Kia Niro PHEV vs MINI Countryman PHEV: safety and reliability
As with running costs and warranty (previous page), we can use the 2020 Driver Power survey as a barometer of reliability. The Niro – bundled in along with its electric and hybrid versions – achieved an impressive fourth-place finish thanks to strong scores in the vast majority of categories, no least reliability and build quality. Just 11.9% of owners reported experiencing a fault, usually with electrical gremlins.
The Countryman didn't feature in the same survey, but MINI itself actually returned an even lower average share of owners reporting a fault with their cars – just 8%, a very strong result considering the double-digit scores of many other manufacturers.
Safety shouldn't be a concern with either car: both are five-star rated by Euro NCAP, with the Countryman scoring 90% for adult safety and 80% for child occupant protection. The Niro (with the Safety Pack added, as on all PHEV cars) gets a 91% score for adult protection and an identical 80% rating for children.
The Niro comes as standard with 'forward collision avoidance assist' (also known as automatic emergency braking, or AEB), lane-keeping assistance and hill-start control, while the Countryman gets AEB as standard but requires some box-ticking to secure some of the features the Kia gets as standard.