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Had a test drive in a Kia Soul EV 64kWh yesterday.
My local Kia dealer had remembered from a year ago when I test drove the e-Niro (had intended to buy one, but first edition spec didn’t meet our requirements) I had said I wanted to test drive the Soul when it arrived and at the time that was expected to be within 6 months!

Soul is a funky looking car, boxy and probably a marmite car for many. Love it or hate it. It is very practical though and it’s boxy shape gives it great headroom, in the front and rear and also the boot. With the same power train from the e-Niro and Kona, it has a great range, good acceleration and is quiet and pretty comfortable too. Surprising little wind noise at speed for a non optimised aerodynamic car. It also comes with the updated infotainment system, which means it has an app that can control and monitor the car. It only comes in one UK spec first edition and a choice of three 2-tone colour schemes. Test car was black with a red roof with black interior. As others have said in various reviews, it’s not as interesting inside the cabin as outside. If it had a red interior it would have more wow for sure. It is practical and pretty well laid out. The centre screen gives a good 3 way view of information clearly.

All in all I was pretty impressed with the car and suggest you read the various reviews online. Info below is my observations. So do go and test drive this car if it In anyway appeals.

It was fitted with Nexen tyres which many have replaced on the Kona as they were noisy. Don’t remember the model of tyre on the Kona from a year ago, but the ones fitted to this Soul were Nexen Nfera SU1 215/55R17 94V and seemed to be as good as most tyres and not noisy and seemed pretty grippy in the basic test driving I did. Review here on the tyres… Nexen N Fera SU1

Seats are supportive and good bolster support. Drivers seat is all electric with a basic lumbar support adjustment. Along with steering rake and reach should be easy to get the correct position. Seemed fine for me with a good fist clearance above head and adjusted up fairly high. I’m 6Ft plus. My wife seemed low in the front passenger seat and then we discovered it only had fore and aft and back adjust, no height, which seems poor and penny pinching.

My wife found it difficult to operate the accelerator pedal. It’s because it’s hung from above and a bit short, so with small feet the pedal is not on the ball of your foot, but on your toes, so very unoptimal. She was not impressed! Pedal either needs to be longer or tredle type, mounted on floor.

Storage space in car is minimal, same in rear door pockets and only one seat back pocket on passenger front. Whilst looking for the bonnet pull, we discovered the carpet is short on the passenger footwell. Again seems penny pinching.
There is no frunk, which is very odd as there is masses of space for one and would easily take the charging cables type 2 and granny. The granny charger has a lovely iPad style front with good display. It’s likely to get very scratched I suspect unless it’s protected.

There is more space than probably needed in the rear. At least a fist plus space from knee to drivers seat rear. Seems like it would have been better if the rear seat was positioned a couple of inches further forward and increase the boot space. Boot space is OK rather than great and has a false floor, but of course charging cables are under that, so need to be in the frunk. I have no doubt a 3rd party one will appear soon, but should have been done by Kia. Rear seats fold almost flat.

As with the e-Niro, Kona, lots of tech which annoyingly cannot be switched off permanently. Various stuff turns on again when you start the car each time. I want to drive the car not have LKA, etc annoy me and try to steer.

Conversely auto hold should be on by default and isn’t. And when you stop and park and press drive P, the electric handbrake should engage, but it doesn’t. Don’t think it even did that when turning off and exiting the car.

The app worked well, easy iOS download UVO connect gmbh and setup, but car didn’t respond as you need to authorise/ enable the car, so did that. Good security on both parts and had it working very quickly, so that looks very promising. It was sunny so didn’t try out pre-heat etc. But all in app stuff available.

Instrument panel is an odd view of what is required. Speedo is small and on right, range on left to same scale. Found it hard to even see what regen mode was set to, along with drive mode. Not the best layout or clarity view. Maybe it can be configured, but didn’t spend time finding out.
HUD worked OK, but again speed is small font. Checked and it was set to largest available. Seen better on other Hyundai/Kia models.

Regen modes work fine along with drive modes. Did most of test in normal, but also used others.

Rear view mirror has some odd offset sensors around mirror.
Rear camera and sensors work ok, but seemed very last minute before touching!

Managed to prove my new Zappi charger worked fine on fast and eco modes with lots of free solar.

Think I have remembered most things, if not will update when I recall
:thinking:

Took lots of pics, just posting some here, otherwise this is a very long post!
 

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Can't remember if you drove the original soul. I was wondering what the steering was like on the new one? The old one gave no indication the wheels were connected to the steering wheel at all!
 

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Discussion Starter #3
Can't remember if you drove the original soul. I was wondering what the steering was like on the new one? The old one gave no indication the wheels were connected to the steering wheel at all!
Never driven the original Soul EV.
Steering feel seemed OK, once you have all the self steering stuff disabled, otherwise it’s a bit like a ball joint has failed. Because of changes to our plans, mainly drove on B roads, no A or dual carriageways, so best for steering. Did manage to find a few places to test cruise control, which worked well.
Seemed to be a bit of torque steer when flooring it, but that’s true of all single motor front wheel drive EV’s.
 
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For the moment we have both old (30 KWh) and new Souls.

Adjustable steering mode has gone on the new model. The "weight" subjectively seems somewhere between the old comfort and normal modes.

Flooring it in Sport mode is "interesting", and should only be done on wider roads than the straight but quite narrow B-road I tried it on. Definitely quick off the mark, great for controlled overtaking, but as previously noted, torque-steer confirms just how much torque is being err.. steered!

Sent from my ONEPLUS A6003 using Tapatalk
 
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