South Trail Kia
Posted on October 10, 2020
The best subcompact crossover vehicles offer an enticing blend of perky performance, interior comfort, and attractive fuel economy. The Kia Soul has won plaudits for all three qualities, and is one of the top sellers in today's Canadian market.
With a new 2020 Kia Soul version recently released, will it continue to be a firm favourite in the Calgary area? To find out, we've put it to the test against one of its five-seater subcompact crossover rivals, the Toyota C-HR.
As standard, the Kia Soul is delivered with a 2.0L regular unleaded I-4 engine producing a creditable 147 horsepower. This is more than enough to power the subcompact frame through city streets and highway stretches alike.
The Toyota boasts a very similar base configuration, although its 2.0L gas engine makes a slightly less impressive 144hp.
However, where the Soul has a definite edge is in the available engine upgrade. A 1.6L turbo option takes the Kia into completely new performance territory, producing fully 201hp at 195lb-ft of torque, making for thrilling performance in a vehicle of this size.
Both cars feature a continuously variable automatic transmission (CVT) feeding the engine's power through to front-wheel drive.
Despite the closely matched entry-level powertrains, the Kia Soul has a small but definite edge in the fuel economy comparison. The Kia manages 8.6L / 100km in the city, marginally better than the Toyota's figure of 8.7L / 100km.
However, the difference in highway economy is significantly larger, with the Toyota's 7.5L / 100km comparing badly to the Kia Soul's 7.1L / 100km. If you rack up plenty of highway driving over a year, the difference in gas costs could really mount up.
Both cars can seat five passengers in relative comfort, although inevitably with subcompacts taller adults may feel a little cramped in the rear.
However, when it comes to cargo capacity, the Soul has the clear upper hand. With the rear seats folded up, there's a standard capacity of 685L, a substantial increase on the C-HR's 540L.
With the rear seats folded down, the difference is even more dramatic. Here, the Soul offers a whopping 1,758L compared to the C-HR's 1,047L.
In total, the 2020 Kia Soul cabin offers 3,423L of interior space, against the Toyota's 2,976L, clearly showing the advantage of the Kia's hatchback-like design.
Lastly, even in a reliable small car like the Kia Soul a generous warranty is important. Thankfully, the standard Kia warranty is up to the task, covering bumper-to-bumper for five years or 100,000km compared to the Honda's offering of three years or 60,000km.
For the engine and powertrain, the difference is even greater, with the Kia providing coverage for 10 years or 160,000km compared to Toyota's five years or 100,000km.
To see for yourself why we think the 2020 Kia Soul is an undisputed leader in the subcompact market, contact us now to arrange a test drive from our Calgary showroom. The Soul's combination of fun, economy, and comfort is well worth taking the time to experience.
Categories: KIA, Toyota