2018 Kia Soul EV

2018 Kia Soul EV
MSRP range
$32,250 - $35,950
2018 Kia Soul EV

Pros

  • Plenty of cabin and cargo space given its size
  • Abundant standard equipment
  • Tall seating position is reminiscent of a small SUV

Cons

  • Excessive wind noise at highway speeds
  • Availability limited to only a handful of states
  • Max driving range is less than what other EVs offer

Which Soul EV does Edmunds recommend?

Get the most basic and least expensive Kia Soul EV you can. Given its range deficit relative to the Chevrolet Bolt, you might as well take as much advantage of the Soul's considerably lower price point. Plus, it's not like a base Soul is a stripper model: You get a heated steering wheel and seats, satellite radio and, with the base EV (versus the California-only EV-e), an 8-inch touchscreen that includes a variety of other tech goodies.

Edmunds' Expert Review

Overall rating

4 / 5

If you're a current or potential EV buyer, chances are that getting a lot of electric range is important. Nobody wants to suffer from range anxiety, and every extra mile an electric car can eke out represents another mile you can go without burning gasoline in your second car, taking public transit or getting an emergency recharge. Well, the 2018 Kia Soul EV can go a few extra miles this year with the debut of a more energy-rich battery, bringing with it a new maximum of 111 miles. That's up from 93 miles.

That's great news for the range-conscious, but it falls a bit short of the range of other EVs such as the VW e-Golf and the Hyundai Ioniq Electric. And, much like every other EV not named Tesla, the Soul has less than half of the Chevrolet Bolt's estimated 238 miles of all-electric range. For many, that will make their EV choice obvious.

Still, if you're planning to stay within the city confines, own a second car, or quite simply don't plan on going very far, the Kia Soul EV offers a lot to like. For starters, it arguably has far more character and style than the Bolt and most other EVs. Like the gasoline Kia Soul upon which it's based, it boasts a handsome-if-quirky exterior, a stylish cabin, and a body style that's pretty reminiscent of a small SUV. It's certainly a more convincing crossover substitute than the Bolt. You also get lots of passenger and cargo space, plus an abundance of features for your money.

Basically, the same things that make the regular Soul so appealing also apply to the EV, and if range isn't everything, we think it's most definitely worth a look.

Notably, we picked the 2018 Kia Soul EV as one of Edmunds' Best Electric Cars for this year.

Trim levels & features

The 2018 Kia Soul EV is, as the name suggests, the all-electric version of the Soul. Though not marketed as such, that car is similar in size and concept to subcompact SUVs. So is the EV. There are three trim levels: EV-e, the base EV and EV Plus (+). All come with generous standard equipment, though the top trim's luxurious extras could be worth the extra bucks. All use the same 30-kWh lithium-ion polymer battery pack and 375-volt electric motor that produces 109 horsepower and 210 pound-feet of torque.

The EV-e is sold only in California. It comes standard with a DC fast-charging port, 16-inch alloy wheels, automatic headlights, LED running lights, heated mirror, rear privacy glass, keyless ignition and entry, automatic climate control, a pedestrian warning system, multiple steering modes (Normal, Comfort and Sport), a height-adjustable driver seat, two-level heated front seats, cloth upholstery, a heated leather-wrapped steering wheel, a 60/40-split folding back seat, a rearview camera, Bluetooth, one USB port, and a six-speaker sound system with a 5-inch color display, a media player interface, an auxiliary audio jack and satellite radio.

The base EV is the starting point for those Soul EV shoppers outside California. It adds better-looking 16-inch wheels, mirror turn-signal indicators, HD radio and an 8-inch touchscreen interface that brings with it integrated navigation, 3G Wi-Fi and Uvo Eco services, which includes an app that allows you to monitor the car's charge, find a charging station, lock and unlock doors, and adjust the in-car climate before you leave.

The EV Plus (+) adds front and rear parking sensors, foglights, power-folding mirrors, a faux-leather-trimmed dash, an auto-dimming rearview mirror, a cargo cover, three-level heated and ventilated front seats, heated outboard rear seats and leather upholstery. Exclusive to the Plus is the Sun and Fun package, which adds a panoramic sunroof, LED interior lighting and speaker lights. A battery-heating system is also available in Oregon, Washington and eastern states that sell the Soul EV.

Trim tested

Each vehicle typically comes in multiple versions that are fundamentally similar. The ratings in this review are based on our full test of the2015 Kia Soul EV Plus (+).

NOTE: Since this test was conducted, the current Soul EV has received some revisions, including an increase in range, and the addition of a standard 5-inch center screen and an available panoramic sunroof. Our findings remain broadly applicable to this year's Kia Soul EV.

Driving

3.5
The Soul EV displays run-of-the-mill electric vehicle driving dynamics. That's disappointing compared to the gas-powered Soul, which has surprisingly adept handling, braking and acceleration. On the other hand, the Soul EV delivers silent, torque-rich power and aggressive regenerative braking.

Acceleration

3.5
Abundant low-end torque makes the Soul EV feel spritely pulling away from a light, but this eagerness peters out as speeds rise. In Edmunds testing, a Soul EV accelerated from 0 to 60 mph in 9.5 seconds, which is behind the leading all-electric competitors.

Braking

3.5
In traffic, the Soul EV's brake pedal isn't particularly responsive or easy to modulate. But aggressive regenerative braking is available, and it is a boon once you get used to it. The Soul EV's panic-stop distance of 125 feet from 60 mph is about average for the class.

Steering

3
The steering response is slow without much feedback regardless of the weight dialed in through the driver-adjustable steering system. Of Normal, Comfort and Sport settings, Sport gives the most normal steering feel.

Handling

2.5
The EV isn't the surprisingly keen handler that the regular Soul is. The suspension favors comfort, limits are low, and grip is unimpressive. Most EV competitors, especially the Chevrolet Bolt and Hyundai Ioniq Electric, are sharper to drive.

Drivability

5
Slotting the shifter to B engages aggressive regenerative braking. It feels unusual at first, but you'll quickly learn to love the car doing much of the braking for you, especially in stop-and-go traffic. The Soul EV is otherwise simple and easy to drive.

Comfort

4
Without the gasoline Soul's raspy engine churning under the hood, the Soul EV is a quiet car to spend time in even with the elevated wind noise caused by its boxy shape. Ride comfort is average. The seats are commendably comfortable and supportive.

Seat comfort

4
The EV Plus' firm, leather-covered seats with an elevated placement are supportive and comfortable during longer drives (limited by range, of course). They are better than what you'll find in most small cars.

Ride comfort

3
The added weight of the batteries, smaller wheels and increased tire sidewall result in an improved ride compared to the rather jiggly and sometimes harsh ride of the gasoline-powered Soul. Ride comfort is about average for the small-EV segment.

Noise & vibration

4
The Soul EV's boxy shape creates more wind noise than is typical, and it's exacerbated by the lack of engine noise. You pretty much just hear the wind. Still, the lack of engine noise is welcome.

Interior

4.5
For the most part, the Soul EV's interior is user-friendly. All but the California-only EV-e has a likable touchscreen that's relatively easy to use, as well as easy entry and exit. Materials quality isn't as good as we'd like for the price, but it's not a deal-breaker.

Ease of use

4
All dashboard controls are placed within easy reach. The large touchscreen is generally a model of simplicity for its audio controls, with big icons and logical menus, but swiping to scroll phone numbers or track lists often results in errant selections.

Getting in/getting out

5
The seats are placed higher than in your average car, making climbing in and sitting down easy. There's no "fall-in" as in a car or "climb up" as in most SUVs. There's near-perfect step-in height. The wide door openings help as well.

Roominess

3
The battery placement raises the rear floor a few inches, reducing rear-seat legroom and comfort compared with the gasoline-powered Soul. Still, high-mounted seats in all positions yield good room for a vehicle of this size. It's a bit bigger than most subcompact SUVs.

Visibility

4
The boxy shape makes it easy to know where the vehicle's corners are. Tall windows make the view forward clear, but thick rear-quarter pillars restrict the crossview while reversing. A rearview camera is standard on the Soul EV, and the Plus comes with front and rear parking sensors.

Quality

3
We gave the regular Soul a higher score in this category for its abundant soft-touch points and above-average materials and switchgear. However, it costs much less than the EV. The Soul EV is well-built, but in the price range, interior quality is a bit under par.

Utility

5
Some EVs suffer a reduction in cargo space due to their extra batteries, but the Soul EV does not. In terms of passenger and cargo room, it lines up more with the new batch of subcompact SUVs rather than compact hatchbacks.

Technology

All but the California-only EV-e comes with an easy-to-use 8-inch touchscreen, remote vehicle controls, Wi-Fi and integrated navigation. Apple CarPlay, Android Auto and wireless charging are not available. There's one USB port.

Consumer reviews

Read what other owners think about the 2018 Kia Soul EV.

Overall Consumer Rating

Most helpful consumer reviews

First EV, as well as my first Kia
Orlando, 08/03/2018
Everything is great about it. Put 7000 miles on it, and everything is solid. Interior is quiet, no creaks, ventilated Seats make driving in the summer a lot more comfy. Dealer support and customer experience through Kia have also been phenomenal.
Write a consumer review of your vehicle for a chance to WIN $100!

Features & Specs

MSRP
$35,950
MPG
124 city / 93 hwy
Seats 5
1-speed direct drive
Electric
N/A
MSRP
$33,950
MPG
124 city / 93 hwy
Seats 5
1-speed direct drive
Electric
N/A
MSRP
$32,250
MPG
124 city / 93 hwy
Seats 5
1-speed direct drive
Electric
N/A
See all 2018 Kia Soul EV features & specs

Safety

Our experts’ favorite Soul EV safety features:

Pedestrian Warning System
Alerts pedestrians of the quiet Soul EV's approach with a soft, artificial noise at 12 mph and under.
Front and Rear Parking Sensors
Warns you if the car's bumpers are approaching exterior objects such as walls or other vehicles.
Uvo Connectivity
Allows owners to set parameters for secondary drivers such as geo-fencing, curfew alert and speed alert.

2018 Kia Soul EV for Sale

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More about the 2018 Kia Soul EV

The 2018 Kia Soul EV is a capable electric vehicle with above-average style and utility. Thanks to its boxy shape, the Soul EV can fit quite a bit of cargo in the rear, and there's enough room in back for adults to sit comfortably. The EPA estimates the Soul EV has a driving range of 111 miles, which is more than it had last year, but it's still short of the range of most top rivals — considerably shorter in one instance.

Kia does equip the Soul EV with an abundance of features, though. For trim levels, there's the EV-e, which is available only in California, the base Soul EV and EV Plus (+). The simple options structure means there's no long list of custom options or stand-alone items to choose from. For prospective buyers, that makes things a lot easier.

The EV-e and base trim levels offer items such as heated seats, a heated tilt-and-telescoping steering wheel, an 8-inch touchscreen and a rearview camera. Most people will be happy with the Soul EV's standard gear, especially for the price. But move up the ladder to the top-trim Kia Soul EV Plus (+), which isn't that much more expensive, and you'll get items such as ventilated front seats and leather upholstery. Whatever equipment level you go with, the Soul EV is a good value for the money, packing in a lot of items for the price.

If you put the 2018 Kia Soul EV up against its main competitors, its price is middle of the pack. Rivals with a bit more luxury equipment and significantly longer EV range are more expensive, while less desirable vehicles with shorter EV range will save you a bit up front. It's also important to note that most EVs are eligible for certain tax credits that will bring the price down by thousands. When you decide on what equipment you need and which 2018 Kia Soul EV is right for you, be sure to check out the details on Edmunds and we'll help you find the perfect one.

2018 Kia Soul EV Overview

The 2018 Kia Soul EV is offered in the following submodels: . Available styles include + 4dr Wagon (electric DD), 4dr Wagon (electric DD), and e 4dr Wagon (electric DD).

What do people think of the 2018 Kia Soul EV?

Consumer ratings and reviews are also available for the 2018 Kia Soul EV and all its trim types. Overall, Edmunds users rate the 2018 Soul EV 5 on a scale of 1 to 5 stars. Edmunds consumer reviews allow users to sift through aggregated consumer reviews to understand what other drivers are saying about any vehicle in our database. Detailed rating breakdowns (including performance, comfort, value, interior, exterior design, build quality, and reliability) are available as well to provide shoppers with a comprehensive understanding of why customers like the 2018 Soul EV.

Edmunds Expert Reviews

Edmunds experts have compiled a robust series of ratings and reviews for the 2018 Kia Soul EV and all model years in our database. Our rich content includes expert reviews and recommendations for the 2018 Soul EV featuring deep dives into trim levels and features, performance, mpg, safety, interior, and driving. Edmunds also offers expert ratings, road test and performance data, long-term road tests, first-drive reviews, video reviews and more.

Edmunds Scorecard

Overall4.0 / 5.0

Driving

3.5 / 5.0

Acceleration3.5 / 5.0
Braking3.5 / 5.0
Steering3.0 / 5.0
Handling2.5 / 5.0
Drivability5.0 / 5.0

Comfort

4.0 / 5.0

Seat comfort4.0 / 5.0
Ride comfort3.0 / 5.0
Noise & vibration4.0 / 5.0

Interior

4.5 / 5.0

Ease of use4.0 / 5.0
Getting in/getting out5.0 / 5.0
Roominess3.0 / 5.0
Visibility4.0 / 5.0
Quality3.0 / 5.0
Our Review Process

This review was written by a member of Edmunds' editorial team of expert car reviewers. Our team drives every car you can buy. We put the vehicles through rigorous testing, evaluating how they drive and comparing them in detail to their competitors.

We're also regular people like you, so we pay attention to all the different ways people use their cars every day. We want to know if there's enough room for our families and our weekend gear and whether or not our favorite drink fits in the cupholder. Our editors want to help you make the best decision on a car that fits your life.

Which 2018 Kia Soul EVS are available in my area?

Shop Edmunds' car, SUV, and truck listings of over 6 million vehicles to find a cheap new, used, or certified pre-owned (CPO) 2018 Kia Soul EV for sale near. There are currently 1 new 2018 Soul EVS listed for sale in your area, with list prices as low as $34,980 and mileage as low as 124 miles. Simply research the type of car you're interested in and then select a car from our massive database to find cheap vehicles for sale near you. Once you have identified a used vehicle you're interested in, check the Carfax and Autocheck vehicle history reports, read dealer reviews, and find out what other owners paid for the 2018 Kia Soul EV.

Can't find a new 2018 Kia Soul EVs you want in your area? Consider a broader search.

Find a new Kia Soul EV for sale - 6 great deals out of 19 listings starting at $23,384.

Find a new Kia for sale - 6 great deals out of 21 listings starting at $22,391.

Compare prices on the New Kia Soul EV for sale in Ashburn, VA to other major cities

Why trust Edmunds?

Edmunds has deep data on over 6 million new, used, and certified pre-owned vehicles, including rich, trim-level features and specs information like: MSRP, average price paid, warranty information (basic, drivetrain, and maintenance), features (upholstery, bluetooth, navigation, heated seating, cooled seating, cruise control, parking assistance, keyless ignition, satellite radio, folding rears seats ,run flat tires, wheel type, tire size, wheel tire, sunroof, etc.), vehicle specifications (engine cylinder count, drivetrain, engine power, engine torque, engine displacement, transmission), fuel economy (city, highway, combined, fuel capacity, range), vehicle dimensions (length, width, seating capacity, cargo space), car safety, true cost to own. Edmunds also provides tools to allow shopper to compare vehicles to similar models of their choosing by warranty, interior features, exterior features, specifications, fuel economy, vehicle dimensions, consumer rating, edmunds rating, and color.

Should I lease or buy a 2018 Kia Soul EV?

Is it better to lease or buy a car? Ask most people and they'll probably tell you that car buying is the way to go. And from a financial perspective, it's true, provided you're willing to make higher monthly payments, pay off the loan in full and keep the car for a few years. Leasing, on the other hand, can be a less expensive option on a month-to-month basis. It's also good if you're someone who likes to drive a new car every three years or so.

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