Kia’s Eco range boasts a number of advanced technologies that will help reduce fuel and maintenance costs for your company car or fleet.
If you’re looking to make your fleet more cost-effective, Kia’s award-winning Eco range could be just what you’re looking for.
In addition to significant tax savings, the suite of advanced technologies available on our Eco range also works behind the scenes to help you use less fuel on a day-to-day basis. These technologies will help you use less fuel, while also reducing service and maintenance costs.
Here we take a look at some of these technologies, and explain how you can use them to get the most out of your Kia.
Our electric, plug-in hybrid and self-charging hybrid vehicles all come equipped with regenerative braking systems. Unlike the friction brakes on a standard car, a regenerative brake set-up uses the electric motor to harvest the kinetic energy that is usually lost during deceleration, so it can then be stored in the battery for later use. The system works as soon as you lift off the throttle, and will gradually slow the car down without touching the brake pedal. By harvesting kinetic energy in this manner, you help to maximise the vehicle’s efficiency – meaning you’ll deplete the battery at a slower rate over the course of a journey.
Using the paddles mounted on the steering wheel (Niro family and Soul EV), you can set the strength of the regenerative system to your preference. Increase the strength and it’ll harvest more energy while slowing the car more quickly when you release the accelerator. You can even hold the left paddle (for a minimum of 0.5 seconds) to slow to a standstill without using the brake pedal, thus increasing battery range.
This is great for reducing both fuel and maintenance bills for your company car or fleet, because running on battery power for longer reduces the amount of fuel you use. Naturally, using less fuel means lower emissions, which means less tax, too. Regenerative braking also means your brakes don’t have to work as hard or as often, so should last longer before being replaced.
Drive Mode Select
If you want a more engaging drive, selecting Sport mode sharpens the throttle response and provides weightier steering. Switching to Eco meanwhile will fine-tune the car’s set-up for maximum efficiency. Changes include, but aren’t limited to, a gentler, more progressive throttle response; while a softer fan speed from the climate control reduces energy consumption further.
As is the case with regenerative braking, by using Eco or Eco+ modes to maximise your electric vehicle’s efficiency as often as possible, you won’t need to charge up the batteries quite as frequently. This will ultimately help your company car or fleet become more cost-effective.
All Kia Niro models come equipped with our Eco Driver Assistance System (Eco DAS).
This clever innovation utilises the car’s camera, radar and satellite navigation systems to anticipate road and traffic conditions ahead, so it can provide tips and tricks about how to adjust your driving style to maximise efficiency. This might include prompts on when to lift off the throttle to coast (when approaching a junction or roundabout for example), or when to apply the brake pedal yourself, helping you or your drivers to use less fuel/energy, without needing dedicated training.
Again, by improving efficiency as much as possible you’ll ultimately maximise your potential electric running time – which is better for both your wallet and the environment.
You can set your Kia electric or plug-in hybrid to start charging its battery at a time of your choosing. So although you might arrive home from work and plug in straight away, you can tell your Kia to start charging a few hours later when the cheaper overnight electricity tariffs kick in. Not only will you wake up to a replenished battery, you won’t pay as much for the privilege either – so fuelling your fleet could be even cheaper than you think.
Battery Heating System
The latest versions of the Kia e-Niro and Soul EV come equipped with a battery heating system. This intelligent piece of tech helps to warm the battery up while it’s plugged in and charging, and then keep it insulated while you’re driving.
Batteries work best when they are warm, so a pre-heated battery helps maintain performance in cold weather, so you’ll be able to make the most of your e-Niro’s 282-mile range over the course of those challenging winter months.
UVO Connect App
Kia’s new UVO Connect app – which works in conjunction with the new UVO Connect infotainment suite in our latest Eco models – can also help you to reduce running costs. Not only does the app allow you to monitor and control the battery charging process for our plug-in and electric models, it allows you to precondition the car’s cabin too.
This means that on our electric cars you can set the temperature to a comfortable level before you get in, while it’s still plugged in and charging. By doing so, you won’t then need to use battery power to heat or cool the interior once you’re up and running – it will only be needed to maintain your desired temperature. This is yet another feature that will help you maximise the efficiency of your plug-in vehicle, and travel further as a result.
Furthermore, the UVO connect app allows you to send planned routes from your phone to your navigation system, and you can even get a summary of your previous journeys – perfect for tracking your business mileage. You can also access important diagnostic information about your vehicle, and you’ll be notified if the car alarm is triggered – a helpful way to keep track of your fleet. Meanwhile, the UVO infotainment suite can offer realtime information such as live traffic updates, live fuel prices, parking information and more – which gives you the power to park and fill-up where it’s cheapest or most convenient.
Driver-Focused Air Conditioning
This is a simple innovation, but one that provides useful gains in efficiency when travelling solo.
Our electric vehicles allow you to restrict the air flow from the climate control system so that it only covers the area where the driver sits. In doing so, you won’t be unnecessarily wasting energy to cool or heat unoccupied passenger zones.