2019 Kia Soul vs. 2018 Honda CR-V

Detailed Review, Specifications & Comparison

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Safety

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Both the Soul and the CR-V 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, daytime running lights, lane departure warning systems, blind spot warning systems and rear cross-path warning.

For its top level performance in IIHS driver-side small overlap frontal, moderate overlap frontal, side impact, rear impact and roof-crush tests, with its optional front crash prevention system, its “Acceptable” rating in the new passenger-side small overlap crash test, and its headlight’s “Good” rating, the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety grants the Soul its highest rating: “Top Pick Plus” for 2018, a rating granted to only 27 vehicles tested by the IIHS. The CR-V is only a standard “Top Pick” for 2018.

Warranty

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The Soul comes with a full 5-year/60,000-mile basic warranty, which covers the entire truck and includes 24-hour roadside assistance. The CR-V’s 3-year/36,000-mile basic warranty expires 2 years and 24,000 miles sooner.

Kia’s powertrain warranty covers the Soul 5 years and 40,000 miles longer than Honda covers the CR-V. Any repair needed on the engine, transmission, axles, joints or driveshafts is fully covered for 10 years or 100,000 miles. Coverage on the CR-V ends after only 5 years or 60,000 miles.

Reliability

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To reliably start during all conditions and help handle large electrical loads, the Soul has a standard 550-amp battery. The CR-V’s 410-amp battery isn’t as powerful.

J.D. Power and Associates’ 2018 Initial Quality Study of new car owners surveyed provide the statistics that show that Kia vehicles are better in initial quality than Honda vehicles. J.D. Power ranks Kia second in initial quality, above the industry average. With 30 more problems per 100 vehicles, Honda is ranked 23rd, below the industry average.

J.D. Power and Associates’ 2018 survey of the owners of three-year-old vehicles provides the long-term dependability statistics that show that Kia vehicles are more reliable than Honda vehicles. J.D. Power ranks Kia fifth in reliability, above the industry average. With 18 more problems per 100 vehicles, Honda is ranked 12th.

From surveys of all its subscribers, Consumer Reports’ April 2018 Auto Issue reports that Kia vehicles are more reliable than Honda vehicles. Consumer Reports ranks Kia third in reliability. Honda is ranked 9th.

Engine

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The Soul !’s 1.6 turbo 4 cyl. produces 11 more horsepower (201 vs. 190) and 16 lbs.-ft. more torque (195 vs. 179) than the CR-V EX/EX-L/Touring’s optional 1.5 turbo 4 cyl.

As tested in Car and Driver the Soul ! is faster than the CR-V 1.5T (automatics tested):

 

Soul

CR-V

Zero to 60 MPH

6.5 sec

7.6 sec

Zero to 100 MPH

18.2 sec

21.5 sec

5 to 60 MPH Rolling Start

6.8 sec

8.1 sec

Quarter Mile

15.1 sec

16 sec

Speed in 1/4 Mile

93 MPH

89 MPH

Fuel Economy and Range

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In heavy traffic or at stoplights the Soul + offers an optional system to automatically turn off the engine when the vehicle is stopped, saving fuel and reducing pollution. The engine is automatically restarted when the driver gets ready to move again. (Start/Stop isn’t accounted in present EPA fuel mileage tests.) The CR-V doesn’t offer an automatic engine start/stop system.

Brakes and Stopping

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For better stopping power the Soul !’s brake rotors are larger than those on the CR-V:

 

Soul !

CR-V

Front Rotors

12 inches

11.1 inches

Rear Rotors

10.3 inches

10.2 inches

The Soul stops much shorter than the CR-V:

 

Soul

CR-V

 

70 to 0 MPH

162 feet

166 feet

Car and Driver

60 to 0 MPH

114 feet

129 feet

Motor Trend

60 to 0 MPH (Wet)

135 feet

146 feet

Consumer Reports

Tires and Wheels

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The Soul’s standard tires provide better handling because they have a lower 60 series profile (height to width ratio) that provides a stiffer sidewall than the CR-V LX’s standard 65 series tires. The Soul !’s tires have a lower 45 series profile than the CR-V EX/EX-L/Touring’s 60 series tires.

Suspension and Handling

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The Soul has standard front and rear gas-charged shocks for better control over choppy roads. The CR-V’s suspension doesn’t offer gas-charged shocks.

The Soul has vehicle speed sensitive variable-assist power steering, for low-effort parking, better control at highway speeds and during hard cornering, and a better feel of the road. The CR-V doesn’t offer variable-assist power steering.

The Soul ! handles at .80 G’s, while the CR-V Touring AWD pulls only .79 G’s of cornering force in a Motor Trend skidpad test.

For better maneuverability, the Soul’s turning circle is 2.6 feet tighter than the CR-V’s (34.8 feet vs. 37.4 feet).

Chassis

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The Kia Soul may be more efficient, handle and accelerate better because it weighs about 300 to 400 pounds less than the Honda CR-V.

The Soul is 1 foot, 5.6 inches shorter than the CR-V, making the Soul easier to handle, maneuver and park in tight spaces.

As tested by Car and Driver, the interior of the Soul + is quieter than the CR-V Touring AWD:

 

Soul

CR-V

At idle

36 dB

40 dB

Full-Throttle

77 dB

78 dB

70 MPH Cruising

69 dB

69 dB

Passenger Space

© 1999 - 2020 Advanta-STAR Automotive Research. All rights reserved. This vehicle comparison and all of the content in it are provided only by license from Advanta-STAR Automotive Research Corporation of America. If you are not a legally licensed user of this vehicle comparison, it is against federal law to access it, copy it, forward it or use it in any manner whatsoever. Any unauthorized use of this vehicle comparison is a violation of U.S. and international law and is punishable criminally and civilly. 6IUEX-0KENZ 45.55.47.189 2020/07/06

The front step up height for the Soul is 2.1 inches lower than the CR-V (16.9” vs. 19”). The Soul’s rear step up height is 1.3 inches lower than the CR-V’s (16.7” vs. 18”).

Servicing Ease

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The Soul uses gas struts to support the hood for easier service access. The CR-V uses a prop rod to support its heavy hood. It takes two hands to open the hood and set the prop rod, the prop rod gets in the way during maintenance and service, and the prop rod could be knocked out, causing the heavy hood to fall on the person maintaining or servicing the car.

Ergonomics

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The power windows standard on both the Soul and the CR-V have locks to prevent small children from operating them. When the lock on the Soul is engaged the driver can still operate all of the windows, for instance to close one opened by a child. The CR-V prevents the driver from operating the other windows just as it does the other passengers.

The Soul’s variable intermittent wipers have an adjustable delay to allow the driver to choose a setting that best clears the windshield during light rain or mist. The CR-V LX’s standard fixed intermittent wipers only have one fixed delay setting, so the driver will have to manually switch them between slow and intermittent.

The Insurance Institute for Highway Safety (IIHS) conducts detailed tests on headlights for their range both straight ahead and in curves and to be certain they don’t exceed acceptable amounts of glare to oncoming drivers. The Soul’s available headlights were rated “Good” by the IIHS, while the CR-V’s headlights are rated “Acceptable” to “Marginal.”

The Soul has a standard automatic headlight on/off feature. When the ignition is on, the headlights automatically turn on at dusk and off after dawn. The CR-V has an automatic headlight on/off feature standard only on the EX/EX-L/Touring.

Both the Soul and the CR-V offer available heated front seats. The Soul +/! also offers optional heated rear seats to keep those passengers extremely comfortable in the winter. Heated rear seats aren’t available in the CR-V.

Optional air-conditioned seats in the Soul + keep the driver and front passenger comfortable and take the sting out of hot seats in summer. The CR-V doesn’t offer air-conditioned seats.

On extremely cold winter days, the Soul +/!’s optional heated steering wheel provides comfort, allowing the driver to steer safely and comfortably before the vehicle heater warms up. The CR-V doesn’t offer a heated steering wheel.

Economic Advantages

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Insurance will cost less for the Soul owner. The Car Book by Jack Gillis rates the Soul with a number “1” insurance rate while the CR-V is rated higher at a number “10” rate.

According to The Car Book by Jack Gillis, the Soul is less expensive to operate than the CR-V because typical repairs cost much less on the Soul than the CR-V, including $211 less for a starter, $79 less for fuel injection, $190 less for a fuel pump and $64 less for front struts.

IntelliChoice estimates that five-year ownership costs (depreciation, financing, insurance, fuel, fees, repairs and maintenance) for the Kia Soul will be $3874 to $4213 less than for the Honda CR-V.

Recommendations

© 1999 - 2020 Advanta-STAR Automotive Research. All rights reserved. This vehicle comparison and all of the content in it are provided only by license from Advanta-STAR Automotive Research Corporation of America. If you are not a legally licensed user of this vehicle comparison, it is against federal law to access it, copy it, forward it or use it in any manner whatsoever. Any unauthorized use of this vehicle comparison is a violation of U.S. and international law and is punishable criminally and civilly. 6IUEX-0KENZ 45.55.47.189 2020/07/06

The Kia Soul has won recognition from these important consumer publications:

 

Soul

CR-V

Consumer Reports® Recommends

TRUE

TRUE

Car Book “Best Bet”

TRUE

TRUE

The Soul was chosen as one of Car and Driver’s “Top Five/10Best Trucks” for 2 of the last 2 years. The CR-V hasn’t been picked since 2017.

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

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