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Kia Soul

csandstecsandste Posts: 1,866
edited January 2014 in Kia
The Korean Diesel showroom car will soon be replaced by the real, for sale, goods.

Frankly, if my Malibu Maxx died, this would be on my short list. I like it a lot better than the xB. The dealer told me it got 31 mpg on the road (haven't checked on the web page), that's pretty good--- of course it's built on a modified Rio platform.


  • iluvmysephia1iluvmysephia1 KC MetroPosts: 6,744
    my friends Kia Motors just continue to improve and improve and improve. When I first started to like Kia, around late '99 or early 2000, they were still fighting an image problem. Now if someone has issues with Kia, one can show them the awards for quality they've won, or, many of the fine automobiles they've made, and ask them just what they don't like. Prices are rising, but, with Kia you get a good, solid vehicle with an unbeatable Long-Haul Warranty. Kia was smart to retain this Warranty.

    The Kia Soul is a rig that Kia Motors has designed that gives off a unique, funky vibe. It is preferable over the Scion xB, I agree. And 31 mpg for the Soul, too, yes, it has a light platform, like the Rio.

    2011 Kia Soul Sport 5-speed

  • iluvmysephia1iluvmysephia1 KC MetroPosts: 6,744
    to enjoy, csandste.


    I am partial to the Kia color Tomato Red for the new Soul. Those rims don't look bad, either. This car rides on a modified Kia Rio platform, remember, and can be had with pulsating red lights on the edges of it's speakers inside. I'd want that option for sure.

    2011 Kia Soul Sport 5-speed

  • csandstecsandste Posts: 1,866
    Iluv...My dealer had red and white Korean models... neat indeed. Unload that Mitsubishi, the Soul combines your current car and your old Sportage.
  • iluvmysephia1iluvmysephia1 KC MetroPosts: 6,744
    it looks to have a tad more clearance than my '08 Mitsubishi Lancer GTS, indeed. We took an unpaved road out west of us here in SE Arizona that went up and over the Dragoon Mountains. They're 5,000-7,000 feet up and the road got a little rough and rocky here and there. I was told that the road can be had with a regular passenger car, so we took the Lancer GTS.

    The '01 Sportage 4X4 would've fit out bill perfectly. This new Kia Soul is a great looking rig and I bet it's built well too. Priced very competitively, too, should do well for Kia Motors. :)

    2011 Kia Soul Sport 5-speed

  • csandstecsandste Posts: 1,866
    My dealer has about eight of 'em. Mostly boring colors. Didn't have time to take a closer look although I could see no physical differences (besides no Diesel) with the Korean car previously in stock.
  • This vehicle is very close to being a bullseye. This is one of three vehicles I narrowed by search down to this scion xb & honda fit. things I don't like about the honda fit is no standard ESC & it has drum brakes in the rear. Things I don't like about Scion xb is it has a 4 speed auto. & comes w/ hubcaps. Kia soul put a 4 speed auto also, geez. the way I figure it otd prices scion 18k, fit sport at 18k too much imo, Kia soul + should be cheaper thinking less than 17k due to image & reliability issues. Like this segment small utility vehicle/ good gas mileage grocery getter. I still have to test drive & kick the tires. I think the prices on these vehicles are bloated in anticipation of high gas prices this summer. which supposedly isn't suppose to happen. These vehicles get rave reviews but use cheap carpets, hubcaps, 4 speed transmissions etc. cut corners everywhere w/ prices that don't reflect it. then try a nickle & dime you on options, erggghhh!!! Just had a stress attack, ha ha. time to take some ridilin;)
  • so_caliso_cali Posts: 64
    Motor Trend rates the xB first between the Kia Soul, the Nissan Cube and the xB. After driving all but the Cube (I think Nissan is floating them here on row boats - how else can you explain why there are taking so l-o-n-g to get to market?), I'd have to agree. The xB drives much nicer.

    Back to the Cube. How can a car company be so cubeless, er clueless? These are 2009 models but coming to market when the year is nearly half over? You don't have to be a rocket scientist to know they should be 2010s. No sunroof either that I could find. (Shakes head from side to side and exits).
  • csandstecsandste Posts: 1,866
    I agree about the Cube being a year late and several dollars short. That's almost a typical Kia move-- remember the 06.5 Optima and the duplicate new and old Spectras. Like the Soul's look, and am looking forward to seeing the Cube but would never buy an 09 at this time of year.

    Drove around with a developer in an xB this week. Hate the look of the vehicle (liked the first generation) but would probably agree with Motor Trend that it's a very agreeable car at least in my short ride. Seems almost a class larger than the Soul, at least in the engine department.

    Will have to drive the Soul in the next month or two. Have great luck with our Optima. No troubles what so ever in 2+ years, although it's my wife's car and she doesn't drive that much. The Soul's front seats seem roomier than the Optima in the few seconds I sat in the Korean car.
  • csandstecsandste Posts: 1,866
    Saw the Cube on dealers lot, although I didn't get to sit in it. Seems smaller than Soul to me and both seem a class down from new (ugly) xB. Cube's optional shag carpet grill is a bit too cute for me. Probably like the Soul better than the Cube as an all around car, although it's hard to say without driving both.

    If my Maxx gave it up, both the Cube and Soul would be on my short list, although buying an 09 Cube at this time of year would strain my common sense unless they come out of the chutes with huge discounts.
  • iluvmysephia1iluvmysephia1 KC MetroPosts: 6,744
    with a 5-speed tranny, those glowing red lights around the stereo speakers, that would do me fine. The Cube is just too weird of a car, every time I look at it to give it some due, it disappoints me within a few moments. The Soul is a more funky, yet exciting car than the Cube, or the Scion xB, for that matter.

    Kia makes nice driving cars for people that love cars. Scion falls closer to that mark, though not on the same par as Kia. Nissan is way back there floundering around, wondering what's going on with the big boys.

    2011 Kia Soul Sport 5-speed

  • irritatrixirritatrix Posts: 40
    The Soul is a cutie. But I'm hear to warn you - quality awards? My brand new Sedona has been in the shop twice in the 30 days I've owned it; this time we're going on 7 consecutive days now with no end in sight...can't start it because the battery goes dead and they can't figure out what's draining it. Have had 4 jump starts and a new battery installed already. I love driving the thing, but 8 days in the shop in the first 30 days of ownership? It doesn't even have 400 miles on it yet. :sick: I'm not sure I could ever recommend a Kia to anyone. I'm half-seriously going to ask my mechanic to keep the thing another 3 weeks so I can qualify for a manufacturer's refund under the CA Lemon Law Act. Or hire Guido to "steal" it. ;) ">
  • csandstecsandste Posts: 1,866
    This seems like a dealer problem. Obviously you have something that is draining the battery, find it and it will probably be easy to fix. No excuse for keeping it for seven days and not knowing what's wrong with it.

    I can't judge our local dealer because we have had no problems with our Optima in 2.5 years-- it hasn't been back to the dealer. Wasn't that crazy about Hyundai dealer with my 01 Elantra, although I had no real problems-- just some money grubbing behavior in the service department and sleezy (increasingly) sales practices. I think Kia needs to spend some more time improving their dealer network. Any thoughts to taking the car to another dealer?

    I don't read the Sedona boards but are there electrical complaints that match yours? Love my Malibu Maxx but lots of people have had electrical steering component failures so that when mine failed I had no problems figuring out what it was.
  • irritatrixirritatrix Posts: 40
    Well, now we're on Day 13 and I still don't have my van. They cannot find out what's draining it. There are several electrical modules that control a number of electrical functions in the van and they've tested all of those, so now I think they're tracing each electrically-controlled device on the car back individually to the modules. There are no complaints on the Sedona boards of a similar problem and the dealer has had no other vehicles with this problem, and Kia is not much help, either, he said.

    I'd have to drive 25 miles to another dealer, so I'm not ready to do that. I own two cars, so I'm just driving my Rabbit while the Kia in is the shop.

    At this point, I'm halfway to meeting BOTH of either of the requirements of the California lemon law (4 attempts to repair same problem, 30 days in shop within 18 months) within 5 weeks of purchasing the car, and I have a friend who's an attorney who will handle it for free for me if it comes to that. So I'm actually not pushing them to finish the repair. As the clock ticks away, my chances of recovering very close to my full purchase price (because there are so few miles on the van) increase.
  • csandstecsandste Posts: 1,866
    I assume they're giving you a free rental car. I've always been given one for problems on a new purchase. If they're not you REALLY have a bad dealer. I'd be posting this on the Sedona boards.
  • irritatrixirritatrix Posts: 40
    They would have, but I have a second car which I'm using instead. I bought the van for camping so I'm a single person with 2 Rabbit will be going off to college with my son next fall. So for now I don't need the rental.

    The dealer has a great reputation. I live in a smallish town (50K) and many of my neighbors have purchased from them. I haven't heard any complaints about them at all. They've been most understanding. They just can't seem to fix it in a timely manner.

    I will post on the Sedona board.
  • jyymjyym Posts: 18
    Keep in mind that the 2 minivans from Kia and Hyundai don't have the greatest reliability records, unlike many of the other Hyundai/Kia models (just like how the BMW X6 and Mercedes E and M Classes were significantly lower than the rest of the models in the BMW's and Mercedes's lineup).
  • joe0302joe0302 Posts: 16
    Is it a new model and does the Soul have an I beam suspenion aka rough ride?

    Best regards, joey
  • iluvmysephia1iluvmysephia1 KC MetroPosts: 6,744

    Sort of the Kia Soul version of the Mini-Cooper. That white stripe looks great off center just a tad. This is the Kia Soul I would go after.

    Do ya like the white wheels offsetting off the grey and that white stripe?

    2011 Kia Soul Sport 5-speed

  • joe0302joe0302 Posts: 16
    I think if Kia keeps producing models like the Soul and Fote I'd be tempted.
    The only thing is resale value.
  • iluvmysephia1iluvmysephia1 KC MetroPosts: 6,744
    don't buy a Kia if you're worried about resale value. Because they will lose their value quicker than they really should. They don't deserve to lose value like they do, they're better cars than that.

    I can tell you after owning two Kia's bought new, one a 1999 Kia Sephia sedan and the other a 2001 Kia Sportage 4X4, they are well-built vehicles. Kia is improving on initial quality, too.

    The 10 year and 100,000 mile Long-Haul Warranty can't be beat for taking care of you in the long run, either.

    Only buy a Kia if you love the body style and love what they offer in the car and you'll be fine. Don't have the plan of trading in in a few years, though, because the depreciation will kill you. But if you see something you love in a Kia and really want that particular car, you will go right by buying a new Kia.

    I'm in a Mitsubishi right now because I fell in love with the 2008 Mitsubishi Lancer GTS. Otherwise I'd have bought a 2010 Kia Forte sedan. Problem is, the 2010 Kia Forte sedan came out 2 years after I was ready to buy.

    Having said that, I love my '08 Lancer GTS, and have no buyers' remorse whatsoever. I am sold on the Mitsubishi product and now will probably stay in the Mitsubishi family of automobiles from now on.

    But don't let what people have said about Kia turn you off to them. They make a fine car.

    2011 Kia Soul Sport 5-speed

  • stephen987stephen987 Posts: 1,994
    Hi, y'all. I finally got a chance to drive the Soul+ today. I came away mostly very impressed.

    First of all, though, I have to say that there is one negative--the car I drove had less than 30 miles on it, and some of the plastic surfaces were already showing marks from careless feet, hands, etc. So the quality of the interior bits does raise some concerns.

    In the cabin, the seats are easy enough to adjust. They're firm, more Honda than Toyota in feel. They seem well made, but I don't really know how they'd feel after three or four hours on the road. One minor weirdness--the salesman tells me the word "soul" on the seatbacks is made to glow in the dark. I don't know--maybe they're going after a younger buyer than me with that one. I was surprised, and a little disappointed, that the cargo area floor seems very high. The car seems a good bit taller than a Fit, but the cargo area doesn't reflect that. With the seats up, there's not much cargo space--with them down, I'd say subjectively it seems about as roomy as the Fit, maybe slightly wider, but I'm a little disappointed with the space utilization. I can't say the same for the front cabin area--it's very wide and spacious, much more so than the Fit, and there didn't seem to be a lot of wasted space.

    Now, on to the drive. The salesman was inexperienced, because the dealership has only had the Kia franchise for about three weeks (used to be a Saturn dealer, and they're still redecorating the building to suit). But I had very little difficulty figuring out the controls. Everything was right where it should be, and worked exactly as expected. Having made a few quick adjustments (seat, wheel, mirrors) without being told where to find the controls, I was on the road.

    First impression I noticed is the car's "handshake"--how the wheel, pedals, and shifter feel to the touch. In this case, I found the car very easy to get to know. Several published reports complain about the shift linkage being difficult to master. I think it's because the gate for first is so close to the gate for third. Fifth, on the other hand, is pretty much in the glovebox. So I guess it would be easy to miss first and grab third by mistake. I made that mistake once during the drive, but soon figured out that it's easy to compensate. The reverse lockout is pretty strong--there's no way you'd accidentally hit reverse instead of first. So just go hard left and you're in first, just like that. The shifter effort is very light. The throws don't seem unnaturally long, the way they did in early Accents, but it's definitely not as tight and sporty a gearbox as you find in a Fit. But it's better than either the Corolla or the Civic gearbox. The clutch takeup is light and smooth, and the throttle tip-in is very linear. I could teach my 73 year old mother to drive stick on this thing in about five minutes.

    On the road, the car is noticeably more powerful, quieter, and less manic than the Fit. It doesn't feel quite as sure-footed, but that might just be because I'm more accustomed to the feel of Honda steering, and because I'm used to sitting a lot closer to the ground in our '99 Civic. The Fit's a blast to drive, and it's brilliantly packaged and nicely made, but for the daily slog, or for any sort of longer trip, I'm pretty sure the Soul would be more pleasant, comfortable, livable, etc. But would I still be in love five years down the road?

    I'm still undecided as to which of the two I would buy. I am pretty sure, though, that I like both of them more than anything else I have looked at.
  • :) I have had my soul for one week and its fun to drive. I am getting 26mpg. The soul is tight and all I can say is WOW on all the extras you get over the Fit and the Cube.There was no BS from the dealer who did a great job in getting me on the road. The Soul had a great price point and is a lot of car for the money over the Cube and the Fit.
  • stephen987stephen987 Posts: 1,994
    I liked the Soul+ a lot, and probably would've bought one if my dealer had held out any hope of getting one. As it was, the one they had was sold before I was in a position to buy. I drove the Soul!, but my wife hated the ride on the 18" wheels--she became physically ill within sixty seconds. And the ! would've cost $2k more than the +, mostly for stuff I didn't need (stereo upgrade and sunroof) or stuff I actively disliked (18" wheels, weird houndstooth upholstery on only the upper part of the seatbacks).

    So we bought a Fit Sport instead. The Fit doesn't have quite as much hip and shoulder room, and lacks Bluetooth, but it compensates with somewhat sportier handling and feel, sitting a bit closer to earth, and it rides better than the Soul with 18" wheels--if not quite as smooth as the Soul+ with 16s. And the Fit Sport split the difference in price between the unavailable + and the unpleasantly harsh !.

    I would've been happy with either the + or the Fit Sport. They both have their pluses and minuses. I'm a four-time Honda buyer (the Fit makes five), so I was expecting there to be a noticeable difference in the build quality. But if there is an edge in fit and finish, it belongs to the Kia. It seems more "finished" inside and less likely to rattle.

    So congrats on your new Soul. Anyone who thinks it's not competitive with the best in its price range just hasn't looked closely.
  • I just bought a Sport model with the sun roof in black (shadow). I love the car, I love the red and black interior. What a deal with everything extra in the car, you got to love it. The ride is great with the sport tuned suppension and the 18 inch rims ride great.
  • jaxs1jaxs1 Posts: 2,697
    Is the A/C good enough for Las Vegas or Phoenix summers?
  • stephen987stephen987 Posts: 1,994
    The Soul's AC does a very good job in Georgia (95 degrees and high humidity).
  • jayriderjayrider Posts: 3,602
    Just drove one today. Roomy for a subcompact and fun to drive. Back seat is amazing with easy access. Only issue was jolting when crossing expansion joints on the highway but with the short wheelbase not surprising. Salesman said the optioanal bigger tires made ride a little rougher? Overall favorably impressed but msrp was about 20k so would have to consider what a few grand more would buy.
  • stephen987stephen987 Posts: 1,994
    Jayrider, I found that the cheaper Soul Plus with the 16" wheels rode a lot better than the Exclaim model with the 18" wheels. So maybe you ought to see what kind of ride $17k will buy.
  • jayriderjayrider Posts: 3,602
    Thanks for the heads up -- didn't research anything about them. Was killing time at the Kia dealer near where my murano was being serviced. Offered a test drive for kicks -- not one customer to be found - I was impressed. would be a great 2nd car for city/half day highway trips. Not sure about cross country [63 yrs old] but the seats were better than the jetta,golf and even the passat. I really liked the look -- seems more balanced than the cube. Not in the market now but at 17k may be a player in the future.
  • stephen987stephen987 Posts: 1,994
    I really liked the Soul--the interior quality was better than the Honda Fit, and the interior is roomier too. I wound up with a Fit instead, but I have a lot of respect for the Soul. It's not a bad choice at all.
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