29 January 2020 · Car Reviews

[Boston] The 2020 Kia Soul is the ultimate economy machine

The Soul has unique, but recognizable styling. –Kia
The Soul has unique, but recognizable styling. –Kia

The Kia Soul looks like nothing else on the road, and yet, in its third iteration and despite a drastic redesign, it is still instantly recognizable. While other box-like cars, such as the Scion xB and Nissan Cube have come and gone, the Soul has endured. This is because Kia knows where to push the envelope, but also where to keep things conventional.

The exterior styling of the Soul defies convention. The previous two generations of the Soul have had plucky styling, but this new third-generation model appears to play by its own rules. It is thoroughly futuristic and looks as much a moon rover as it does a commuter car.

The boxy shape that makes it so different from other cars also ensures it has more than 62 cubic feet of cargo space, which is nearly the cargo space of a Jeep Grand Cherokee. The Soul also has a seemingly impossible head and legroom for a subcompact car. It allows for an upright seating position that delivers a commanding view of the road – no staring at truck wheels in the Soul!

With its seating position and cargo space, the Soul actually bridges the gap between a small car and a small SUV. It may not offer all-wheel drive, but neither do the rivals Nissan Kicks and Toyota C-HR, and the Soul delivers much better value and build quality than both of those vehicles.

Thankfully, Kia has moved away from punctuation terms like “!” (exclaim) for its trim names. Now, buyers can choose from LX, S, X-Line, EX, and GT-Line trims. Even the base LX comes pretty well equipped, including a USB port, Bluetooth connectivity, and a 7-inch touchscreen that runs Kia’s UVO infotainment. UVO is very intuitive and provides support for Apple CarPlay and Android Auto. This is a heck of a lot of connectivity for an entry-level trim.

Kia Soul Internal Image
The Soul is available with a massive 10.25-inch UVO infotainment system. —Kia

The Soul S adds driver assistance tech, such as forward collision warning and lane departure warning, while the EX adds heated front seats, dual-zone climate control, wireless device charging, and upgrades the infotainment to the massive 10.25-inch screen. Read More