Most Common Kia Soul Problems

When buying a Kia Soul, you likely aren’t expecting it to be as fast as a high-performance sports car. However, you are likely expecting the engine to be reliable and safe. Unfortunately, according to the NHTSA complaint records, this isn’t always the case. The main concern regarding 2020 Kia Soul problems tends to revolve around the engine and transmission. Given these Kia Soul problems are not universal and only happen on a case by case basis, we would never discourage the purchase of one. But, it is worth knowing what kinds of issues you may run into if you’re thinking of buying one or what issues you should get looked at if you already have one. 

Kia Soul Engine Problems

Out of the 115 complaints filed with the NHTSA, 44 of them are regarding Kia Soul engine problems. The main issue being that the engine would lose power, stall, and shut off, which is very dangerous to have happen unexpectedly while driving. Most of these reports were also from owners that had vehicles with low milage. This issue became a big enough concern that Kia even issued a recall on 2020-2021 Kia Souls that were manufactured between Nov. 24, 2018 and Oct. 24, 2020 to attempt to fix the problem. However, according to vehicle owner complaints, the recall as a solution was hit or miss as some owners are still experiencing issues after the fixes were implemented. 

Kia Soul Transmission Problems

The transmission is what carries power from the engine to the wheels to propel the vehicle forward and drive at the speed you desire. Given the transmission has to interpret the exact amount of power to reach your desired speed, even the smallest transmission issues are noticeable and should be addressed as soon as possible. The most commonly reported 2020 Kia Soul transmission problems include but are not limited to shifting delays, gear grinding, jumping during acceleration, shaking while driving at both slow and higher speeds, burning smells, and whistling sounds coming from under the hood. If you are experiencing any of these issues, be sure to visit your local mechanic as soon as possible. By ignoring these Kia Soul transmission issues you could suffer a noticeable loss in fuel efficiency and/or end up with a Kia Soul that doesn’t run at all.

Kia Soul Steering Problems

Although Kia was thought to have fixed the majority of their vehicles steering issues with recent recalls, there are just as many reports of new vehicles experiencing a similar issue. The issue was discovered after Kia found out that the workers at a supplier’s manufacturing plant in South Korea had been using the wrong adhesive to lock in the thread on a plug – which secures a pinion gear to the steering assembly. When the plug gets rattled loose, drivers could potentially lose control of their car, thus could cause a crash due to the faulty vehicles. If you are hearing odd clunky sounds coming from your steering rack when turning the steering wheel, be sure to get it looked at right away.

As mentioned above, these Kia Soul problems are not present in every vehicle and happen on more of a case by case basis. However, they are still important to be aware of if you are a current or future Kia Soul owner. Before purchasing any vehicle we recommend looking at the complaints for the year, make, and model you are looking to purchase on the NHTSA site, as well as the other Car Complaint Index sites.