LA Auto Show 2019

Refreshed 2020 Kia Niro gets exterior enhancements, high-tech additions

Kia has updated the Niro Hybrid and Niro PHEV for the 2020 model year.

Photo courtesy of Kia Motors

It feels like the Kia Niro was just introduced but here we are at mid cycle refresh. The enhanced 2020 Kia Niro Hybrid and PHEV see the addition of key exterior equipment and technology to help it competitive in the tough SUV market as more hybrids make their way to the market.

"It's difficult to improve on a winning formula," said Michael Cole, president, KMA, "but we're always striving to improve every product we sell and the enhanced 2020 Niro provides new owners the latest and greatest while retaining the value, utility and performance of the original Niro."

2020 Kia Niro Hybrid 2020 Kia Niro PHEV front face wheels lights Kia has given the Niro new headlights and grille.Photo courtesy of Kia Motors

The Niro now features projector-type headlights and fog lamps. A new diamond-pattern grille brings its looks in line with the freshest Kia models. There are dual chevron-shaped LED daytime running lights.

The rear faux skid plate is wider and more pronounced in the 2020 model versus the 2019. Kia has added new 16- and 18-inch wheel designs.

2020 Kia Niro Hybrid 2020 Kia Niro PHEV back rear tailgate The back of the Niro features a faux skid plate.Photo courtesy of Kia Motors

The powertrain in unchanged. The 2020 Kia Niro Hybrid is powered by a 1.6-liter four-cylinder engine and electric motor that work in tandem to get 50 mpg in the FE trim and 43 mpg in the Touring trim. The Niro PHEV is powered by the same engine and motor but also has a lithium-ion battery. The model achieves 105 MPGe. It has 26 miles of all-electric range.

2020 Kia Niro Hybrid 2020 Kia Niro PHEV dashboard screen wheel shifter The Kia Niro has a new standard 7-inch infotainment screen.Photo courtesy of Kia Motors

Kia has given the cabin of the Niro a more significant upgrade with a new 7-inch instrument cluster with drive mode graphics. An 8-inch infotainment touch screen is standard but buyers can choose to upgrade to a 10.25-inch screen. There's also an available Harman Kardon premium audio system.

Drivers can utilize new optional paddle shifters. An electronic parking brake and mood lighting with six different colors are available.

2020 Kia Niro Hybrid 2020 Kia Niro PHEV paddle shifters Paddle shifters are available.Photo courtesy of Kia Motors

Pricing for the Niro Hybrid and Niro Plug-In have not yet available and will be announced closer to the on-sale date early in 2020. The 2019 Niro Hybrid started in the low $20,000s. The 2019 Niro Plug-In is priced closer to $30,000.

Photo courtesy of Kia Motors

Ahead of its official debut at the Geneva International Motor Show, Kia has released images of the redesigned 2021 Kia Sorento. The midsize three-row SUV's last redesign was in 2015.

Kia says that its design was inspired by "refined boldness" but really it just looks like the Seltos and Telluride mated and formed an attractive offspring. Sure, it's refined and bold, with a more sculpted design than its predecessor. There's plenty of geometric detail, as is apparent on the other Kia models, and elongated proportions.

2021 Kia Sorento face front The front of the Sorento is reminiscent of the Seltos.Photo courtesy of Kia Motors

The SUV has a longer wheelbase this this fourth generation than in the past

Sorento gets new "tiger eye" LED daytime running lights in this iteration, which thankfully do not pop out like the Sportage's.

The inside of the Sorento shows off what Kia does best - deliver high-quality, premium level design and appointments to the masses. Kia brags that the 2021 Sorento has, " One of the highest quality interior spaces found in any Kia to-date." There are metallic trims, leather upholstery, and embossed wood-effect surfaces

Its sophisticated design features fresh technology that Kia calls "intuitive." There's a 10.25-inch infotainment touch screen front and center on the dashboard and a 12.3-inch digital instrument cluster in front of the driver.

2021 Kia Sorento rear back The rear of the Sorento is similar to the Kia Telluride's backside.Photo courtesy of Kia Motors

The automaker is also promising that the redesigned Sorento is more comfortable than in the past. Unlike the Hyundai Santa Fe, which was downgraded to two rows when the Palisade debuted, the Sorento is retaining its three-row design for 2021.

Kia has confirmed that there will be a 2021 Kia Sorento Hybrid model.

The three-row 2020 Kia Sorento starts at $26,990. It is likely that Kia will continue to offer the Sorento at a starting price near that level in its new generation. That 2020 Sorento was named one of U.S. News & World Report's Best Cars for the Money.

2021 Kia Sorento cabin interior The Sorento's cabin is an evolution in Kia design.Photo courtesy of Kia Motors

The new Sorento will make its debut on March 3.

Kia has refreshed the Cadenza for the 2020 model year. It will arrive at dealerships soon.

Photo courtesy of Kia Motors

Kia continues to surprise with products that highlight the sleek exterior and high-quality interiors the company is capable of producing and selling for budget-friendly rates. The refreshed 2020 Kia Cadenza is no exception, delivering new design elements, advanced technology, and available convenience features.

The refresh of the Cadenza falls into familiar territory. There's a redesigned hood and grille with deeper vertical fascia. It has standard multi-lens LED headlights and redesigned LED daytime running lights. The Cadena's new lower front fascia has integrated turn signals while the rear and trunk lid are also redesigned and features new LED combination taillights.

2020 Kia Cadenza The 2020 Cadenza features a new front end design.Photo courtesy of Kia Motors

Kia has given the Cadeza redesigned standard 18-inch wheels and available 19-inchers.

Despite all the exterior changes, the most impactful enhancements for the 2020 model year come on the inside. The car's dashboard and instrument cluster are new. Audio controls have been relocated to sit above the climate controls. It has a new standard 4.2-inch screen in the instrument panel, 12.3-inch infotainment touch screen, three additional charging ports, enhanced wireless charging, Smart Key with remote start, and Bluetooth connectivity. Ambient LED mood lighting is available in the Limited trim level.

Kia will offer the Cadenza with two Nappa leather trimmed seat colors: Saddle Brown and Gray. Limited models have quilted bolsters.

The Cadenza comes standard with Sensor Fusion, a suite of safety and driver assistance technology that includes forward collision warning, forward collision avoidance assist with pedestrian and cyclist detection, adaptive cruise control with stop and go, and high beam assist. Blind spot monitoring and assist, lane change assist, and Safe Exit Assist are also standard.

Kia has installed Highway Driving Assist, which uses federal highway speed limit information to automatically adjust vehicle speed to be within the posted speed limit, and Navigation-based Smart Cruise Control, uses navigation data to lower the vehicle's speed proactively before upcoming curves in every Cadeza.

2020 Kia Cadeza The 2020 Cadenza is more luxe than in previous model years.Photo courtesy of Kia Motors

Under the hood of the Cadenza is a 3.3-liter V6 that achieves a satisfying 290 horsepower and is paired with an eight-speed automatic transmission.

Kia has made enhancements to the 2020 model to help reduce noise, vibration, and harshness including redesigned shock valves and larger rear dampers.

2020 Kia Cadenzaza Kia has kept the engine in the Cadenza the same for the 2020 model year.Photo courtesy of Kia Motors

The large car will be offered in Technology and Limited trim levels when it goes on sale later this year. Last year, the car was also offered in a Premium grade but that has been eliminated for the new model year.