What Kind Of Car Is Kia Soul? 5 Things You Need To Know

Kia Soul X-Line in orange color

Kia Soul boxy crossover has been a major hit for the South Korean carmaker ever since its inaugural US-market unveiling almost a decade ago.

The exterior design of the car has become iconic, while hamsters, which Kia used in the commercials, are also a big hit today.

The overall success, makes us think what kind of a vehicle is Kia Soul that it managed to turn on so many U.S. consumers.

Let’s find out by learning more about new Kia Soul:

  • first release date
  • AWD
  • hamsters
  • competitors
  • hybrid

1. When was the Kia Soul first released?

The production version of the Kia Soul was first shown at the Paris Auto Show in 2008, with the design work being done in California. Head designer Peter Schreyer oversaw the design, but the real credit is thought to belong to Mike Torpey.

2012 saw the Soul get a minor facelift, with a fully re-designed model delivered to Kia showrooms in 2014.

The second generation model was given some major improvements to the ride and handling, and it’s expected that even more changes will come when another facelift is applied to the 2017 model.

At the end of 2019, Kia officially unveiled the third-generation of the Soul crossover.

2. Is the Kia Soul all-wheel-drive?

The Soul all-wheel-drive is curently not available! All Kia Souls are front-wheel drive. There is talk, though, that a Soul AWD model will be made available sometime in the near future.

3. Who are the Soul hamsters?

Marketing is key to the success of a new vehicle, and the David&Goliath ad agency hit a home run when they introduced the “A new way to roll campaign” featuring a trio of cool hamsters behind the wheel of the Kia Soul.

The Soul commercial ads have all gone viral online, and have also received critical acclaim via the “Automotive Ad of the Year” from Nielsen.

Music is a major component of the ads, and some of the featured songs include Fort Knox by Goldfish, Do What You Do by Marz, The Choice Is Yours (Revisited) by Black Sheep, Junkyard by the Potbelleez, Colours by Calvin Harris, and Applause by Lady Gaga. The spot shown during the 2011 MYV Video Music Awards featured Party Rock Anthem by LMFAO.

Another Soul hamster ad, this one released to promote the 2013 Soul, featured “In My Mind” (Axwell Remix) by Ivan Gough, Feenixpawl, and Georgi Kay. This ad saw the hamsters in period dress at an 18th-century opera house.

4. Which cars are most like the Kia Soul?

If truth be told, the Kia Soul is pretty much in a league of its own.

The Scion xB was the first boxy car to hit the market, and it was particularly popular with younger drivers, at least until the Soul arrived on the scene. The second generation of the xB found it impossible to compete with the Soul as consumers made the switch.

The Nissan Cube was another entry into the boxy car segment, but it was never really able to break through. There are other urban crossovers on the market, such as the Mazda CX-3 and the Fiat 500X, but neither really looks much like the Kia Soul car.

5. Is there a Kia Soul hybrid?

The only Kia Soul hybrid that we have seen to this point is a concept model shown off in 2008. That hybrid vehicle featured a Gamma 1.6-liter gas engine and a 20-hp electric motor, but the only real reason for this model was to show off the developments being made by Kia with hybrid technology.

One thought on “What Kind Of Car Is Kia Soul? 5 Things You Need To Know

  1. RC says:

    Nice article but disappointed the AWD Soul is taking so so long .

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