Kia Niro Plus part of a purpose-built vehicle’ strategy

Kia Niro Plus – Adaption to specific needs continues to be a major strategy in new car design. Kia has revealed its Niro Plus, its first ‘purpose-built vehicle’ (PBV).

Kia Niro Plus taxi model in Korea

Currently the standard Niro is available in Australia as a hybrid, plug-in hybrid or full electric vehicle.

The Kia Niro Plus will be used as a general model and zero-emission taxi in Korea.

It is a modification of the first-generation Niro EV to make it suitable for the demands for car-hailing.

Its introduction follows the launch of their Ray Van in February, Korea’s first single-seater van designed to satisfy the growing national demand for small cargo delivery services.

Length and height of the taxi model have increased by 10 mm and 80 mm respectively, to give occupants more space inside the cabin. Slimmed-down structures have also made for more cabin space, with the Niro Plus taxi featuring thinner seats and door trims. Additional passenger safety and convenience features including door reflectors and assist handles are also available in both the taxi and general versions.

Kia is further developing micro to large purpose-built vehicles on dedicated platform; targeting global PBV leadership by 2030

Kia is planning a general version of the Niro Plus for private owners, which can be used for many business and recreational purposes including car-hailing services. For example, Kia is envisaging a scenario where a small business owner uses the Niro Plus for work during the week, before making the most of its versatility at the weekend for leisure activities such as camping or visits to the seaside or mountains.


The demand for delivery and logistics services has increased significantly following the acceleration in e-commerce during the Covid-19 pandemic. As the PBV market grows, Kia plans to gradually expand its range from micro to large PBVs that can potentially offer an alternative to public transportation or even be used as mobile offices.

The general, non-taxi version will be made available in select overseas markets in the second half of the year. In addition to the battery electric vehicle (BEV) version, the Niro Plus will be available as plug-in hybrid (PHEV) and hybrid (HEV) electric vehicles in these markets, reflecting country-specific characteristics and diverse customer needs.

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About David Brown 585 Articles
David’s boyhood passion for motor cars did not immediately lead to a professional role in the motor industry. A qualified Civil Engineer he specialised in traffic engineering and transport planning. What followed were various positions including being seconded to a government think-tank for the planning of transport firstly in Sydney and then for the whole of NSW. After working with the NRMA and as a consultant he moved to being an independent writer and commentator on the broader areas of transport and the more specific areas of the cars we drive. His half hour motoring program “Overdrive” has been described as an “informed, humorous and irreverent look at motoring and transport from Australia and overseas”. It is heard on 22 stations across Australia. He does weekly interviews with several ABC radio stations and is also heard on commercial radio in Sydney. David has written for metropolitan and regional newspapers and has presented regular segments on metropolitan and regional television stations. David is also a contributor for AnyAuto