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2014 Kia Soul: First Drive Page 3

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The new UVO eServices infotainment system with navigation that’s offered as an option is well worth it, from our first sample. This is a completely new system, based on Android linux; the capacitive touch display worked perfectly, with no lagginess, and it looks great. And in top Exclaim (!) models such as the one we drove, the smaller TFT LCD color screen that’s in the middle of the instrument panel even displays turn-by-turn directions from the nav system. Upgrades should be quite easily done through the SD slot, as well.

Base sound systems include six speakers and don’t offer the large touch screen; but they do have more than the single-line display of some vehicles.

From base to Exclaim, still quite the deal

In fact, while we drove the 2014 Kia Soul Exclaim, with all the new bells and whistles, including ventilated/cooled and heated front seats, heated rear seats, a heated steering wheel, and automatic climate control, among many other extras—at a price of less than $27,000—we’re still wondering about the $15,495 base model, which includes power accessories, heated mirrors, Bluetooth, and six-speaker audio (with satellite radio, even). With all the interior upgrades and improved cabin comfort, it could truly be the deal of the lineup.

No matter which Soul you end up with, chances are you’re going to be happy. Like its predecessor, the Soul from what we saw in a relatively brief drive stands out in the market simply for its lack of serious flaws.

Is the new Soul any less of an outlier? With its plush ride, improved interior, and market success, yeah, we’d say so. On the outside, though, it sure hasn’t lost its edge.

Provided you don’t drive your cars flat-out all the time or judge them by lap times, the Soul has so many layers of niche appeal that you’re bound to be happy in its fold for a long time.

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See our full review of the 2014 Kia Soul for more details, specs, and all the rest. And follow The Car Connection on Facebook, Twitter and Google+.


 
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