What is the Soul?
The Kia Soul is one of the rare vehicles that defies easy categorization. On the outside, the Soul resembles a boxy SUV, but its car-like ride height and lack of all-wheel drive make it more akin to a hatchback. While its taxonomy might be confusing, the Soul's wide range of strengths makes it one of our favorite small runabouts.
Though it doesn't quite reach TARDIS levels of size disparity, the Soul's cabin is more spacious than its exterior dimensions suggest. The tall, flat roof provides plenty of headroom, and smart packaging affords a generous amount of legroom. Two 6-foot-tall passengers will be able to sit in tandem without issue. The Soul also has a fairly sizable cargo area — one whose utility is maximized with the available two-tier floor.
The Soul excels in other areas too. The ride is comfortable, handling is composed, and the list of tech features is impressive at this price. The powertrain lineup is worth mentioning. It certainly keeps up with rivals with its standard engine and continuously variable automatic transmission combo, but the Soul is one of the only small SUVs with an available upgrade. The turbocharged four-cylinder on the top trim level delivers sprightly acceleration, though the paired dual-clutch automatic can feel a little jerky at low speeds.
The Kia Soul is one of the most well-rounded small vehicles available today. We don't expect many changes to the 2022 model, so if you're looking now, consider grabbing the 2021 Kia Soul.