Closeup of Toyota Prius wheel


  • The Prius and Niro have similar starting prices.
  • You get better fuel economy ratings with the Prius no matter what trim you choose.
  • Plus, you can choose to get available AWD-e with the 2021 Prius.

The 2021 Toyota Prius has it all, giving drivers excellent EPA-estimated fuel economy and available AWD-e to take you farther.

Fuel Economy and Available AWD

Both the Prius and Niro have starting MSRPs under $25,000. While there's not much difference in price with a starting MSRP of $24,525 vs. $24,690, the Prius L Eco comes with a lot more.

One advantage is fuel economy. The base model Prius L Eco has an EPA-estimated 58/53/56 (city/highway/combined) MPG rating while the Kia Niro LX has an EPA-estimated 53/48/50 (city/highway/combined) MPG rating. Even the Prius LE and XLE AWD-e have an EPA-estimated 51/47/49 (city/highway/combined) MPG rating. Comparatively, the Niro LXS and EX Premium have an EPA-estimated 51/46/49 (city/highway/combined) MPG rating and the Touring and Touring Special Edition have a lower EPA-estimated 46/40/43 (city/highway/combined) MPG rating.

Now with the 2021 Prius, you can also get the available AWD-e on the LE and XLE AWD-e. The AWD-e system operates at speeds of up to 43 mph and provides better traction for bad weather like heavy rain and snow. Looking at the Kia specs page, it makes no mention of AWD on any trim they have.

Closeup of Toyota Prius steering wheel


  • Both the Prius and Niro have an abundance of active safety features, however, only the Prius has them standard.
  • The Prius also has a 3-year trial subscription of Safety Connect®️ standard.
  • When looked at by the IIHS, both hybrids received high marks on their "safety report cards".

Every 2021 Prius has a full suite of active safety features so you don’t have to choose between trim level and safety features.

Standard Safety Features

Every Prius has Toyota Safety Sense 2.0 (TSS 2.0). Toyota Safety Sense 2.0 comes with: Pre-Collision System with Pedestrian Detection (PCS w/PD), Lane Departure Alert with Steering Assist (LDA w/SA), Lane Tracing Assist (LTA), Automatic High Beams (AHB), Full-Speed Range Dynamic Radar Cruise Control (DRCC), and Road Sign Assist (RSA). The Niro does have its own suite of safety features called Kia Drive Wise. This includes Blind-Spot Collision Warning (BCW), Rear Cross-Traffic Collision Warning(RCCW), Forward Collision Avoidance Assist w/ Pedestrian Detection (FCA-Ped), Lane Keep Assist System (LKAS), and Driver Attention Warning (DAW) w/ Leading Vehicle Departure Alert (LVDA). The comparable High-Beam Assist (HBA) and the features mentioned above are only standard on the LXS or higher. Plus, if you want Forward Collision Avoidance-Assist w/ Cyclist Detection (FCA-Cyc), Smart Cruise Control (SCC) w/ Stop & Go, and Lane Following Assist (LFA) you'd need to get the Niro Touring or higher.

The Toyota Prius also comes with a Safety Connect®️ trial. This includes: Emergency Assistance, Stolen Vehicle Locator, Roadside Assistance, and Automatic Collision Notification with a 3-year trial subscription. The Kia Niro Touring and higher come with similar Kia’s UVO link services. With the standard Lite package, UVO link includes features like 911 Connect and Maintenance Reminders complimentary for up to five years.

In terms of passive safety features, the Prius comes standard with a Driver and Front Passenger Advanced Airbag System, driver and front passenger front seat-mounted side airbags, passenger seat cushion airbag, driver's knee airbag, and front and rear curtain shield airbags. The Niro has Dual Front Advanced Airbags, Dual Front Seat-Mounted Side Airbags, Full-Length Side Curtain Airbags, and a Driver's Side Knee Airbag.

The safety features in both of these hybrids have been put to the test by the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety. The Prius received a 2019 Top Safety Pick from the IIHS while the Kia Niro received the 2019 IIHS Top Safety Pick+ with optional front crash prevention and specific headlights.

Closeup of Toyota Prius license plate and bumper


  • The Prius and Niro have roadside assistance programs, but only the Prius also includes factory-scheduled maintenance.
  • Based on customer reviews, the Prius ranked more highly than the Niro in the category of reliability on
  • The Hybrid Battery Warranty for the Prius lasts longer than the limited powertrain warranty for the Niro.

Buy your next hybrid with confidence knowing that it is backed by warranties and maintenance programs to help ensure your vehicle will last. Toyota’s legendary reputation for Quality, Durability, and Reliability is one reason why the Prius beats the Niro.

Built-In Reliability

All new Toyota Prius’ come with the ToyotaCare plan. The ToyotaCare plan includes factory-scheduled maintenance and 24/7 roadside assistance. Toyota drivers receive factory-scheduled maintenance for two years or 25,000 miles, whichever comes first. Plus, the roadside assistance program for the Prius lasts for three years and unlimited miles. Kia offers a roadside assistance program for 5 years or 60,000 miles, but their maintenance program, Kia Care Choice, costs extra. The exact cost is dependent on the plan you buy.

Looking beyond the warranty, customers on gave the 2021 Prius a 4.8-Star Consumer Reliability rating. The 2021 Niro received 4.5 out of 5 stars in the same category.

Toyota has recently lengthened their Hybrid Battery Warranty to 10 years from date of first use, or 150,000 miles, whichever comes first. Kia has a limited powertrain warranty for 10 years, or 100,000 miles. The warranty page does not specifically mention a hybrid battery warranty.

View of Prius infotainment center


  • The Prius Limited has a larger touchscreen than the Niro Hybrid's EX Premium.
  • The Prius Limited also has more speakers than the Niro Hybrid EX Premium.

Vehicles are adding so much tech these days that it's worth considering what each competitor has. The Toyota has plenty.


The base trim Niro Hybrid LX has a 8-inch touchscreen while the base Prius L Eco has a 7-inch touchscreen. However, if you opt for the Prius Limited you'll get an 11.6-inch touchscreen. The Niro Hybrid's EX Premium trim only has a 10.25-inch touchscreen.

Prius also comes out ahead in the number of speakers too. The base model Niro Hybrid LX has six speakers, the same as the base model Prius L Eco. Again, if you choose the Prius Limited model you get ten JBL®️ speakers. The Niro Hybrid EX Premium has only eight Harman Kardon® speakers.

The Prius LE and higher models come with Intelligent Clearance Sonar (ICS) with Intelligent Parking Assist (IPA). This makes parking easier and less stressful by helping to avoid forward and rearward collisions at speeds of 9 miles per hour or less. The Niro Hybrid's Parking Distance Warning-Reverse is not available on the base model LX. To get it you'd have to opt for the EX Premium model-the highest price model available.

Conclusion: Prius vs. Niro

This comparison pits two great hybrids that get great gas mileage and come with industry-leading features. In addition to being one of the first readily available hybrids, the Prius stands out with its suite of standard safety features, fuel economy ratings, and its AWD-e trim option.

  • All Prius trim options offer better fuel economy ratings than you get with the Niro.
  • The 2021 Prius has an available AWD-e trim option.
  • The Prius comes standard with its suite of active safety features, while these features are only available at extra cost on the Niro.
  • The Prius comes standard with a 3-year trial subscription to Safety Connect®️.
  • While the Prius and Niro both come with roadside assistance programs, only the Prius includes factory-scheduled maintenance.
  • The Prius Hybrid Battery Warranty that comes with the Prius lasts longer than the Niro's limited powertrain warranty.