My wife and I are thinking of trading in our trusty '13 Soul (Base, Automatic) that has 93K miles on it. Except for some small rock chips up front and small bump from a hit&run moron in the grocery store parking lot, it still runs and looks like new. That is why we are hesitant to trade.
However, like any sheet-metal and rubber appliance, there comes a point where we will have to start putting in money for repairs. With the powertrain warranty ending soon, that means $$ out of pocket.
We decided to look at another Base model (now called LX) automatic. We like the base because it does not have the electronic safety nannies (lane assist and forward collision braking) that so many cars are getting standard now. (Even the middle and upper level Souls have them. Ugh!)
Here's my thoughts after a 10-mile test drive and 30 minutes checking it out:
Still has big windows, excellent visibility.
Still has same basic layout as our '13, so my wife felt "at home" right away.
Front seats seem to have more lower back support and better overall comfort.
CVT - Oops, IVT - "shifted" smoothly and was very transparent. ALSO - I noted in the owner's manual that there is no recommended fluid change for the IVT. Looks like lifetime fluid, even though I would probably change at 60K-75K miles.
2.0 engine had plenty of power.
I reset the trip meter before driving, and my short stop&go and heavy acceleration showed 29MPG.
I don't like Engine Stop-Start, but I'm glad they put an "Off" switch by your left knee where it's easy to touch every time you start up.
SO VERY GLAD they did not put the Lane Assist on the base model. I don't a car pulling itself in the opposite direction I intend.
Struts on the hood.
Glad to see they went back to Multi-Port Fuel Injection. I've had no problems with our GDI, but MPFI is simpler and more proven.
Glad to see the base model uses regular headlights and not LED. We have LED headlights on our '19 Subaru Forester and there is a very distinct cut-off line, above which it is pitch black. Before we buy a '20 Soul, I will definitely take it overnight for a headlight check.
Spare tire - not a can of Fix-A-Flat!
Not so sure:
No more mic to make phone calls via voice commands, unless you plug in your phone with USB cable. Problem: we have all of our music on a thumb-drive and there is only one USB outlet. Salespeople were not sure if multi-plug adapter would work.
Only 3 overhead grab handles above the doors. What happened to the driver's handle???
No bodyside molding available to protect that huge chunk of real estate just waiting for a stray swinging door.
Rear bumper cover by the license plate area seemed very flimsy.
No "repeater lights" on front fender for turn signals.
Not sure if I like the idea of expensive headlights hanging that low on the front end. Our town has a lot of the cement "bump-stops" in the parking lots and some are high enough to just catch the underside of the front bumper. If I catch the bumper on one of these either pulling in or backing out, that could be an expensive repair.
Cargo area floor covering was thin and looks like it would collapse into the spare-tire well if anything was put on it.
SUMMARY: Since it seems like the age of Electronic Nannies is upon us, we will probably get one of the '20 Base Automatics this summer while we can still get a car that doesn't want to drive itself.
Anyone in the market for a nice '13? No smoking - No pets. All seats covered and like new. New brakes and fluid flush. Trans and coolant flushes at 60K. LOL