2020 Kia Soul EV Charges Into LA With Massive 64-kWh Battery


The slick next-generation urban electric compact crossover is hugely improved.

The next generation Kia Soul EV celebrates its world premiere at the 2018 Los Angeles Auto Show. One of the most upbeat urban compact crossovers is back with even more appeal & upgrades. The vehicle will be powered by a next-generation, state-of-the-art liquid-cooled lithium-ion polymer 64 kWh battery. That’s the same as what’s found in the Kia Niro EV, which goes some 301 miles per charge (WLTP) or an estimated 260 miles EPA.

Considering that the current Soul EV, with its 30-kWh battery pack, is EPA-rated at 111 miles, we figure this 2020 Soul EV, with 64-kWh on board, will travel close to 240 miles per charge, maybe even more. Sadly, since its Kia, this will be a limited offering in the U.S., so availability will be an issue.

The 2020 Kia Soul EV is set to utilize a 201 horsepower electric motor, delivering 291 lb-ft of torque. However, the new battery is currently being tested to ascertain precise EPA-estimated range. Results are expected early in 2019 and will be announced at a later date.

The award-winning and unconventional compact utility vehicle is one of the best looking compact crossovers on the market today. It’s also one of the quirkiest and people pleasing cars money can buy, allowing Kia to successfully target the younger, more upbeat and better at EV adoption crowds as well.

One of the most impressive features of the new Soul EV is the new state-of-the-art liquid-cooled lithium ion polymer 64 kWh battery. According to Kia, it will allow owners much less need for daily charging, and with Combined Charging System (CCS) DC fast-charging as standard, charges should be brief so road trip fun can happily continue after only a short break.

The 2020 Kia Soul EV will come with Four drive modes – Eco, Comfort, Sport and Eco+ – that automatically adjusts power output to the traction motor, regenerative braking, air conditioning and heating settings, and set speed limits to help manage operating efficiency depending on driving conditions. Furthermore, smart regenerative braking operated via paddle shifters is also available. This will help drivers to slow the car with the electric motors, allowing less brake pad wear and helping to recapture kinetic energy, adding extra range. Three regenerative braking levels will be offered, depending on the desired driving smoothness and personal preferences, resulting in more enjoyment and improved efficiency.

However, one of the most interesting items on the 2020 Kia Soul EV is the Smart Eco Pedal Guide display on the instrument cluster. In a nutshell, the system keeps the driver aware of real-time battery usage based on accelerator pedal input. In turn, this allows every driver to fine tune their driving habits, allowing for longer range, better energy consumption and in the end, a more eco-friendly and cheaper motoring. That, alongside a big list of safety features, dubbed the “Kia Drive Wise” Advanced Driver-Assistance Systems, makes sure the driver and passengers can enjoy a safe drive.

In a nutshell, the 2020 Kia Soul arrives with more technology, available advanced driver assistance systems, increased cargo room and a more fun feeling behind the wheel.

2020 Kia Soul EV

2020 Soul EV
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Full press blast from Kia below:

Super Cool and Electric Too

• Next-generation uber-popular urban runabout again available with battery-only power
• Powered by a state-of-the-art liquid-cooled lithium ion polymer 64 kWh battery
• Combined Charging System (CCS) DC fast-charge is standard equipmentii
• 201-horsepower electric motor with 291 lb.-ft. of torque

LOS ANGELES, November 28, 2018 – Today Kia Motors America (KMA) introduced the 2020 Soul, a completely new version of Kia’s beloved, award-winning and unconventional compact utility vehicle. In conjunction with that world-debut, the all-electric, battery-powered Soul EV was also unveiled. Just as quirky, fun-loving and crowd-pleasing, the Soul EV provides the opportunity for lovers of the Soul to drive without ever stopping for gas.

A Much Better Battery

The new Soul EV has a new state-of-the-art liquid-cooled lithium ion polymer 64 kWh battery which is expected to mean much less need for daily charging, and with Combined Charging System (CCS) DC fast-chargeiii as standard equipment, battery refills should be brief so road trip fun can happily continue after only a short break.

The new battery is currently being tested to ascertain precise EPA-estimated range. Results are expected early in 2019 and will be announced at a later date.

Driving Dynamics – The Soul EV is More Fun Than Ever

The Soul EV has always provided a bit of a magic carpet ride, whisking along silently with seemingly effortless pull. Now, with 201 horsepower and 291 lb.-ft. of torque (way up from 210 lb.-ft. in the outgoing model), drivers will feel like a virtual Aladdin. Handling and driving dynamics are also much improved, thanks to the addition of independent rear suspension. The new Soul EV also provides plenty of tools for drivers to customize their driving experience and their battery usage, including:

• Four drive modes – Eco, Comfort, Sport and Eco+ – that automatically adjust power output to the traction motor, regenerative braking, air conditioning and heating settings, and set speed limits to help manage operating efficiencyiv depending on driving conditions
• Smart regenerative braking operated via paddle shifters provides drivers the ability to slow the car and capture kinetic energy, adding extra range. Drivers can choose from four regen braking levels (0 to 3) depending on desired driving smoothness, enjoyment and efficiency
• Brake and Hold System feature allows regen paddle shifter to bring the car to a full stopv
• Smart Regen System adjusts the regenerative braking level based on a vehicle being detected in front of the Soul EV and creates smoother coast-down driving, especially when descending a steep roadvi
• Smart Eco Pedal Guide display on the instrument cluster keeps the driver aware of real-time battery usage based on accelerator pedal input

Technology Befitting a Thoroughly Modern Vehicle

The Soul EV comes equipped with a long list of state-of-the-art features to help enhance safety, improve the driving experience and provide ease of operation and ownership. Kia engineers and designers have thought of everything. Every Soul EV includes a suite of “Kia Drive Wise” Advanced Driver-Assistance Systems, and a long list of standard and optional equipment, highlights of which are listed below.
• High-tech rotary shifter (shift-by-wire)
• 10.25-inch color touchscreenvii with rear view monitorviii and parking guidance
• 6-speaker audio system (AM/FM/SiriusXM)ix with USB input
• Steering wheel-mounted audio controls
• Apple CarPlayx and Android Autoxi
• Bluetoothxii wireless connectivity with voice recognition
• 7 airbagsxiii (dual front advanced air bags, dual front seat-mounted side air bags, side curtain air bags with rollover sensor, driver’s side knee air bag)
• Vehicle Safety Systemsxiv
◦ Antilock braking
◦ Traction control
◦ Electronic stability control
◦ Hill-start assist control
◦ Tire pressure monitoring system
◦ Pedestrian warning system
• “Kia Drive Wise” Advanced Driver-Assistance Systems (ADAS)xv
◦ Forward Collision Warning (FCW)
◦ Forward Collision-Avoidance Assist (FCA)
◦ Lane Departure Warning (LDW)
◦ Lane Keeping Assist (LKA)
◦ Driver Attention Warning (DAW)xvi
◦ Smart Cruise Control with Stop & Go
◦ Blind Spot Collision Warning (BSW) (available)
◦ Rear Cross-Traffic Collision Warning (available)
◦ Parking Distance Warning – Reverse only (available)
New for Soul EV is a revamped UVOxvii telematics system that allows owners to monitor and control a long list of vehicle operations, including:
• Notifications of battery and charging status
• Real-time charging station update
• Scheduled charging
• Panic notifications – the vehicle will send a notification to the server if the panic alarm is triggered and the system dials 911 emergency services, provides the car position via GPS, and opens a live microphone so that emergency workers can communicate with the vehicle occupants
• “Send2Car” points of interest (POI) and waypoints — owners will be able to plan a road trip with waypoints and send it to the vehicles’ navigation system

Made in Korea and One Soul with a Whole Lot More

Built at the Gwangju plant in Korea, the Soul EV is expected to go on sale next year. Pricing will be announced closer to the on-sale date. Buyers can choose from two trims, the Soul EV and the Soul EV Designer Collection. Supporting its super-fancy sounding name, the Designer Collection model gets all the Soul EV goodies, plus a whole lot more, including:
• Two-tone paint: Gravity Grey with a Platinum Gold roof; Cherry Black with an Inferno Red roof; and Neptune Blue with a Cherry Black roof
• Power-folding gloss-black heated, power-adjustable outside mirrors with signal repeater
• 10-speaker Harman/Kardonxviii premium audio with external amplifier
• Wireless phone chargerxix
• Leather-wrapped steering wheel
• Heated front seats with Sofino premium non-animal seating upholstery
• Auto-dimming rear view mirror

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79 Comments on "2020 Kia Soul EV Charges Into LA With Massive 64-kWh Battery"

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I thought the current Soul EV is available at more than just the 10 states that have adopted the CARB rules. I have seen the current ones in Washington state which isn’t a CARB state, so I’m hopeful that this 2020 model will be available in more than 10 states.

Those are mostly used Soul EVs from Oregon.

They sell/sold them in Washington…

I bought my 2018 from Lee Johnson in Kirkland. I believe they sell more Soul EVs than any other US dealer.

Non-CARB state should join the program. I’m surprised no states have joined CARB over the last couple of years. You’d think there would have been a couple on the fence and the events of recent years would have nested them over.

Colorado has joined CARB recently.

With the midterms netting +7 Democrat governors, it’s possible more states could go CARB. Though I’m not exactly sure the process that needs to take place for a state to “go CARB”. I’m assuming the local governments must all agree (which pretty much means Democrats need to control the state Senate, House, and Gov).

I think folks are not getting the difference between a ZEV state and one that simply follows the CARB regulations. Washington follows the CARB regulations, but not the ZEV regulations.

Arizona, Nevada n HI need to join us carb states ASAP. Air quality issues in the first two require such a move. And Hawaii has tons of sun n wind power but no oil so it just makes sense to switch to bevs….and the range issue isn’t such a big deal on the islands as well.

From what I’ve heard, the current Soul EV is available for order in all 50 states and I know I’ve seen dealerships in places like Georgia and Tennessee advertise it on their lots.

Washington state is a CARB state, but not a zero emmisson vehicle state. Folks who buy a hybrid are covered under the more generous California warranty for hybrid parts.

Kia e-Niro
Kia Soul EV

Both will be equipped with a 64 kWh battery pack

How much difference will there be in price?

one of the things not mentioned is pre-cabin conditioning. .ore specifically while youre still ugged in and use wall electrons and not from the pack

Cool. Looks like a good sweet spot to hit. The more the merrier, even if the numbers are limited. Maybe more states will adopt CARB, as CO recently did. With many more states going for the democrats that is where progress can be made in the arena of advancing the adoption of evs.

Yes, it is good that CO joined the 13 states (Connecticut, Delaware, Maine, Maryland, Massachusetts, New Jersey, New Mexico, New York, Oregon, Pennsylvania, Rhode Island, Vermont, and Washington) that have agreed to abide by CARB pollution rules. (The article says “12,” but it is incorrect.)

Unfortunately, Colorado has not adopted the CARB EV mandate rules that get the state into nine state ZEV club that have joined the ZEV mandate. These ZEV states are: Connecticut, Maine, Maryland, Massachusetts, New Jersey, New York, Oregon, Rhode Island, and Vermont. So CO will not likely receive EVs that are provided to ZEV states. Speak to your representative about becoming a ZEV state.

I believe joining the ZEV coalition is officially on the agenda of the state commission that handles these things to consider in the next month. I’m moving from NJ to CO next year and hope I can replace my ’17 Soul EV (93 mile range) with this or the Nero, without having to fly to California to buy it! Plus CO now has $5000 state rebates ($2500 for leases), so it seems they are trying to support EVs…but only the ZEV requirement will get them sold there, it seems.

The Colorado rebate has a built-in taper, so I believe the $5000 ends this year.

So that’s the difference. Pollution rule and mandate rules. Interesting.

Completely agree. When the rollback was announced, 19 states sued, so that’s at least nine more states that need to get on the ZEV train. We should all be writing them a letter demanding it.

One thing I’m happy to see is that with all the new longer range EVs many car companies are taking advantage of the larger battery packs and their greater discharge rates and giving them more power and performance. I was worried that in order to avoid taking sales away from their ICE offerings they would continue to cripple their performance to match the earlier generation of EVs in order to maintain the image of green vehicles having the advantage of being efficient but with the sacrifice of being slow like the Prius.

Most EVs, including this one, are equipped with various driving modes that decrease or increase performance and efficiency.

The second most efficient EV on the market the Model 3 has a chill mode but even without using it it still gets a 130 mpge rating even with almost 300 hp. Settings are fine but EVs can be powerful and efficient even without settings depending on how you drive them. Earlier EVs just had small packs with limited discharge rates so they were paired with less powerful motors hence less power.

I was just mentioning that I’m glad many of these new models don’t have cheaper less powerful motors put in to differentiate them from their ICE cousins on the dealer lot. Now EVs can be marketed as cheaper to operate and equally as powerful as they should be.

Agreed. Gotta love that instant torque despite what EV you drive.

I’m just a bit concerned over the safety of LiPo technology, as I am also an FPV drone pilot who knows how fast these things can catch fire if you even look at them sideways.

Most EV batteries aren’t LiPo.

I guess it depends on chemistry, but from my memory of more intense research on the issue some few years ago, Lithium Polymer was generally considered safer than Lithium-ion, while also offering better energy density, but with less power and less durable. Much easier to brick a Li-Po battery from what I’ve read.

But you arent at all worried about the preponderance for gas cars to spontaneously combust?
I think its 11:1 ratio ICE:EV, plus EV fires, whilst they burn fiercely, start small and build slow,giving plenty of time to get out unlike many ICE fires.

Previous Soul was CHAdeMO no? Looks like consolidation of charging plugs is finally happening.

Is this confirmed? I thought it would be so per Niro and Kona.

Yep!Look at the pictures,all three of the cars have CCS while the previous gen Soul EV has CHAdeMO

CHAdeMO is dead to Hyundai/KIA. It’s CCS from here on out. CHAdeMO pretty much died in South Korea after its government adopted CCS as their country’s official fast charging standard,

Hyundai/Kia announced that they would be going to CCS for everything going forward earlier this year.

Nissan is the only hold out now. CCS is pretty much mandated for public chargers across Europe will be interesting to see what the new Leaf is for Europe.

So CHAdeMO in North America is down to the slow-selling Leaf and the Outlander PHEV with the Soul’s switch to CCS.

Stick a fork in it.

The new Soul looks great and I loved my 2015 model. I hope they can make enough for real availability.

The sooner CHAdeMO dies in the US, the better.

So ugly.

Why are all the Asian PEVs so ugly?

The color, Chartreuse, is certainly not appealing.

Right. And don’t get me started on how much I dislike that lime green.

(⌐■_■) Trollnonymous

The pistachio car…..

Former Minnesota Governor Jesse Ventura would have loved it, though. No idea why. His feather boa from his WWWF days was pink. WWE. WWF. Whatever.

Your comment should win an award on this site for diplomacy.

I would say this color makes my brain hurt.

More exciting than the Audi GT, as the Kia is likely to be a lot more affordable.

The Kia e-Niro is about 15 cm longer than the Kia Soul EV.

The Kia Soul EV is about 5 cm higher than the Kia e-Niro.

Helpful. Thanks for this info.

Wow, i thought they were going to roll with 40 KW Battery. This is impressive.

Me too…they must have changed their plans (or just saved it for a rainy day). The announcement of the 39 kWh (only) battery made me sad, this makes me really happy. 🙂 😛 🙂

Battery shortage.
So will be sold in only 1 state.
Standard excuse from Hyundai/Kia.

I hope at least they sell more in EU / Korea / ROW.

Great specs! But what about an app similar to the Nissan Leaf’s? Is that something we can expect?

No mention of over the air update capability. Guess with a dealer network that would be too much to expect. Pity though.

I love the Kia I had a 2018 red love that color but I traded it in due to the fact that’s not all wheel drive if the Kia was to make the soul all-wheel-drive trust and believe everyone in my family will purchase one cuz they all got in mines they all test drive mine they all enjoy mine and room inside was fabulous my son 6 2 tall fit fine in the back..good luck Kia to doing all the changes just try to make all wheel drive Soul

Ditto on the AWD. Traded in an old ’99 Subaru for the SoulEV, which i love, but miss the AWD for sure.

AWD is a scam. Put winter tires on it and you’ll be fine.

Is there any word on the suspension technology of the Soul? One thing that gives the Kona a leg up in handling is the rear suspension is multi link versus, say, Chevy’s coil and solid beam in the Bolt.

Also, I am not sure I’m buying the eco pedal display is all that revolutionary. I have owned a Nissan LEAF and more recently a Chevy Bolt and both have real time graphics showing how much energy is being spent or recovered. The Chevy has a cool addition to the obligatory graph – the ring around the virtual instrument cluster in front of the driver transitions from nice deep green to bright yellow as driving becomes wasteful. It is kind of subtle but gets the point across without being childish about it. Drivers really ought to be paying attention to road and not glued to the instrument panel anyway. Maybe an LED on the dash that reflects an economy head-up onto the windscreen by changing color would be an even better feedback mechanism.

This is stated in the above press release… “Handling and driving dynamics are also much improved, thanks to the addition of independent rear suspension.”

If GM ain’t gonna make a Bolt SS, the least they could do is add an independent rear suspension.

Cheaper the better. Why use the same power zapping 201 HP motor? Use something weaker like 150 HP. It will still have plenty of torque. And the range will improve dramatically. Keep the price lower than eNiro.

This is an electric where peak motor output doesn’t directly equate to efficiency. Most likely the difference in efficiency between the two you mentioned would be lost in the noise.

How could that be?
Full load amperage is directly related to consumption. And FLA is also directly related to peak torque and peak HP is directly calculated from peak torque

Full load during how long time? Yes, driving like a mad man at full load all the time will increase consumtion. But accelertion up to a certain (reasonable) speed during shorter time will not increase the total consumtion that much.

Agree on price but not about efficiency. SparkEV has 140 HP motor, yet more efficient than all at its time at 5 mi/kWh at 62 MPH, even more efficient than iMiev and golf carts while having more power than Soul, Leaf, etc.

It was tiny.

We all have the efficiency characteristics of ICE beat into us through sheer repetition.

But electric motors have their own efficiency characteristics. They are quite different. There’s 3 kinds if electric motors: dc, ac and synchronous. The synchronous are the most efficient. Synchronous merges an ac and a dc motor to varying degrees. Dc are next most efficient. lastly ac. Cost is highest for dc, then synchronous, ac the cheapest.

In ICE motors theres a small sweet spot for efficiency that varies wih design but it’s under low load, low rpm.

Electric motors have a really wide efficiency range between 5-95%, with ac’s a bit narrower. You can carry around a much more powerful motor before you lose a noticeable amount of efficiency.

Nice… I am glad to see them finally hop on board with CCS. Now, we just have to wait for Nissan to get their heads out of the sand and switch the Leaf over to CCS. Tesla is already replacing the CHAdeMO adapter with a CCS one.

As for this car itself, I wonder how the cargo space compares to the e-Niro or the Kona…

Yes, I’m confused about Kona, Soul, eNiro. Wich one to select in what case?

It should be between the two as it is as long as the Kona, shorter than the Niro, but taller and boxier than both. The Kona electric has 332 litres using the European VDA methodology (1114l with seats folded) ; the Niro electric has 451 litres using VDA (1425l with seats folded).

CHAdeMO will eventually be a Japan-only standard.

For those in civilised countries, the range on the comparable e-Niro is 484 km WLTP and 418 km EPA. For the Americans, 64 kWh is 218 377 BTU.

Not sure where the blame goes that it is still in use. Is it the weather man? The school system? Construction? Postal services? Government road signage? Read the article below if you’d like to find out how messed up Europe and Asia was before the SI units.

Hyundai/Kia have just got a new, additional, battery supplier I believe, which looks to be improving supplies for export outside Korea (where these cars are much in demand). Hopefully all their export markets will benefit.
These are not intended as compliance cars, but I guess they make more money selling in CARB states, even at the same price.

Yep, the 2020 Soul EV will net ~3 ZEV credits only in the CARB states, which can be worth as much as $5k per credit to the company. So you’re looking at up to a $15k difference in the bottom line of a sale of a Soul EV in Cali compared to say Mississippi. Which is why KIA won’t sell the Soul EV in non-CARB states.

I believe dealers can special order them outside of the ZEV states. However, I suspect the dealers don’t really want them, and there may be some requirements for service training and equipment.

Wow, the most powerful Soul is EV! Kia is starting to get it. EV alone is not enough, it has to be kickass.

Now all I have to do is convince my wife that a Soul is large enough to replace her Rogue in a year or two.

KEY QUOTE=One of the most impressive features of the new Soul EV is the new state-of-the-art liquid-cooled lithium ion polymer 64 kWh battery.
I had a 2015 and the battery dies along with ALL 20 in Phoenix so liquid-cooled is KEY!

I could have sworn there was a story the other day about now the 2020 Soul EV would ONLY be sold in the smaller battery configuration (39ish kWh).

You’re right -> https://insideevs.com/new-kia-soul-ev-39-kwh-battery-niro/

Intel for this article must have come for Nissan. 😉

Editors: Please don’t just cut and paste the press information into the web site. This particular one uses Roman numerals throughout which should be superscripted. It makes it difficult to read with extra characters that appear (with your lack of formatting) to blend into the text.

We write a full article, rather than just pasting in the press release. Then, we paste it in at the end for further reference. A quote tool somehow removed all the formatting, so I eliminated it. It should be much easier to read now. I have let the others know not to use the quote tool for the press releases and will keep my eye on it. Thanks for catching it!

AWD or GTFO. Electric is great (and I have a 2017 EV), but I really need an EV AWD in CO.

The winner will be someone that delivers a reimagined EV Honda Element. The Soul EV is close, but not enough to have me buy.