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2010 Kia Soul

Overview
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2010 Kia Soul Review

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With the arrival of the 2010 Kia Soul and 2009 Nissan Cube, the original Scion xB becomes the progenitor of a bona fide little sub-segment defined by funky practicality. Surely, there's a good chance the Soul and Cube wouldn't be here today - in this country, anyway - if not for the success of the original box on wheels. While the Nissan Cube is more reminiscent of the smaller, first-generation xB, the Kia Soul is a more direct competitor to the latest xB. Does the Soul's mix of style, value and technology make it the right choice for you? Keep reading to find out.

You'll Like This Car If...

Versatility and affordability are admirable qualities in a car, but they sound so boring. The 2010 Kia Soul wraps both in look-at-me styling, creating a vehicle that combines niche appeal with well-rounded practicality.

You May Not Like This Car If...

If you're looking for zip, you'll have to look elsewhere (outside the category, really). A four-speed automatic transmission doesn't help matters, and the Soul's highway mpg rating of 30 mpg (31 mpg for the smaller, less powerful base model) isn't anything to write home about.

What's Significant About This Car?

The arrival of the Kia Soul puts an end to Scion's near monopoly on economical, versatile, boldly styled cars aimed directly at the younger set.

Driving the Soul

Driving Impressions The 2010 Kia Soul is interesting to look at, roomy for people or cargo and offers an impressive array of audio and connectivity features. Less notable is the way it...

drives: like a run-of-the-mill economy car. It isn't particularly slow (although we haven't driven a base model with the smaller engine) or ill-handling, but the driving experience doesn't live up to the car's otherwise playful demeanor. The five-speed manual transmission doesn't offer the kind of car-driver connection you might want from a manual, and the four-speed automatic is at least one speed shy of flexible. Would the driving experience keep us from buying a 2010 Kia Soul? Absolutely not. Around town and on the highway, the 2010 Kia Soul is as easy and as comfortable as some of today's better compact cars. Just don't expect it inspire you to take the fun way home.
Favorite Features

Comprehensive Audio System
The 2010 Kia Soul base model might be hampered with small steel wheels and a lack remote keyless entry, but Kia saw fit to make sure every single Soul has a full-featured AM/FM/CD/MP3/Sat/Aux/USB audio system. That's cool.

iPod Bin
The 2010 Kia Soul has the best iPod station we've seen (outside of another Kia or Hyundai): an open bin, in plain view and within easy reach, with readily accessible power and connection ports.

2010 Kia Soul Details
2010 Kia Soul photo Interior

The first thing new Soul owners show their friends are the available speaker lights in the front door speakers, which pulse to the beat of the music or cycle softly with adjustable intensity. Far more important in the long run are the Soul's overall interior design and quality, which we find especially impressive for a car that starts under $14,000. One of our favorite features is the front-and-center iPod bin, detailed further in the Favorite Features section of this review. The 2010 Kia Soul sport is offered exclusively with a very red-themed interior, our favorite part of which is the red glove box interior that makes it easier to see what's inside. Not surprisingly, the tall, boxy 2010 Kia Soul is a roomy and versatile little car.

Exterior
2010 Kia Soul photo

We like the simultaneously sporty, quirky and utilitarian look of the 2010 Kia Soul. We like it much better, of course, with the range-topping 18-inch five-spoke wheels than the base model's 15-inch covered steel wheels. The entry Soul is also hindered by black door handles and mirrors in contrast with body-color pieces across the rest of the line. At the opposite end of the price spectrum, the 2010 Kia Soul sport is distinguished visually by unique front and rear fascias and side sills.

Notable Equipment
Standard Equipment

For a Lincoln less than $14,000, the 2010 Kia Soul offers a 122-horsepower four-cylinder engine, five-speed manual transmission, air conditioning, power windows and locks, a four-speaker AM/FM/CD/MP3/Sat/Aux/USB audio system and an impressive list of standard safety equipment that includes six airbags and electronic stability control.

Optional Equipment

Check all the option boxes and your 2010 Kia Soul will include a 142-horsepower engine, four-speed automatic transmission, 18-inch alloy wheels, front fog lamps, moonroof, upgraded audio system, leather-covered steering wheel and shift knob, steering wheel-mounted audio controls, cruise control and Bluetooth phone connectivity. The Soul sport gets a sport-tuned suspension, unique front, rear and side styling elements, metal-finish pedals and interior accents, and a red/black interior color scheme.

Under the Hood

Although the base model 2010 Kia Soul features a smaller 1.6-liter engine that's paired only with a five-speed manual transmission, Kia doesn't anticipate selling too many. And we probably wouldn't buy it, either. Most 2010 Kia Souls will feature a 2.0-liter engine, offered with a four-speed automatic or the five-speed manual.

1.6-liter in-line four
122 horsepower @ 6,300 rpm
115 lb.-ft. of torque @ 4,200 rpm
EPA city/highway fuel economy: 26/31

2.0-liter in-line four
142 horsepower @ 6,000 rpm
137 lb.-ft. of torque @ 4,600 rpm
EPA city/highway fuel economy: 24/30

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2010 Kia Soul Consumer Reviews

Overall Rating
8.6
Out of 10

Based on 265 Ratings for the 2010 - 2013 models.

Review this car
  • Value
    8.8/10
    Quality
    8.5/10
  • Reliability
    9.1/10
    Performance
    8.4/10
  • Comfort
    8.6/10
    Styling
    8.9/10

This is a fun vehicle!

By on Tuesday, April 22, 2014

I own this car - My approximate mileage is 22,000

10 10.0
overall rating 10 of 10rating details

Reviewer Ratings

Overall Rating
10/10
Value
10/10
Reliability
10/10
Quality
10/10
Performance
10/10
Styling
10/10
Comfort
10/10

Pros: "fun to drive"

Cons: "none"

Likely to recommend this car? (1-10): 10

"The height of this vehicle is great; one gets in and out with ease and when the rear seats are down, there is much room. Very fun to drive; handles great on the winding roads in WV. I see no disadvantage other than not being able to get studded 18" low profile tires for winter travel."

Honestly..a car for just about anyone!

By on Monday, April 21, 2014

I own this car - My approximate mileage is 21,500

10 10.0
overall rating 10 of 10rating details

Reviewer Ratings

Overall Rating
10/10
Value
10/10
Reliability
10/10
Quality
10/10
Performance
9/10
Styling
10/10
Comfort
10/10

Pros: "VALUE! QUALITY! And not just a warmed over clone!"

Cons: "I'm 60, not the type of person who owns a Soul?"

Likely to recommend this car? (1-10): 10

"When Volkswagon cooked up the first series of the "Beetle", it was called "The Peoples Car", and Henry Ford sold his Model A's and Model T's literally like "hot cakes" and just about all of Americans could at long last sell the horse! The KIA Soul isn't quite the everymans car...but on the other hand it close to being an iconic vehicle...and in its Urban Utility Vehicle catagory it has sent several "wanna be" competitors packing their bags and slinking away!"

I love my Soul

By on Saturday, April 19, 2014

I own this car - My approximate mileage is 36,000

10 9.0
overall rating 9 of 10rating details

Reviewer Ratings

Overall Rating
9/10
Value
8/10
Reliability
10/10
Quality
8/10
Performance
8/10
Styling
8/10
Comfort
8/10

Pros: "great on gas, reliable, adorable"

Cons: "hated the fabric on the seats!"

Likely to recommend this car? (1-10): 10

"I am a photographer who carries her studio around in her car and I have loved the ease and convenience of doing so in my Kia Soul. It's spacious without being a gas-guzzler and totally reliable. I've had this car for three years and have never taken it in for anything more than an oil change and tire rotation. I wasn't thrilled with the fabric used for the seats of the 2011 Soul, but I know that has since been improved upon."

wonderful car.

By on Wednesday, April 16, 2014

I own this car - My approximate mileage is 4,500

10 10.0
overall rating 10 of 10rating details

Reviewer Ratings

Overall Rating
10/10
Value
10/10
Reliability
10/10
Quality
10/10
Performance
10/10
Styling
10/10
Comfort
10/10

Pros: "FUN, A BLAST TO DRIVE."

Cons: "HUH? THERE ARE NONE."

Likely to recommend this car? (1-10): 10

"INCREDIBLE STEERING, GAS MILEAGE = 35-40MPG. (BUT WE DON'T RACE IT) SIMPLY BEAUTIFUL DESIGN. EVERY TIME WE PASS ANOTHER ONE, BOTH DRIVERS GIVE A "THUMBS UP". WHEN PEOPLE SEE THIS CAR, THEY SMILE."

2 people out of 3 found this review helpful

Great first car/Good value for what its worth

By on Monday, April 07, 2014

I own this car - My approximate mileage is 31,071

10 9.0
overall rating 9 of 10rating details

Reviewer Ratings

Overall Rating
9/10
Value
10/10
Reliability
10/10
Quality
8/10
Performance
8/10
Styling
8/10
Comfort
9/10

Pros: "Very reliable, smooth driving, great price, MPG"

Cons: "Touchy breaks, slow take off"

Likely to recommend this car? (1-10): 8

"This is the first car I have bought and owned and I loved it. The engine is very quiet, rides smooth, and a Kia will last you forever if you keep up the maintenance. The only downside I could say about this car is that the breaks are REALLY touchy, no matter what (it gets worse in the rain). The look of the car is unique, something you will have to get used to! Also, if you want to go from 0-60 in seconds, this is not the car for you. The econ button makes for a slow take off (but the MPG are amazing!). Unfortunately I just recently totaled this car (about a week ago). However, I can personally vouch for the good safety ratings. Just minor seat-belt injuries is how I walked away from it being totaled, and even though major damage on the outside the inside hardly gave at all allowing for my injuries to be as minor as they were."

4 people out of 5 found this review helpful

very happy with vehicle,must sell because of money

By on Wednesday, April 02, 2014

I don't own this car

10 10.0
overall rating 10 of 10rating details

Reviewer Ratings

Overall Rating
10/10
Value
10/10
Reliability
10/10
Quality
10/10
Performance
10/10
Styling
10/10
Comfort
10/10

Pros: "good price,great style,cleans up perfectly."

Cons: "some exterior blemishes, does not take away"

Likely to recommend this car? (1-10): 10

"great sounds,mood lights around front speakers,fantastic cargo and or back seats,very clean no tears or wear, small spare tire with tire jack intact. safety rating with air bags very high. Having to sell because of financial crisis. When I get back in the saddle I will buy another Kia. SAT radio ability,USB site, MP3/CD player,tilt wheel, very low miles, electric windows, color is "alien green" factory original,5 speakers up front,many stash boxes for sunglasses etc,large glove box plus middle console box. Area for cell phone with 4 cup holders in front seat. Driver and passenger lighted vanity mirrors. The list goes on....low mileage 37,000 gets avg 30mpg. Automatic trans. quiet motor,smooth ride,sweet package."

4 people out of 5 found this review helpful

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Trading in or Selling? Know where you stand with the most up-to-date Kelley Blue Book Value at your fingertips. See your car's value

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