Did Kia Take A Dig At SMART With The Latest Niro? - story fullscreen Fullscreen

Did Kia Take A Dig At SMART With The Latest Niro?

The all-new Niro’s styling is unconventional and is your best way to stand out in a sea of crossover’s and SUVs

LISTEN 02:15

Kia took the wraps off of its 2023 Niro, and folks got an up-close look at the crossover, at the recently held 2022 New York Auto show. One of the most striking aspects of the new Niro has to be its design. I have to admit, the 2023 Niro is a breath of fresh air in the crossover space, where most manufacturers - if not all - are stepping over themselves with a heavy dose of body cladding and roof rails to show off the vehicle’s so-called ‘Off-road’ credentials.

Did Kia Take A Dig At SMART With The Latest Niro?
- image 1075282

Coming back to the Niro, the highlight design element on the Niro has to be those pronounced contrasting side blades, which are, in fact, functional. But, if you think about it, something like this has been done before. Remember Smart? Yes, the Daimler division, which was responsible for creating those quirky little micro-city cars. They are still around by the way, but I want to draw your attention to how unconventional the car looked to anything else on the road, especially when viewed from the side.

Did Kia Take A Dig At SMART With The Latest Niro?
- image 49825
But contrasting body panels is something that the Smart brand has done for years. It was one of the hallmarks of these funky city little city cars

This was, in fact, a design hallmark of the Smart brand where a contrast color would start off at the A-Pillar, continue on to the roof, and then come round from the D-Pillar to meet the sill. It would then extend all the way to the front wheels. Things got even quirkier later with the Smart Forfour (not sold in the United States), which also had contrasting bits around the front and rear screens as well. Now, since we’re talking contrasting body panels, you can’t forget the original Audi R8 and its side blades either. Things aren’t as dramatic on the Niro as they were on the Smart, but I’m glad that Kia chose to try something different in a crowd of ever-burgeoning crossovers and SUV wannabes. The styling looks are, dare I say, sophisticated to my eye.

Did Kia Take A Dig At SMART With The Latest Niro?
- image 1071471
But the overall aesthetic is dare I say sophisticated and should help you stand out in the crowd. Swipe up to read more.

Now, unfortunately, the SUV bug hasn’t spared the microcar maker either as they too now have their very own all-electric Smart SUV. Its design, although futuristic, is nowhere as radical as the Smart cars from the 2000s. Automakers have to roll with the times and, as I’ve said before, manufacturers will continue to churn out these suburban runabouts as long as people keep buying them.

Khris Bharath
Khris Bharath
Khris is a classic car aficionado and adores his Jags and Alfas, although he keeps tabs on everything from super exotics like an old EB 110 to the latest from Lucid. Formula One is very close to his heart, and he diligently makes time to tune in for the Grand Prix on Sundays. Khris also loves his road trips and he prefers stick shift over an Auto any day.  Read full bio
About the author

Related Articles

2023 Kia Niro Breaks Cover With Striking Looks And Varying Degrees Of Electrification

Smart forfour to be canceled

2006 Brabus SBR

What do you think?
Show Comments
Car Finder: