Kia Soul vs Honda HR-V


Crossovers are the vehicle of choice for many new car consumers. These vehicles are very versatile and come in all different shapes and sizes. There are compact crossovers, mid-sized crossovers, and crossovers that are almost the size of an SUV. Choosing the best one can depend on various factors such as the size of your family, the power of the engine and space inside the vehicle. Here we will compare two very popular crossovers the Kia Soul and the Honda HR-V on various features of each vehicle. 


Exterior Appeal


First off, we shall look at the exterior styling, or for some the thing that matters most, the overall look of the exterior is of overriding importance to many modern-day consumers. In this regard, we have two very different automobiles. The Kia Soul and the Honda HR-V are two very differently styled crossovers. The Kia Soul, at first glance, does not resemble a crossover. It has a very unique shape and style. In other words, it is one of the coolest looking vehicles available in America right now. You will notice people’s eyes on the Soul every time you stop at a traffic signal or when you are parked in a parking lot. Most of the attention is due to the attractive color range available for the Soul and its unique look. Other than that, important things like ground clearance are ample for the Soul as compared to the HR-V. The Kia Soul seems to pack a lot of room into an overall smaller feeling vehicle then the Honda HR-V.

The Honda HR-V, on the other hand, appears larger in stature, possibly due to its curved roof line. The Honda HR-V appears to have a lot of similar features to its other Honda counterparts at first glance it reminded me of a smaller version of the Honda CR-V. The shape and design of the HR-V are very similar to other crossovers in the Toyota line-up as well. You won't find much difference between several of the vehicles being offered in the CUV lineup. With that being said the HR-V comes with some subtle styling cues centered around appealing to the CUV consumers and looking more mainstream with not many features to make this vehicle stand apart from the rest.


Engine & Performance


The Kia Soul comes with three different powertrain options, so there is something for everybody. The base powertrain is a 1.6-liter engine that has ample power and smooth drivability producing 131 hp. If you like a bit more power, you can upgrade to the 2.0 -liter engine or a third engine option in the Kia Soul is the 1.6-liter turbocharged engine that is simply fun to drive. This top of the line engine produces 201hp which can really move the Kia Soul and works really well with the Kia Soul front wheel drive system. The KIA Soul is one of the few vehicles in the CUV segment that still has a standard transmission option. I know most prefer an automatic transmission but for those that still like to feel completely connected to their vehicles the Kia Soul is one of the few if not only with this option. The Kia Soul is a very maneuverable vehicle, solid in all different driving situations. Comfortable on the highway and nimble in city driving in all conditions.


The Honda HR-V gets one powertrain option and that is a 4-cylinder 1.8-liter engine. The Honda HR-V feels a little under powered at times with this engine choice. You won’t get the thrill and excitement with the HR-V that you will get with the Soul’s added turbocharged engine option. The HR-V does perform well in both highway and city driving and gives you solid line of vision and ergonomics for all types of driving situations.




The interior of the Kia Soul is very spacious and well put. You will find all the modern equipment and technologies in this vehicle and even though it is not an overly sophisticated designed it is perfect for a crossover lover. The interior inside has clean lines and in monotone black, works well in contrast with the exterior color options. The interior feels spacious for the overall size of the vehicle, the Kia Soul has an overall larger passenger volume then competitor vehicles in this segment at 101 cu ft. The instrument panel is very user friendly with well-placed controls. The Instrument panel is easy to read and works well with the interior design of the Kia Soul. The headroom and legroom inside the Soul are very accommodating compared to other vehicles in this segment. The Kia Soul does offer more rear hip, head and shoulder room at 49.3in rear hip Room, 39.5in rear head room and 54.7in rear shoulder room which is more than the Honda HR-V offers and can make a big difference on longer trips where more space becomes an added convenience for passengers.


The Kia Soul has an extremely quiet cabin when compared to its peers. Although reducing wind noise is a fairly difficult task at high speeds, the designers and engineers at Kia have managed to reduce the sound level inside the Soul’s cabin to a minimum. At 69 dBA Kia’s in-cabin sound level is the lowest among its competitors especially when compared to the HR-V. The HR-V has a sound level of 71 dBA. You might think that is not a big difference but when you are on a longer route, you can feel the variation. Furthermore, when it comes to visibility the Soul has the least number of blind spots. Front visibility is vast at 160 degrees, the most in its segment.


The Honda HR-V has an accommodating interior with well-placed controls and easy to view instrument panel that works well inside the overall interior design. The most noticeable issue within the Honda HR-V interior is a space issue with front head room, coming in at just 37.6in which is a solid 2 inches less than the majority of the competition in this segment. Also notable is the smaller rear passenger space; 47.4in rear hip Room, 38.3in rear head room and 54.5in rear shoulder room. Visibility is good in the Honda HR-V.


 Technical Features


The Kia Soul has a number of packages and add-ons that can make your ride comfortable and fun. If you equip your base Soul with the Convenience package, you get a state of the art UVO3 infotainment system to the mix. However, the basic features are equally exciting. The basic features include a 5.0-inch touchscreen that can be upgraded to 7.0- or 8.0-inch screens. Other than that climate control, Bluetooth capability, Apple CarPlay, and Android Auto and USB ports. The touchscreen infotainment system is very responsive and user-friendly. The Kia Soul also has available Satellite radio and dual illuminated vanity mirrors which many of its competitors do not offer.


The Honda HR-V does not come equipped or optioned with the technology we had expected from a Honda vehicle. The infotainment system was not very user friendly. The Honda HR-V does come equipped with HondaLink, four speakers, a 5.0-inch touchscreen and Bluetooth connectivity. If you go one step above to the EX trim package, Honda adds two more speakers, an extra USB port and a 7.0 -inch touchscreen replacing the smaller screen. It is in the EX-L trim that you get navigation and radio on top of other features.




The Kia Soul scores extremely well when it comes to safety. There are two safety rating companies: the NHTSA and the IIHS. Both these organizations gave the Soul a very good rating. The NHTSA gives ratings based on a star system. The NHTSA gives the Soul 5-stars. The IIHS gives ratings based on Poor through Good. The Kia Soul gets Good in all concerned ratings. The compact crossover has ample airbags designed to protect passengers in all situations from all angles.


The Honda HR-V notable safety rating concerns from the IIHS is an acceptable (A) rating for Driverside rating and Poor (P) headlight and marginal (M) child safety seat anchors ease of use rating but the HR-V did well in the NHTSA rating. The NHTSA gave the HR-V a 5-star rating Honda does give a similar amount of airbags throughout the vehicle to help protect passengers in a collision situation.


Both the Kia Soul and Honda HR-V come standard with a traction control system, electronic stability control and hill assist control to help with driving in adverse situations.


 Fuel Efficiency


The Kia Soul has (3) different engine options the official EPA rating listed from the manufacture with the 1.6L I4 201hp Turbo as a combined fuel economy of 28 mpg and, on the highway, it came in at 31 mpg and city 26 mpg.


The Honda HR-V rates well when it comes to the EPA ratings, HR-V gives 28 mpg in the city while on the highway it came in at 34 mpg for a combined rating of 31 mpg. All this is justified given that the crossover is equipped with a 1.8-l I4 at 141hp.




The Kia Soul comes standard with what’s considered by many to be one of the best automotive warranties in America. The Basic warranty covers the Kia Soul for 5 years or 60,000 miles with the powertrain warranty covering the Kia Soul for 10 years or 100,000 miles, whichever comes first. The Kia Soul comes with one of the longest new car warranties of any manufacturer of new vehicles in the United States.


The Honda HR-V comes standard with a basic warranty for 3 years or 36,000 miles and a powertrain warranty for 5 years or 60,000 miles, whichever comes first. These are standard warranty terms comparable to other CUVs in the segment except the Kia Soul.




Seeing the comparison between the Kia Soul and the Honda HR-V, it is easy to say that the Kia Soul has several benefits over its competition. It’s unique styling, versatility engine options more advanced technology components and overall more spacious rear passenger area, added warranty length and benefits are just a few of the Kia Souls added highlights in the compact CUV segment. When it comes to price there is a difference as well the base price of the Kia Soul is $16,490 and the Honda HR-V is $20,470. With the substantial pricing difference in mind we believe the Kia Soul offers more vehicle at a lower price. It’s no wonder the Kia Soul is in thousands of driveways across America. With so many vehicles to choose from in this growing compact CUV segment the auto manufacturers have taken notice of consumers desire to have the best of both world, more fuel efficient larger vehicles that are fun to drive. No matter where you are located throughout the country we believe the Kia Soul will bring miles of exciting driving in any conditions.

If you live in Central Florida, in areas like Lakeland, Lake Wales, Bartow, Haines City, Winter Haven, Kissimmee, Davenport, Highland Park, Fort Meade, Frostproof or anywhere else in Polk or Osceola counties, Dyer Kia in Lake Wales offers a wide selection of brand new Kia’s including the Kia Soul mentioned is this article. 

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