2019 Kia Niro EV vs. 2019 Honda Clarity Electric

Detailed Review, Specifications & Comparison

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Safety

The Niro EV has standard Active Headrests, which use a specially designed headrest to protect the driver and front passenger from whiplash. During a rear-end collision, the Active Headrests system moves the headrests forward to prevent neck and spine injuries. The Clarity Electric doesn’t offer a whiplash protection system.

To help make backing safer, the Niro EV’s cross-path warning system uses wide-angle radar in the rear bumper to alert the driver to vehicles approaching from the side, helping the driver avoid collisions. The Clarity Electric doesn’t offer a cross-path warning system.

Both the Niro EV and the Clarity Electric have standard driver and passenger frontal airbags, front side-impact airbags, driver knee airbags, side-impact head airbags, front seatbelt pretensioners, front wheel drive, height adjustable front shoulder belts, four-wheel antilock brakes, traction control, electronic stability systems to prevent skidding, crash mitigating brakes, daytime running lights, lane departure warning systems, rearview cameras and available rear parking sensors.

Warranty

The Niro EV comes with a full 5-year/60,000-mile basic warranty, which covers the entire truck and includes 24-hour roadside assistance. The Clarity Electric’s 3-year/36,000-mile basic warranty expires 2 years and 24,000 miles sooner.

Kia’s powertrain warranty covers the Niro EV 5 years and 40,000 miles longer than Honda covers the Clarity Electric. Any repair needed on the engine, transmission, axles, joints or driveshafts is fully covered for 10 years or 100,000 miles. Coverage on the Clarity Electric ends after only 5 years or 60,000 miles.

Reliability

J.D. Power and Associates’ 2018 Initial Quality Study of new car owners surveyed provide the statistics that show that Kia vehicles are better in initial quality than Honda vehicles. J.D. Power ranks Kia second in initial quality, above the industry average. With 30 more problems per 100 vehicles, Honda is ranked 23rd, below the industry average.

J.D. Power and Associates’ 2019 survey of the owners of three-year-old vehicles provides the long-term dependability statistics that show that Kia vehicles are more reliable than Honda vehicles. J.D. Power ranks Kia 10th in reliability, above the industry average. With 20 more problems per 100 vehicles, Honda is ranked 16th.

From surveys of all its subscribers, Consumer Reports’ December 2018 Auto Issue reports that Kia vehicles are more reliable than Honda vehicles. Consumer Reports ranks Kia 10 places higher in reliability than Honda.

Engine

The Niro EV’s electric motor produces 40 more horsepower (201 vs. 161) and 70 lbs.-ft. more torque (291 vs. 221) than the Clarity Electric’s electric motor.

Fuel Economy and Range

The Niro EV’s maximum EPA estimated driving range is 239 miles on a full charge, over two and a half times as far as the Clarity Electric’s 89-mile range.

Suspension and Handling

For better maneuverability, the Niro EV’s turning circle is 3.6 feet tighter than the Clarity Electric’s (34.8 feet vs. 38.4 feet).

Chassis

The Niro EV is 1 foot, 8.5 inches shorter than the Clarity Electric, making the Niro EV easier to handle, maneuver and park in tight spaces.

Passenger Space

The Niro EV has 1 inch more front headroom and .6 inches more rear headroom than the Clarity Electric.

Cargo Capacity

The Niro EV has a much larger cargo volume with its rear seat up than the Clarity Electric (18.5 vs. 14.5 cubic feet).

To allow full utilization of available cargo room, the Niro EV’s cargo door uses gas strut supported hinges that don’t intrude into the cargo area. Its intrusive beam hinge reduces the Clarity Electric’s useful trunk space.

Ergonomics

The power windows standard on both the Niro EV and the Clarity Electric have locks to prevent small children from operating them. When the lock on the Niro EV is engaged the driver can still operate all of the windows, for instance to close one opened by a child. The Clarity Electric prevents the driver from operating the other windows just as it does the other passengers.

To improve rear visibility by keeping the rear window clear, the Niro EV has a standard rear wiper. The Clarity Electric doesn’t offer a rear wiper.

When the Niro EV with available tilt-down mirrors is put in reverse, both rearview mirrors tilt from their original position. This gives the driver a better view of the curb during parallel parking maneuvers. Shifting out of reverse puts the mirrors into their original positions. The Clarity Electric’s mirrors don’t automatically adjust for backing.

Standard air-conditioned seats in the Niro EV EX Premium keep the driver and front passenger comfortable and take the sting out of hot seats in summer. The Clarity Electric doesn’t offer air-conditioned seats.

On extremely cold winter days, the Niro EV EX Premium’s optional heated steering wheel provides comfort, allowing the driver to steer safely and comfortably before the vehicle heater warms up. The Clarity Electric doesn’t offer a heated steering wheel.

© 1991-2018 Advanta-STAR Automotive Research. All rights reserved.

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