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2010 Kia Soul review

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The Soul is a brand new type of car from Kia. The Korean company describes it as a Crossover Utility Vehicle or CUV, and it’s best described to the still-confused as a sizable, jacked up hatchback with a funky design.

Built on a completely new platform, the exterior styling of the Soul is penned by designer Peter Schreyer, who also brought us the original Audi TT. A trailing roofline enhances the wrap-around effect windscreen which appears to taper all the way to the C-pillar, while the front-end has an aggressive blacked out lower air intake (well, as aggressive as a cute runabout can be) and angular ‘circuit board’ inspired headlight clusters which set the Soul firmly in the 21st century.

The rear-end is a simple, full-length hatch opening to a 546-litre luggage space which, with the rear seats flattened, increases to 1,500 litres – enough for two mountain bikes, apparently.

2010 Kia SoulThe Soul sits on 18-inch wheels on the top-of-the-range EX model, while the standard rim on the LX is 16-inches. The LX features as standard manual air conditioning, audio controls on the steering wheel and a roof rack, as well as front fog lamps, tinted glass and electric wing mirrors. There’s a keyless entry system and parking sensors at the rear.

The Soul also comes equipped with a racy three-binnacle instrument cluster, driver airbag, sporty seating position and steering wheel, while the upper spec model also features a sunroof, eight-speaker sound system with iPod connection and pulsating speaker lights.

The EX model adds an extra airbag as well as mud guards, metallic trim and a leather-covered steering wheel and gear knob. It also sports a sunroof and luggage net, as well as an under-floor storage tray and a power outlet in the boot. It also includes ABS, which the LX does not – this is fairly unusual on new cars these days, and could count against it for those who take their safety seriously.

2010 Kia SoulThere are four interior trims depending on how subtle or funky you want to appear. The standard graphite black ‘heat press knit’ seat material is hardwearing and looks quite sporty, as does the read and black ‘Street Demon’ colour combination, while the ‘Soul glow’ upholstery features a luminescent ‘Soul’ logo in the backrest.

The car will seat four large adults and five occupants in total. One of the key features of the Soul is that Kia offers lots of customisation options, from sports-style wheel rims, rear spoiler and ‘Dragon tattoo’ body graphic, to sports pedals, front and rear skirts, and metallic fuel cap.

The only engine is a 122bhp 1.6-litre, four-cylinder engine mated to a four-speed automatic gearbox.

The Soul starts at 52,900AED and top of the range version will sell for 62,000AED, which is significantly lower than several key competitors such as the Honda Jazz and Suzuki SX4.

There is speculation that the US-spec 2.0-litre engine could be introduced to the GCC at a later date.

SOURCE: http://automiddleeast.com/2010-kia-soul/

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