Following its unveiling at the Paris Motors Show in September 2016, the enhanced KIA Soul this week makes its arrival on South African shores. Featuring a number of design updates, the Soul’s up-to-date styling is complemented by the introduction of a new turbo diesel-powered entry-level model.

  • Mid-life update for KIA’s ‘Hip to be Square’ crossover
  • Introducing the new turbodiesel Soul 1.6 START

(JOHANNESBURG) May 2, 2017 – Following its unveiling at the Paris Motors Show in September 2016, the enhanced KIA Soul this week makes its arrival on South African shores. Featuring a number of design updates, the Soul’s up-to-date styling is complemented by the introduction of a new turbo diesel-powered entry-level model.

The KIA Soul has established itself as one of the most popular crossovers in its segment across the globe, offering customers a striking and funky car of class-leading quality. In fact, the KIA Soul has topped its segment in the annual J.D. Power Initial Quality Survey in the USA, first reaching the top spot in 2012, and retaining that position ever since then.

Introduced locally in November 2014, the second-generation KIA Soul has firmly established itself as the ultimate anti-establishment crossover, defying traditional classification by offering the space and practicality of an MPV and the quality and features of an SUV, wrapped in the dimensions of B-segment crossover.

A WesBank / SAGMJ Car of the Year semi-finalist in 2015, CAR Magazine also declared it a ‘Best Buy’ in their 2016 Best Buys survey.

“In a market of mundane crossovers and smaller SUV’s, the Soul has always been able to provide something a little different and stand out,” says David Sieff, Marketing Director, KIA Motors South Africa. “As an alternative, the Soul gives consumers a great way to express themselves in a practical and funky way, but with all the features and the quality people expect from KIA”.

Introducing the new turbodiesel KIA Soul 1.6 START

Bolstering the Soul line-up at the entry level, KIA is introducing a new turbocharged diesel derivative to the range. The Soul 1.6 CRDI START is powered by KIA’s renowned ‘U2’ 1,6-litre turbodiesel engine that develops 94 kW of power at 4,000 r/min and 260 Nm of torque between 1,900 and 2,750 r/min. This engine mates to a six-speed manual transmission, with no automatic option available.

The Soul START features a comprehensive list of standard specification, including a radio with RDS, MP3/Aux/USB jacks, Bluetooth connectivity and six speakers, central locking, an immobiliser, a rear-view camera, electrochromatic rearview mirror, electric windows front and rear, electric heated side mirrors with integrated indicators, and a leather-wrapped steering wheel. It also features ABS brakes, six airbags, active (up and down) headrests, an impact-sensing door unlock function  and ISOFIX child seat anchors.

“The new turbodiesel Soul 1.6 START is probably the best-built, most spacious and well-specced diesel crossover below R400,000,” says Gary Scott, Sales Director and Deputy Managing Director, KIA Motors South Africa. “At R329,995 it represents exceptional value, and a quick test drive will more than confirm its virtues.”

Updated design for the KIA Soul range

While the KIA Soul’s exterior and interior design remains one of its most memorable characteristics, the range has received a series of upgrades to further enhance its appeal among buyers.

Exterior updates include remodelled front bumpers, which now feature a metallic skid plate treatment that endows the Soul with a more robust and sportier appearance. KIA has also given the Soul’s signature ‘tiger-nose’ grille a minor revision, while its headlights also see a revision to its composition and layout – on the high-specification SMART models, the Soul’s LED daytime running lights move to the bottom of the light.

The Soul’s rear bumper has also been remodelled, also featuring a a metallic skid plate treatment as well as newly-designed fog lamps and reflectors for greater illumination for following road users. Entry-level START models feature a designed, sportier alloy wheel design, while the alloy wheel design on the STREET and SMART models remain unchanged.

Featuring one of the most spacious and innovatively designed interiors in its segment, revisions to the Soul’s cabin have been kept to the minimum. Entry-level START models feature a unique redesigned cloth upholstery, while STREET and SMART models retain their black leather interior with contrasting stitching detail. Cabin ambience has also been enhanced with the introduction of new gloss black and metallic highlights and switchgear.

Range and Pricing

The enhanced KIA Soul range comprises six derivatives, covering the START, STREET and SMART specification grades. Apart from the new turbocharged diesel option at the entry level, the Soul START is also available with a normally aspirated 1,6-litre petrol engine that develops 91 kW of power at 6,300 r/min and 152 Nm torque at 4,850 r/min, also mated to a six-speed manual transmission. A six-speed automatic transmission is available as an option on the petrol-powered derivative only (R13,000).

Mid-spec STREET models – all only available with six-speed manual transmissions –retain all of the specification available in the START models, but add further items such as glovebox cooling, electric folding side mirrors, a Smart Key with push button start and leather upholstery, Electronic Stability Control, Brake Assist, Hill-start Assist Control and Vehicle Stability Management, to name but a few. Apart from the 94 kW 1,6-litre CRDI engine, the Soul STREET is also available with a normally aspirated 2,0-litre petrol engine that develops 116 kW of power at 6,200 r/min and 192 Nm of torque at 4,000 r/min.

At the top of the range are two Soul SMART derivatives, which add features such as front and rear park distance control, HID projection lamps with LED daytime running lights, LED rear combination lamps, cruise control, electric seats and interior modd lamps . The Soul 2.0 SMART is equipped with a six-speed automatic transmission, while the Soul 1.6 CRDI SMART features KIA’s innovative 7-speed DCT (Dual Clutch Transmission). Because the DCT being capable of more efficient and continuous power delivery, the turbodiesel Soul SMART features an increased power output of 100 kW at 4,000 r/min and 300 Nm of torque between 1,900 and 2,750 r/min when compared to the manual derivatives.

Pricing for the enhanced KIA Soul range is as follows:

Soul 1.6 START Manual  R 309,995
Soul 1.6 CRDI START Manual     R 329,995
Soul 2.0 STREET Manual     R 347,995
Soul 1.6 CRDI STREET Manual    R 376,995
Soul 2.0 SMART Auto    R 391,995
Soul 1.6 CRDI SMART DCT R 431,995

Both the Soul 2.0 SMART and the Soul 1.6 CRDI SMART DCT are available with an optional sunroof (R12,500).

All models ship as standard with KIA’s industry-leading 5-year / Unlimited Kilometre Warranty, 5-year / Unlimited Kilometre Roadside Assistance as well as a 4-year / 90,000km Service Plan.


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