The second generation of Kia's boxy hatchback gets longer and wider for 2014; its price also grows slightly. When the new Soul goes on sale this fall, it'll start at $15,495, a slight increase over the 2013 model's base price of $15,200 (all prices include the destination fee).
Base, Plus and Exclaim versions carryover. Base versions use a 130-horsepower, 1.6-liter four cylinder and standard six-speed manual transmission; a six-speed automatic is optional. Plus models get a 164-hp, 2.0-liter four-cylinder mated to the standard manual or optional automatic; prices start at $18,995. Topline Exclaim versions (thankfully Kia ditched the + and ! designations this year) use the same engine and a standard six-speed automatic transmission and start at $21,095.
Standards across the lineup include power windows, heated side mirrors, telescoping steering wheel, six-speaker stereo with USB input, satellite radio and Bluetooth connectivity. A new option this year is the UVO multimedia system with navigation. The 8-inch touch-screen works with Android and iPhone apps such as Pandora internet radio.
The Soul is Kia's second best-selling vehicle behind the Optima sedan. Through July of this year, the automaker has sold 73,191 Souls. Its closest competitor, the boxy Nissan Cube starts at $17,570 (including destination) and is a sales dud. Through July, Nissan sold just 3,720 units.