Value is one leg of the stool propping up Kia’s Soul hatchback, er, we mean subcompact crossover. The other legs include its general funkiness, appealingly boxy shape, and tall seating position. For 2020, the Soul is all new and remains a great buy, even if the base price has crept up slightly.
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Relative to last year’s entry-level Soul, the redesigned model costs $1000 more, starting at $18,485 in LX trim with a six-speed manual transmission. That is the only Soul that offers a stick shift; a new continuously variable automatic transmission (CVT) is a $1500 option. On the rest of the lineup, which includes S, GT-Line, X-Line, and EX trims, the CVT is the only choice. Every 2020 Soul shares as standard a new 147-hp 2.0-liter four-cylinder engine, which replaces both last year’s entry-level 1.6-liter and mid-level 2.0-liter fours.
On the GT-Line, buyers can pay extra for a 201-hp turbocharged 1.6-liter inline-four engine and a seven-speed dual-clutch automatic transmission. A lot extra: The list price for the turbocharged GT-Line is a withering $28,485. That includes nearly every available extra on lesser Souls, including a new 10.3-inch widescreen touch display with navigation, a Harman/Kardon sound system, forward-collision warning, automated emergency braking, lane-keeping assist, adaptive cruise control, and a head-up display.
Between that range-topping GT-Line and the base Soul sit the $21,285 S and the identically priced GT-Line with the non-turbo engine, as well as the $22,485 pseudo-SUV-look X-Line and the $23,685 EX. A 7.0-inch touchscreen is standard on the LX, S, X-Line, and base GT-Line, while the EX gets the same 10.3-inch unit as the loaded GT-Line. Apple CarPlay and Android Auto capability are standard across the line. More detailed trim-for-trim feature allocations and options will come out when the Soul goes on sale early in 2019.