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5 reasons to love and hate Kia Soul I

Cubic shapes are definitely stylish. And also very loud at speed and dirty in the offseason. The salon is both spacious and not practical at all. The first-generation soul soul is literally woven out of contradictions: we’ll figure it out today.

Little about the origins
The story of Kia Soul began in 2005 when young designer Mike Torpey, who worked in the California studio of the Korean concern, was sent to the “country of morning freshness” in order to take part in brainstorming, the purpose of which was to develop the concept of a new compact car. According to the apocrypha, according to the impressions of his acquaintance with the Korean culture, Thorpey painted a caricature of a pig with a backpack. It was this sketch that served as the starting point for the work of the design team under the general guidance of maestro Peter Schreier.

In Russia, Soul sales started on March 20, 2009, a few months after the premiere in Paris. Initially, the car was delivered to the Russian market with two engine options: a 1.6-liter 124-horsepower gasoline Gamma (G4FC) and a U-II turbo-diesel (D4FB) of the same volume, but with a capacity of 128 hp. (although the US market offered a two-liter “four” with 164 hp) and front-wheel drive. Both engines could work either with a 5-speed manual transmission or with a 4-speed automatic, and during the first year of sales in our country, gasoline versions were offered only with mechanics. In addition, the car “in the base” was not supplied with a trunk shelf (which was supplied as a paid option), and the climate control, engine start button and on-board computer were not available to customers.

Soon (strangely, not immediately) it became clear that Russian buyers (and especially customers) needed cars with a gasoline engine in conjunction with automatic transmission, and they still went on sale. However, the situation was completely corrected during the restyling of 2011, when the old 4-speed box was replaced with a 6-speed one. At the same time, the SKD assembly was established in Kaliningrad, at the Avtotor plant.

In the US, Soul became a hit, costing tens of thousands of pieces per month. As for the popularity of Soul in Russia, the position of this model can be described in the words of Omar Khayyam: “my glass is small, but I drink from my glass.” A car with such a bright design could not but gather around itself a club of fans … and haters, too. As one of the owners of Soul aptly formulated, “it seems that it’s cut off the dream, then I think that they have deceived me.” So what is the dream, and what is it deceived?

Many owners were upset by the manufacturer’s inattention to trifles: “On my previous car with a minimum configuration, the glove compartment was blown out of the air conditioner. Here, even in the configuration “Suite” is not. On the old car (in the minimum configuration) all the bolts of fastening of the front seats were equipped with plastic decorative caps. Here (in the “Suite”) sparkling red stripes of factory seals … “. The quality of plastic on the first generation of Soule also leaves much to be desired: it is hard and uncomfortable.

There were cases of poor-quality assembly in Kaliningrad. For example, the starter stopped working, and the reason was that the bolt that connected the positive lead to the starter was not properly tightened, which is why the wire burned out. It is repeatedly mentioned that after buying a car in the dealership, the DVD drive in the media center did not work – and only because the transport screws were not removed when installing the device. But there in red English letters it is written: “remove the bolts before installation!”.

A lot of reviews on the Internet start roughly the same way: I drove (went) to the salon to buy a new car, I was going to buy (hereafter, a long list of popular sedans, hatchbacks and crossovers), but I saw (saw) Soul and left (left) already on it. Naturally, such spontaneous purchases are more characteristic of the beautiful half of humanity: “I saw, fell in love and no longer wanted any other car,” so that among lovely ladies the model is a success, their share among owners is very large, and the car earned a reputation as “female”.

For many men, it even became a negative factor – they say, “the car is generally female, and it is not respected on the road.” And in general, such a bright and original design, in principle, can not please everybody. Be sure there will be a sufficient number of those who will criticize him, compared with a toaster or shoe box … But all this is unimportant. It is important that there are enough of those for whom Soul is the sweetest car, bright, bold, catchy of attention, and most importantly – capable of generating positive emotions. In this regard, only works of the Mini brand can compete with Soul, but the Mini belongs to the premium price segment, and the Soul – to the middle price segment, and this is also very important.

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