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.

Reliability

Reliability indicates how models have performed in the past, providing the basis for predicting how the vehicles will hold up in the year ahead. These charts provide the most comprehensive reliability information available to consumers. Based on information received from our latest subscriber survey, our reliability history charts give you a rundown on how used vehicles are holding up in 17 potential trouble spots, ranging from the engine, transmission, and brakes to power equipment and the electrical system.

Overall Reliability
Most Common Trouble Spots
Common Trouble Spot
Common Trouble Spot
The 2016 Kia Soul has been recalled 3 times by NHTSA. View Recalls
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Overall Reliability Verdict
POTENTIAL TROUBLE SPOTS
Engine Major
Engine Minor
Engine Cooling
Transmission Major
Transmission Minor
Drive System
Fuel System
Electric System
Climate System
Suspension
Brakes
Exhaust
Paint/Trim
Body Integrity
Body Hardware
Power Equipment
In-car Electronics
Reliability indicates how models have performed in the past, providing the basis for predicting how the vehicles will hold up in the year ahead. These charts provide the most comprehensive reliability information available to consumers. Based on information received from our latest subscriber survey for about 329,000 vehicles, our reliability history charts give you a rundown on how 2000 through 2020 vehicles are holding up in 17 potential trouble spots, ranging from the engine, transmission, and brakes to power equipment and the electrical system. NA 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.

Learn more about car Reliability.

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)

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)

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)

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)

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)

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)

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)

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)

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)

Drive System

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

Engine Cooling

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

Engine Major

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

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This score shows whether the model had more or fewer problems overall than the average model of that year, calculated from the total number of problems reported by subscribers in all 17 trouble spots.
Recalls
PROVIDED BY
ELECTRICAL SYSTEM:SOFTWARE
Jul 02 2020
Unintended vehicle movement can increase the risk of a crash.
Summary:
Kia Motors America (Kia) is recalling certain 2015-2016 Kia Soul Electric Vehicle (EV) vehicles. The parking mechanism may become damaged if the driver moves the gear shift lever into Park 'P' before the vehicle comes to a complete stop. If the parking mechanism is damaged, unintended vehicle movement may occur when the gear shift lever is in the Park 'P' position and the parking brake is not applied.
What should you do:
Kia will notify owners, and dealers will update the electronic control unit software, free of charge. The recall began August 7, 2020. Owners may contact Kia customer service at 1-800-333-4542. Kia's number for this recall is SC191.
For more information:
Owners may also contact the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration Vehicle Safety Hotline at 1-888-327-4236 (TTY 1-800-424-9153), or go to www.safercar.gov.
NHTSA CAMPAIGN ID Number: 20V389000
Potential Number of Units Affected: 3714
ENGINE AND ENGINE COOLING:EXHAUST SYSTEM:EMISSION CONTROL:CATALYTIC CONVERTOR
Feb 22 2019
Piston damage may result in an engine stall, increasing the risk of a crash. A broken connecting rod may puncture the engine block allowing engine oil to escape. The leaking oil may contact the exhaust, increasing the risk of a fire.
Summary:
Kia Motors America (Kia) is recalling certain 2012-2016 Kia Soul vehicles equipped with 1.6L Gasoline Direct Injection (GDI) engines. High exhaust gas temperatures may damage the catalytic converter, possibly resulting in abnormal engine combustion and damage to one or more of the engine's pistons and possible piston connecting rod failure.
What should you do:
Kia will notify owners, and dealers will upgrade the Catalytic Overheating Protection Engine Control Unit logic to prevent overheating of the catalytic converter. In addition, the catalytic converter will also be replaced if it has been damaged. Depending on the extent of any damage, the engine may also be replaced, free of charge. The recall began April 17, 2019. Owners may contact Kia customer service at 1-800-333-4542. Kia's number for this recall is SC176.
For more information:
Owners may also contact the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration Vehicle Safety Hotline at 1-888-327-4236 (TTY 1-800-424-9153), or go to www.safercar.gov.
NHTSA CAMPAIGN ID Number: 19V120000
Potential Number of Units Affected: 378967
STEERING
Sep 29 2017
If the pinion gear separates, steering will be lost, increasing the risk of a crash.
Summary:
Kia Motors America (Kia) is recalling certain 2014-2016 Soul and Soul EV vehicles. The pinion plug may allow the pinion gear to separate from the steering gear assembly.
What should you do:
Kia will notify owners, and dealers will inspect and secure the pinion plug or replace the steering gear assembly, as necessary, free of charge. The recall began November 16, 2017. Owners may contact Kia customer service at 1-800-333-4542. Kia's number for this recall is SC155. Note: This recall supersedes campaigns 14V-332 and 15V-736. Vehicles previously remedied under those numbers are being recalled again under this campaign.
For more information:
Owners may also contact the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration Vehicle Safety Hotline at 1-888-327-4236 (TTY 1-800-424-9153), or go to www.safercar.gov.
NHTSA CAMPAIGN ID Number: 17V608000
Potential Number of Units Affected: 342381
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