The Soul lives in that increasingly gray area between hatchbacks and SUVs. A boxy, upright design gives it abundant interior space and super-easy access. You sit up high in chairlike seats, surrounded by an ample glass area for good visibility. Overall, it feels like driving a small SUV, but one that's lower to the ground. Redesigned for 2014, the new Soul provides a more mature and well-rounded package than its predecessor.
Alerts
There are 3 recalls on this vehicle. Learn More.

Road Test Results

Performance
Acceleration Acceleration Acceleration tests are conducted on a smooth, flat pavement straightaway at the track. Time, speed, and distance measurements are taken with a precise GPS-based device that’s hooked to a data-logging computer.
0 to 60 mph 0 to 60 mph (sec.) The time in seconds that a vehicle takes to reach 60 mph from a standstill with the engine idling.
Transmission Transmission Transmission performance is determined by shifting smoothness, response, shifter action, and clutch actuation for manual transmissions.
Braking Braking The braking rating is a composite of wet and dry stopping distances and pedal feel. Braking distance is from 60 mph, with no wheels locked.
Emergency Handling Emergency Handling Several factors go into the rating, including the avoidance maneuver speed and confidence, as well as how the vehicle behaves when pushed to its limit.
Comfort / Convenience
Ride Ride Our expert judgment of how well the suspension isolates and absorbs road imperfections and how steady it keeps the body on various road surfaces.
Noise Noise Our expert judgment of the vehicle's interior noise level in everyday driving.
Front Seat Comfort Front Seat Comfort Our judgment of how comfortable the front seat is for drivers of various heights.
Rear Seat Comfort Rear Seat Comfort Our judgment of how comfortable the rear seat is for two passengers to sit across.
Interior Fit and Finish Interior Fit and Finish An expert evaluation of the interior quality and craftsmanship.
Trunk/Cargo Area Trunk/Cargo Area Our rating is based on the amount of luggage or cargo space that a vehicle has in the trunk or cargo area.
Fuel Economy & Emissions
Fuel Economy Fuel Economy We perform our own fuel-economy tests, independent of the government's often-quoted EPA figures and the manufacturers' claims. Using a precise fuel-flow measuring device spliced into the fuel line, we run two separate circuits to represent city and highway consumption.
CR's Overall Mileage CR's Overall Mileage CR's overall mileage is a composite of measured fuel usage on a prescribed city course and highway cruising; and CR's 150-mile test trip of mixed driving, if tested. In recent road tests, we've discontinued the 150-mile trip test.
CR's City Mileage CR's City Mileage Measured fuel usage on a prescribed city course.
CR's Highway Mileage CR's Highway Mileage Measured fuel usage on a prescribed highway cruising.
Annual Fuel Cost Annual Fuel Cost The cost and amount of fuel used in 12,000 miles and is calculated from CR's overall mileage.
Greenhouse Gas Greenhouse Gas The Greenhouse Gas Rating represents the amount of carbon dioxide the vehicle emits compared to other vehicles of the same model year. This score from the EPA ranges from 1 (worst) to 10 (best).
Smog Rating Smog Rating The Smog Rating represents the amount of health-damaging and smog-forming airborne pollutants the vehicle emits compared to other vehicles of the same model year. This score from the EPA ranges from 1 (worst) to 10 (best).

Owner Reports

Worse Better
Reliability History Reliability History The reliability charts are based on responses on hundreds of thousands of vehicles from our latest Annual Auto Survey. Consumer Reports subscribers reported on any serious problems they had with their vehicles during the past 12 months that they considered serious because of cost, failure, safety, or downtime, in any of the trouble spots included in the table below. The results are presented relative to the average model that year. Extra weight is given to the more serious areas such as major engine or transmission problems. Based on this data and further analysis, we predict reliability for the latest year. N/A indicates that we did not receive a large enough sample size to provide data for a specific year. An X indicates that the vehicle was not manufactured for a specific year.
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Reliability Trouble Spots
Engine Major Engine Major Engine rebuild or replacement, cylinder head, head gasket, turbo or supercharger, timing chain or timing belt.
Engine Minor Engine Minor Accessory belts and pulleys, engine computer, engine mounts, engine knock or ping, oil leaks.
Engine Cooling Engine Cooling Radiator, cooling fan, antifreeze leaks, water pump, thermostat, overheating.
Transmission Major Transmission Major Transmission rebuild or replacement, torque converter, clutch replacement.
Transmission Minor Transmission Minor Gear selector or linkage, leaks, transmission computer, transmission sensor or solenoid, clutch adjustment, rough shifting, slipping transmission.
Drive System Drive System Driveshaft or axle, CV joint, differential, transfer case, 4WD/AWD components, driveline vibration, traction control, electronic stability control (ESC), electrical failure.
Owner Satisfaction Owner Satisfaction To learn about satisfaction, CR has collected survey data from our annual survey on more than half a million vehicles. Our subscribers provide great insights into their satisfaction by answering one simple question: If they had it to do all over again, would they definitely buy or lease the same model? In addition, respondents also rate their cars in six categories: driving experience, comfort, value, styling, audio, and climate systems. N/A indicates that we did not receive a large enough sample size to provide data for a specific year. An X indicates that the vehicle was not manufactured for a specific year.
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Driving Experience Driving Experience Includes acceleration and handling
Comfort Comfort Includes seats, climate control, noise, and ride
Value Value Did you get what you wanted relative to the price you paid?
Styling Styling How it looks inside and out
Safety Equipment
ABS and ESC standard. Side and head protection air bags standard.
Road Test

The Soul lives in that increasingly gray area between hatchbacks and SUVs. A boxy, upright design gives it abundant interior space and super-easy access. You sit up high in chairlike seats, surrounded by an ample glass area for good visibility. Overall, it feels like driving a small SUV, but one that's lower to the ground.

Redesigned for 2014, the new Soul provides a more mature and well-rounded package than its predecessor. That is, once you get past the quirky styling, which reminds some of a surfer dude with wraparound shades.

Seating
2 front, 3 rear
Drive Wheels
Front
Warranty
Coverage varies among versions of this vehicle

In most cases, automotive warranties are based on the vehicle identification number (VIN), and the warranty will be valid regardless of ownership. The dealership can tell you exactly how much warranty is left.

Read more about extended warranties
Body Styles
wagon
Transmissions Available
  • 6-speed Automatic
  • 1-speed Direct
  • 6-speed Manual
Engines Available
  • electric (109 hp)
  • 1.6-liter 4 (130 hp)
  • 2-liter 4 (164 hp)

Owner Reported Trouble Spots

The Reliability score is based on our latest subscriber survey of 2016 Kia Soul owners. The owner comments describe problems respondents experienced with this vehicle.

Body Integrity

Squeaks, rattles, wind noises, loose or cracked seals and/or weather-stripping, air and water leaks.

What Owners Say

Air or water leaks

"MINOR WATER LEAKS BOTTOM OF DOOR PANELS. WHITE STAINS OVER WHOLE ENGINE COMPARTMENT SINCE NEW"

Michele E., PA (2016 Kia Soul Base 1.6-L 4 Cyl)
Seals and/or weather-stripping

"Sometimes I hear wind leaks between the front driver door or window, and the interior. I never feel the air leak as wind, but I sometimes hear it. Water NEVER leaks in. The most annoying and concerning noise, though, is an engine roar when I accelerate quickly. This isn't a noise, but your survey doesn't ask about this kind of problem: sometimes the ride is too rough. There is one spot I drive through EVERY DAY that makes me adjust my seating position and tense my aging body to avoid being thrown around. All in all, though, I am very happy with the price I paid for this used car (47K at purchase)."

Anonymous, FL (2016 Kia Soul)

"Transmission seal leak at 300 miles"

Anonymous, TX (2016 Kia Soul Plus 2.0-L 4 Cyl)

"Seal along top of windshield was causing a really annoying wind noise."

Anonymous, OH (2016 Kia Soul Exclaim 2.0-L 4 Cyl)
Squeaks or rattles

"When driving on blacktop roads with a coarse finish, the HVAC vents rattle & vibrate, making an annoying rattle that does not stop. This rattle comes from the HVAC vents that surround the large GPS navigation screen. Dealer tried to fix it, and it is only 50% less annoying! It is a really horrible rattle that will drive you crazy!"

Anonymous, TX (2016 Kia Soul Plus 2.0-L 4 Cyl)

"The large center speaker rattles on rough roads. Not enough to worry about but loud enough to notice."

Thomas D., IL (2016 Kia Soul)

"The only issue I have with this car is a slight rattle that is sporadic"

Anonymous, CO (2016 Kia Soul 2.0-L 4 Cyl)

"The car has a lot of wind noise, squeaks, and rattles"

Anonymous, CA (2016 Kia Soul Plus 2.0-L 4 Cyl)

"Dashboard rattling"

Rodney B., CT (2016 Kia Soul Base 1.6-L 4 Cyl)

"Had two rattles in the dash behind the instrument panel."

Anonymous, OH (2016 Kia Soul Exclaim 2.0-L 4 Cyl)

"front sway bar connection points were worn, and replaced under warranty."

Anonymous, ON (2016 Kia Soul EV Electric)
Wind noise

"wind causes high pitch tone and shaking at high speeds with back windows down"

Steven P., FL (2016 Kia Soul Base 2.0-L 4 Cyl)

Brakes

Antilock system (ABS), parking brake, master cylinder, calipers, rotors, pulsation or vibration, squeaking, brake failure or wear.

What Owners Say

Normal routine brake wear

"Just seems brake pads did wear out little to soon. Cost to fix is expensive."

Anonymous, IL (2016 Kia Soul Base 2.0-L 4 Cyl)

"Brakes needed to be serviced sooner than expected"

Clarence H., OH (2016 Kia Soul Plus 2.0-L 4 Cyl)

"The front brake pads had to be replaced after 70000 miles."

Anonymous, TX (2016 Kia Soul Base 2.0-L 4 Cyl)
Parking brake

"When I put the car in Park, I had to always engage the parking brake for about a month because the car would roll sometimes after putting it in park. Then the problem diminished and fixed itself, although I went to 2 dealers to fix it and they weren't able to reproduce the problem."

Anonymous, (2016 Kia Soul EV Electric)
Premature brake wear

"According to the dealer, the brakes wore 4mm in six months."

Anonymous, NY (2016 Kia Soul Plus 2.0-L 4 Cyl)

"Rotors and Pads were completely worn at about 18000 miles. I have never in my life had that much brake wear on any car that quickly."

Anonymous, OH (2016 Kia Soul Plus 2.0-L 4 Cyl)
Regular brake failure

"Does not stop the car fast enough if you come to a sudden stop."

David L., HI (2016 Kia Soul EV Electric)
Rotors

"Despite only having 33K miles on the rotors, they needed to be turned due to the outside surface of the rotor not wearing evenly. The steel used in construction of the rotor was so bad and there was so much rust/corrosion around the outer edge of the rotor (the true outer edge, not the surfaces that the pads touch) that when the shop started to turn it, large chunks would break away. Mechanic said it seemed to be a problem with newer Kia's, that the brake rotors were made with really cruddy steel."

Anonymous, IL (2016 Kia Soul Plus 2.0-L 4 Cyl)

"The rear brakes seized($615) so I shall always get the services lubed before winter"

Anonymous, ON (2016 Kia Soul EV Electric)
Squeaking

"Normal squeaks in car. I drive lots of miles for work. Break squeaking is annoying and expensive to fix."

Anonymous, IL (2016 Kia Soul Base 2.0-L 4 Cyl)

"car sits all winter and rotors rust"

Anonymous, NY (2016 Kia Soul Plus 2.0-L 4 Cyl)

Electric System

Alternator, starter, hybrid battery and related systems, regular battery, battery cables, engine harness, coil, ignition switch, electronic ignition, distributor or rotor failure, spark plugs and wires failure.

What Owners Say

12V power plug

"never worked but dont care i dont use"

Tom W., IL (2016 Kia Soul Base 2.0-L 4 Cyl)

"While charging vehicle, the charger went to default mode. Under warranty, a new charger was provided which resolved the issue."

Anonymous, (2016 Kia Soul EV Electric)
Alarm or security system (excluding aftermarket systems)

"The alarm button on the key is activated if any pressure is applied, very aggravating and the reason I will be buying a replacement from another manufacturer."

Anonymous, FL (2016 Kia Soul Unsure 2.0-L 4 Cyl)
Body control module

"Power unlock for rear hatch door not working could not open hatch at all"

Tom W., IL (2016 Kia Soul Base 2.0-L 4 Cyl)
Exterior lights (other than headlights)

"The car has an electrical problem that affects the interior lights, exterior lights, navigation system, the starter and the remote control. the dealership told me it is related to a depledted remote battery and that the malfunctions are because the car cannot sense the remote when the battery is low and therefore does not turn off the lights or will not allow the car to start reliably"

Anonymous, CA (2016 Kia Soul Plus 2.0-L 4 Cyl)
Gauges

"Fuel gauge and sensor replaced, under warranty.."

Larry O., SC (2016 Kia Soul EV 2.0-L 4 Cyl)
Keyless entry

"The car sometimes experiences electrical issues that turns on exterior and interior lights and prevents the ignition from turning on."

Anonymous, CA (2016 Kia Soul Plus 2.0-L 4 Cyl)
Warning lights

"check brake light went on. dealer couldn't fix it. replaced the indicator, didn't help. took 7 days to fix including 3 trips back to the dealer."

Carl E., CA (2016 Kia Soul EV Electric)

Climate System

Blower (fan) motor, A/C compressor, condenser, evaporator, heater system, automatic climate control, refrigerant leakage, electrical failure.

What Owners Say

A/C compressor

"Warranty Used several days of a rental while compressor came from factory"

Anonymous, CA (2016 Kia Soul Exclaim 2.0-L 4 Cyl)
Automatic climate control

"Will sometimes fog car windows completely up if driven with the heat on on days that the temperature is above freezing. Sometimes can see water vapor coming out of the vents when AC is on."

Thomas D., IL (2016 Kia Soul)
Blower (fan) motor

"The selector switch did not work properly at the lower values (1-3). This happened twice. It is working ok now."

Anonymous, WA (2016 Kia Soul Plus 1.6-L 4 Cyl)

"Variable blower speed quit working."

R B., AZ (2016 Kia Soul Plus 2.0-L 4 Cyl)

"Dealer said that it was just new vech. noise and had to break in now they say it had to be fixed when I took delivory."

John W., IN (2016 Kia Soul EV 2.0-L 4 Cyl)
Refrigerant leaks

"I live in central Florida; I use the car's air conditioning almost year-round. As each spring approaches I feel sure I'll have to, both, examine the AC system, and recharge the coolant on . This year I did, too; but this is the first spring I've owned this car."

Anonymous, FL (2016 Kia Soul)

Suspension

Shocks or struts, ball joints, tie rods, wheel bearings, alignment, steering linkage (includes rack and pinion), power steering (pumps and hoses, leaks), wheel balance, springs or torsion bars, bushings, electronic or air suspension.

What Owners Say

Alignment

"At 15,000 miles, front tires showed uneven wear. Had to have tires aligned. Dealer said that alignment is part of wear and tear."

Anonymous, CA (2016 Kia Soul EV Electric)
Bushings

"Soul EV thus very quiet when inside. Going over speed bumps, driveways, suspension would "thunk" or squeak. Dealer lubricated suspension but noise still exists. If vehicle had gasoline engine, then I probably would not hear the suspension noise since the engine is loud."

Anonymous, CA (2016 Kia Soul EV Electric)
Steering linkage (includes rack and pinion)

"recall by kia repaired"

Irwin C., NJ (2016 Kia Soul Base 1.6-L 4 Cyl)

"Recall for a pin with retaining screw."

James H., MI (2016 Kia Soul Plus 2.0-L 4 Cyl)

"intermediate steering wheel shaft was worn and strg wheel had play when turned"

Anonymous, TN (2016 Kia Soul Plus 2.0-L 4 Cyl)
Tire wear is uneven

"Tire wear was not uneven. But I have had four sidewall tire failures with the original equipment NEXEN tires."

R B., AZ (2016 Kia Soul Plus 2.0-L 4 Cyl)

Exhaust

Muffler, pipes, catalytic converter, exhaust manifold, leaks.

What Owners Say

Catalytic converter

"recall"

Joseph C., FL (2016 Kia Soul Base 2.0-L 4 Cyl)

"Not a problem. Received a recall notice and took car in. They fixed and released car. All ok."

Kit A., FL (2016 Kia Soul 1.6-L 4 Cyl)
Other/unsure

"Same as previous. Stopped working shortly after purchase. Was repaired at the dealership."

Anonymous, AB (2016 Kia Soul Base 1.6-L 4 Cyl)

"It stopped working shortly after purchase. Was repaired by service center at dealer."

Anonymous, AB (2016 Kia Soul Base 1.6-L 4 Cyl)

"Sensor replaced under warranty for front passenger seat"

Anonymous, TX (2016 Kia Soul Exclaim 2.0-L 4 Cyl)

In-car Electronics

CD or DVD players, radio, speakers, GPS, communication system (e.g., OnStar), display screen freezes or goes blank, phone pairing (e.g. Bluetooth), voice control commands, steering wheel controls, portable music device interface (e.g., iPod/MP3 player), backup or other camera/sensors.

What Owners Say

Display screen goes blank

"The screen freezes and goes blank. It is very slow to respond to gear changes. It takes a second or two to come on when shifting into reverse."

Anonymous, AR (2016 Kia Soul EV Electric)
External music device interface (e.g., smart phone, MP3 player)

"Keeps dropping stations and contacts"

Anonymous, ON (2016 Kia Soul Plus 2.0-L 4 Cyl)
Phone pairing (e.g., Bluetooth)

"Will only accept one phone can not use multiple phones on it"

Anonymous, ON (2016 Kia Soul Plus 2.0-L 4 Cyl)
Radio

"Head end unit periodically freezes only when using satellite radio feature, preventing Sirius/XM station from being changed on steering wheel or dash panel. Problem began while still under factory 2nd-owner warranty (5-year/60k miles) but after the electronics warranty expired."

Anonymous, TX (2016 Kia Soul Plus 2.0-L 4 Cyl)

Body Hardware

Power or manual windows, locks and latches, tailgate, hatch or trunk, doors or sliding doors, mirrors, seat controls, safety belts, sunroof, convertible top.

What Owners Say

Sunroof

"Panoramic roof slow operation then stuck in open position. Repaired under warranty."

Anonymous, MA (2016 Kia Soul Plus 2.0-L 4 Cyl)
Windows

"Driver's side power window would roll up to top and automatically go back down. Had to go to dealer three times to get it fixed. First time, incorrect part was ordered. Second time, correct part was ordered. third time, window was fixed"

N D., KY (2016 Kia Soul 2.0-L 4 Cyl)

Paint/Trim

Paint (fading, chalking, cracking, or peeling), loose interior and exterior trim or moldings, rust.

What Owners Say

Loose exterior trim or moldings

"Front right side molding was cracked and misaligned"

Rick B., UT (2016 Kia Soul Plus 2.0-L 4 Cyl)
Paint (fading, chalking, cracking, or peeling)

"Biggest problem with the Kia Soul is that the exterior paint is very thin and chips easily. No rust yet, but I'm constantly touching the paint up."

Anonymous, MN (2016 Kia Soul Plus 2.0-L 4 Cyl)

Engine Minor

Accessory belts and pulleys, engine computer, engine mounts, engine knock or ping, oil leaks.

What Owners Say

Oil leaks

"main seal on the crank shaft started leaking a lot! Was covered under warranty"

Anonymous, AL (2016 Kia Soul Base 1.6-L 4 Cyl)

Transmission Major

Transmission rebuild or replacement, torque converter, clutch replacement.

What Owners Say

Transmission rebuild or replacement

"Started took it to the dealer. They fixed under the warranty"

Anonymous, IL (2016 Kia Soul Base 2.0-L 4 Cyl)

Transmission Minor

Gear selector or linkage, leaks, transmission computer, transmission sensor or solenoid, clutch adjustment, rough shifting, slipping transmission.

What Owners Say

Clutch adjustment

"When the engine is cold, the first few times letting the clutch out can result in a rough/pulsating start from a complete stop. Shifting while in motion is unaffected during this time. The problem seems to go away once the engine is completely warm."

Jon S., FL (2016 Kia Soul Base 1.6-L 4 Cyl)

Power Equipment

Cruise control, clock, warning lights, body control module, keyless entry, wiper motor or washer, tire pressure monitor, interior or exterior lights, horn, gauges, 12V power plug, remote engine start, alarm or security system

What Owners Say

Hybrid/electric system and battery (excluding replacement)

"Range was 96 miles per charge at purchase and now, only 6 months later charges only to 64 miles. Kia will not fix despite warranty"

Anonymous, TX (2016 Kia Soul EV Electric)

Fuel System

Check engine light, sensors (includes O2 or oxygen sensor), emission control devices (includes EGR), engine computer, engine computer, fuel cap, fuel gauge/sender, fuel injection system, fuel pump, fuel leaks, stalling or hesitation.

What Owners Say

Emission control devices (includes EGR)

"the car just shut off on the highway! we was on vacation, left stranded. dealer could not get parts, so the took parts off another kia soul"

Tim B., OH (2016 Kia Soul Base 1.6-L 4 Cyl)

Engine Cooling

Radiator, cooling fan, antifreeze leaks, water pump, thermostat, overheating.

Drive System

Driveshaft or axle, CV joint, differential, transfer case, 4WD/AWD components, driveline vibration, traction control, electronic stability control (ESC), electrical failure.

Engine Major

Engine rebuild or replacement, cylinder head, head gasket, turbo or supercharger, timing chain or timing belt.

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