Kia Soul (2008–2014)

Model History

May 2008

Kia confirmed Soul would retain the name and spirit of the concept from which it evolved. Body colours: White, Bright Silver, Titanium Silver, Blue Stone, Vanilla Shake, Green Tea Latte, Cocktail Orange, Tomato Red, Java Brown, Moonlight Blue, Black Soul. 15" steel wheels with 195/65 R15 tyres, 16" alloys with 205/55 R16 tyres or 18" alloys with 225/45 R18 tyres.

Production of Soul will began in Korea in September 2008 with UK cars appearing in early 2009. Kia believes Soul will provide a creative platform for buyers to individualise and match their car to their own personality. High tech standard audio with Aux and iPod sockets and Bluetooth. Optional reversing camera screen is in rear view mirror.

Choice of 1.6 DOHC chain cam diesel with manual or torque converter auto, or 1.6 chain cam DOHC petrol, manual only. Right-hand drive production is due to start in March 2009.

The diesel engine generates 126 ps at 4,000 rpm and maximum torque of 255 Nm at 2,000 rpm. The all-aluminium petrol engine also produces 126 ps at 6,300 rpm and 156 Nm of torque at 4,200 rpm.

Overall height is 1,610 mm but the base of the windscreen is 135 mm higher than a typical compact car, the hip-points are 120 mm higher and the ground clearance is raised by 45 mm. Access to the new Kia Soul's spacious interior is remarkably easy and the cabin will deliver head, leg and shoulder room that matches or beats many larger vehicles.

Generous headroom (1020/1005 mm front/rear), legroom (1070/990 mm front/rear) and shoulder room (1403/1400 mm front/rear) will ensure Soul can easily adapt to the changing demands of its owner when pressed into giving friends or family a lift.

  • Soul 1 1.6 petrol £10,495
  • Soul 2 1.6 petrol £11,495
  • Soul 2 1.6 diesel £12,495
  • Soul 2 1.6 diesel automatic £13,495
  • Soul Samba 1.6 petrol £12,495
  • Soul Samba 1.6 diesel £13,495
  • Soul Shaker 1.6 petrol £12,495
  • Soul Shaker 1.6 diesel £13,495
  • Soul Burner 1.6 diesel £14,995.

July 2008

Kia Soul Concepts shown at Geneva March 2008 and again at London Motor Show in July 2008. Five-door boxy hatchback with front-wheel drive, 4,105mm long x 1,785 mm wide, excluding door mirrors x 1,610 mm tall. Wheelbase 2,550 mm.

November 2009

Launch of Soul 'Tempest' Original

Replaces the 'Samba' model. Tempest features standard metallic paintwork in Titanium Silver with black high-gloss bumper inserts and door mirrors, and is fitted with unique black 18-inch alloy wheels. Completing the look inside is the modern 'Soul-Shine' black seat trim with metallic centre fascia and chrome accents on the dashboard and instrument clusters. Other key features include Kia's Advanced Reversing Camera system with Electrochromic Rearview Mirror, as available on its sister model Shaker, and an upgraded audio system which features a dash-top centre speaker, rear sub-woofer and external amplifier.

The Soul Tempest is available in 1.6-litre petrol and diesel engines with a four-speed automatic transmission available with the diesel. Tempest prices start from just £12,845.

Other 2010 model year changes to the rest of the Soul range introduced as running changes. The entry grade '1' trim gained driver's seat height adjust as standard. Metallic centre fascia highlights and chrome accents have been improved and made brighter and are now offered as standard on the Soul 2 grade as well as all Originals. Also, the lidded storage tray in the upper dash has been redesigned for improved functionality and usage.

Colour availability has been revised on the Soul '2' mid-grade. With the deletion of Samba from the line-up, the vivid Tornado Red paintwork is now made available on all '2' models, while the vibrant metallic Cocktail Orange is no longer offered. This quickly changing line-up ensures that all Soul customers feel special knowing theirs is one of a limited number. From October 2009, prices rose slightly now starting from £10,775 OTR

January 2010

New 7-Year Kia Warranty. No mileage limit to the warranty for the first three years, except for vehicles used as a Taxi, when coverage is limited to 100,000 miles. Over the full period of the warranty, the overall mileage limit is 100,000 miles. Qualifications to the new warranty include: paintwork is covered for
5 years (depending on model), audio for 3 years and 60,000 miles and service parts, accessories and batteries for 2 years. Normal 'wear & tear' on items such as tyres, brake pads and clutch linings, are excluded from cover.

August 2010

Kia New Vehicle Warranty Terms & Exclusions:

  • There is no mileage limit during the first 3 years, except for vehicles used as taxis where a limit of 100,000 miles applies.
  • There is a 100,000 mile limit between years 4 and 7.
  • Paintwork is covered for 5 years / 100,000 miles.
  • Audio is covered for 3 years / 60,000 miles.
  • Batteries are covered for 2 years.
  • Normal 'wear and tear' on items such as brake linings and clutch linings, etc. are excluded from cover.
  • The warranty is transferable, at no cost, to subsequent owners and is valid across Europe.

December 2010

Soul Searcher introduced

The Searcher is available in stunning light green metallic paintwork, with a high quality cream and brown full leather interior, chrome front grille, chrome door handles, roof rails, black bezel headlights, front and rear mud flaps as well as 18-inch silver alloy wheels. Equipment includes reversing sensors, front fog lights, electric folding door mirrors, privacy glass and a cream and black dashboard.

Also dual auto air conditioning, heated front seats, upgraded 8 speaker sound system (with subwoofer and external amplifier), Bluetooth and iPod connectivity. For the driver a tilt and telescopic steering wheel with cruise control and steering wheel mounted audio controls means that everything is available at close hand.

The Soul Searcher is powered by the 1.6-litre CRDi diesel engine and is available in either 5-speed manual or 4-speed automatic. Its occupants are protected by a host of safety features including six airbags, Electronic Stability Control (ESC), Electronic Brakeforce Distribution (EBD), Traction Control (TC) and a five-star Euro NCAP rating. The Soul Searcher is available from theJanuary 2011 from just £16,965 OTR for the manual and £18,025 for the automatic.

October 2011

Kia Soul facelifted

Kia Soul has been refreshed from top to bottom for the 2012 model year. New or revised 1.6-litre engines and the introduction of a six-speed gearbox on all models improve performance while lowering fuel consumption, emissions and running costs. The exterior styling is now sharper while continuing to emphasise Kia quality. This is reflected in the cabin, where changes to the fascia, console and trim raise standards even higher. And all versions have more equipment.

The revised model is now on sale offering a choice of two regular trim grades, badged Soul 1 and Soul 2, and two ‘Soul Originals', the Hunter and Quantum. ‘Soul Originals' is a rolling programme of special versions with unique styling and trim, changed at regular intervals.

Soul is an urban crossover - small enough to be ideally suited to the world's urban jungles, but totally different to conventional, workday small cars. By combining the charm and desirability of the MINI and Fiat 500 with a hint of SUV ruggedness, Soul opened up an entirely new market sub-segment when it first appeared in 2008.

Like conventional superminis, Soul is a five-door, five-seat front-wheel-drive hatchback. But within those parameters, it defies convention thanks to its fun-to-drive character, expressive interior and a seating arrangement which offers the flexibility of a medium-sized MPV or SUV within the footprint of a supermini.

Soul's style is 'tough not rough'. It has a high bonnet with rounded forms, bulging wheel arches and a wide track. The wheel arches are joined by a body side crease, while the roofline appears to slope gently down to the tailgate. The beltline, which rises from the front wheel arch to create a gentle wedge shape, is continued under and around the third side window. There are decorative air vents in the front wings, these incorporate sleek side repeaters on the entry-level version.

For 2012, Soul's rugged charm has been given an even sportier twist with changes to the grilles, lights, front bodywork and wheels. A new bumper with a wider, lower air intake changes the proportions of the car and gives it a wider stance, and the grilles are now set off with cubic effect inserts which give it a more premium look. The new front grille is reflected at the rear, where a large tusk-shaped section in the bumper helps to visually stretch the width of the car.

The vertical rear light clusters have been revised and incorporate brake lights that wrap around the side of the car, while daytime running lights - bulb-type in Soul 1 and 2 and LED in the two ‘Soul Originals' - add a touch of style to the black bezel headlamp units and make the car easier to see. The rear light pattern on models with LED rear lamps is identical to that on the 2006 Detroit Show Soul concept to which the production model so faithfully adheres.

Soul 1 now has body-coloured door handles and mirrors and a top-tinted windscreen, while Soul 2 gains muscular surrounds around its front foglights, 16-inch alloy wheels and folding electric door mirrors containing stylish indicator repeaters. All versions are 15mm longer than before to accommodate the new powertrains under the bonnet, yet remain extremely compact at 4.12 metres long.

The practical and spacious interior features a totally redesigned centre fascia, centre console and gearshifter which improve both usability and the feeling of quality. The upholstery in Soul 1 continues to be stylish all-black cloth, while Soul 2 has a new design of luminous ‘Soul Shine' cloth. Soul Hunter is trimmed in either black or beige, depending on the exterior colour specified, with matching tartan colour trim that adds a charming and fun flavour to the interior. Soul Quantum is trimmed in luxurious black leather.

The new powertrains bring significant gains in performance, economy and running costs. The diesel manual is now 0.6 seconds quicker from rest to 60mph (10.3 seconds), while more than 3mpg more fuel-efficient (57.6mpg). This is sufficient to bring its CO 2 emissions down by 8g/km to 129g/km, which means owners are exempt from Vehicle Excise Duty (VED) in the car's first year.

The new petrol engine and six-speed gearbox combination, meanwhile, ensures the Soul delivers sparkling performance with impressively sparing use of fuel. It can accelerate from standstill to 62mph in 10 seconds, while its official combined-cycle economy is 44.1mpg.

In keeping with Soul's rebellious, individual and urban character, Kia has ensured that every model has a six-speaker audio system capable of being linked to digital music players or other portable music devices. From Soul 2 upwards, an iPod cable is standard, and all models now have steering wheel-mounted audio controls. Further up the range, the hi-fi grows to eight speakers, including a boot-mounted subwoofer and a dashboard centre speaker, and is powered by an external amplifier.

The standard specification is generous, with air conditioning, all-round electric windows, remote central locking and six airbags fitted to every model. The 2012 Soul 1 gains Bluetooth with voice control, and sun visors with illuminated mirrors in addition to remote audio controls, electric mirrors, body-coloured door handles and a top-tinted windscreen. Soul 2 has new 16-inch alloys, unique upholstery and folding mirrors. To top it off, all versions have Kia's pioneering seven-year, 100,000 miles warranty.

In the spirit of a fashion collection, the Originals are frequently updated with new colour schemes and specifications and have proved popular since the first trio appeared in 2009. Hunter and Quantum are the latest to arrive and each brings a unique style and high level of specification.

In addition to the well-specified ‘2' trim level, both of the new Originals gain metallic paint, distinctive LED daytime running lights, an uprated eight-speaker stereo system with external amplifier and boot-mounted subwoofer, heated door mirrors and privacy glass to the rear windows and tailgate. Cruise control is standard on automatic versions and will feature on manual versions from the end of the year.

The Hunter adds to this with 18" alloy wheels, an electrically operated sunroof and a colour reversing camera which conveniently displays inside the rear view mirror when reverse gear is engaged. Hunter is available in Olive Green metallic, with a beige and tartan interior, or Moonlight Blue metallic with black and black tartan upholstery.

The Quantum is only available in Titanium Silver metallic and comes with 18" black five-spoke alloy wheels, piano black bumper inserts and chrome exterior door handles. On the inside is a black leather upholstery, heated front seats, climate control and reverse parking sensors.

April 2012

Kia Soul Inferno launched

The latest characterful addition to the Soul ‘Originals' line-up offering a distinctly fiery personality and very high specification level. The Soul Inferno joins its ‘Originals' stable-mates - Hunter and Quantum - at the top of the recently-revised Soul range and is available to order now from Kia dealerships priced at £18,695 on-the-road.

Soul Inferno gets a striking exterior look from its Tornado Red paintwork, tattoo-style dark red dragon body graphics, rear spoiler, silver roof rails and unique 18-inch ‘Black Petal' alloy wheels. This is enhanced by privacy glass on rear windows along with black bezel projection headlights, LED daytime running lights, black high-gloss door mirrors and bumper inserts.

The red and black colour scheme continues on the inside where full black leather upholstery is contrasted with a red leather gearshift and mood lighting in the doors.

Soul Inferno's comprehensive specification includes automatic air-conditioning, cruise control, heated front seats, electric folding and heated mirrors and all-round electric windows. iPod and Bluetooth connectivity, a Radio/CD player with MP3 compatibility, and USB/AUX slots provide the inputs for the external amplifier to power the eight-speaker hi-i system that includes a boot-mounted subwoofer. A smart key with start/stop button and rear parking sensors provide additional driver convenience.

January 2013

Soul Shaker returned to the Soul Originals line up

Koining its Originals stable-mates - Soul ‘Quantum' and Soul ‘Inferno' - at the top of the recently revised Soul range, priced from £15,295 on-the road.

Soul ‘Shaker' sits in the Soul line-up above the ‘2' specification version and includes features such as iPod and Bluetooth connectivity, cruise control (diesel model only) and air conditioning, as well as LED daytime running lights, LED rear combination lamps and high mounted brake lights. Inside, there are steering wheel mounted controls and both the steering wheel and gearshift are leather-trimmed.

The ‘Shaker' is distinguished by its Vanilla Shake coloured bodywork or, for no extra cost, is available in Quartz Black metallic. Distinctive multi-spoke 18-inch alloy wheels.

Premium cloth upholstery in a new unique ‘Houndstooth' design, combined with beige interior surfaces. Other features include an electric tilt-and-slide sunroof, and an automatically-dimming rear view mirror with an integrated colour reversing camera.

The Soul Originals first appeared in 2009, conceived in the spirit of a fashion collection - being frequently updated with distinct styles and personalities.

Powered by a 1.6 CRDi 126bhp turbo-diesel engine, and mated to a six-speed manual transmission, Soul ‘Shaker' delivers 126bhp at 4,000rpm and 192lb/ft torque from 1,900rpm to 2,750rpm. Top speed is 112mph and the 0-60mph dash is dispatched in 10.3 seconds. C0₂ emissions are just 129g/km - putting the car in VED Band D. Fuel Economy is 57.6mpg on the official combined cycle.

The 1.6 GDi petrol engine delivers 138bhp at 6,300rpm and 122lb/ft torque at 4,850rpm. The top speed is 112mph and 60mph is reached in 10 seconds flat.

Soul ‘Shaker' receives the same comprehensive technical package and safety measures as the rest of the Soul range. Electronic stability control (ESC) and anti-lock brakes (ABS) with electronic brake force distribution (EBS), vehicle stability management (VSM) and hill-start assist control (HAC) provide a comprehensive level of active safety whist twin front, side and curtain airbags provide occupants with a reassuring level of passive safety.

The Soul ‘Shaker' is rated at insurance group 19 and has service intervals of 12 months or 10,000 miles on the GDi engine and 12,500 miles on the CRDi engine.

The Soul ‘Shaker' is priced from £15,295 for the 1.6 GDi version. The diesel is priced at £16,690 and is also available as an automatic for £17,795. As with all new Kias, the Soul ‘Shaker' comes with a fully-transferable seven year warranty.

What does a Kia Soul (2008 – 2014) cost?

Contract hire from £141.58 per month