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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Hello all! I have been looking around on this forum a alot lately because I'm seriously thinking about getting a 2nd gen Soul.

I currently drive a 2002 PT Cruiser base model 5 speed manual with no options. It has a/c and power windows and that's it for standard equipment.

My main dilemma here is whether or not get a Soul Base manual or to get a Soul+ (2.0 liter) with the auto. Im located in Central New York State (not anywhere near New York City).

I test drove a Soul Base Manual and a Soul Base auto. I liked how the auto worked in general better than other autos I have driven but if I'm gonna get an auto is probably want the larger engine. The issue with the manual is that there are no options at all and the shift lag in 2nd gear really put a damper on things.

So yeah, that's my current reason for being here.

Anyone have recommendations?
 

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You are in range for three models: Base MT; Base AT; and Plus. The main difference is the engine and the manual/auto. If you are doing local driving, are not a hot rodder with your car, have a fair amount of patience and are more into saving gas, then the base MT is your ticket. There are threads here that cover the lag you mention, research it because I believe that there is a fix for that. Other than that, the auto is not bad and there are a few options for it. The Plus on the other hand can be run up to 27K if you want but there are a ton of options in packages. I have had two base ATs and for me, around town driving they cannot be beat (I had to give up manuals some years back). If you are on the interstate on the other hand on a regular weekly and/or daily schedule, you will be happier with the Plus but the MPGs will suffer some.

Try reading through this thread and see if you can get some relief for your concerns: http://www.kiasoulforums.com/137-so...ansmissions-1st-2nd-hesitations-remedy-2.html
 

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I bought a 2016 Soul+ 2.0 auto in March and am very happy with it. I would highly recommend the combination.
I second this opinion. I do love a manual, but I am really happy with the larger engines power. The sport mode gives it some good zip, and the features on a + model are very nice. At the end of the day however, go with your gut and whichever one makes you smile to drive everyday.
 

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Discussion Starter · #5 ·
TnTsSoul, do you have any experience with manual transmissions?

I noticed when I test drove a 2015 base automatic Soul, that when I used the manual gear mode it almost felt as if it was a manual transmission (i.e.- it felt like the torque converter was locked or nearly locked while both accelerating and decelerating while in gear) and I really liked that.

I also drove an automatic 2013 Mazda 6 and in the manual mode the torque converter feels very "slippery" like a typical automatic, which really turned me off of that car in automatic. The problem is, the manual Mazda 6s are very rare and I dont really feel like driving 150-300 miles to go look at one. I also prefer a hatchback and the high seating position on the Soul better.

Any thoughts on this?
 

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TnTsSoul, do you have any experience with manual transmissions?

I noticed when I test drove a 2015 base automatic Soul, that when I used the manual gear mode it almost felt as if it was a manual transmission (i.e.- it felt like the torque converter was locked or nearly locked while both accelerating and decelerating while in gear) and I really liked that.

I also drove an automatic 2013 Mazda 6 and in the manual mode the torque converter feels very "slippery" like a typical automatic, which really turned me off of that car in automatic. The problem is, the manual Mazda 6s are very rare and I dont really feel like driving 150-300 miles to go look at one. I also prefer a hatchback and the high seating position on the Soul better.

Any thoughts on this?
I have a ton of experience with manual transmissions. I've owned more sticks then autos in my life. My wife can drive anything that's a stick too. I would prefer a stick but the wife has rheumatoid arthritis in her knees now so a stick is out. No need to torture her.

That being said I do like Kia's auto trans, it has good engine braking in all gears, wide gear ratios, downshifts as you slow, has a nice torque convertor and shift quality. I like the shifter too.

I have driven a Mazda 6 and wasn't impressed by it's auto trans but it's been a few years since I drove one.
 

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2017 KIA Soul base, Titanium. Bought some better taars.
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I have a ton of experience with manual transmissions. I've owned more sticks then autos in my life. My wife can drive anything that's a stick too. I would prefer a stick but the wife has rheumatoid arthritis in her knees now so a stick is out. No need to torture her.

That being said I do like Kia's auto trans, it has good engine braking in all gears, wide gear ratios, downshifts as you slow, has a nice torque convertor and shift quality. I like the shifter too.

I have driven a Mazda 6 and wasn't impressed by it's auto trans but it's been a few years since I drove one.
I have a 2017 Maz6 Touring and I find the auto a nicer unit than my '15 Soul+ auto. Smoother, and in power mode I can really feel the difference.
That said, I'm going to have to ditch the Maz for a Soul for the accessibility and body ache issues you mention. I'm looking at a turbo Soul.

Interesting coincidence, my wife has a 2001 PT LTD that just turned 70,000. She loves that car, it fits just right, right height right size, she's never owned a car this long. The engine is a dog and gets amazingly poor MPG (18 in town, best of about 24-25 on the highway) but that's not a biggie. It makes her happy and she just runs about 1000/year so it's perfect.
 
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TnTsSoul, do you have any experience with manual transmissions?

I noticed when I test drove a 2015 base automatic Soul, that when I used the manual gear mode it almost felt as if it was a manual transmission (i.e.- it felt like the torque converter was locked or nearly locked while both accelerating and decelerating while in gear) and I really liked that.

I also drove an automatic 2013 Mazda 6 and in the manual mode the torque converter feels very "slippery" like a typical automatic, which really turned me off of that car in automatic. The problem is, the manual Mazda 6s are very rare and I dont really feel like driving 150-300 miles to go look at one. I also prefer a hatchback and the high seating position on the Soul better.

Any thoughts on this?
I have both an automatic and a manual Soul (first gen). I drive the manual, wife drives the automatic. The lag in the manual is annoying but you get used to it - you have to wind the RPMs up higher than you would expect. I live in the mountains and commute through the mountains and the automatic would drive me nuts. That said, I like the extra foot-space of the automatic and the manuals on the Souls are nothing to write home about.

I have drove manuals all my life and I have more than a million miles of driving time. There are a few writeups on improving the Soul's manual experience, mostly related to removing the stupid clutch release valve in the slave cylinder. That valve slows down the clutch re-engagement by slowing the hydraulic release, which makes for a jerky ride if you're used to driving manuals the old fashioned way. I also dislike the hill-holder feature, but that can be avoided by just shifting into neutral.

Driving the manual is definitely more "sporty" than the automatic, even in 'manual' mode. But the Soul isn't much of a sports car, and from a guy coming from Miatas (Miatae?), the shifting experience leaves a lot to be desired. My left hamstring, however, has healed up in this car while it was in a permanent state of inflammation in the Miatas. I loved driving my Miatas and hated giving them up but as age creeps up the Soul is a much more well-rounded car for everyday use.
 

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Discussion Starter · #9 ·
I have drove manuals all my life and I have more than a million miles of driving time. There are a few writeups on improving the Soul's manual experience, mostly related to removing the stupid clutch release valve in the slave cylinder. That valve slows down the clutch re-engagement by slowing the hydraulic release, which makes for a jerky ride if you're used to driving manuals the old fashioned way. I also dislike the hill-holder feature, but that can be avoided by just shifting into neutral.
Thanks for the response!

Have you done the clutch valve mod? And could you elaborate on the hill hold "disable" by shifting to neutral?

Unfortunately miatas are out of the question for me as I am 6'7" and the main reason I'm considering a Soul is for the passenger room in the front.

Sent from my Moto G (4) using Tapatalk
 

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Go for the Exclaim ! Turbo, You won't believe how much more power (201HP, 195ft/lbs torque) this engine has and it gets better mileage than the 2.0L, I just purchased one and, My other car is a 2013 Ford Mustang GT with Modifications It puts out 460HP & 425ft/lbs Torque at the rear wheels and the Soul Turbo still impressed me.
 

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I have not done the clutch valve mod - it's on my list - but everyone that has done it here, and on other similar Kia forums have reported a major improvement in the way it drove. For me, I commute in this car 5 days per week and have a list of things to do a mile long on the weekend, so I've never got to it yet, but one day.

As for the "Hill Hold", if you shift into neutral at any stop, you can just keep your foot on the brake and clutch/shift when you need to go (i.e. when the light turns green) and you will roll back just as you would expect to in any other manual. If you leave it in gear when you stop, the hill hold is automatically engaged. If you shift into gear before you are ready, and hold the brake, the hill hold also engages (if my memory serves me right). So you just shift into neutral, let off the clutch and just hold the brake and don't go into first until you're ready to take off - if you do it that way, the car doesn't have a chance to figure out you're on a hill :)
 

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Dwing if you can wait until the 2018 comes out you'll get a backup camera added as standard (by law) on the MT.

I added the OEM center armrest & cruise to mine. I love driving MT & short of having a tablet in the dash, which is unimportant to me (we all have smartphones), I don't find the Base MT lacking in anything I need.

PS: I found hill hold annoying the first couple of weeks, especially since I had never experienced it during a lifetime of driving stick. Now that I understand how & when it works, I very much like & appreciate it (crazy I know). I would miss it now.
 

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Discussion Starter · #14 ·
That would be cool but unfortunately I'm buying Used because I'm cheap and I don't want a car payment.

I didn't know back up cameras were now mandatory though. That's pretty cool
 

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Discussion Starter · #15 ·
I have not done the clutch valve mod - it's on my list - but everyone that has done it here, and on other similar Kia forums have reported a major improvement in the way it drove. For me, I commute in this car 5 days per week and have a list of things to do a mile long on the weekend, so I've never got to it yet, but one day.

As for the "Hill Hold", if you shift into neutral at any stop, you can just keep your foot on the brake and clutch/shift when you need to go (i.e. when the light turns green) and you will roll back just as you would expect to in any other manual. If you leave it in gear when you stop, the hill hold is automatically engaged. If you shift into gear before you are ready, and hold the brake, the hill hold also engages (if my memory serves me right). So you just shift into neutral, let off the clutch and just hold the brake and don't go into first until you're ready to take off - if you do it that way, the car doesn't have a chance to figure out you're on a hill :)
Wouldn't be an issue for me then as I always sit at stop lights in neutral with my left foot off the pedal. Good to know though! Thanks!
 

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Dwing if you can wait until the 2018 comes out you'll get a backup camera added as standard (by law) on the MT.
not saying that you might not be right, but they are not mandated to be compulsory till built in May 2018, the same applies to Canada. However, the 2018 info I have on Canadian model does not indicate a backup camera standard on the LX model (Base), so maybe not till the 2019 model as far as the Soul is concerned - but as they say "product specifications are known to be accurate at time of printing and are subject to change without notice."

The 2018 Rio 5 will have backup camera standard.
 

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not saying that you might not be right, but they are not mandated to be compulsory till built in May 2018, the same applies to Canada. However, the 2018 info I have on Canadian model does not indicate a backup camera standard on the LX model (Base), so maybe not till the 2019 model as far as the Soul is concerned - but as they say "product specifications are known to be accurate at time of printing and are subject to change without notice."

The 2018 Rio 5 will have backup camera standard.
Nope Conwel you're exactly right. I've read that manufacturers would try to offer them on all 2018s to avoid buyer confusion & anger. Can you imagine buying a car made in April & discovering the next month it would have been standard.

Who knows how it will all play out.
 

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Nope Conwel you're exactly right. I've read that manufacturers would try to offer them on all 2018s to avoid buyer confusion & anger. Can you imagine buying a car made in April & discovering the next month it would have been standard.

Who knows how it will all play out.
maybe they might start the 2019 model year production in May of 2018 (which would not be uncommon), which would at least solve the possible scenario you just mentioned. Most vehicles now have back-up cameras its just the lower end inexpensive models that seem to be lacking in some cases.
Nice to see that Canada is following the US on this feature and at the same time too.
 

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maybe they might start the 2019 model year production in May of 2018 (which would not be uncommon), which would at least solve the possible scenario you just mentioned. Most vehicles now have back-up cameras its just the lower end inexpensive models that seem to be lacking in some cases.
Nice to see that Canada is following the US on this feature and at the same time too.
That's a good point conwel. Starting 2019 MY in May 2018 would help keep things cleaner, especially for salespeople.

I agree it's nice to see Canada & US following the same guidelines. Now if only they would let us Yanks purchase the model packages you get. I still stand by what I said years ago "You Canadians get the good toys first!" Remember that cool built in flashlight in the boot space?
 
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