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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.

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 320 Ratings for the 2010 - 2013 models.

Review this car
  • Value
    8.7/10
    Quality
    8.5/10
  • Reliability
    9.2/10
    Performance
    8.3/10
  • Comfort
    8.6/10
    Styling
    8.7/10

Best value and fun to drive

By on Thursday, April 16, 2015

I own this car - My approximate mileage is 38,000

10 10.0
overall rating 10 of 10rating details

Reviewer Ratings

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

Pros: "Great price, 5 stars for safety, fun to drive,"

Cons: "When I find one I will let you know"

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

"I love this car. To say I am fussy is an understatement. I test drove 23 cars before I decided on one but from the moment I sat in this car I knew it was mine. Comfortable, easy and fun to drive, low maintenance, low repair cost. How could you ask for more? The sound system is amazing. I have not had a single repair or any problems at all in 4 years. Air filter and oil changes are all it has ever needed. That is saying a lot since my driving is up and down hills and stop and go driving.I know that is hard on brakes and tires let alone the engine and drive train. I have recommended this car to several friends and 2 of them have also purchased one."

1 person out of 1 found this review helpful

GREATEST, SAFEST, FUNEST CAR EVER!!!!!

By on Monday, April 13, 2015

I own this car - My approximate mileage is 31,000

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: "She gets up and goes!! Comfortable safe reliable"

Cons: "none except no light in glove box"

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

"I LOVE MY KIA SOUL SPORT. SO FUN TO DRIVE AND VERY CUTE. MY LIL RED CAR IS THE BEST. VERY HIGH SAFETEY RATINGS TOO!!!!!"

1 person out of 1 found this review helpful

Value is unbeatable and better mpg than stated

By on Saturday, April 04, 2015

I own this car - My approximate mileage is 45,390

10 10.0
overall rating 10 of 10rating details

Reviewer Ratings

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

Pros: "Great price, fun drive, great looking."

Cons: "Turning off a/c to climb mtn slacks the "drag"."

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

"This car is well worth the money. I average 32+ mpg and that is with a daily paper route and 1 and 1/2 mile mountain climb to get back home. If I am total highway/trip 39.5. It has the perfect amount of room and easy access with the four doors and my 6'4" hubby sits in back comfortably."

3 people out of 5 found this review helpful

very good on gas and travels good country or city.

By on Friday, April 03, 2015

I own this car - My approximate mileage is 16,700

10 9.0
overall rating 9 of 10rating details

Reviewer Ratings

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

Pros: "gas and looks"

Cons: "I'm getting what I paid for and stylist too."

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

"Love my car! The looks are sweet (white) Gas mileage is about 29. I live in the country and have had no problem getting around in snow, ice or dry. Great little car."

1 person out of 1 found this review helpful

good for economy

By on Sunday, March 22, 2015

I own this car - My approximate mileage is 26,500

10 7.0
overall rating 7 of 10rating details

Reviewer Ratings

Overall Rating
7/10
Value
4/10
Reliability
10/10
Quality
8/10
Performance
8/10
Styling
6/10
Comfort
7/10

Pros: "reliable, good fuel economy, agile"

Cons: "ugly body style"

Likely to recommend this car? (1-10): 7

custom paint

"Great daily driver. Actually handles and accelerates very well. (Manual) more room than appears, other than "trunk" space."

4 people out of 5 found this review helpful

custom paint

Great Little car

By on Wednesday, March 18, 2015

I own this car - My approximate mileage is 14,300

10 10.0
overall rating 10 of 10rating details

Reviewer Ratings

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

Pros: "Accessibilty, interior comfort, sportiness"

Cons: "Probably not made for cross-country touring."

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

"Buyers of this car are very young or very old. I'm old. I thought my Ford Focus was a small car - this one is 30 inches shorter overall. And seems vastly larger inside. It doesn't happen often, but even large and tall people sit comfortably in the back seats. Plenty of room for people and luggage, groceries, etc. Ease of entry and seating are important at my advanced age - this car is the best. It sits low; you sit upright. 8 airbags means I'm probably safe, too. IT drives like a sports car and parks so easy. Great little car."

4 people out of 4 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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