Kia unveils its updated 2016 Soul EV with a new entry-level spec and more standard features

2015-kia-soul EV
Kia’s Soul EV has been on the scene since 2014 and the Korean automaker has now released a series of minor updates to the compact electric hatch for the 2016 model year.

Most notably, Kia revealed a new entry-level version dubbed the EV-e that starts at $31,950 ($2,000 cheaper than the 2015 Soul EV base model) and includes push-button ignition, heated front seats, a heated steering wheel, Bluetooth connectivity, a multi-function steering wheel, and a six-speaker audio system. Including the $7,500 federal tax credit, the 2016 model will cost $24,450.

At the top of the Soul EV range is the Soul EV+ with a new “Sun & Fun Package” consisting of a panoramic sunroof, LED interior lighting, and speaker lights that pulse to the beats of the music. All 2016 Soul EVs will also get a charge-port nozzle lock — a critical piece of equipment — an illuminated AUX/USB port, and two new exterior colors: Bright Silver and Shadow Black.

Unchanged is the Soul EV’s powertrain: a 27kWh lithium-ion battery-powered electric motor making 109 horsepower and 210 pound-feet of torque. The range is still 90 miles on a single change, zero-to-60 mph takes 11.2 seconds, and top speed stands at 90 mph. You won’t be winning any drag races, basically.

The 2016 Kia Soul EV’s closest rivals include the Chevrolet Spark EV, Fiat 500e, Honda Fit EV, Ford Focus Electric, Mitsubishi i-MiEV, Nissan Leaf, and Volkswagen E-Golf. The Soul EV’s 90-mile range falls somewhere in the middle of the competition, and its new, lower starting price and attractive shape could draw new buyers to the Kia brand.

Product Review

Want an electric car that doesn't look like an electric car? Meet Audi's E-Tron

The 2019 Audi E-Tron is the German automaker’s first series-production electric car. Rather than make a bold statement with its first electric vehicle, Audi chose to make the E-Tron as much like its other cars as possible.
Cars

Alexa and Google Home-compatible JuicePlan simplifies EV charging at home

JuicePlan, eMotorWerks' new residential electric vehicle level 2 charging service subscription plan that simplifies EV home charger selection and installation, is now available in parts of California, New York, New Jersey, and Maryland.
Social Media

Twitter co-founder Ev Williams still wants to save the world

Social media is evil, leading to a mental health crisis in Gen Z and a rise in hate speech. But there’s light at the end of the tunnel, says Ev Williams, the co-founder of Twitter. But weaning ourselves off today's social media won't be…
Cars

Walmart slashes prices on electric hybrid bicycles for National Bike Month

Electric bikes can be economical, convenient, and fun. Heading into summer, Walmart slashed the prices for two pedal-assist Hyper E-ride Mountain and City Electric Hybrid Bikes by 40%. We found a variety of e-rides for under $1,000.
Cars

2020 Chevrolet Silverado 1500 pickup lets you see through trailers — sort of

The 2020 Chevrolet Silverado 1500 pickup truck gets a handful of updates for the new model year, including a transparent trailer camera system and a big boost in maximum towing capacity.
Cars

Insiders claim the Tesla Model S nearly became the long-rumored Apple car

Apple offered to buy Tesla in 2013, according to an analyst who spoke to people familiar with the talks. Apple made Tesla a great offer, but the deal fell through when Elon Musk refused to step away from the company he helped found.
Product Review

Hyundai’s luxurious Tucson suffocates you with more – in a good way

The refreshed 2019 Hyundai Tucson may be one of the more affordable compact SUVs on the market, but there are more safety features than before as standard, as well as a hint of luxury.
Cars

Parents will never miss soccer practice with BMW’s new 523-horsepower SUVs

BMW is launching M Performance versions of its biggest SUVs, the X5 and X7. While not full-on M models, they do pack 523-horsepower twin-turbo V8 engines, allowing both SUVs to sprint from zero to 60 mph in under five seconds.
Cars

Don’t trust Tesla’s new autonomous lane-changing feature, Consumer Reports warns

Consumer Reports warns that last month's Autopilot updates that enabled automatic lane changing may put you at risk of a ticket or accident. Reaction times lagged what a human could do, testers say.
Cars

Texas awaits one signature to put a statewide stop to red light cameras

When Texas Governor Greg Abbott signs state House Bill 1631 into law, he will bring a halt to red light cameras in the state. The central issue in the bill's passage is the presumption of guilt of the registered owner of the car.
Cars

EV owners may still need to stop at a Chevron station, but not to buy gasoline

EVgo, the operator of a sizable network of electric car charging stations, has partnered with Chevron. Five Chevron stations located in California will install EVgo chargers that electric car owners can pay to use.
Cars

Mercedes-Benz GLE SUV tries to balance power and efficiency with mild-hybrid V8

The redesigned Mercedes-Benz GLE will get a V8 mild-hybrid powertrain when it launches in the United States later in 2019. The 4.0-liter twin-turbocharged V8 makes 483 hp on its own, but can also get a 21 hp electric boost.
Cars

Audi TT will get the ax to make way for electric cars — and the R8 may be next

Once a design leader, the Audi TT will meet its demise to make room in Audi's lineup for more electric cars. Audi executives confirmed plans to kill off the TT at the automaker's annual shareholder meeting.
Cars

Honda recalls 119,000 2019 CR-V crossovers over fears of airbag deployment

A manufacturing defect in select 2019 Honda CR-V crossovers could cause the airbag to malfunction and unexpectedly deploy, leading the automaker to recall some 137,000 vehicles worldwide, 118,598 of them in the U.S.