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Alan Cesar
Alan Cesar Associate Editor
4/12/12 9:00 a.m.

The Kia Soul. Don't write it off just yet: It actually answers a lot of automotive questions. And it's available in a stickshift.

http://grassrootsmotorsports.com/new-cars/2012-176-soul/

MG Bryan
MG Bryan Dork
4/12/12 9:04 a.m.

Now if only someone, anyone, would make a surprisingly good that isn't horrifyingly ugly.

kreb
kreb SuperDork
4/12/12 9:10 a.m.

It looks better in person.

Honestly, I wish people would lay off the subjective aesthetic judegements. 99 percent of cars have their detractors. Do we really need to know that someone finds something ugly? Wow! News flash! Who cares?

David S. Wallens
David S. Wallens Editorial Director
4/12/12 9:11 a.m.

And I'm going to say that I think Kia has some of the coolest-looking, mass-production cars out there. Hey, we each have our own tastes when it comes to looks.

Curmudgeon
Curmudgeon MegaDork
4/12/12 9:18 a.m.

Kia really has stepped up their game, as has Hyundai. Honda et al better check their rearview mirrors carefully.

That doesn't mean I'd buy one, BTW. The only new car that interests me is the Genesis coupe because it's RWD.

The rest of the pack are FWD yawners, made for the vast masses as motorized washing machines. Or overpriced failure prone German stuff. Or retro muscle cars which evoke a simpler time but in reality are overweight yawners as well, not something I'd want to drive every day.

mndsm
mndsm UberDork
4/12/12 9:20 a.m.

Friend of mine bought one of those. It's a neat little van/truck/suv-let.

jrw1621
jrw1621 PowerDork
4/12/12 9:24 a.m.

But, if shopping for a sensible, fwd, DD in the "yawner class" the Koreans are clearly leading the pack.
Toyota/Scion has only "old models" (except iQ)
Honda has only the good Fit and the bad new Civic.
Mazda has the good CX-5 but charges more than Korea for the 40 mpg Mazda 3.
Nissan is dead to me.

mad_machine
mad_machine MegaDork
4/12/12 9:33 a.m.

the soul is better looking than the cube.. and I will admit I like the taillights on it.

MG Bryan
MG Bryan Dork
4/12/12 9:41 a.m.
kreb wrote: It looks better in person. Honestly, I wish people would lay off the subjective aesthetic judegements. 99 percent of cars have their detractors. Do we really need to know that someone finds something ugly? Wow! News flash! Who cares?

Yeah, when someone pisses in my Cheerios, it berkeleys up my day too. Welcome to the internet though - they tell me it might be serious business.

Lesley
Lesley UberDork
4/12/12 9:47 a.m.
jrw1621 wrote: But, if shopping for a sensible, fwd, DD in the "yawner class" the Koreans are clearly leading the pack. Toyota/Scion has only "old models" (except iQ) Honda has only the good Fit and the bad new Civic. Mazda has the good CX-5 but charges more than Korea for the 40 mpg Mazda 3. Nissan is dead to me.

Don't be too quick to dismiss Nissan – that Juke is seriously fun to drive.

Moparman
Moparman HalfDork
4/12/12 9:51 a.m.

In reply to kreb:

I care. My sister owns a Soul. It is a good car, but it is horribly ugly. Hey, I think the fastback body style is the epitome of automotive design so what do I know.

Seriously, there are very few cars made today which I think are attractive (super cars and exotics not withstanding). Heck, I think the Mustang is beautiful, but everything from Honda, except the CRZ, is butt ugly. The best looking cars on the market have some degree if retro in their styling. Cars today look too much like refrigerators. It reminds me of the early 60s Detroit (and late 70s Detroit as well).

Now if Kia would only build the Trackster!

Moparman
Moparman HalfDork
4/12/12 9:54 a.m.

In reply to Curmudgeon:

FWD does not bother me. I have owned many fun to drive FWD cars. My 84 Charger 2.2 was just as much fun to drive as my 85 RX7. I owned them at the same time and would switch back and forth. Oh yeah, both fastbacks.

Joe Gearin
Joe Gearin Associate Publisher
4/12/12 11:02 a.m.

I actually dig the way the Soul looks.

It drives better than it looks too. I had one for a week or so while on a California trip, and it grew on me the more I drove it. It's a happy little machine, especially with the manual trans.

If I was looking for a very practical little truck-let, it would be on my list.

carguy123
carguy123 PowerDork
4/12/12 12:07 p.m.
kreb wrote: It looks better in person. Honestly, I wish people would lay off the subjective aesthetic judegements. 99 percent of cars have their detractors. Do we really need to know that someone finds something ugly? Wow! News flash! Who cares?

The people who find it ugly care. Aesthetics are a major portion of car desire and directly affect sales.

Snowdoggie
Snowdoggie Dork
4/12/12 12:30 p.m.

It's cheap. It comes with a manual and it has a hatch for hauling large dogs and tons of crap.

So far I like it.

Giant Purple Snorklewacker
Giant Purple Snorklewacker UltimaDork
4/12/12 12:47 p.m.

You know a car is ugly when removing it improves the photo. It ruins that scenery as badly as an electric substation or gas well ruin other nature shots.

It does have the net effect of bringing the average down so that other formerly ugly cars have to be classed a little higher. I suppose Nissan can run with "New for '12, Now Marginally Better looking than a Kia Soul!"

Bobzilla
Bobzilla SuperDork
4/12/12 12:47 p.m.
Snowdoggie wrote: It's cheap. It comes with a manual and it has a hatch for hauling large dogs and tons of crap. So far I like it.

I agree. The wife think's its too boxy. Duh! lol

I Am Keyser Söze
I Am Keyser Söze SuperDork
4/12/12 12:51 p.m.
Alan Cesar wrote: The Kia Soul. Don't write it off just yet: It actually answers a lot of automotive questions. And it's available in a stickshift.

But does it answer the question as to why Automotive companies think stupid commercials with CGI animals in them are a good way to sell a car???

Riddle me that.

Snowdoggie
Snowdoggie Dork
4/12/12 12:59 p.m.
I Am Keyser Söze wrote:
Alan Cesar wrote: The Kia Soul. Don't write it off just yet: It actually answers a lot of automotive questions. And it's available in a stickshift.

But does it answer the question as to why Automotive companies think stupid commercials with CGI animals in them are a good way to sell a car???

Riddle me that.

They should have used huskies.

ebonyandivory
ebonyandivory Reader
4/12/12 2:45 p.m.

Is it me or are the "ugly" cars of old now some of the most fun and cool cars to own?

I'd love to own a: Pacer, Hornet, Volare', Gremlin, Matador, Thing (Type 181), Pinto, Chevette, Mustang II.

I'm guessing these new cars will only get cooler as time marches on.

4eyes
4eyes Dork
4/12/12 2:52 p.m.
ebonyandivory wrote: Is it me or are the "ugly" cars of old now some of the most fun and cool cars to own? I'd love to own a: Pacer, Hornet, Volare', Gremlin, Matador, Thing (Type 181), Pinto, Chevette, Mustang II. I'm guessing these new cars will only get cooler as time marches on.

It must be you, because it sure as hell aint me.

4eyes
4eyes Dork
4/12/12 2:53 p.m.
4eyes wrote:
ebonyandivory wrote: Is it me or are the "ugly" cars of old now some of the most fun and cool cars to own? I'd love to own a: Pacer, Hornet, Volare', Gremlin, Matador, Thing (Type 181), Pinto, Chevette, Mustang II. I'm guessing these new cars will only get cooler as time marches on.

It must be you, because it sure as hell aint me.

However I do like the Soul. It looks like a moderatly sized, stuff mover, that should get pretty good gas mileage.

Per Schroeder
Per Schroeder Technical Editor/Advertising Director
4/12/12 2:56 p.m.
I Am Keyser Söze wrote: But does it answer the question as to why Automotive companies think stupid commercials with CGI animals in them are a good way to sell a car??? Riddle me that.

Not all CGI. Steve and I met the girl who was one of the hamster drivers....

I Am Keyser Söze
I Am Keyser Söze SuperDork
4/12/12 3:05 p.m.
Per Schroeder wrote:
I Am Keyser Söze wrote: But does it answer the question as to why Automotive companies think stupid commercials with CGI animals in them are a good way to sell a car??? Riddle me that.

Not all CGI. Steve and I met the girl who was one of the hamster drivers....

There is so much in that statement right there, LOL

jrw1621
jrw1621 PowerDork
4/12/12 3:15 p.m.

LOL Lemmiwinks?

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