Kia Soul (2014 – 2018) Review

Kia Soul (2014 – 2018) At A Glance


+Practical family car. High quality and attractive cabin. Easy to drive. Practical and reasonably spacious. Steers and handles decently on 17-inch wheels. Outstandingly reliable.

-Looks aren't universally popular. Emissions and economy far from best in class. 18-inch wheels wreck the ride.

Insurance Groups are between 9–18
On average it achieves 83% of the official MPG figure

While this second generation Kia Soul may look similar to the original model, it’s actually much improved under the skin with significantly better steering, ride and handling. It's also more than just style over substance. Get past the rather quirky and boxy appearance and you'll find a family car that is impressively refined with a very practical and upmarket cabin. 

The Soul is easily big enough for a family of five and features good quality materials along with a stylish dashboard layout. Standard equipment levels are generous and all cars get DAB radio and air conditioning. There are plenty of customisation options too, with colour contrasting roof choices and a broad selection of alloy wheel designs.

Thanks to the tall, upright cabin there is a huge amount of headroom even for taller passengers, plus it’s very easy to get in and out of from both the front and back rows of seats. Unfortunately the generous passenger compartment means the boot space suffers a little - but it’s still a reasonable size and more than adequate for everyday use.

There are two engines - a 1.6-litre petrol and a 1.6-litre diesel, the latter of which is available with a six-speed torque converter automatic transmission. The diesel offers lower running costs thanks to its economy of 58.9mpg and 125g/km CO2 emissions. It also offers a decent amount of torque so it's the best one to go for unless you’re a low mileage driver. That said, it lags behind some key rivals when it comes to economy and emissions – the Renault Captur, Peugeot 2008 and Skoda Yeti are better on this front. 

If you are a keen driver, you will also find the Yeti better to drive on a winding road. There is still a lot to like about the Soul, though. It's reasonably well priced, well equipped, impressively built and offers more cabin space than the usual small crossover model.

Kia Soul 1.6 CRDI Connect Plus and 1.6 GDI StarRoad Tes

Real MPG average for a Kia Soul (2014 – 2018)


Real MPG was created following thousands of readers telling us that their cars could not match the official figures.

Real MPG gives real world data from drivers like you to show how much fuel a vehicle really uses.

Average performance


Real MPG

30–54 mpg

MPGs submitted


Diesel or petrol? If you're unsure whether to go for a petrol or diesel (or even an electric model if it's available), then you need our Petrol or Diesel? calculator. It does the maths on petrols, diesels and electric cars to show which is best suited to you.

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Ask Honest John

I am about to get my Kia serviced - if I do not use a main dealer will this cancel warranty?
"I am about to get my Kia Soul serviced. If I do not use a main dealer will this cancel my seven-year warranty? What would a main dealer charge? "
If the non-Kia dealer does not do everything precisely to Kia standards using the correct fluids and parts and fully documenting the entire job then yes, it will void the Kia seven year warranty. Different dealers charge different prices according to their labour rates that depend on their fixed costs such as their premises and workshops, heat, light and rent as well as mechanics wages and the parts and fluids.
Answered by Honest John
Would an electric car cope with hilly terrain?
"We currently have a Honda Jazz CVT. My my wife, who has limited mobility, really likes it. However, we feel that with the type of motoring that we do, journeys up to about 25 miles from home, that an electric car would be a good alternative. Our area is quite hilly, which makes quite a dent in our Jazz's petrol consumption (45+mpg on relatively level roads down to 40mpg going over hills). Would an electric car cope with this? With battery rental, the impression I get is that the cost would be about the same as filling up with petrol, which somewhat defeats the object of an electric car. At the moment, we are thinking of a Nissan Leaf, but would value your views if there were an alternative. Are the used versions any good? I understand that Honda do a Hybrid CVT for the Jazz."
Yes, hills will make a significant dent in the range of electric cars. But my parents live in Hexham Northumberland which has steep hills in the town itself and all around and there are a number of Nissan Leaf and Nissan eNV200 electric vans operating in the area, so they must make sense. Better to go for one with longer range batteries though. Good choice these days. Kia Soul electric, Hyundai Ioniq electric, Renault Zoe, Nissan Leaf and plenty of secondhand Mitsubishi i-Miev, Citroen C-ZERO, Peugeot iOn, Renault Fluence ZE, etc going cheap. Honda did a Mk II Jazz hybrid. Plenty of Yaris hybrids. The Toyota Auris hybrid works well. Prius extremely popular.
Answered by Honest John
Kia warranty invalid due to missing records
"We purchased a used Kia Soul three months ago. The car is 3.5 year old and we specifically bought it because of Kia's long warranty. When we brought the car the car salesman said the car had 3.5 years left of its original seven year warranty. This is also stated on the invoice. However, it seems that the warranty is not intact as the second service was done four months and 2000 miles over the warranty stipulations. Also the paintwork warranty section in the handbook has only been stamped once at first service. What should we do?"
Reject the car because it is not the car you were promised and is not the car you bought. Or come to a settlement whereby the dealer refunds you £1,000 in lieu of the warranty. See:
Answered by Honest John
Will Kia's warranty cover a faulty DPF?
"I want to buy a new Kia Soul diesel, but I will only cover 6000 miles a year. If the DPF gives problems will the seven-year warranty cover it? Or would I be better off buying the petrol version?"
Unless you balance short journeys of less than five miles with longer journeys of 30 miles or more then better to go for the petrol engine rather than the diesel. The warranty will not cover self-induced DPF problems.
Answered by Honest John
More Questions

What does a Kia Soul (2014 – 2018) cost?