2022 Kia Soul

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2022 Kia Soul Review: A Heart-Shaped Box

by Deiondre van der Merwe

The big-hearted box is back for another year, and we're welcoming it with open arms. The Kia Soul has always been in a league of its own in terms of practicality and unique style, but the newest version, redesigned for the 2020 model year, packs in impressive tech and has a class-leading interior to boot. The choice between the two improved engines is also a plus for the line-up, offering up to 201 horsepower and 195 lb-ft of torque from the 1.6-liter turbo mill, so the Soul is a pro at zooming around the city. Once targeted at the parents of college-goers as an affordable and safe utilitarian, the new Kia Soul has come a long way. It's now a crossover to be reckoned with amongst contenders like the Honda HR-V and the Hyundai Kona and appeals to a whole new range of shoppers in the subcompact segment.

Read in this review:

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2022 Kia Soul Changes: What’s the difference vs the 2021 Kia Soul?

The Soul was redesigned for the 2020 model year and received only subtle changes last year. This year, the changes are again limited and the only one obvious from the outside is the use of the modern new Kia logo in place of the old oval one. Infotainment is upgraded, with the base LX's display increasing in size from seven to eight inches and a 10.3-inch display nou standard for all the other models. Alloy wheels and more safety equipment are also offered optionally on the LX in the shape of the Technology package, which includes blind-spot monitoring, automatic emergency braking, and lane-keep assist. The S, X-Line, and GT-Line trims now all get dual-zone climate control, wireless smartphone charging, an additional two USB ports, and push-button start. The manual transmission is dropped from the lineup for 2022 too. Lastly, Sparkling Silver is replaced by a new paint color called Steel Gray and Solar Yellow is dropped altogether, along with another few changes to paint availability per trim.

Pros and Cons

  • Spacious interior
  • Choice between two engines and three transmissions
  • Impressive fuel economy figures from the CVT
  • Top trims are well-stocked with convenience features
  • Funky cabin with loads of modern tech
  • Bare-bones base trim
  • Not a lot of additional packages
  • Top trim level is far more expensive than the rest

What's the Price of the 2022 Kia Soul?

Best Deals on 2022 Kia Soul

2022 Kia Soul Trims

See trim levels and configurations:

Trim Engine Transmission Drivetrain Price (MSRP)
2.0L Inline-4 Gas
Continuously Variable Automatic (CVT)
Front-Wheel Drive
2.0L Inline-4 Gas
Continuously Variable Automatic (CVT)
Front-Wheel Drive
2.0L Inline-4 Gas
Continuously Variable Automatic (CVT)
Front-Wheel Drive
2.0L Inline-4 Gas
Continuously Variable Automatic (CVT)
Front-Wheel Drive
2.0L Inline-4 Gas
Continuously Variable Automatic (CVT)
Front-Wheel Drive
See All 2022 Kia Soul Trims and Specs

2022 Soul Exterior

2022 Kia Soul Forward View KIA
2022 Kia Soul View Out Back KIA
2022 Kia Soul Lateral View KIA
See All 2022 Kia Soul Exterior Photos


  • Length 165.2 in
  • Wheelbase 102.4 in
  • Height 63.0 in
  • Max Width 70.9 in
  • Front Width 62.0 in
  • Rear Width 62.4 in
  • Curb Weight 2,844.0 lbs

Exterior Colors

  • Snow White Pearl +$345
  • Cherry Black +$345
  • Neptune Blue/Black Roof +$345
  • Mars Orange/Black Roof +$345
  • Inferno Red
  • Undercover Green
  • Gravity Gray
  • Steel Gray
  • Mars Orange
  • Neptune Blue

2022 Soul Performance

2022 Kia Soul Driving Front Angle KIA
2022 Kia Soul Rear View Driving KIA
2022 Kia Soul Engine KIA

Engine and Transmission

  • Engines
    1.6L Turbo Inline-4 Gas, 2.0L Inline-4 Gas
  • Transmissions
    7-Speed Automatic, Continuously Variable Automatic (CVT)
  • Drivetrain

Handling and Driving Impressions

Handling and driving experience are where the Soul shines through in the sea of crossovers - competition is plentiful in the segment. The subcompact feels more like a high-riding hatchback from behind the wheel, and X-Line and GT-Line models get improved shocks to soak up the bumps a little better. Comfortable ride quality can also be expected from other trim levels, but the higher ones just do it better. As comfortable as the suspension is, Kia has managed not to sacrifice a sporty touch, especially on the Turbo. It's not exactly a hot hatch, but it holds its own in and out of the bends better than you'd expect if judging by its appearance.

There's a decent amount of feedback from the steering wheel, though it's on the lighter side. Kia even added some paddle shifters to the mix on the Turbo for use in Sport mode, controlling the impressive seven-speed dual-clutch transmission. When driven by the 2.0-liter engine, the Soul gets around town with ease but runs out of breath a little if you're going uphill. Regardless of the engine choice, the Soul is fun to drive and hides its below-$20,000 price tag pretty well from behind the wheel.

2022 Soul Interior

2022 Kia Soul Dashboard KIA
2022 Kia Soul Steering Wheel Design KIA
2022 Kia Soul Infotainment System KIA
See All 2022 Kia Soul Interior Photos

Seating and Interior Space

  • Seating capacity
  • Front Leg Room 41.1 in
  • Front Head Room 39.4 in
  • Rear Leg Room 38.8 in
  • Rear Head Room 39.5 in

2022 Soul Trunk and Cargo Space

2022 Kia Soul Door Storage KIA
2022 Kia Soul Glove Box KIA
2022 Kia Soul Trunk Space KIA

2022 Soul Safety and Reliability


  • Basic:
    5 Years \ 60,000 Miles
  • Drivetrain:
    10 Years \ 100,000 Miles
  • Corrosion:
    5 Years \ 100,000 Miles
  • Roadside Assistance:
    5 Years \ 60,000 Miles

US NHTSA Crash Test Result

  • Overall Rating
  • Frontal Barrier Crash Rating
  • Side Crash Rating
  • Rollover Rating

Verdict: Is the 2022 Kia Soul A Good SUV?

There's a reason America keeps coming back for more with the Kia Soul. The boxy icon has offered practicality and efficiency for over a decade since its inception, and all in a very unique package. In review, the Kia Soul has always had a distinct style that made it unmistakable, and this rings true even with the redesign. Kia was even careful to keep the history alive, making sure the square, compact dimensions weren't compromised. Regardless of engine choice, the Soul is a delight to drive. Comfortable ride quality and a welcomed hatchback-feel contribute to the fun, and the little Kia is a pro at getting occupants where they need to be on time. Beyond performance, the Soul has an undeniably funky interior, with a rounded design and bright colors. The cabin isn't just nice to look at, either. It's functional and the layout has been kept simple. If the marvelous appearance inside isn't enough, the roominess will be enough to convince you. Pair all of its merits with a Top Safety Pick award from the IIHS and how much value you get for your money, and you have yourself a remarkably well-rounded subcompact crossover SUV.

What 2022 Kia Soul Model Should I Buy?

2022 Kia Soul Comparisons

Hyundai Kona
Jeep Renegade Jeep
CompetitorHorsepowerMPGPrice (MSRP)
Kia Soul147 hp29/35 mpg$19,890
Hyundai Kona 147 hp30/35 mpg$22,140
Jeep Renegade 177 hp23/29 mpg$29,995
Honda HR-V 158 hp26/32 mpg$23,800

2022 Kia Soul vs Hyundai Kona

The Soul and the Kona are similar in many ways, but there are a few characteristics that set them apart. They both boast a Top Safety Pick award from the IIHS, but the Kona comes with a better warranty. When the 1.6-liter turbos go against one another, it's the Soul that delivers more powerful figures, but the Kona gets better fuel economy from its four-pot. In terms of ride quality, the Soul can't really be beaten, but the Kona is a close second. The Soul has more interior space, but the Kona makes AWD available. In terms of overall quality and driving experience, the Soul wins this one.

See Hyundai Kona Review

2022 Kia Soul vs Jeep Renegade

The two crossovers are similar in size, but the Renegade lays claim to the larger dimensions. When both are at base-level, the Jeep offers higher power outputs of 180 horsepower and 175 lb-ft of torque, but is less fuel-efficient than the Soul. The interior of the Renegade does not feel as premium as the Soul, with the latter offering a more modern infotainment set-up. They both offer a manageable amount of space inside, but the Jeep's trunk doesn't hold a candle to the Soul's class-leading cargo capacity. The Soul is arguably the more attractive of the two and it's the more affordable option, with the Jeep coming in at just under $25,000. With all things considered, the Soul is the better buy of the two.

See Jeep Renegade Review

2022 Kia Soul vs Honda HR-V

When two of the USA's most affordable favorites go head to head, there's bound to be a couple of sparks flying. Both the Soul and the HR-V offer practicality at very accessible prices, so what sets them apart from each other? The Soul offers a range of engine and transmission options across more trims, allowing for some extra customization. Both engines are also more powerful than the 141-hp engine that the HR-V employs and the Soul is more fun to drive than the lackluster HR-V. The Soul offers the same trunk size but it lacks the HR-V's flip-up rear Magic Seats - or its AWD option. With a 2023 HR-V already on the horizon, the aging current model falls out of contention, and even if you need the AWD, there are better rivals in this class. The Soul takes it.

See Honda HR-V Review
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