Kia Shows Updated Soul and Carens

Kia Soul

Along with unveiling their newest Rio at the Paris Motor Show, Kia also showed off new versions of the Soul compact SUV and the not-quite-a-CUV, not-quite-a-minivan Carens (which Canadians know as the Rondo). All-new in 2014, the pair receive a mid-cycle update and refresh for 2017.

The Soul gets new front and rear bumpers, with a metallic skid plate to give it a tougher look. There are now optional HID headlights and LED running lights. The Kia “tiger-nose” grille has gotten a new finish as well. Closer to the ground, there are new optional 16- and 17-inch alloy wheel designs.

Inside, the Soul gets a new cloth interior with single or two-tone colour schemes. There are gloss black and metallic trim highlights for a more upscale appearance. Available trim packs give either orange or red highlights to the inside and the outside of the Soul.

The SX trim gets an engine upgrade to a 204 hp 1.6L turbo four-cylinder. That will be combined with a new seven-speed dual-clutch automatic transmission, a bolder body kit, 18-inch wheels and dual exhaust to provide a much sportier SX than Souls past. It will also get a cloth and leather interior with orange highlights.

A trio of new touchscreen infotainment systems are available, in 5.0-, 7.0- and 8.0-inch sizes. Apple CarPlay and Android Auto integration is available, and there is now a USB charge port for rear-seat passengers. Rain-sensing wipers are now an option, as are blind-spot detection and rear cross-traffic alert.

Kia Carens (Rondo)

The the small seven-seater Carens (aka Rondo) gets many of the same changes as the Soul for model-year 2017. There are new front and rear bumpers, an updated grille and new wheel choices, along with new interior materials. It receives the same infotainment systems but gets a new JBL premium sound system.

Both models go on sale later this year.

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Evan Williams

Evan Williams

Evan is based in Halifax, and has been a car nut for as long as anyone can remember. He autocrosses, does lapping days and TSD rallies, breaks cars and then fixes them again.