- The Polestar 4 is a standalone brand focusing on electric cars, while Kia offers gas, hybrid, and electric vehicles.
- The Polestar 4 has more power, a longer range, and faster acceleration compared to the Kia Niro EV.
- The Polestar 4 features a unique digital rear-view mirror and advanced technology, including a large infotainment display and head-up display.
- Both the Polestar 4 and the Kia Niro EV have safety features such as automated emergency braking and lane keep assistance.
- The Polestar 4 has a higher starting price, while the Kia Niro EV is more affordable and offers lease incentives.
In an evolving EV world, automakers strive to launch better and more affordable vehicles each year. Two competitive players are Polestar and Kia.
Find out in this comparison between the Polestar 4 and the Kia Niro EV. Let’s dive right in!
Polestar 4 vs. Kia Niro EV: Side-by-Side Comparison
|Polestar 4||Kia Niro EV|
|Power||544 hp||201 hp|
|Range per Charge||Up to 372 miles||Up to 253 miles|
|Charging Speed (10% to 80%)||20 minutes||45 minutes|
|Acceleration (0 to 60 mph)||3.8 seconds||6.7 seconds|
|Top Speed||124 mph||104 mph|
|Number of Seats||5||5|
|Cargo Capacity||17.7 cubic feet||23 cubic feet|
|Wheel Size||20” or 22”||17” or 18”|
|Year of Release||2024||2023|
Polestar 4 vs. Kia Niro EV: What’s the Difference?
Originally introduced as Volvo’s racing division, Polestar is now a standalone brand co-owned by Volvo and Geely. The automaker has launched one hybrid and two fully electric vehicles since 2019, and its fourth model, the Polestar 4, is expected to hit the roads in the second half of 2024.
The newest arrival promises outstanding power and a range that can easily put the Tesla Model Y to shame. You can also expect unique features, such as the absence of a rear-view mirror and an attractive design with luxury elements.
Now in its fourth edition, the Kia Niro EV was initially launched in 2020. The 2023 model is a well-rounded electric SUV but not the most exciting vehicle to drive. It is less powerful than the Polestar 4 and has a shorter range. However, it brings more cargo space and is cheaper.
If you can’t make up your mind, this in-depth comparison highlights each model’s advantages and downsides. Let’s break them down in detail below.
Polestar’s newest arrival is unbeatable in terms of performance — at least, the Kia Niro EV has no chance of beating it. The Swedish automaker offers its fourth model in single and dual-motor trims with power ranging from 272 to 544 horsepower.
The single-motor Polestar 4 comes with a rear-wheel drivetrain developed for increased speed and acceleration. However, the true power is seen in the all-wheel drive variant that goes from 0 to 60 miles per hour in 3.8 seconds and reaches top speeds of 124 miles per hour.
Polestar hasn’t revealed many details about the vehicle’s chassis, but we do know that the AWD trim comes with an adaptive suspension system as standard. This feature increases comfort and handling in tough conditions, whether you’re driving on bumpy terrains or wet roads.
All of the Kia Niro EV trims come with a single motor capable of outputting 201 horsepower. Combined with a front-wheel drivetrain, the motor delivers bland acceleration. This vehicle hits 60 miles per hour in about 6.8 seconds, and it won’t go faster than 104 miles per hour. That said, front-wheel drive cars typically offer more stability on the road, so that’s something to keep in mind if top speed isn’t one of your priorities.
The Polestar 4 might offer lightning-fast acceleration, but what makes it stand out is its range. According to the automaker, you can expect it to cover around 372 miles per charge. The vehicle is also fast-charging capable. At Level 3 fast-charging stations, it should take around 20 minutes for the 94 kWh battery to go from 10 to 80 percent.
Polestar hasn’t yet revealed details about the model’s fuel economy or the Level 1 and Level 2 charging times, so we’ll have to wait and see how it truly performs.
Meanwhile, the Kia Niro EV is a tried-and-tested model with a range of up to 253 miles per charge and a fuel economy of 113 MPGe combined. These are not the best numbers, especially as far as the range is concerned. However, the true disappointment is the 64.8 kWh battery pack that needs about 45 minutes to charge from 10 to 80 percent when connected to a DC fast-charger.
Beyond range and performance, the Polestar 4 also wins the technology round. This car’s unique factor is the replacement of the rear-view mirror and rear windshield with a digital rear-view mirror that, with the use of two rear cameras, displays everything that happens behind the vehicle.
This tech feature reduces the blind spots to an absolute minimum, and no other vehicle can compete with the Polestar 4 in this aspect. But the digital rear-view mirror is not the only tech-savvy feature on this car.
The huge 15.4-inch infotainment display comes as standard on all trims. It runs Polestar’s latest Google-based interface, which basically means that you can access all your favorite apps, including Google Maps, Google Assistant, and the Google Play store. The vehicle is compatible with Apple CarPlay and comes with a 12-speaker Harman Kardon stereo system as standard (and that you can upgrade to a 16-speaker system).
In addition to the main infotainment screen, a 10.2-inch digital gauge display comes as standard on all trims. This display shows essential driving information, such as speed and battery range, while a 14-inch head-up display projects the same essential driving info at eye level, minimizing distractions while driving.
The Kia Niro EV has fewer tech features and a smaller, 10.3-inch touchscreen display. The infotainment system runs Kia’s proprietary OS but is compatible with Android Auto and Apple CarPlay. Built-in Alexa and Google Assistant enable voice commands, but that’s about it.
If the standard 6-speaker stereo system is not to your liking, you’ll have to shell out more money to upgrade to a Harman Kardon. Wireless charging is also optional, but you get Kia’s Digital Key 2.0 app that allows you to access vehicle functions remotely via your smartphone.
A similarity between the Polestar 4 and the Kia Niro EV is safety. Both models are equipped with sensors and cameras developed to assist you while driving or parking the vehicle. Standard options include automated emergency braking, forward collision warning, lane departure warning, and lane keep assistance.
The Polestar 4 also has adaptive cruise control with hands-free driving mode. Adaptive cruise control is available on the Kia Niro EV too, but this model doesn’t have hands-free driving.
Another difference between the Polestar 4 and the Kia Niro EV is the interior design and comfort. The Polestar 4 impresses with a minimalist interior similar to Tesla. Soft cabin lighting inspired by the Solar System creates a relaxing ambiance, while the seats provide adequate back support.
The lack of a rear glass allowed the automaker to push the rear seats back. This feature translates to more legroom for the rear passengers, although the headroom is less generous. You won’t feel claustrophobic, though, thanks to the front-to-rear moonroof that extends further back compared to standard SUVs. The main downside is the small trunk with a capacity of only 17.7 cubic feet.
The Kia Niro EV boasts a spacious cabin, but the style is more cluttered. The central control houses a rotary shifter and miscellaneous buttons, and the AC control is rather old-school.
What it lacks in style, however, this SUV brings in function. For instance, in-cabin storage includes a generously-sized glovebox, large door pockets, and useful cubbies in the central console. You also benefit from 23 cubic feet of cargo space, a lot more compared to the Polestar 4.
The Polestar 4 is a luxury SUV coupe with an expected starting price of around $60,000 for the single-motor variant. Most features come as standard, so the AWD trim shouldn’t be much more expensive. However, any optional customizations will drive up the costs.
If you’d rather save some money, the Kia Niro EV could be the right choice for you. This SUV has an MRSP of $39,550 for the Wind trim and $44,550 for the Wave. With all customization options, the more expensive trim will unlikely exceed $50,000.
Neither the Polestar 4 nor the Kia Niro EV qualify for tax credits. However, if you’d rather lease than buy the car, Kia offers a lease bonus of up to $7,500 to qualified lessees. Alternatively, Kia offers finance options through its authorized dealers. Similarly, Polestar offers lease and finance options through authorized dealers. Terms usually vary from 24 to 48 or 60 months, respectively.
Polestar 4 vs. Kia Niro EV: 6 Must-Know Facts
- The Polestar 4 is Polestar’s new SUV coupe. The automaker introduced it on April 18, 2023, at the Shanghai auto show and it is expected to hit the roads in 2024.
- The Kia Niro EV is the fully electric variant of the gas and hybrid Kia Niro models. Now in its fourth edition, the EV model was initially released in 2020.
- Despite its compact SUV design, the Kia Niro EV only comes in FWD trims. The single motor outputs up to 201 horsepower.
- The Polestar 4 is offered in RWD and AWD trims. In its AWD variant, this car has 544 horsepower.
- Polestar replaces the rear-view mirror and rear glass with a digital rear-view mirror and camera system that reduces blind spots and increases safety.
- The Kia Niro EV has a standard design and features, but it is more affordable than the Polestar 4.
Polestar 4 vs. Kia Niro EV: Which One is Best?
From an objective standpoint, the Polestar 4 is better than the Kia Niro EV in almost every way. This SUV coupe incorporates technologies developed to increase safety, features a comfortable cabin, and is offered in both single-motor and dual-motor variants. It is more powerful than the Kia Niro EV and boasts faster acceleration and a higher top speed. However, you have to pay for all these features.
If you need an affordable electric SUV and don’t mind giving up the bells and whistles, the Kia Niro EV might be the better choice for you. You won’t get the most exciting ride out there, but the car meets or exceeds all safety standards and has a good range for the town. With lease incentives of up to $7,500, the Kia Niro EV is undoubtedly the most budget-savvy option.
The image featured at the top of this post is ©Grzegorz Czapski/Shutterstock.com.