2019 Kia Soul

MSRP $16,490

Ranked #2 in Wagon

7.5

Overall Rating

2019 Kia Soul Price, Review, Ratings and Pictures

Updated on: July 19, 2021

Nathan Dyer's image
Nathan Dyer 

Senior Editor


In the world of boring and simple-looking cars, Kia keeps up a funky and unique-looking design that still attracts a lot of people with its boxy wagon-like offering perfectly named the 2019 Kia Soul. It comes with three engine options and ample features packed in the little box but might cut short on a bit of cargo space. Nevertheless, it offers a lot of cubbies and compartments inside the cabin for small item storage and also has ample passenger space. 

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Pros

Powerful turbocharged engine

Fascinating design

Spacious interior

Excellent warranty

Cons

Larger wheels hamper the ride quality

Average fuel economy

Important safety features available from Plus trim

Could have improved cargo space

What's New?

Gets new exterior color ‘Inferno Red’ 

New tech features like a rearview camera and automatic on/off headlights, 5-inch touchscreen

Increase in the fuel economy of the base engine from 27 to 28 MPG with the automatic transmission


Features

vehicle bio

base price

$16490

bodystyle

4dr Wagon

passenger capacity

5

top speed

90 mph

drivetrain

front wheel drive

engine type

displacement

97 cu.in.

horsepower

130 hp @ 6300 rpm

torque

118 lb.-ft. @ 4850 rpm

transmission

6 speed manual

chassis

suspension front

front independent suspension

suspension rear

Semi-independent rear torsion beam suspension

dimensions

wheelbase

101.2 in.

length

163 in.

width

70.9 in.

height

63.5 in.

curb weight

2884 lbs.

ground clearance

5.9 in.

capacity

passenger volume

101 cu ft.

cargo volume

49.5 cu ft.

performance

zero to 60 mph

7.3 sec.

zero to 100 mph

17.6 sec.

rolling start 5-60 mph

6.6

standing 1/4-mile

15.4 sec.

braking (70-0 mph)

177 ft.

fuel economy

city/combined/highway

24/27/30 mpg

warranty

basic warranty

5 yr./ 60000 mi.

drivetrain warranty

10 yr./ 100000 mi.

powertrain warranty

10 yr./ 100,000 mi.

corrosion warranty

5 yr./100,000 mi.

roadside assistance

Yes


Pictures & Videos


Trims

Base$16,490 onwards

base$16,490 onwards

Colors and Styles

2019 Kia Soul in Alien Green color
Alien Green

Vehicle images are guides only and may not reflect the model's exact specifications/features– exact specifications/features should be confirmed with the seller.

Ratings

Pricing and Features

7.0

Engine and Performance

6.5

Fuel Economy

5.0

Interior

8.6

Exterior

8.0

Safety

7.0

Competition

9.1

7.5

OVERALL RATING

Expert Review, Pricing Analysis and Buying Guide

7.5

Overall Rating


In short, the Kia Soul is a car that has something on offer to suit everyone’s taste, making it quite a good choice on offer today. Starting at an MSRP of $16,490, it is quite accessible, to begin with as well. However, it is given excellent competition in the segment with rivals like the Toyota C-HR. Hyundai Kona and the Buick Encore.


6.5/10
Engine and Performance

5.0/10
Fuel Economy

8.6/10
Interior

8.0/10
Exterior

7.0/10
Safety

9.1/10
Competition


2019 Kia Soul Features

It comes available in three trims, starting with the base trim which is priced at $16,490, this trim for the 2019 model years sees an addition of a bit more features than the previous model year making it well equipped, the second and top trim are named Plus(+), and Exclaim (!) respectively and see an addition in the list of features as you move up. The powertrain also changes depending upon the trim you choose. All the trims come with a choice of manual or automatic transmission. 

Trim

Base

Plus(+)

Exclaim(!)

MSRP (FWD)

$16,490

$20,490

$22,990

Key Features

1.6-liter DOHC Inline-4 engine

Add to the features of the Base trim:

Add/Replaces to the features of the Plus(+) trim:

 

6-speed manual transmission

2.0-liter DOHC inline-4 engine

1.6-liter DOHC turbocharged Inline-4 engine

 

16-inch alloy wheels

6-speed automatic

7-speed dual-clutch automatic transmission

 

Rear-camera display

17-inch alloy wheels

18-inch alloy wheels

 

5-inch touchscreen display

Cruise control with steering wheel-mounted controls

4.3-inch TFT color display gauge cluster

 

Auto on/off headlights

7-inch touch screen display

LED mirror-mounted indicators

   

UVO infotainment system

Piano black trim

Which Trim should you buy?

If you are seriously tight on budget then there is no option but to make do with the Base trim, but the best option to go for is the Plus(+) trim. The Plus trim comes with more features, a more powerful engine, and most importantly offers better safety features over the base trim, the price is also quite reasonable for the trim and this proves as the best trim to go for among the three.

2019 Kia Soul Engine and Performance

6.5/10

The base engine available is a 1.6-liter inline-4 engine, which takes the fun out of the Soul. It produces 130 horsepower and 118-pound feet of torque and can be had with either a six-speed manual or automatic gearbox. The Plus trim offers a better and slightly more powerful 2.0-liter inline-4 engine which produces 161 horsepower and 150 pound-feet of torque. This engine adds a bit more soul to the Kia Soul, as it pumps up the power which helps in overtaking at highway speeds, and paired with a six-speed Sportronic automatic transmission this engine proves to be a much better choice than the base engine. 

The top-level Exclaim trim comes with the engine that offers the most power which is the 1.6-liter inline-4 engine, but this setup has a turbocharged engine installed to it. Paired with a dual-clutch automatic transmission, this engine produces 201 horsepower and 195 pound-feet of torque, which is a lot for the Kia and makes it fun to drive a crossover with immense power for a small car. It comes with standard FWD and there is no choice of AWD, so it proves to be more of an urban-focused crossover, rather than one which you could take off-roading. 60 MPH comes up at 10.3 seconds for the base trim, 8.5 seconds for the Plus, and 7.5 for the top Exclaim trim. 

Models

2019 Kia Soul

2019 Toyota C-HR

2019 Hyundai Kona

2019 Buick Encore

MSRP

$16,490

$20,945

$19,500

$23,200

Engine

1.6-liter DOHC Inline-4 

2.0-liter Inline-4

2.0-liter inline-4

1.4-liter turbocharged Inline-4

Drivetrain

FWD

FWD

FWD

FWD

Transmission

6-speed manual

2-speed CVTw/OD

6-speed automatic

6-speed automatic

Power (hp @ RPM

130 hp @ 6,300 RPM

144 hp @ 6,100 RPM

147 hp @ 6,200 RPM

138 hp @ 4,900 RPM

Torque (lb-ft @ RPM)

118 lb-ft @ 1,850 RPM

139 lb-ft @ 3,900 RPM

132 lb-ft @ 4,500 RPM

148 lb-ft @ 1,850 RPM

0-60 MPH (seconds)

10.3

11.0

10

8.4

Quarter-Mile (seconds)

17.6

18.4

17.3

16.2

Top-Speed (MPH)

N/A

106

127

N/A

All the cars offer similar performance but the base model Kia is the least quick. Buick offers the highest torque and even with the smaller and less powerful engine. The Soul reaches 60 MPH before the Toyota which offers more power and torque. The Buick offers the most torque and is also the fastest among the rivals. The more expensive trims in the Kia are very much powerful in the class.

How well does the 2019 Kia Soul handle?

Even though it comes in only FWD, the Soul has one of the best driving characteristics on offer. The base engine makes the car feel sluggish and slow, however with the manual transmission you tend to feel a little bit more in control. The Plus and Exclaim trim come with DMS or Drive Mode Select which allows you to change the driving modes. 

The DMS offers a sport mode, for when you feel the need for a sharper and more agile drive, what this mode does is that it stiffens up the electric steering a little to provide a sharp response which makes cornering feel a little more composed. In the standard driving modes, the steering feels more relaxed and predictable which makes the ride comfort in the Soul. The bumps and rough surfaces are flattened out quite well with the suspension, but with bigger wheels, you feel a bit more jerks and shocks in the cabin.

2019 Kia Soul Braking Performance

There is not much to say about the braking performance of the Kia Soul. It offers decent performance and comes with disc brakes all around. The braking performance is not exceptional but is not bad either, and considering the weight of the car, it offers good performance. 11-inch ventilated discs are installed upfront while the rear discs are solid and slightly smaller in size at 10.3 inches. 

Models

2019 Kia Soul

2019 Toyota C-HR

2019 Hyundai Kona

2019 Buick Encore

Brake Rotors: Front (inches)

11

11.8

11.8

11.6

Brake Rotors: Rear (inches)

10.3

11.1

9.0 (Drum)

10.8

Curb Weight (lbs)

3,163

3,300

2,890

3,113

60-0 (feet)

N/A

N/A

N/A

N/A

All the cars come with similarly sized brakes, the Hyundai however comes with smaller drum brakes at the rear and weighs less than the rest. The Toyota is the heaviest, followed by Kia and Buick, so while the braking distance is not yet known based on the difference in weight, it is safe to suppose that the lightest car would stop before the rest. 

2019 Kia Soul Fuel Economy

5.0/10

Anyone who knows a little bit about cars, and has common sense would think that the least powerful engine would be the most fuel-efficient, but Kia managed to change the status quo. The base 1.6-liter engine offers 24/30/27 MPG for city/highway and combined cycles with the manual transmission and slightly better figures with the automatic transmission. The 2.0-liter engine offers 25/30/27 which is slightly better than the weaker counterpart. 

The most powerful engine with a turbocharger offers 26/31/27 MPG, which is much better than the standard 1.6-liter engine, making it a better choice to go for and putting the standard engine at shame. It comes with a 14.2-gallon fuel tank which makes up for an overall range of about 383 miles for the standard engine under combined driving conditions. 

Models

2019 Kia Soul

2019 Toyota C-HR

2019 Hyundai Kona

2019 Buick Encore

MPG (City)

24

27

27

26

MPG (Highway)

30

31

33

31

MPG (Combined)

27

29

30

28

Fuel Capacity (Gallons)

14.2

12

13.2

14

Range (City/Highway/Combined, in Miles)

355/426/383

324/372/348

356/436/396

364/434/392

The Hyundai Kona offers the best in fuel economy and Kia which is a sub-brand from Hyundai is the least fuel-efficient of them all. Even with the biggest fuel tank, the low MPG figures of the Kia fail to match the range offered by Hyundai. Toyota and Buick also offer better MPG than Kia despite offering smaller fuel tanks.

2019 Kia Soul Interior

8.6/10

The interior of the Soul matches the funky design of the exterior. There are various hard plastics fitted inside the cabin, but most key touchpoints are covered in soft-touch plastics. The top-level trims come with upscale materials, colorful stitching on the steering wheel and seats, a panoramic sunroof, and a matching shifter inlay. All these add up to give the cabin a more premium feel than what you usually get in the price range. 

There are a few unique touches like the speakers sticking from the top of the driver and passenger air vents, visible seat stitching, and a sport instrument cluster that match with the overall crazy design of the Soul. There is no lack of space inside the cabin no matter where you sit, and even though the panoramic sunroof cuts short on a bit of headroom, it still can take tall heightened passengers anywhere they want to go in comfort. 

Models

2019 Kia Soul

2019 Toyota C-HR

2019 Hyundai Kona

2019 Buick Encore

Seating Capacity

5

5

5

5

Front Row (Headroom/Shoulder Room/Leg Room, in inches)

39.6/55.5/40.9

38.1/49/43.5

39.6/55.5/41.5

39.6/54.2/40.8

Rear Row (Headroom/Shoulder Room/Leg Room, in inches)

39.5/54.7/39.1

38.3/52.5/31.7

37.8/54.5/34.6

38.8/52.5/35.8

Trunk Capacity (cubic feet)

18.8

19

19.2

18.8

Kia offers the most space in the cabin whether it is upfront or in the rear. Toyota offers more legroom upfront but cuts on the rear legroom. The Hyundai has the biggest trunk while the trunk in the other cars is also not very small but slightly smaller. Buick and Kia offer identically sized trunks but they are also adequately spacious and are only slightly smaller than the Hyundai. Some standout interior features include:

  • Automatic temperature control with cluster ionizer
  • Remote keyless entry
  • Dual front cup holders
  • 6-way adjustable driver’s seat
  • 60/40 split-folding rear seat
  • Overhead sunglass holder 

What’s there to keep you entertained?

The standard infotainment system is a five-inch touch-screen display that comes with various audio streaming capabilities in the form of AM/FM/MP3 and SiriusXM radio streaming. The base trim has a six-speaker sound system with two dash-mounted tweeters and offers smartphone connectivity in the form of USB/Bluetooth/Auxiliary input. 

The higher trims come with a bigger 7-inch touchscreen display and Kia’s in-house UVO infotainment system which offers better features than the standard infotainment system. There is also an option to upgrade the sound system to a 7 speaker sound system from Harman Kardon which comes with a subwoofer and external amplifier that comes in the optional audio package. The features available with the Kia Soul include:

  • Android Auto and Apple CarPlay (In Plus and Exclaim trims)
  • Navigation (In Plus and Exclaim trims)
  • AM/FM/MP3 capability
  • Bluetooth connectivity
  • USB ports
  • Six-speaker sound system
  • SiriusXM satellite radio 

2019 Kia Soul Exterior

8.0/10

The design in itself is a standout feature of the car. The unique boxy design comes with a multi-reflector headlight for the base trim and HID lights for the higher trims, which also come with LED fog lights. The wheel sizes range from 16 to 18 inches for the three trims. The Exclaim trim comes with specific exterior cues including gloss black and red trim elements and twin chrome exhaust tips. The design and other exterior characteristics remain mostly similar to that of the 2018 model. 

Models

2019 Kia Soul

2019 Toyota C-HR

2019 Hyundai Kona

2019 Buick Encore

Curb Weight (lb)

3,163

3,300

2,890

3,273

Length (inches)

163

171.2

164

168.4

Width (inches)

70.9

70.7

70.9

70.1

Height (inches)

63.5

61.6

61

65.2

Ground Clearance (inches)

5.9

5.9

6.7

6.2

Wheelbase (inches)

101.2

103.9

102.4

100.6

The Kia Soul is the smallest and has a short wheelbase, but it still offers better interior space, which makes it a well-designed car, as the engineers at Kia managed to use the available space as much as possible and helped the car to provide more space inside the cabin. However, despite being smaller it is not much lighter than any of its competitors. Some standout exterior features include:

  • Front grille in chrome black
  • Dual body-color power mirror
  • Multi-reflector headlights
  • Privacy glass
  • Rear wiper and washer

2019 Kia Soul Safety

7.0/10

Being a fun car does not mean that Kia compromises safety. In the tests conducted by the top safety institutions, the Soul manages to pass with flying colors. It scores full five-out-of-five stars in the crash test rating given by NHTSA and manages to grab the title of ‘Top Safety Pick’ from IIHS with the topmost ‘Good’ rating for almost all the tests. 

The base trim comes with standard safety features like ABS, traction control, VSM or vehicle stability management, Hill-start assist control or HAC, and six airbags. The higher trims get slightly more advanced features, but automatic emergency braking can be had only in the Plus trim and is absent even on the top trim. Other safety features available with the car include:

  • Tire pressure monitoring system
  • Blind Spot monitoring
  • Rearview camera
  • Hill-start assists control
  • Automatic emergency braking
  • Vehicle stability management

2019 Kia Soul Competition

9.1/10

2019 Kia Soul vs 2019 Toyota C-HR

Toyota also made a uniquely designed crossover, which is a more capable off-roader than the Kia. It is also slightly more fuel-efficient than the Kia Soul. Kia however offers more space inside, a better warranty, and few more standard infotainment features. The Toyota C-HR is also a run-of-the-mill product while the Kia Soul has a character of its own.

2019 Kia Soul vs 2019 Hyundai Kona

Kia is owned by Hyundai which makes the cars similar in some ways. However, one thing that Hyundai does better than the Kia offers more fuel economy and a bigger trunk. The Kona also feels a bit more refined and premium even in the standard variant than the Soul. It is as practical as the Kia is quirky.

2019 Kia Soul vs 2019 Buick Encore

The Buick Encore, while on one hand offered better performance and slightly better fuel economy than the Kia Soul does not manage to keep up the same build quality inside. The Kia Soul offers more comfort, better features, and an upscale interior at a lower price. Kia also offers a best-in-class warranty and comes equipped with more safety features. 

2019 Kia Soul Final Verdict

On a budget, the Kia Soul is a unique, well-equipped, and fun-to-drive crossover. It might not offer as much off-road capability as a few other crossovers but it offers ample cabin space, three different engine options, a funky interior to match the exterior design, a slew of infotainment features. Overall, it is a good small family crossover to own as it offers something to meet the needs of everyone.