Crossover & Midsize

How to Pick the Best Used Kia Soul Model Year For You

The Kia Soul might have an odd sense of style, but this unique crossover boasts many practical elements. The Soul has earned excellent crash safety scores, and its overall dependability makes it an excellent choice to buy new or used. But if you are particularly interested in purchasing a used Soul, here’s how you should determine which model year is best for you. 

Weigh the different engine options on the Kia Soul

A bright green 2010 Kia Soul on the track.
2010 Kia Soul | Kia

There are few different engine options on the Kia Soul. The one you choose makes a significant impact when it comes to the driving experience you get. Kia introduced the Soul as an all-new model for 2010, and at first, it didn’t stand out for the best reasons.  

The 2010-2011 Soul models have two available four-cylinder engines. Base models have a 1.6-liter that makes 122-horsepower; the 2.0-liter on the upper trims makes 142-hp. Neither of these powertrains are strong performers. That said, the 2012 model year was a game-changer for the Soul. The 2012 model introduced two upgraded four-cylinders that added more horsepower, making the Soul more fun to drive.

For the most power available on the Soul, you’ll want to shop for the 2017 model and newer. The turbocharged engine on the Exclaim trim makes 201-hp. But for a small car, the Soul isn’t so impressive when it comes to fuel efficiency.

RELATED: The 2017 Kia Soul Is One of the Best Versions You Can Buy

Think about the interior features you might want also

The 2017 model year also marks the first time Apple CarPlay and Android Auto were available on the Soul
2017 Soul interior | Kia

We celebrate the Soul for its funky style and its spacious interior design. The Soul can seat up to five people, and its cabin materials are high-quality too. For advanced safety equipment, check out 2016 models and newer for features including forward-collision and lane departure warnings. 

For advanced infotainment, you’ll also want to consider the 2017 version, which added Apple CarPlay and Android Auto as available features. Overall, the Soul’s infotainment features are sharp and user-friendly. But if these additional features don’t interest you, consider the 2015-2015 model years for a lower price. 

RELATED: You Probably Won’t Regret Buying a Kia Anymore

Reliability and depreciation ratings are on your side

A Kia Soul on display at an auto show
A Kia Soul on display | Raymond Boyd/Getty Images

The Soul has an impressive reliability history. According to Consumer Reports, there aren’t many trouble spots on this Kia. It performs well in critical areas, including its engine, transmission, and body integrity.

J.D. Power has also given the Soul above-average ratings. In regards to owner satisfaction, Soul owners are most happy with their vehicle’s comfort levels, value, and of course, style. What’s also impressive is that 75 percent of owners would repurchase the Soul.

The Soul is a practical and reliable alternative to a traditional car or SUV. What makes this crossover even more appealing is its high depreciation ratings. A three-year-old Soul has a 37.4 percent depreciation rate. This means you can save almost $8K by getting an almost-new Soul instead of a brand new one. Once you’ve determined your price point and your must-have features, you’re ready to find the right Soul model based on your needs.