Kia Soul Reviews

2014 Kia Soul EX GDI 2.0 from North America

Model year2014
Year of manufacture2014
First year of ownership2014
Most recent year of ownership2014
Engine and transmission 2.0 Automatic
Performance marks 7 / 10
Reliability marks 10 / 10
Comfort marks 10 / 10
Dealer Service marks 9 / 10
Running Costs (higher is cheaper) 10 / 10
Overall marks (average of all marks)
9.2 / 10
Distance when acquired9 kilometres
Most recent distance1500 kilometres
Previous carDodge SX 2.0


It seems to be a great car, but the interior fit, finish and quality is what really sold me on it


I haven't had it long enough for anything to go wrong with it.

General Comments:

At first I was looking at a 2010 Soul and was leaning towards buying it as the price was good, it had low miles on it, and other than the previous owner being a dog lover (claw scratches on the plastic door panels), I was OK with it. Then I decided before buying it that I should really try out a Sportage just to see if I'd like it better. The Sportage was definitely a step up and at brand new, would have had a much higher price. So after I parked the Sportage, my friend says, "Hey, what about that new Soul?" Why don't you try that one?"

So we did, and I drove it 3 km and there was no question that the 2014 Soul was for me. There were a few things that set it apart, but the one thing that stood out miles beyond anything else was the massive improvements to the interior over previous models. After my Dodge SX, I'd pretty much gotten used to plastic everywhere, and in the Soul, yes, there's still some plastic, but there's a lot less of it. It just feels comfort and quality from the moment I get in.

I give it a 7 on performance, because let's face it, there is no 300HP beast under the hood. The 165HP 2.0 isn't exactly a snail either; I think it balances performance and mileage into an acceptable mix.

It's brand new so I give it the full 10 for reliability, because with the 5 year warranty on everything from stem to stern, I have no worry about mechanical failures at this point.

I'd give the extra point for Dealer Service marks because when I was shopping for it, the dealer made all kinds of promises about free car washes and free oil changes for as long as I own it. I'm not due for the first service yet, but I did go in for a free car wash only to be told I'd have to make an appointment if I wanted that. Nobody said anything about appointments at sales time, so they lose a mark for that. There was no need to promise anything they weren't 100% committed to giving, so I felt they misrepresented that. Any time I find a business that misrepresents anything I always ask myself, "If they misrepresented that, what else weren't they exactly truthful with?"

Considering this engine is brand new, I was surprised to get 28 MPG out of it. I wasn't expecting that good. I'll check often to see where that's going to go.

Would you buy another car from this manufacturer? Yes

Review Date: 28th July, 2014

2013 Kia Soul Base Model 1.6 from North America

Model year2013
Year of manufacture2012
First year of ownership2012
Most recent year of ownership2013
Engine and transmission 1.6 Manual
Performance marks 8 / 10
Reliability marks 10 / 10
Comfort marks 7 / 10
Dealer Service marks 8 / 10
Running Costs (higher is cheaper) 9 / 10
Overall marks (average of all marks)
8.4 / 10
Distance when acquired1 miles
Most recent distance25000 miles
Previous carMazda B2200


Great, inexpensive, everyday vehicle



General Comments:

Good, inexpensive car. Totally reliable, and 33-35MPG on the highway, depending on how fast I drive. Reasonably roomy for a guy that's 230 lbs 5' 10". One thing I like is that I don't have to duck down to get into the vehicle.

The only real downside is the base engine doesn't have a lot of power. It's manageable enough for driving around in - I can do 80MPH+ without any problem - but it's not fast to get to that speed. So trying to pass another car on a 2 lane road is a little hairy.

Other than that, I'd have no problem recommending the car. In over a year and 25k miles it hasn't been back to the dealer for anything. And I've got 2 of these cars (the other is a 2012) and it hasn't had any problems either.

Would you buy another car from this manufacturer? Yes

Review Date: 31st October, 2013

2013 Kia Soul Exclaim 1.6 from North America

Year of manufacture2013
First year of ownership2013
Most recent year of ownership2013
Engine and transmission 1.6 Automatic
Performance marks 7 / 10
Reliability marks 7 / 10
Comfort marks 9 / 10
Dealer Service marks 9 / 10
Running Costs (higher is cheaper) 9 / 10
Overall marks (average of all marks)
8.2 / 10
Distance when acquired2 miles
Most recent distance1200 miles
Previous carFord Fusion


Worrisome on the highway


I apparently left one of the interior lights on and awoke to a dead battery the following morning. In my view, there should be an automatic timer on any lights once the key is removed from the ignition, as I am accustomed on all my cars. My fault though. Kia was great in responding and recharging the battery after a thorough check of the vehicle.

General Comments:

The Soul is a wonderful small SUV with great headroom. Unfortunately, its interior is designed for kid tastes, but that didn't prevent me, an old timer, from choosing the Soul. I thought that it was the best buy for the bucks. I test drove it around the neighborhood and found it to be good - not great.

It was not until I purchased the vehicle and had it on the road, that I realized there is maybe a major worrisome flaw. The vehicle does not hold the road well on turns at high speeds. I suspect that this is because the wheelbase is too short and the center of gravity too high. I am not an engineer, but I have driven many, many different cars over the years, and have never felt this uncomfortable about any vehicle on the highway. The car is otherwise a great buy, but the flaw makes it unacceptable, and I'm shopping around, even though my car is brand new.

Would you buy another car from this manufacturer? Don't Know

Review Date: 1st March, 2013

31st Mar 2013, 18:42

Best bang for the buck? Seriously, try the Suzuki Kizashi.

1st Apr 2013, 22:51

What do you expect, seriously? You bought a Kia!

31st Oct 2013, 21:23

I have two of these cars, and I think this review is wrong. I'm not sure what the reviewer means making turns at high speeds. The vehicle is more top heavy than, say, a Miata, but unsafe? Not in the least. I've put 25k miles on my 2013 and have never felt unsafe - except when trying to pass on a 2 lane highway, because it's not super fast!

Average review marks: 7.8 / 10, based on 11 reviews