examining reported problems and expert evaluations, we aim to guide you toward making an informed decision and avoiding potential headaches down the road.

2019 Kia Niro

The 2019 Kia Niro, while not the least reliable option in its segment, stands out as the most troublesome within the Niro lineup. With 65 complaints and no recalls reported by CarComplaints, it’s clear that this particular model year has had its fair share of issues.

Consequently, our verdict is to exercise caution and consider alternatives to the 2019 Niro.

One of the primary issues plaguing the 2019 Kia Niro is the “Check Hybrid Engine System” error, as reported by numerous owners. Although the exact cause and solution can vary, some cases have required a hybrid power relay assembly replacement.

An owner from Winnipeg shared their experience, stating that the error appeared just 13 days after purchasing the vehicle, during extremely cold weather conditions of -16 degrees Celsius.

Despite having the car towed to the dealer, the issue persisted even after a reset, indicating a recurring problem.

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The 2019 Kia Niro has also received a significant number of complaints regarding engine-related problems. Out of the 39 total complaints registered with the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA), approximately 16 were related to powertrain issues.

Some drivers have reported experiencing sudden jerks and loud clacking sounds when accelerating at low speeds.

These unpredictable occurrences not only compromise driving comfort but also increase the risk of rear-end collisions, adding to the concerns surrounding this particular model year.

Consumer Reports, a trusted source for vehicle reliability evaluations, assigned the 2019 Kia Niro a dismal reliability score of 1.0 out of 5.0. This low rating further emphasizes the potential pitfalls associated with this specific model year, urging prospective buyers to explore alternative options within the Niro lineup.

In light of the reported problems and expert assessments, it is prudent to approach the 2019 Kia Niro with caution.

Which Years Of Used Kia Niros Are Most Reliable?

Which Years Of Used Kia Niros Are Most Reliable

When searching for a reliable and efficient SUV, the Kia Niro stands out as an appealing choice in the hybrid and electric vehicle market.

Let’s explore the best years of the Kia Niro, focusing on models that offer exceptional reliability, fuel efficiency, and impressive features.

By examining key data and reviews, we aim to assist you in making an informed decision and finding a Kia Niro that suits your needs and provides peace of mind.

2021 Kia Niro: Fuel Efficiency and Features

The 2021 Kia Niro is renowned for its remarkable fuel efficiency, seating capacity, and handling performance. With the ability to achieve up to 50 MPG, it stands as one of the most fuel-efficient SUVs in its class for that year.

While it lacks all-wheel drive (AWD) and may have slower acceleration compared to previous years, its standout features include a spacious interior, advanced navigation-based cruise control, rear occupant alert technology in all standard trims, and compatibility with Android Auto© and Apple CarPlay©.

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2022 Kia Niro: Modern Design and Impressive Features

The 2022 Kia Niro continues the trend of excellence with its modern design and luxurious features. This model year offers a compelling package, combining aesthetics, features, and exceptional fuel efficiency.

Whether you’re considering a hybrid or exploring the world of electric vehicles (EVs), the 2022 Kia Niro presents an enticing option.

Notable features include a lithium-ion polymer battery (LIPO) with 356V, 201 horsepower, and 291 lb-ft. torque, and an impressive 239-mile all-electric range.

2023 Kia Niro: Luxury, Performance, and Hybrid Versatility

The 2023 Kia Niro represents another significant advancement in the lineup, showcasing increased luxury and enhanced performance. With options for three hybrid design trims, this year’s model offers an impressive fuel economy of up to 53 MPG combined.

Powered by a 1.6L four-cylinder hybrid powertrain generating 139 horsepower and 195 lb-ft. torque, the 2023 Niro provides a comfortable seating capacity for five passengers and a 6-speed automated manual transmission.

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With an 11.1-gallon fuel tank capacity, it strikes a balance between efficiency and practicality.

2017 Kia Niro: A Strong Debut Year

Despite being a debut model, the 2017 Kia Niro has managed to establish itself as a reliable choice. While it has a few reported reliability problems, they are not severe enough to outweigh the overall positive aspects of this model year. reports a total of 75 complaints and four recalls for the 2017 Niro.

Some notable issues include occasional door handle breakage and soy-based fuel lines that may attract rodents.

Nevertheless, the 2017 Niro received positive ratings from Consumer Reports, with a perfect reliability score of 5.0 out of 5.0.

2018 Kia Niro: Stellar Reliability and Owner Reviews

The 2018 Kia Niro further solidifies the reputation of the Niro lineup for reliability. With 39 complaints and two recalls reported, the 2018 model year has garnered exceptional reliability scores and positive owner reviews.

While there have been occasional reports of electrical system problems and door latch issues, they do not appear to be prevalent.

Consumer Reports rates the 2018 Niro with a perfect reliability rating of 5.0 out of 5.0, making it an excellent choice for those seeking a dependable used small SUV.

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2020 Kia Niro: Fuel Efficiency and Reliability

For those in search of a relatively new Niro with top-tier reliability, exceptional fuel efficiency, and accessible pricing, the 2020 model year is a standout option.

With a fuel economy rating of 52 MPG for the hybrid version and an EPA-rated 239 miles for the full-electric variant, it ranks among the most fuel-efficient hybrids in its segment.

The 2020 Kia Niro has received primarily positive feedback on its predicted reliability, further solidifying its status as one of the most reliable years for the Kia Niro lineup.

Kia Niro Problems and Common Issues

Kia Niro Problems and Common Issues

Like any vehicle, it is essential to be aware of potential problems and common issues that may arise.

By understanding these issues, you can make an informed decision and take proactive steps to address or prevent them.

1. Transmission Problems: Jerky Shifting, Hesitancy, and Stalling

One of the most commonly reported issues with the Kia Niro involves transmission. Some owners have experienced instances of jerky shifting, where the gears shift abruptly and disrupt the smoothness of the ride.

Additionally, there have been reports of hesitancy during acceleration, where the vehicle may momentarily hesitate before responding to driver input.

In rare cases, stalling has been reported, which can be a safety concern.

If you encounter any of these transmission issues, it is advisable to have your vehicle inspected by a qualified technician to diagnose and address the problem promptly.

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2. Electrical Problems: Infotainment System, Backup Camera, and Sensors

Another area of concern for some Kia Niro owners revolves around electrical problems. These issues can manifest in various ways, including malfunctions with the infotainment system, intermittent operation of the backup camera, and faults in various sensors throughout the vehicle.

These electrical problems can be frustrating and may require professional assistance to diagnose and resolve.

3. Fuel System Problems: Trouble Filling Gas Tank and Fuel Gauge Accuracy

Several Kia Niro owners have reported difficulties when attempting to fill their gas tanks. This issue can range from slow filling to repeated instances of the pump prematurely shutting off, even when the tank is not yet full.

Additionally, some owners have encountered problems with the accuracy of the fuel gauge, leading to misleading readings and uncertainty about the remaining fuel level.

If you encounter such fuel system problems, it is advisable to consult a Kia dealership or authorized service center to assess and address the issue to ensure accurate fuel measurement and proper tank filling.

4. Brake System Issues: Early Rotor and Brake Pad Wear

A subset of Kia Niro owners has reported premature wear of the brake system components, specifically the rotors and brake pads.

This problem can manifest as a reduction in braking performance, increased noise during braking, or uneven wear on the brake pads.

Prompt attention to brake system maintenance and routine inspections can help detect any signs of wear early on and prevent further damage.

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5. Suspension System Problems: Noise and Vibration While Driving

Some Kia Niro owners have reported issues related to the suspension system, including noise and vibration while driving. These symptoms can range from rattling or clunking noises over bumps to a noticeable vibration felt through the steering wheel or seat.

If you encounter these suspension-related issues, it is advisable to have your vehicle inspected by a qualified technician to identify the source of the problem, which could be related to worn components or improper installation.

Addressing these issues promptly can help maintain a smooth and comfortable ride.

Is the Kia Niro a reliable car?

Yes, the Kia Niro is generally considered a reliable car. In a reliability survey, Kia ranked seventh out of 32 car manufacturers, indicating that their cars, including the Niro, are known for their reliability. Additionally, Kia offers a generous seven-year warranty on their new cars, meaning that even a three-year-old Niro would still have four years of warranty coverage remaining.

This warranty provides added peace of mind for Kia Niro owners.

Is Kia Niro good on gas?

Yes, the Kia Niro is known for its excellent fuel efficiency. According to the EPA, the Niro hybrid model is rated at up to 53 mpg in the city and 54 mpg on the highway for the base LX trim. Other trims are rated at 53 mpg in the city and 45 mpg on the highway.

These impressive fuel economy figures make the Niro one of the most fuel-efficient options in its class, providing cost savings and environmental benefits to owners.

What are the most common problems with the Kia Niro?

While the Kia Niro is generally reliable, some owners have reported certain issues. Common problems that have been raised include malfunctioning powertrain, visibility issues, problems with the forward collision avoidance technology, and excessively loud alerts that are considered safety hazards.

It’s important to note that these issues may not be prevalent in all Kia Niro vehicles and may vary depending on individual experiences.

Is the Kia Niro expensive to fix?

The average annual repair cost for a Kia, including the Niro, is reported to be $474, which is considered to be above average in terms of ownership costs. However, it’s important to keep in mind that repair costs can vary depending on the specific repair needed and the availability of parts.

Additionally, Kia’s generous warranty coverage can help offset some of the repair costs during the warranty period.

Regular maintenance and timely repairs can help minimize overall ownership costs and keep the Kia Niro running smoothly.


While the Kia Niro has generally proven to be a reliable car, there are certain factors to consider. Kia ranks well in terms of reliability among car manufacturers, and the Niro benefits from Kia’s seven-year warranty, providing extended coverage and peace of mind.

The Niro also excels in terms of fuel efficiency, with impressive MPG ratings for its hybrid models.

Additionally, it’s worth noting that the cost of ownership for the Kia Niro, including repair and maintenance expenses, is slightly above average.

If you’re considering purchasing a Kia Niro, it’s advisable to thoroughly research the specific model year and take into account any reported problems or recalls.

Being well-informed will help you make an informed decision and potentially avoid any unfavorable experiences.

In summary, while the Kia Niro has its strengths in terms of reliability and fuel efficiency, it’s important to be aware of potential issues and conduct due diligence when selecting a specific model year. By considering all relevant factors, you can make an educated choice that aligns with your preferences and priorities.

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