The Kia Soul 1.6 T-GDi has been revealed; with its turbocharged engine producing 201bhp, it's the hottest model in the Soul range. It will make its debut at the Paris motor show
Jimi Beckwith
26 September 2016

The Kia Soul 1.6 T-GDi has been revealed as the model to spearhead the facelifted Soul range. 

With the same 1.6-litre turbocharged petrol engine as the Cee'd GT, the Soul T-GDi has a power output of 201bhp, with 195lb ft of torque delivered to the front wheels. It can go from 0-62mph from a standstill in 7.5sec, with a top speed of 122mph.

The most powerful Soul in the range doesn't get the GT badge that Kia is poised to apply to more models across its line-up, but it does get upgraded bodywork and interior tweaks over the standard car.

This includes more sportily-styled bumpers and twin exhaust pipes, as well as model-exclusive 18in alloys. Despite the non-GT badging, the car also gets red highlights on its front bumper and sides.

Inside, the Soul T-GDi gets an exclusive colour scheme, with black leather and cloth with orange highlights. Kia has also fitted a flat-bottomed steering wheel.

The T-GDi also gets larger brakes, which improve the car’s stopping distance over the regular Soul. Also making its debut on the hottest Soul is a drive mode selector coupled to its seven-speed dual-clutch transmission, which allows drivers to choose between Normal, Eco and Sport driving modes. The feature also tweaks the weight of the steering.

As is usual for the more powerful cars among manufacturers’ lineups, the T-GDi will be the most expensive Soul to run, with CO2 emissions of 156g/km and fuel economy slightly less than the Ceed GT’s 38.2mpg, due to the Soul's less aerodynamic shape. An official fuel economy figure is yet to be confirmed, though.

Read about this year's Paris motor show here

Kia has launched this new car as part of the facelifted Soul range, which will go on sale in the UK from late this year. The facelifted regular model gets the usual raft of subtle interior and exterior tweaks, as well as new headlights and LED daytime running lights and a revised grille.

On the inside, new gloss black and metallic trim has been added, as has a choice of 5.0in, 7.0in or 8.0in infotainment touchscreens. Android Auto and Apple CarPlay compatibility are likely to be offered on mid-range Mixx trim and above.

A reversing camera is also available, and there’s a rear USB port for back-seat passengers to charge their devices with. New safety tech includes a blind spot monitor and a system that alerts the driver of approaching traffic across the rear of the car when reversing, although these are likely to be on higher-spec cars only.

The facelifted Soul is likely to be priced from above £13,000, a small price hike from the current model. The warmed-up Soul T-GDi is likely to be priced from around £21,500.

Keep up with all the latest Paris motor show news, with all the latest reveals and details here

Our Verdict

Kia Soul

Kia adds refinement and maturity to its funky crossover without leaching out the charm. Still flawed dynamically

Join the debate


26 September 2016
I applaud Kia for building this. But 201bhp, 7.5secs to 60 & 122mph flat out. Wonder if it weighs quite a bit. The Rover Tomcat & 800 Vitesse sport would pull 150, with the same power the Tomcat was a sub 6sec car. So much for advancement.

27 September 2016
smokescreen38 wrote:

I applaud Kia for building this. But 201bhp, 7.5secs to 60 & 122mph flat out. Wonder if it weighs quite a bit. The Rover Tomcat & 800 Vitesse sport would pull 150, with the same power the Tomcat was a sub 6sec car. So much for advancement.

Probably a limit set by the tyres. These cars appeal to the older generation who like something quirky, would give a few Corsa kids a shock at the lights.. epic fun!

27 September 2016
Shame Kia hasn't decided to fit a smaller turbo option as well. I like the Soul but I don't want a diesel and if the standard 1.6 petrol is the only other option, I don't fancy (a claimed) 41mpg and £185 a year tax either. This 1.6 turbo is obviously to appeal to the American market, where the Soul is popular and petrol flows like water. Just wish Kia had knocked out a cheaper, smaller version for us.

Add your comment

Log in or register to post comments

Find an Autocar car review

Driven this week

  • First Drive
    23 March 2018
    Fully-loaded, big-hitting diesel CLS shows the potential perils of ticking too many options boxes on your order form. A good car with a bad suspension combination.
  • BMW M5
    First Drive
    22 March 2018
    Super saloon deploys four-wheel drive to improve every facet of its driving experience. Faster and more capable than any, and more exciting than most, of its celebrated predecessors
  • Range Rover Sport SVR
    First Drive
    22 March 2018
    More power and an intoxicating soundtrack have breathed new life into our love affair with the biggest, baddest Range Rover Sport variant
  • First Drive
    21 March 2018
    The new Vantage has been developed as a Porsche 911 beater, and our first taste on UK roads suggests it can live up to that bold claim
  • Nissan Leaf Tekna
    The is the new Nissan Leaf
    First Drive
    21 March 2018
    The new version of the world's best-selling electric car gains a bigger battery and more power. How does it compare to rivals such as the Volkswagen e-Golf?