Kia has taken the covers off the second-generation Niro, a design-focused small SUV that offers the choice of three electrified powertrains.

Due in Australian showrooms in the second half of next year, the new stands out from the crowd with its distinctive exterior, which was previewed by the HabaNiro concept from April 2019’s New York motor show.

Of course, all the attention is stolen by two-tone paintwork, specifically that of the C-pillars, which incorporate the deeply set tail-lights that are shaped like boomerangs. There’s also low-set headlights and a new version of signature ‘tiger nose’ grille.

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Inside, the Niro follows the lead of the recently launched mid-size with a pair of side-by-side displays, with both the central touchscreen and digital instrument cluster on the larger side and powered by Kia’s latest .

Aside from the images you see here, Kia is yet to release any other key details regarding the Niro, although it is expected to carry over the platform of its predecessor, which only went on sale in Australia six months ago, despite being unveiled in February 2016.

‘Self-charging’ hybrid (HEV), plug-in hybrid (PHEV) and all-electric (EV) powertrains have been confirmed for the new Niro, all of which are expected to be similar to that of its forebear. They will rival the , and respectively.

As such, all signs point to the HEV and PHEV retaining their shared 1.6-litre petrol four-cylinder and six-speed with differing electric motor outputs and battery sizes.

Meanwhile, the EV is likely to retain its single front-mounted electric motor, but like the HEV and PHEV, its outputs could increase alongside its battery size for more driving range.

Stay tuned as Kia reveals more information about the Niro, including local pricing and full specification details. For reference, the current model is priced from $39,990 to $65,990 plus on-road costs.