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Unread 2012-09-04, 10:18 AM   #1
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Default 2014 KIA Soul











BASIC SPECS

Base From TBA
Unveiling Not Yet
Availability 2013
Status In Development
Engine 1.6L four-cylinder, 2.0L four-cylinder
Body Style Hatchback
Segment Entry level
Size Compact

Our spy photographers have snapped new, more revealing images of Kia’s next-generation 2014 Soul hatchback that show off a more chiseled front fascia but essentially the same proportions as the current car.

Kia is expected to unveil the latest version of its funky five-door sometime during 2014.

Likely to hit the North American market as a 2014 model, the next-generation Soul will have big shoes to fill. In the United States, the Soul has consistently been Kia’s second-best seller behind its Optima midsize sedan. In the first six months of 2012, Kia sold more than 63,000 units of the boxy five-door.

The next-generation Soul will likely ride on the same platform as Kia’s updated Rio subcompact. A pair of new 1.6 and 2.0-liter four-cylinder gasoline powertrains arrived in the Soul late last year for the 2012 model year, and they’re expected to carry over to the 2014 version. For global markets, an updated version of the automaker’s 1.6-liter diesel mill will likely be on offer.

Don’t look for the Soul’s basic design to change much, at least conceptually. Kia has found far more success with the boxy five-door bodystyle than rivals from Honda and Toyota, both of which have canned or are planning to discontinue their squared-off Element and Scion xB models.

The Soul’s interior, however, looks to be in line for a major design overhaul. Going with a more upscale theme, the 2014 Soul will arrive with a new steering wheel, updated center stack and upgraded leather seats with contrasting stitching, as seen in our earlier spy shots. Given that added refinement, the 2014 Soul’s interior should be quieter than the current car’s.

Look for the 2014 Kia Soul to debut in about a year, possibly as soon as the 2013 New York International Auto Show next April.
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Unread 2013-02-14, 06:28 PM   #2
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Kia To Launch 2014 Soul, Forte Koup And Optima Facelift In New York


Kia will debut no less than three vehicles at the 2013 New York Auto Show, including the redesigned 2014 Kia Soul.
The show, and the unveiling, will be held in the last week of March at New York’s Jacob Javits Convention Center.
Kia also plans to show off their newly redesigned 2014 Optima, as well as the all-new 2014 Forte Koup two-door coupe.

Kia Forte Koup

The Forte Koup is basically a derivative of then Forte sedan that first made an appearance at the 2012 Los Angeles Auto Show last November.
Kia also unveiled a 5-door hatchback version of the vehicle at the 2013 Chicago Auto Show. The sales of each model will begin later this year.
2014 Kia Soul

The Soul had proven to be very popular both at home and abroad. It was Kia’s third best-selling vehicle in the US last year, selling 115,778 units. The Optima and Sorento held top two spots with 152,399 and 119,597 units sold, respectively.
There has been little change to the styling of the Soul since it debuted in 2009.
The expectation among many US Kia insiders was that this would be the year that the Soul would receive some rather noticeable design changes, although the feeling was that the character of the car would remain.
It is also believed that people within Kia’s US operations were pushing for a second model to help lure in new buyers to the brand. Neither one of those options is likely to happen, according to a Kia source.
A Kia insider has stated that the styling changes on the 2014 Soul crossover vehicle are so slight that most US buyers will likely be unable to see any real difference, even with both models placed side by side.
It is believed that people at the Kia headquarters in Korea felt that any major changes to the design might results in sales being hurt outside of the US.
The American Kia team had really hoped that a second model would be coming so that they could build on already strong sales, whilst also creating some real brand buzz.
Kia has already mentioned more than once in the past few years that expansion of the Soul line is coming. As of now, though, there is only the 5-door hatchback on offer.
There have been a couple of Soul concept cars shown in recent years, including a 3-door Track’ster and an SUV style Soul’ster that was designed to carry surfboards. There has also been a lot of chatter about a convertible Soul, as well!
The Kia source said that any new model ideas have been put on hold for now, with no clear idea on when they will be approved.
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Unread 2013-02-18, 07:16 PM   #3
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2014 Kia Soul poses for the camera

2014 Kia Soul spy photo 18.02.2013 / Automedia


Could grow in size

The 2014 Kia Soul has been spied once again by our photographers.
The new generation of the Soul will adopt an evolutionary design with bigger headlights featuring LED headlights sitting at the top. It will also have a prominent front grille, restyled mirrors with built-in turn signals, vertical taillights and a sloping roofline.
Judging by these photos, the new Soul could grow in size a little bit which means more room inside the cabin should be available. Since it will be a new generation, better interior materials are also expected and possibly more high-tech equipment.
No word about engine lineup, but the 2014 Soul will probably be offered with a 4-cylinder, 1.6-liter producing 135 hp (101 kW) and a 2.0-liter with 164 hp (122 kW).
An official unveiling should occur later this year before the car will go on sale as a 2014MY.




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Unread 2013-02-23, 01:08 AM   #4
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Spied: 2014 Kia Soul reveals its interior


Gallery (19 images) Next

Our spies have just sent us a fresh batch of 2014 Kia Soul shots, revealing the hatch's production-spec interior for the first time.

Set to hit the North American market as a 2014 model, the next-generation Soul will have big shoes to fill. In the United States, the Soul has consistently been Kia's second-best seller behind its Optima midsize sedan.


The next-generation Soul will ride on the same platform as Kia's updated Rio subcompact. Despite that platform switchover, the Soul will carry on with its current 1.6 and 2.0-liter four-cylinder gasoline engines. For global markets, an updated version of the automaker's 1.6-liter diesel mill will likely be on offer.

Don't look for the Soul's basic design to change much, at least conceptually. Kia has found far more success with the boxy five-door bodystyle than rivals from Honda and Toyota, both of which have canned or are planning to discontinue their squared-off Element and Scion xB models.

The Soul's interior, however, looks to be in line for a major design overhaul. Going with a more upscale theme, the 2014 Soul will arrive with a new steering wheel, updated center stack and upgraded leather seats with contrasting stitching. Our spies managed to catch two different Souls -- one with navigation and one without.

Given that added refinement, the 2014 Soul's interior should be quieter than the current car's.

The 2014 Kia Soul will debut at the upcoming New York auto show before hitting dealer showrooms later this year.
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Unread 2013-03-27, 10:42 AM   #5
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2014 Kia Soul totally redesigned, now bigger and more refined
Related Gallery2014 Kia Soul










The 2014 Kia Soul has been unveiled at the 2013 New York Auto Show, and the all-new five-door box-on-wheels offers up nearly an extra inch of wheelbase and a track that's wider by .6 inches. The changes offer up a bit more space indoors, and since overall height has remained the same, the Soul now looks a bit less top heavy than before. A wider rear hatch opening also makes loading and unloading cargo easier. Indoors, the 2014 Soul offers a substantially revised cabin with more soft-touch materials, and leather seats are now on the option sheet. Designers borrowed inspiration from the Kia Track'ster Concept indoors, using organic lines throughout.

An available eight-inch touch screen takes care of infotainment duties on the center stack, and now features the ability to scroll through content by flicking a finger, just like a smartphone, instead of paging through multiple screens. Buyers can also fit their 2014 Soul with a larger TFT LCD color screen in the instrument cluster, which now displays turn-by-turn directions on vehicles equipped with navigation.

Engineers managed to create a chassis that's also 29-percent stiffer, with 66 percent of the shell using ultra-high-strength steel for safety and rigidity. Under the hood, base models bow with a 1.6-liter direct-injection four-cylinder engine with 130 horsepower and 118 pound-feet of torque, while Plus and Exclaim trims get a more potent direct-injection 2.0-liter four-cylinder. That engine develops 164 hp and 151 lb-ft of torque, and both mills can be bolted to either a six-speed manual or automatic depending on trim. Check out the full press release below for more information.
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Unread 2013-05-17, 10:04 AM   #6
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Kia Soul Electric Car To Be Released In 2014


Kia Motors Corp. And Hyundai Motor Company have already shown they are among the worlds most advanced automakers.
They are looking to prove that with the release of their second generation electric vehicles with improved functions and competitive pricing.




The industry buzz is that Kia may be very close to unveiling the follow-ups to their exisiting electric models, with the focus being on delivering an improved car at a more affordable price for the consumer.

We can expect to see Kia release the Soul EV as a follow-up to the Ray EV, with the expected release date to be in the first half of 2014.
The Kia Soul EV has received a great deal of attention, especially since it will be the first electric vehicle to be mass produced by Hyundai and Kia.
It will also be the very-first electic vehicle to be sold in the global market, including the US, Europe and China.
The model that the Soul EV is replacing, the Kia Ray EV, was only ever made available in its native South Korea.
Rumored Soul EV Specs
The 2014 Kia Soul EV is expected to deliver better performance and an increased mileage per charge.
It is believed the Soul EV will be capable of running about 200 km on a single charge, with a top speed of 140 km/h.
The powertrain will be full-electric and will take the Soul EV from 0-100 km/h in under 12 seconds, shaving 4 seconds off the best time by the Ray EV.
It’s also eexpected that the Soul EV will be more competitively priced than the smaller Ray, with sources saying that it could sell for around KRW 40 million ($35,000)
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Unread 2013-05-17, 02:19 PM   #7
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the souls weve got here in the past ride so stiff
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Unread 2013-05-17, 02:21 PM   #8
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I really wish they would put a bigger engine in them. The ones I rode in had no power going up a hill. I guess for what the price is though you cannot expect much.
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Unread 2013-05-18, 10:44 AM   #9
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Originally Posted by Prime816 View Post
I really wish they would put a bigger engine in them. The ones I rode in had no power going up a hill. I guess for what the price is though you cannot expect much.
Lol the price compared to what? Have you driven an XB/Cube/etc?

You probably drove a base, which has a 1.6, if you were in the + or ! they have a 2.0 which doesn't have that problem, imo.
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Unread 2013-05-19, 06:04 PM   #10
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Originally Posted by Albatross View Post
Lol the price compared to what? Have you driven an XB/Cube/etc?

You probably drove a base, which has a 1.6, if you were in the + or ! they have a 2.0 which doesn't have that problem, imo.
Compared to the obvious point that when you can shove that many people into a car it needs more power. It is probably 3000+ pound vehicle with like 120tq. Going up a on ramp with a full car is worthless. Might as well just get out and push it.
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Unread 2013-05-19, 08:16 PM   #11
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Originally Posted by Prime816 View Post
Compared to the obvious point that when you can shove that many people into a car it needs more power. It is probably 3000+ pound vehicle with like 120tq. Going up a on ramp with a full car is worthless. Might as well just get out and push it.
Sounds like you should of evaluated the weight/capacity of the passengers you were carrying and got a more accommodating vehicle. You're making a comparison with varying factors, that would affect all the vehicles in the same class.
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Unread 2013-05-19, 08:22 PM   #12
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Prime816 View Post
Compared to the obvious point that when you can shove that many people into a car it needs more power. It is probably 3000+ pound vehicle with like 120tq. Going up a on ramp with a full car is worthless. Might as well just get out and push it.
seems like you need to do a little bit more research

Quote:
Weights: published curb weight (lbs): 2,615
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Unread 2013-05-19, 09:11 PM   #13
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seems like you need to do a little bit more research
Seems like you forget a car requires people to be driven. Throw two people in there and you hit 3000+
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Unread 2013-05-19, 11:40 PM   #14
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Awesome.

So, another Econobox... being made into a not-econobox... AGAIN.

WTF.


And it's just as ugly and boring as the last one.
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Unread 2013-07-08, 05:29 PM   #15
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Rumored Kia Soul EV spied for the first time








Up until now, we've only heard rumors about an all-electric version of the second-generation Kia Soul, but these spy shots seem to confirm that the Korean automaker is developing a zero-emission version of its quirky little box-back. Our most recent report has the Kia EV showing up in the first half of next year (likely for MY 2015) with a starting price of around $35,000 (presumably before tax credits) and a range of about 120 miles.

While the front and rear of this prototype remains heavily camouflaged, we can see some differences between this car and the 2014 Soul we saw earlier in the year at the New York Auto Show. For starters, the entire front end seems to be changed, including the hood, headlights and fascia, and we would expect Kia's so-called Tiger Nose grille to be blocked off for improved aerodynamics. Further supporting our shooter's claims that this is an electric vehicle is the fact that the Soul's exhaust pipe is missing from beneath the rear fascia.

Previous reports have indicated that the Soul EV will become "the very-first electic vehicle to be sold in the global market, including the US, Europe and China." It would appear that claim may be validated by technicality only – Nissan sells its Leaf in the US and Europe, and it will reportedly be sold as the Dongfeng Fengshen E30 in China.
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Unread 2013-07-08, 11:32 PM   #16
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I have been seeing Souls everywhere as of lately!
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Unread 2013-08-28, 09:17 PM   #17
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2014 Kia Soul priced from $14,700*








Kia has announced pricing on the refreshed 2014 Soul. At $14,700 (*plus a destination charge of $795), the new funky crossover undercuts its two primary competitors, the Scion xB and Nissan Cube, by $2,850 and $2,060, respectively. That base model includes 16-inch alloys, cruise control, wheel-mounted audio controls and a 1.6-liter, four-cylinder engine with 130 horsepower and 118 pound-feet of torque.

The mid-range model, the Soul Plus, demands $18,200 and adds a spate of exterior items, like 17-inch wheels and chrome trim, to class up the Soul's look, not to mention a 164-horsepower, 2.0-liter, four-cylinder engine. Plus customers also have access to a number of option packages, including a $400 pack that adds Kia's UVO infotainment system and a backup camera. A $1,400 Audio Package adds navigation, an eight-inch display, an Infinity stereo and automatic temperature controls. A $3,000 Primo Package adds a few notable luxury items, like a panoramic sunroof, heated leather seats, and push-button start. Finally, a $400 Eco Package adds stop-start technology and replaces the 17-inch wheels with 16s shod in low-rolling-resistance tires.

The top-of-the-line Soul Exclaim starts at $20,300 and comes with LED running lights, LED taillights, 18-inch wheels and the Plus's UVO Package as standard. Buyers can opt for The Whole Shebang, a $2,500 option pack that apes the Primo Package from the Plus. Weirdly, the Audio Package from the Soul Plus is an extra $1,200 on the Exclaim, and has been rebranded the Sun and Sand Package. Feel free to peruse the press release below for more.
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Unread 2013-09-03, 12:03 PM   #18
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2014 Kia Soul

Rounding Out The Market's Best Box

Quote:
Vital Stats

Engine:2.0L I4Power:164 HP / 151 LB-FTTransmission:6-Speed Automatic0-60 Time:10.2 (est)Drivetrain:Front-Wheel DriveCurb Weight:2,879 LBSSeating:2+3Cargo:24.2 / 61.3 CU-FTMPG:24 City / 29 HWY (est)Base Price:$14,700As-Tested Price:$26,795 (est)

As a car critic, you can tell a lot about a new car just by looking at a map. That's because more often than not, the geography of where a vehicle is initially launched will tell you a surprising amount about how the automaker feels about its new baby. Manufacturers want their models to be shown in the best light – dynamically and socially – so they put a lot of thought into where they first let members of the media slip behind the wheel. Luxury cars nestle up closely to swank hotels in the globe's trendiest locales, high-performance cars are let loose on breathtaking mountain roads with adjacent racetracks, and so on. It all makes for a tough life, as you can imagine.

So consider it telling that when Kia first launched the Soul way back in 2009, it did so in Miami. Trendy? Check. Billiard-table level, arrow-straight smooth roads? Frequently snarled with traffic? Check and check. You see, good as it was, the original Soul wasn't a particularly thrilling driver. Competent, sure, but its simplistic suspension, modest power and upright dimensions didn't exactly afford it entertaining driving dynamics. Which is exactly why Kia launched it in an environment utterly devoid of potholes and curves (save those conjured by the area's robust plastic surgery community), instead choosing a city loaded down with pedestrians and slow-moving motorists.

So where did Kia choose to launch this new 2014 Soul? San Diego, a city built in and around a network of hundreds of canyons and mesas. Hmmm...

You're not looking at a Nissan Juke R in hamster's clothing.
Now listen – don't get ahead of yourself. You're not looking at a Nissan Juke R in hamster's clothing – that's not this car's mission. However, Kia is claiming sizable improvements in ride, handling and overall refinement. It may not seem like it at first glance, but this isn't another mid-cycle refresh – after five years on the market, the Soul has very much earned a new platform, and for 2014, it gets one. Based on Kia's so-called K architecture (apparently nobody told the company about Chrysler's long-maligned Plymouth Reliant and Dodge Aries), the Soul doesn't share an architecture with its Forte and Rio siblings so much as it does a toolbox and learnings. In other words, parts are not common, but the method in which they go together are. The Soul's new body-in-white is now 28.7-percent stiffer thanks in part to increased use of high-strength steels.

Size is up slightly, with a wheelbase that's increased by 0.8 inches giving a bit more room in the cabin. Overall dimensions are similar, with length up by 0.8 inches and width up by 0.6 inches. Conversely, overall height is down 0.4 inches, largely because ground clearance has been cut from 6.5 inches to 5.9, giving the Soul a more planted look at the expense of some faux crossover cred. Unfortunately, weight has increased, too, but not by much given the car's increased levels of content and more substantial construction. Officials tell us the 2014 model weighs 93 pounds more in base 1.6-liter spec and just 59 pounds more in the 2.0-liter volume trim. Figure on between 2,700- and 2,900 pounds, depending on specification.


The Soul has owned this segment thanks to its styling, low cost and those irrepressible whirling rodents.
Visually, the new Soul is a carefully considered evolution of its predecessor, but if you place the two generations side-by-side, the differences become readily apparent, including a gaping new trapezoidal lower fascia with fog lamps punctuating the lower corners (a theme repeated with the reflectors on the rear bumper). It's one of a number of design decisions influenced by Kia's Track'ster concept of 2012. Lighting is also influenced by the three-door show car, with the range-topping Exclaim(!) model receiving LED corner units and halo-effect taillamps, along with available high-intensity discharge headlamps. While the new units doubtlessly provide better illumination, we prefer the look of the older pieces, with their unique recessed turn signals and a wraparound quality that the new fixtures lack. In fact, we'll go ahead and say that the old nose looked more youthful and distinctive, while the new face looks bluffer and more pugnacious. We do like the reworked rear end, particularly its larger rear hatch and the floating body-colored panel it wears like a backpack.

It's hard to blame Kia designers for not breaking out a clean sheet. The Soul has been a massive sales hit, selling some 112,000 units here last year – its best year ever – and Kia's dealers could have sold more units if only the company's Gwangju, Korea plant wasn't running at redline. Besides, it isn't as if rivals in this class have done themselves any favors by undergoing radical transitions from generation to generation. The Scion xB went from cult hero to the dog's breakfast in one fell swoop, and Nissan pulled something similar with its Cube between that model's second and third generations (North America only received the latter). Honda didn't even bother with an encore for its happy little toaster, the Element. Since going on sale in 2009, the Soul has pretty much owned this segment thanks to its distinctive styling, low cost of entry and those irrepressible whirling rodents from the marketing department.


The interior... is nothing short of a colossal improvement.
If the new Soul's exterior doesn't strike you as a major departure, the interior should – it's nothing short of a colossal improvement. Materials look and feel better, the recontoured dual-density seat foams are now kinder to your backside, and the cabin now has a much more mature feel. That's particularly true of heavily optioned models like our tester, which featured a number of new creature comforts including a panoramic moonroof, heated and cooled leather seats (the driver's is powered), heated steering wheel and an eight-inch touchscreen that marks the first appearance of the company's new Android-based navigation system.

The latter is a nice system with quick reactions and crisp graphics, but annoyingly, it alerts the driver of oncoming bends in the road without seeming rhyme or reason. (The severity of the corner and one's rate of speed doesn't seem to matter, and on winding roads, it seems to pick corners at random, announcing some but ignoring others.) The navigation system doesn't even need to have a route programmed to do this, it just announces an impending apex, generally too late for the driver to do anything about it anyway. Officials assure us this unexpected "feature" will be turned off by the time cars start rolling into showrooms in October.


Both powerplants have been reworked for more low-end torque.
That snafu aside, the Soul's cabin is more fun and functional than ever before, and it isn't just a raft of new gewgaws that make it a better place to be – it's better to look at, as well. We particularly like the redesigned door panels, along with the combined air vents and speaker grilles that bookend the dashboard like turrets, and the new steering wheel feels better in the hand while offering well-sorted switchgear for cruise control and audio. The new instrument panel is well-grained and soft to the touch, and it's thicker to let in less noise from beyond the firewall – even the carpets are more sound absorbent than before. Nobody's going to confuse the refinement levels with that of a Cadenza, but the interior no longer falls into the "cheap but cheerful" category. And you can stop biting your fingernails – those gloriously ridiculous pulsating speaker light rings have survived intact.

With all the changes that have been exacted on the Soul's platform and interior, it's perhaps a bit surprising that more hasn't been done with the car's moving parts, which are largely carryover. That means the buyer's choice of 1.6-liter and 2.0-liter four-cylinder engines – units introduced during the Soul's 2012 mid-cycle update. In all fairness, these engines are still quite new, and the larger one receives direct-injection for the first time (necessitating a whole new upper, including new heads and a roller-type timing chain), and both powerplants have been reworked for more low-end torque – Kia says it's up by 9 percent on the 1.6 liter and 5 percent on the 2.0 liter. Tuning for torque has altered the output figures a bit, and not all for the better. The smaller engine sees its horsepower drop from 138 to 130, with peak torque slipping from 123 pound-feet to 118. The larger 2.0 liter seen here fares better, generating the same 164 horsepower as last year's model a bit earlier on the tachometer (6,200 rpm instead of 6,500), and torque actually improves from 148 lb-ft at 4,800 rpm to 151 lb-ft at 4,000 rpm.



A six-speed manual and a conventional automatic with as many speeds carry over, though their gearing has been reevaluated to take advantage of the engines' remapped torque curves. Important note: The larger engine can no longer be ordered with three pedals – just one percent of new models sold last year were 2.0-liter manual transmission models, and Kia couldn't continue to justify the additional cost and build complexity. Despite the ever-present rumors, all-wheel drive remains highly unlikely, as floorpan-level alterations would need to be made (and as we pointed out in a recent news story, there's little incentive for Kia to develop new variants since it can't build enough of the standard car as it is).
A lot of time and money has been expended on the Soul's suspension.
Our advice? Unless you really want a manual, roll with the 2.0. Both powerplants are fine for around-town use (we only had the chance to drive the big'un), but the larger engine isn't much more than adequate on the mountain roads surrounding San Diego or even on meager steady inclines at freeway speeds, which coerces the automatic into hunting occasionally in an effort to extract a bit more motivation. If your drive plans include elevation changes or a heavy right foot, the smaller engine might not be up to the job. Fuel economy estimates are not yet available, but they shouldn't stray much from the 2013's figures, which means they figure to be about 24 miles per gallon in the city and 29 on the highway regardless of displacement, rather unremarkable figures in this day and age.

A lot of time and money has been expended on the Soul's suspension, even though its basic design remains the same – Macpherson struts up front, torsion beam out back, a commonly preferred setup for cost and space efficiency, but less so for outright performance. Jazzing up the compliant bits are costly twin-tube shocks (the rear dampers are now longer and completely vertical), more and larger bushings – including on the front subframe, which went without before – and a relocated front stabilizer bar and steering box to improve braking stability and directional fidelity. Coupled with the stiffer platform, all of these little alterations dial up a major improvement in ride and at least a click or two in handling, as well.


The new chassis feels like it can happily handle another 50 to 100 HP, and we'd love to see it get it.
Kia officials noted that they intentionally chose a drive route that included portions with road surfaces of dubious quality just to show off the new generation's improvements, and we have to admit, the difference between this car and the old Soul (outgoing models were also on-hand for short loops) is really quite dramatic. The new car feels significantly more planted, and even a bit more eager to turn-in thanks to the architectural changes and a new one-piece steering gear housing. Our loaded tester included Kia's optional adjustable electric power steering system, Flex Steer, which includes Comfort, Normal and Sport modes. We preferred the latter, but in truth the differences could be more sharply defined, with a bit more weight at one end of the spectrum and a bit less on the other. As it is, the system is fine, but it's still light on feel overall, even if it has better on-center manners than it did before. However, regardless of our test car's 18-inch treads, tire roar proved much less intrusive than we've experienced in Souls past, and wind and engine noise are much better managed than before, as well. Overall, the new chassis feels like it can happily handle another 50 to 100 horsepower, and we'd love to see it get it.

Given the departure of the Element as well as the soon-to-be abandoned xB and the no-replacement-in-sight Cube, it would be easy to think that the new Soul is merging onto Easy Street. But the competitive topography is actually as foreboding as it's ever been. There's direct new competition in the form of the 2014 Fiat 500L and the Mini Countryman isn't exactly an elder statesman (even if it is costly). There's also a raft of new space-efficient small car cross-shops on the map, including subcompacts like the next-generation Honda Fit and larger models like the Mazda3. Yet even in the face of this competitive landscape, with its much richer interior and major improvements in ride and handling, we expect this new model to continue to pay big dividends for its parent. Like its predecessor, the 2014 Soul figures to offer a happily familiar shape to Kia's beancounters – that of a cash box.
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Unread 2013-09-03, 04:21 PM   #19
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At least it looks better than the Cube. Not that thats saying much.
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Unread 2013-11-11, 10:51 PM   #20
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Kia details U.S.-bound Soul EV


Gallery (12 images)

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By Ronan Glon

Monday, Nov 11th, 2013 @ 12:20 pm

Kia is putting the final touches on its all-electric Soul EV before it goes on sale next year.

The car -- which Kia confirmed recently will be sold in the United States, Europe and in several countries throughout Asia, making it Kia's first global electric vehicle -- was spotted in July undergoing shakedown testing in Death Valley.


Today, Kia released a handful of details about its first EV for the American market.

The upcoming EV will share most of its sheetmetal with the second-gen Soul that was introduced at the New York Motor Show. The two models will be distinguishable thanks to small differences such as EV-specific paint colors, emblems and 16-inch wheels plus LED accent and tail lamps. Minor changes will also be made to the car's interior.

By the numbers
The Soul EV's drivetrain will be derived from the unit that is found in the Ray EV, a small minivan that is currently being tested in South Korea as part of a pilot program. The hatchback will be equipped with a roughly 50-kilowatt electric motor that will be linked to a lithium-ion battery mounted under the car's floor.

Power will come from a 109 horsepower electric motor perhaps more notable for its 210 lb-ft. of torque. A single-speed constant ratio gear reduction unit will serve in place of a traditional transmission.

Kia says that the car will boast a 120 mile range and an 85 mph top speed. Moreover, the Soul EV won't be especially poky by EV standards; Kia is quoting a sub 12-second 0-60 mph sprint.

On the charging front, Kia claims a five hour full charge on a 240v outlet and just 25 minutes on a so-called "fast" charger 100 kW outlet.

In preparation for upcoming federal guideliness, Kia says that the Soul EV will use a Virtual Engine Sound System - or VESS - that emits an audible noise below 12 mph to alert pedestrians of the approaching vehicle.

Kia is clearly targeting vehicles like the Nissan Leaf and Toyota RAV4 EV with its electric Soul, as evidenced by the test fleet in our spy shots.

Not only will the Soul EV skip gasoline, Kia says that the car will be composed of 85 percent recyclable materials.

Kia has not commented on the matter, but unnamed sources told website Kia-World that the electric Soul will retail for about $35,000 in its home country of South Korea.. The car could sticker for less than $30,000 in the United States once government incentives are factored in.

More information about the electric Soul will be available over the coming months.
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Unread 2013-11-13, 03:13 PM   #21
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2015 Kia Soul EV Prototype



Quote:
Vital Stats

Engine:81.4 kW electric motorPower:109 HP / 210 LB-FTTransmission:Single-speed0-60 Time:11.5 Seconds (est.)Top Speed:90 MPH (est.)Drivetrain:Front-Wheel DriveCurb Weight:3,150 LBS (est.)Seating:2+3Cargo:24.2 / 61.3 CU-FTMPG:120-Mile Range (est.)

Spend a few days chatting with the good people of Seoul about their neighbors to the north, and you'll find a pattern emerges. When they first start talking, South Korea's citizenry speaks openly and ardently about seeking reunification with their North Korean brothers and sisters. Yet once you get beyond casual conversation, you'll find that those hopes and wishes aren't all that they first appear to be. Quite reasonably – and despite everyone's best intentions – there's genuine fear that opening the border with communist North Korea would severely tax South Korea's finances, infrastructure and daily lives. It's almost as if reunification feels like something the general public has to say they want, even if they're really not buying into the reality.

It's kind of like the way American consumers and the media have been crying out for electric and hybrid automobiles, yet when it comes time to vote with their pocketbooks, their hearts just aren't in it. There are potential financial and infrastructure concerns, along with lingering worries about how well EVs will integrate into their daily lives. Today, hybrids and plug-ins make up about three percent of new vehicle sales, and the vast majority of those models are gas-electric models – one in particular. Pure electrics aren't yet even a drop in a very large bucket. It's exactly this uncomfortable dichotomy that rings in our heads as we drive through the traffic in Namyang at the wheel of a 2015 Kia Soul EV prototype.

Of course, one can't blame Kia for developing an electric car – it has California's zero-emissions mandates to meet, regardless of whether the segment's sales suggest there's a sound financial strategy attached. Kia officials we spoke with at this early drive of the company's electrified 'box' car seemed to tacitly acknowledge the Soul EV's difficult business case, but pointed to the company's effort to reduce its CO2 output as part of its reason for being. And besides, their beancounters' industry-wide projection for global EV sales in 2018 is 600,000 units, so there's got to be room to grow, right?

The company is also claiming better range with a target of 124 miles.
At the very least, Kia's got a great platform to electrify – the gas-powered Soul is all-new for 2014 and it rectifies just about every lingering concern we've had with the popular model – mostly criticisms that centered on noise, vibration and harshness, interior refinement and ride quality. And critically, the engineers have managed to substitute in all the E-bits without compromising the Soul's interior packaging one iota. That's right – there's no higher load floor in the cargo bay, no awkward carpet humps in the footwells, just the same spacious and well-designed accommodations found in the regular Soul. Better yet, the engineers on hand promise that not only have they preserved interior room, they've also managed to improve ride, handling and crash performance; a remarkable assertion.

For starters, instead of finding a 1.6-liter or 2.0-liter four-cylinder engine up front, Kia has substituted an 81.4-kW electric motor with 109 horsepower and 210 pound-feet of torque fueled by a 27-kilowatt-hour lithium-ion battery pack. The latter is outwardly similar to what is used in Kia's Optima Hybrid, but its chemical makeup has been altered for improved power density and charging characteristics. Of course, it's also much larger. In fact, Kia maintains that the Soul EV's battery has 46-percent better energy density than its chief rival, the Nissan Leaf. The company is also claiming better range with a target of 124 miles, although real-world figures are likely to be only somewhat better than the Leaf's 75-mile envelope (90 miles or so would be a reasonable expectation in EPA testing). Thanks to the additional heft of the sub-floor battery pack, the Soul EV is tipped to be about 440 pounds heavier than the regular Soul, so figure on a curb weight of around 3,150 lbs, some 140 less than the Nissan.


Kia is targeting a sub-12-second 0-60 mph time.
Despite its substantial torque bump (the larger gas engine only has 151 lb-ft), all that extra weight takes its toll on acceleration, so Kia is targeting a sub-12-second 0-60 mph time. After our day driving a prototype on Kia's Namyang proving grounds in the exurbs of Seoul and out on neighboring city roads, we think 11.5 seconds is achievable. And that's with a particularly robust-feeling 0-30 mph thanks to the motor's instant-on torque, an ideal characteristic for the stoplight-to-stoplight urban grind. Top speed is pegged at 90 mph.

Throughout our drive, the Soul EV's ride felt particularly buttoned down, delivering almost fullsize sedan levels of comportment. With limited drive circumstances, we didn't have the chance to seek out a properly challenging road to assess its handling chops, but we suspect prospective owners will seldom attempt any canyon carving or apex clipping, especially on such modest 16-inch Kumho Solus low-rolling-resistance rubboer. We're still not crazy about the lack of weight and feel from the electric power steering, but engineers assure us that calibrations are an ongoing discussion.


We did notice the car's extra weight during a moment of full-on panic braking.
At least the Soul benefits from a next-generation regenerative braking system (the previous iteration was deployed on Kia's only other production electric, the Korea-exclusive Ray), and it's quite natural in its engagement, with only a little of the low-speed snatchiness we've experienced in other electrics and hybrid vehicles. Let off the gas, and there's quite a bit of inherent regen slowing the car down. Once you get used to the sensation, it actually makes for an entertaining way to drive, but there won't be much coasting. We did notice the car's extra weight during a moment of full-on panic braking (from what we've observed, Korean drivers have an occasionally cavalier relationship with certain stoplights), but the specially tuned ABS and stability control inspired confidence, as does use of even more high-strength steel than in internal-combustion Souls.

Predictably, an absence of engine and exhaust din combined with the new Soul's stiffer and better-sealed structure means that this is one quiet EV, despite its upright proportions. Even at elevated speeds, we didn't find the road or wind noise to be off-putting. That quiet extends to the outside of the vehicle, as well, so Kia has fitted a pedestrian alert system that emits a tone when backing up and at speeds up to 12 mph.


We've seen a prototype sans camouflage and can tell you that there's a fair bit of exterior differentiation, particularly up front.
How will you know a Soul EV on the street? Well, you certainly can't tell from our prototype's disguise, but we've seen a prototype sans camouflage and can tell you that there's a fair bit of exterior differentiation, particularly up front. A taller and larger "Tiger Nose" that accommodates dual charging ports is the primary styling change, but you'll also note a redesigned lower fascia, aero-pattern alloy wheels and contrasting trim color on the grill surround, mirrors and roof. The car may also receive a unique set of taillamps, but that decision remains up in the air, as do paint colors (Kia is planning on marketing the Soul EV in a pair of novel two-tone color schemes, but it may add more).

Our prototypes sported disguised interiors, but production EV cabins will include a greater complement of environmentally sensitive materials, including plastics, foams and fabrics derived from bio-friendly materials like cane extract. Everything from seat covers to the carpeting and headliner will be rendered in the stuff, and there will be special trim differences, too. Functionally speaking, the most noticeable changes will come from a unique gauge cluster and through different menus on the infotainment screen (charging supervision, range reports, etc.). One novel feature: the driver has the ability to shut off climate control to unoccupied seats, in order to save energy.


Kia is still determining things like where it will be offered and whether sales will include purchasing, leasing or both.
That's just one of dozens of special measures designed to optimize battery life, including things like a heat pump to reduce load on the climate control system and a battery heater that speeds charge times in cold conditions (it's said to save 50 minutes at -4º Fahrenheit). Of course, there's also the expected smartphone-based HVAC precooling and preheating features, along with charging functions.

With the Soul EV over a year away, there's still some finessing of ones and zeros to be done, but what we experienced on our first drive was very encouraging. There is perhaps more work to be done on the marketing and dealer side. Kia is still determining things like where it will be offered and whether sales will include purchasing, leasing or both. Officials we spoke with admitted that there's a unique challenge in getting dealers excited about selling EVs, as these models (and customers) tend to have very different sales and service expectations, not to mention limited after-sales $ervice potential.

Like the Korean citizens we spoke with about reunification and like the average American car shopper, Kia's dealers have real financial and infrastructure concerns, along with lingering worries about how EVs will integrate into their daily lives. That's going to be an inte
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Unread 2014-01-20, 10:10 AM   #22
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ia Soul EV spied winter testing, will cost around 22,000 EUR

2014 Kia Soul EV spy photo / Automedia

Arriving later this year

A prototype of the Kia Soul EV has been spied ahead of this year's confirmed market launch.
Expected to have a starting price of around 22,000 EUR (about 29,800 USD / 18,100 GBP), the electric version of the Soul will look a lot like the conventional powered-model, except for the front/rear bumpers and the areas around the badges and turn signals.
Kia previously stated they are testing prototypes with a 109 bhp (81 kW) electric motor which enables the Soul EV to hit 62 mph (100 km/h) in less than 12 seconds before topping out at 90 mph (145 km/h). The electric motor provides an instant torque of 284 Nm (210 lb-ft) and works with a 27 kWh lithium-ion battery pack allowing the EV to return an estimated 120+ miles (193+ km). Once the battery pack is depleted, recharging takes 5 hours from a 240v outlet or 25 minutes from a 100 kW fast charger.
The 2014 Kia Soul EV will ride on aero-optimized 16-inch wheels and will utilize LED technology for the positioning and rear combination lamps. The cabin will host a revised instrument cluster as well as an updated center stack with a built-in eight-inch screen.
Kia plans on introducing the Soul EV later this year.
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Unread 2014-02-03, 02:44 PM   #23
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2015 Kia Soul EV production model glimpsed before Chicago






A few days before its on-stage reveal at the Chicago Auto Show, the production version of the 2015 Kia Soul EV has been spotted, tagged and bagged in this series of spy shots. On the EV captured by our photographer's lens, we can see unusual baby blue accents on top, on the mirrors and up front, as well as a closed-off "Tiger Nose" that is both taller and larger than the grille on the standard Soul. The special "Eco Electric" badge on the sides is useful for identifying the car in the picture, but we can't imagine it'll make the transition to showroom floor (at least, we hope).

The Soul EV's rear side is different, too, with the bottom lights moved lower and the design of the main taillights tweaked a bit (compare our spy shots gallery to the standard model here). The wheels get a fresh five-spoke design as well.

What lies under the new exterior? Some things we already know. The Soul is supposed to have a "class-leading" range of over 120 miles on a charge thanks to a 27-kilowatt-hour lithium-ion polymer battery pack. The electric motor offers 109 horsepower and 210 pound-feet of torque to create a 0-62 mile per hour time of under 12 seconds and a top speed of around 90 mph.

What we can't see in these shots is a window sticker, but from what we've heard before, the Soul EV, "won't be priced to stimulate demand." Early predictions put the price at $35,000-$40,000 US – before government incentives – when the car launches in the US in the second half of this year. The gas-powered Soul starts at $14,400. We should learn more in Chicago later this week.
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Unread 2014-02-06, 10:07 AM   #24
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Kia has unveiled its plug-in 2015 Soul EV at the 2014 Chicago auto show. Kia detailed the Soul EV last year, but Chicago marks the electric's first public appearance.

Based on the second-generation Soul, the plug-in version of the hatchback separates itself form its gas-powered counterpart thanks to small differences such as EV-specific paint colors, emblems, 16-inch wheels and LED lighting elements. Minor changes have also been made to the car's interior.

The Soul EV is powered by an 81.4 kW electric motor good for 109 horsepower and 210 lb-ft. of torque. A single-speed constant ratio gear reduction unit will serve in place of a traditional transmission.

Backed by an air-cooled 27kWh lithium-ion polymer battery, Kia says the Soul EV should provide a real world driving range of 80-100 miles. Moreover, the Soul EV won't be especially poky by EV standards; Kia is quoting a sub 12-second 0-60 mph sprint. The Soul EV tops out at about 90mph.

The Soul EV should also be a decent handler. The EV's battery pack is mounted low in its chassis and addition bracing actually improves the hatchback's torsional rigidity by 5.9 percent.

On the charging front, Kia claims it will take 24 hours to charge a completely depleted battery from a standard 120-volt outlet. That charge time drops to under 5 hours when using a 240-volt outlet. When using a 50 kW-output charger, Kia says the Soul EV's battery can be charged to 80 percent in just 33 minutes.

In preparation for upcoming federal guidelines, Kia has equipped the Soul EV with a Virtual Engine Sound System - or VESS - that emits an audible noise below 12 mph or when the vehicle is in reverse to alert pedestrians of the approaching vehicle.

In addition to its green drivetrain, the Soul EV also boast an interior comprised largely of eco-friendly materials. Kia hasn't omitted creature comforts in the name of environmental friendliness, however, with navigation, UVO EV Services, a rear-view camera, Bluetooth, power driver's seat, power windows and cruise control all fitted as standard.

One neat option for the Soul EV is a heat pump that uses heat from the car's electric system to warm the cabin.

Soul EV buyers can choose between cloth and leather seating surfaces. Both are gray with blue accents.

The Soul EV will be offered in three distinct, two-tone color palettes: Pearl White lower body with Electronic Blue roof, Caribbean Blue lower body with Clear White roof, and Bright Silver with Clear White roof. All Soul EV models ride on 16-inch wheels wrapped in Super Low Rolling Resistant tires that help improve overall range.
Kia isn't ready to discuss Soul EV pricing, but that information is expected to be announced closer to the vehicle's launch.

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Unread 2014-02-06, 12:31 PM   #25
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2015 Kia Soul EV whirrs into the Windy City








Earlier this week, we got our first glimpse of the 2015 Kia Soul EV out on the road, completely uncovered. And even before then, executive editor Chris Paukert had the opportunity to drive a camouflaged electric Soul prototype on Kia's home turf in Korea. But now, finally, officially, the electron-happy Soul makes its debut at the Chicago Auto Show.

Powering the Soul EV is an 81-kilowatt electric motor that sends 109 horsepower and 210 pound-feet of torque to the front wheels. That's not immensely powerful, with Kia quoting a 0-60 time of "fewer than 12 seconds," but we're big fans of the instant torque thrust that EVs like the Soul provide. Top speed is electronically limited to approximately 90 miles per hour.
Kia says the Soul EV is good for roughly 80 to 100 miles of driving range.
The Soul's battery source is a 27-kWh, air-cooled unit that the automaker says can provide roughly 80 to 100 miles of range. (Your mileage may vary, of course.) As for the all-important charging times, Kia states a full charge can take as long as 24 hours for a fully depleted battery using a standard 120-volt outlet, or as quickly as under five hours when hooked up to a 240-volt outlet. Kia even says that an 80-percent charge "can be achieved in as little as 33 minutes with a 50-kW-output [CHAdeMo] charger." Kia is partnering with three charger providers – Bosch, Leviton and AeroVironment – to offer customers a wide range of home charging solutions.

Inside, the Soul's cabin is largely carryover, save for a 5.1-cubic-foot loss of cargo space in the rear. (Thanks, batteries.) Standard amenities include Bluetooth, navigation, a rear-view camera, cruise control, a power driver's seat, LED positioning lamps, LED taillamps and 16-inch alloy wheels. Eco-friendly cloth seats are standard, and leather is optional.

Visually, no one should mistake the Soul EV for its gas-powered kin, with a closed-off grille, and a more aerodynamic front fascia. Three different two-tone color options are available, as well – Pearl White with Electronic Blue roof, Caribbean Blue with Clear White roof, and Bright Silver with Clear White roof.

Pricing will be announced closer to the car's launch later this year. And when it does hit dealers, Kia will initially limit sales to California and Oregon out west, and New York, New Jersey and Maryland on the east coast. Kia will "look to offer the vehicle in other markets in the near future as infrastructure and demand grow," however. Scroll down for more details in the company's official release.
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