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Kia Says Soul Coming as '09 Model


Kia Motors America says it will add the Soul crossover to its lineup in 2008. The Soul was originally unveiled as a concept car during the 2006 Detroit show.

"The Soul's aggressive and youthful styling is raising the bar for vehicles in its segment, and we are excited that it will be joining the ever-expanding Kia lineup in 2008," said Len Hunt, executive vice president and COO of KMA. "The flexibility, function, and utility this vehicle provides, as well as its dynamic appearance, further demonstrate Kia's commitment to producing vehicles that create passion with consumers."

At the 2006 Detroit show, Kia introduced the Soul concept, which bears a pun in its name — a play on Kia's home city, Seoul. The Soul concept showed an upright cabin similar in layout to that of the Scion xB, though it's much less utilitarian and more stylized.

2008 Kia Soul Features of the concept included B-pillar-less and rear-hinged back doors (called "freestyle doors" here) that allowed more cargo and passenger ease, and the rear liftgate is claimed to have the flexibility of a backpack, with a fold-out pouch area for a wetsuit or muddy boots.

 

The Soul concept was powered by a 2.0-liter four-cylinder engine with five-speed manual transmission, and back then, TheCarConnection.com was told that if such a vehicle were to be produced that it would use a platform readily adapted from one of Kia's existing small cars.


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