Kia Motors unveiled the new Soul EV, a completely new iteration of Kia’s award-winning electric compact crossover, at the LA Auto Show. The new Soul EV has a new liquid-cooled lithium-ion polymer 64 kWh battery pack with Combined Charging System (CCS) DC fast-charge as standard equipment.
The Soul EV is currently being tested to ascertain its estimated range, with the overall battery range due to be announced early in 2019.
With 204 ps and 395 N·m of torque (up from 285 N·m in the outgoing model), the new Soul EV accelerates more strongly than its predecessor. Handling and driving dynamics are also much improved, with the adoption of new fully-independent rear suspension.
The new Soul EV also provides tools for drivers to customize their driving experience and their battery usage, with four drive modes—Eco, Comfort, Sport and Eco+—which automatically adjust power output to the traction motor. The driving modes also control the level of regenerative braking on offer, air conditioning and heating settings, and enable drivers to set speed limits to help manage operating efficiency in different driving conditions.
The Soul EV’s smart regenerative braking is operated via paddle shifters behind the steering wheel, providing drivers with the ability to slow the car and capture more kinetic energy, adding extra range. Drivers can choose from four regenerative braking levels (0 to 3), depending on desired driving smoothness, enjoyment and efficiency. The regenerative braking system also features a ‘Brake and Hold’ system, which enables drivers to use the paddle shifters to bring the car to a full stop while harvesting kinetic energy.