2019 Honda CR-V vs. 2019 Kia Soul

Detailed Review, Specifications & Comparison

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Safety

The CR-V offers all-wheel drive to maximize traction under poor conditions, especially in ice and snow. The Soul doesn’t offer all-wheel drive.

The CR-V EX/EX-L/Touring’s driver alert monitor detects an inattentive driver then sounds a warning and suggests a break. According to the NHTSA, drivers who fall asleep cause about 100,000 crashes and 1500 deaths a year. The Soul doesn’t offer a driver alert monitor.

Compared to metal, the CR-V’s plastic fuel tank can withstand harder, more intrusive impacts without leaking; this decreases the possibility of fire. The Kia Soul has a metal gas tank.

Both the CR-V and the Soul have standard driver and passenger frontal airbags, front side-impact airbags, side-impact head airbags, front seatbelt pretensioners, front wheel drive, height adjustable front shoulder belts, four-wheel antilock brakes, traction control, electronic stability systems to prevent skidding, rearview cameras, available crash mitigating brakes, lane departure warning systems, blind spot warning systems and rear cross-path warning.

The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration does 35 MPH front crash tests on new vehicles. In this test, results indicate that the Honda CR-V is safer than the Kia Soul:

 

CR-V

Soul

 

Driver

STARS

5 Stars

5 Stars

Neck Injury Risk

23%

25%

Neck Stress

194 lbs.

248 lbs.

 

Passenger

STARS

5 Stars

4 Stars

HIC

283

394

Neck Injury Risk

29%

42%

Neck Stress

124 lbs.

142 lbs.

Neck Compression

111 lbs.

172 lbs.

New test not comparable to pre-2011 test results. More stars = Better. Lower test results = Better.

The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration does side impact tests on new vehicles. In this test, which crashes the vehicle into a flat barrier at 38.5 MPH and into a post at 20 MPH, results indicate that the Honda CR-V is safer than the Kia Soul:

 

CR-V

Soul

 

Front Seat

STARS

5 Stars

5 Stars

Chest Movement

.6 inches

.8 inches

Abdominal Force

130 G’s

190 G’s

Hip Force

354 lbs.

377 lbs.

 

Rear Seat

STARS

5 Stars

5 Stars

HIC

125

231

Spine Acceleration

53 G’s

79 G’s

Hip Force

609 lbs.

727 lbs.

 

Into Pole

STARS

5 Stars

5 Stars

Max Damage Depth

13 inches

14 inches

New test not comparable to pre-2011 test results. More stars = Better. Lower test results = Better.

Warranty

The CR-V’s 5 year corrosion warranty has no mileage limitations, but the corrosion warranty on the Soul runs out after 100,000 miles.

There are over 35 percent more Honda dealers than there are Kia dealers, which makes it easier should you ever need service under the CR-V’s warranty.

Reliability

J.D. Power and Associates rated the CR-V third among compact suvs in their 2018 Initial Quality Study. The Soul isn’t in the top three in its category.

Engine

The CR-V has more powerful engines than the Soul:

 

Horsepower

Torque

CR-V LX 2.4 DOHC 4 cyl.

184 HP

180 lbs.-ft.

CR-V EX/EX-L/Touring 1.5 turbo 4 cyl.

190 HP

179 lbs.-ft.

Soul 1.6 DOHC 4 cyl.

130 HP

118 lbs.-ft.

Soul + 2.0 DOHC 4 cyl.

161 HP

150 lbs.-ft.

As tested in Motor Trend the CR-V LX is faster than the Soul + 2.0 DOHC 4 cyl. (automatics tested):

 

CR-V

Soul

Zero to 60 MPH

7.7 sec

8.6 sec

Quarter Mile

16 sec

16.6 sec

Speed in 1/4 Mile

88.4 MPH

84.3 MPH

Fuel Economy and Range

On the EPA test cycle the CR-V gets better fuel mileage than the Soul:

 

 

 

MPG

CR-V

FWD

Auto

2.4 DOHC 4 cyl.

26 city/32 hwy

 

 

1.5 turbo 4 cyl.

28 city/34 hwy

AWD

Auto

2.4 DOHC 4 cyl.

25 city/31 hwy

 

 

1.5 turbo 4 cyl.

27 city/33 hwy

Soul

FWD

Manual

1.6 DOHC 4 cyl.

24 city/30 hwy

 

Auto

1.6 DOHC 4 cyl.

26 city/31 hwy

 

 

+ 2.0 DOHC 4 cyl.

25 city/30 hwy

 

 

! 2.0 turbo 4 cyl.

26 city/31 hwy

The CR-V has a standard cap-less fueling system. The fuel filler is automatically opened when the fuel nozzle is inserted and automatically closed when it’s removed. This eliminates the need to unscrew and replace the cap and it reduces fuel evaporation, which causes pollution. The Soul doesn’t offer a cap-less fueling system.

Transmission

The Honda CR-V comes standard with an automatic transmission, for driver comfort, especially in the city. Automatic costs extra on the Soul.

The CR-V has a standard continuously variable transmission (CVT). With no “steps” between gears, it can keep the engine at the most efficient speed for fuel economy, or keep it at its peak horsepower indefinitely for maximum acceleration. The Soul doesn’t offer a CVT.

Brakes and Stopping

The CR-V stops shorter than the Soul:

 

CR-V

Soul

 

70 to 0 MPH

166 feet

169 feet

Car and Driver

60 to 0 MPH

115 feet

116 feet

Motor Trend

Tires and Wheels

For better traction, the CR-V has larger tires than the Soul (235/65R17 vs. 205/60R16).

For better ride, handling and brake cooling the CR-V LX has standard 17-inch wheels. Smaller 16-inch wheels are standard on the Soul.

The CR-V has a standard space-saver spare tire so you can replace a flat tire and drive to have the flat repaired or replaced. A spare tire isn’t available on the Soul; it requires you to depend on roadside assistance and your vehicle will have to be towed.

Suspension and Handling

For superior ride and handling, the Honda CR-V has fully independent front and rear suspensions. An independent suspension allows the wheels to follow the road at the best angle for gripping the pavement, without compromising ride comfort. The Kia Soul has a rear torsion beam axle, with a semi-independent rear suspension.

The CR-V has standard front and rear stabilizer bars, which help keep the CR-V flat and controlled during cornering. The Soul’s suspension doesn’t offer a rear stabilizer bar.

For a smoother ride and more stable handling, the CR-V’s wheelbase is 3.5 inches longer than on the Soul (104.7 inches vs. 101.2 inches).

For better handling and stability, the average track (width between the wheels) on the CR-V is 1.3 inches wider in the front and 1.4 inches wider in the rear than the average track on the Soul.

The CR-V Touring AWD handles at .82 G’s, while the Soul + pulls only .78 G’s of cornering force in a Car and Driver skidpad test.

The CR-V LX executes Motor Trend’s “Figure Eight” maneuver quicker than the Soul ! (27.7 seconds @ .62 average G’s vs. 28.1 seconds @ .62 average G’s).

Chassis

The front grille of the CR-V uses electronically controlled shutters to close off airflow and reduce drag when less engine cooling is needed. This helps improve highway fuel economy. The Soul doesn’t offer active grille shutters.

The CR-V uses computer-generated active noise cancellation to help remove annoying noise and vibration from the passenger compartment, especially at low frequencies. The Soul doesn’t offer active noise cancellation.

Passenger Space

The CR-V has 4.9 cubic feet more passenger volume than the Soul (105.9 vs. 101).

The CR-V has .5 inches more front headroom, .4 inches more front legroom, 1.9 inches more front hip room, 2.4 inches more front shoulder room, 1.3 inches more rear legroom, .2 inches more rear hip room and .9 inches more rear shoulder room than the Soul.

For enhanced passenger comfort on long trips the CR-V’s rear seats recline. The Soul’s rear seats don’t recline.

Cargo Capacity

The CR-V has a much larger cargo volume with its rear seat up than the Soul with its rear seat up (39.2 vs. 24.2 cubic feet). The CR-V has a much larger cargo volume with its rear seat folded than the Soul with its rear seat folded (75.8 vs. 61.3 cubic feet).

A low lift-over cargo hatch design makes loading and unloading the CR-V easier. The CR-V’s cargo hatch lift-over height is 26 inches, while the Soul’s liftover is 31.1 inches.

The CR-V’s cargo area is larger than the Soul’s in every dimension:

 

CR-V

Soul

Length to seat (2nd/1st)

37.5”/71”

25”/58.3”

Max Width

54”

50”

Min Width

41.5”

40.5”

Height

41”

31.5”

Pressing a switch automatically lowers the CR-V’s rear seats, to make changing between passengers and cargo easier. The Soul doesn’t offer automatic folding seats.

A standard locking glovebox (which can’t be accessed with the valet key) keeps your small valuables safer in the CR-V. The Soul doesn’t offer locking storage for small valuables.

To make loading and unloading groceries and cargo easier, especially for short adults, the CR-V EX-L/Touring has a standard power liftgate, which opens and closes automatically by pressing a button, or on the CR-V Touring, by just kicking your foot under the back bumper, completely leaving your hands free. The Soul doesn’t offer a power liftgate.

Towing

The CR-V has a 1500 lbs. towing capacity. The Soul has no towing capacity.

Ergonomics

When two different drivers share the CR-V EX-L/Touring, the memory seats make it convenient for both. Each setting activates different, customized memories for the driver’s seat position. The Soul doesn’t offer memory seats.

The CR-V EX-L/Touring’s standard easy entry system glides the driver’s seat back when the door is unlocked or the ignition is switched off, making it easier for the driver to get in and out. The Soul doesn’t offer an easy entry system.

The CR-V’s standard driver’s power window opens or closes with one touch of the window control, making it more convenient at drive-up windows and toll booths. The Soul’s standard driver’s power window switch has to be held the entire time to close it fully.

If the windows are left open on the CR-V the driver can close them all at the outside door handle. On a hot day the driver can lower the windows at the outside door handle or from a distance using the keyless remote. The driver of the Soul can only operate the windows from inside the vehicle, with the ignition on.

The CR-V Touring’s standard wipers adjust their speed and turn on and off automatically according to the amount of rainfall on the windshield. The Soul’s manually variable intermittent wipers have to be constantly adjusted.

While driving with high beams on, sensitive light sensors standard on the CR-V EX/EX-L/Touring detect other vehicles which could be blinded and automatically switch to low beams. The Soul doesn’t offer automatic dimming high beams.

The CR-V EX/EX-L/Touring’s standard dual zone air conditioning allows the driver and front passenger to choose two completely different temperatures so people with different temperature preferences won’t have to compromise. This makes both the driver and front passenger as comfortable as possible. The Soul doesn’t offer dual zone air conditioning.

Both the CR-V and the Soul offer rear vents. For greater rear passenger comfort, the CR-V has standard rear air conditioning vents to keep rear occupants cool in summer or warm in winter. The Soul doesn’t offer rear air conditioning vents, only heat vents.

Economic Advantages

According to The Car Book by Jack Gillis, the CR-V is less expensive to operate than the Soul because it costs $450 less to do the manufacturer’s suggested maintenance for 50,000 miles. Typical repairs cost much less on the CR-V than the Soul, including $72 less for a water pump, $28 less for a muffler, $14 less for front brake pads, $173 less for a timing belt/chain and $230 less for a power steering pump.

Recommendations

The Honda CR-V has won recognition from these important consumer publications:

 

CR-V

Soul

Consumer Reports® Recommends

TRUE

TRUE

Car Book “Best Bet”

TRUE

TRUE

Motor Trend selected the CR-V as their 2018 Sport Utility of the Year. The Soul has never been chosen.

The Honda CR-V outsold the Kia Soul by almost four to one during the 2018 model year.

© 1991-2018 Advanta-STAR Automotive Research. All rights reserved.

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