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2024 Kia Niro EV vs. 2024 Nissan Leaf Comparison

Car shoppers looking to go electric without spending a bundle would be wise to consider the 2024 Kia Niro EV and the 2024 Nissan Leaf. They’re both among the most affordable EVs, and the Leaf now has the honor of being the lowest-price electric car on sale today.

The Kia Niro EV costs more, granted, but it comes with an expansive roster of standard tech and safety features. Following a complete redesign for the 2023 model year, the 2024 Kia Niro EV has no notable changes or updates.

Having been at the forefront of the EV charge (pun intended), the 2024 Nissan Leaf also is unchanged this model year. It offers a choice of two battery packs, though opting for the larger of the two adds around $8,000 to the price. With its small size, good steering response, and torque-rich electric powertrain, the Leaf shines in city traffic.

Let’s see how the 2024 Kia Niro EV and the 2024 Nissan Leaf compare.

2024 Kia Niro EV

The Kia Niro EV is available in two trim levels: Wind and Wave. (Kia’s naming department must have been fresh from a seaside vacation…)

Starting at $39,600, the Niro EV Wind is very well equipped for a base model. Opting for the $44,600 Niro EV Wave adds features like heated and ventilated front seats, a heated steering wheel, remote park assist, a hands-free liftgate, and an 8-speaker Harman Kardon audio system.

Kia Niro EV Highlights

Loads of standard features: We think sticking with the base Wind trim is the way to go. It’s brimming with tech touches like wireless Apple CarPlay and Android Auto, wireless device charging, five USB ports, navigation, and satellite radio. Safety is also addressed via numerous standard driver aids such as blind-spot monitoring, rear cross-traffic warning, adaptive cruise control, automatic high-beam headlights, and more.

Outstanding warranty coverage: As a Kia, the Niro EV is graced with excellent warranty coverage. A 5-year/60,000-mile basic warranty is complemented by a fantastic 10-year/100,000-mile powertrain warranty.

Dual-screen display: Even the base Niro EV is loaded with tech, but we’re just as enamored with the layout of the infotainment system. A 10.25-inch digital instrument display sits alongside a 10.25-inch touchscreen. Combined, they give the Niro EV cabin the look of a luxury vehicle. It’s sleek, modern, and user-friendly.  

Vegan leather: Did you know the Niro EV’s seating surfaces are vegan? The synthetic leather contains something called “Tencel,” which is from Eucalyptus trees. A quirky detail you might enjoy.

Check this week’s Fair Purchase Price or see the Niro EV models for sale near you.

2024 Nissan Leaf

2024 Nissan Leaf SV in blue with a green hedge in the background.

The Nissan Leaf has a starting price of $28,140 for the entry-level Leaf S trim. This makes it the least expensive EV and, even better, it’s eligible for a $3,750 federal tax credit at the time of this writing. Stepping up to the SV Plus trim brings along a larger battery pack that boosts driving range from a relatively feeble 149 miles in the Leaf S to 212. That’s better, but it still lags many rivals, including the Niro EV.

Nissan Leaf Highlights

Least expensive EV on sale today: You can’t ignore that the Nissan Leaf is the most affordable EV on the market. Even the 2024 Nissan Leaf SV Plus starts at a reasonable $36,190.

Front seat comfort: Nissan went to great lengths to make the front seats of the Leaf comfortable and supportive. You can feel it the moment you sit in the Leaf.

Nissan ConnectEV: This smartphone feature is standard on the Leaf EV Plus. It allows you to check the current rate of charge, to decide when to charge, and even allows you to adjust cabin temperature, all via your phone.

ProPilot Assist: Another standard feature of the SV Plus is ProPilot Assist. This semi-autonomous driving aid blends the adaptive cruise control with a lane-centering feature. This makes highway drives more relaxing.

Check this week’s Fair Purchase Price or see the Leaf models for sale near you.

Similarities

The 2024 Niro EV and 2024 Nissan Leaf are both compact 5-door hatchbacks sized right for snug city parking spots. While the range of the base Leaf S is nothing to write home about, the 212 miles of the SV Plus is a bit closer to the 253 miles of the Niro EV. Additionally, both these EVs have generous cargo compartments, along with enough headroom and legroom to comfortably accommodate four adults.    

Conclusion

There’s a lot to like about these chirpy small EVs. The Kia Niro is packed with standard features and now has a head-turning design. Its interior is upscale and wouldn’t look out of place in a vehicle costing thousands more. It’s also faster while offering much more range than the Leaf.  

Having arrived more than a decade ago, the Leaf continues to impress us with its refinement and easy everyday driving. It offers tons of value for your EV-buying dollar, and we’re torn between the low price of the base Leaf or the more usable range of the pricier SV Plus. Either way, the Leaf is great for around-town errands or short commuting duty, and it swallows considerably more cargo than the Niro EV.

All things considered, the Kia Niro EV gets the nod in this comparison. If your budget is tight, however, we feel the Nissan makes an excellent EV alternative.

  2024 Kia Niro EV  2024 Nissan Leaf
Starting Price $39,600  $28,140
Popular Powertrains  
Engine Single electric motor w/68-kWh battery Single electric motor w/40-kWh battery
Horsepower 201 hp 147 hp
Torque 188 lb-ft 236 lb-ft
Transmission 1-speed automatic 1-speed automatic
Fuel economy MPGe 126 city/101 highway/113 combined   123 city/99 highway/111 combined
Also Available  hybrid; plug-in hybrid 62-hWh battery
Specs     
Basic Warranty 5 years/60,000 miles  3 years/36,000 miles
Powertrain Warranty 10 years/100,000 miles  5 years/60,000 miles
NHTSA Overall Safety NA  5 star
Max Seating Capacity 5  5
Wheelbase 107.0 inches  106.3 inches
Overall Length 174.0 inches  176.4 inches
Width 71.8 inches  70.5 inches
Height 61.8 inches  61.4 inches
Turning Diameter 34.8 feet  34.8 feet
Headroom, Front 40.5 inches  41.2 inches
Headroom, 2nd Row 38.1 inches  37.3 inches
Legroom, Front 41.5 inches  42.1 inches
Legroom, 2nd Row 36.9 inches  33.5 inches
Shoulder Room, Front 56.3 inches  54.3 inches
Shoulder Room, 2nd Row 55.4 inches  52.5 inches
Cargo Volume 22.8 cubic feet   30.0 cubic feet

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