Help! Should we buy a Soul EV

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New member
Sep 10, 2023
Hello all,

We're thinking of buying a used Soul EV to be my commuter in Seattle. I would probably average about 20-25 miles a day. We have some questions before we pull the trigger.

We'd be looking at a 2016 or 2017 so we wouldn't have a warranty. Should we be worried about battery degradation? Is that a big issue with these cars? How often do the battery packs fail? How can I test the batteries of cars before buying?

How much more will insurance be?

Anything else we should be thinking about?

Thanks in advance,
Cars built before the 2018 MY used an older battery technology, which has been prone to premature degradation. Some of those will have been given replacement batteries under warranty. The replacements have, for some time now, utilised the new technology cells, which are proving pretty robust. Mine has done about 45k milesfrom new and still shows 102% State of Health (that is 102% of the 30kW nominal capacity).

To test before buying, you would need to buy the Android app SoulEV Spy, and a bluetooth dongle which plugs into the OBD connector in the interior fuse panel (Konnwei KW902 is recommended). Use an Android phone or tablet. That will allow you to read the SoH. Alternatively, take the car to a KIA dealer and get them to give you an SoH readout. Warranty replacement is granted when SoH (as read by the dealer) is below 70%. The procedure for reading the SOH is given here It is important it is followed correctly - the BMS must not be updated or reset prior to reading the SOH.
You should keep looking, maybe a hybrid Toyota, if I had it to do over again I would go that route. Seriously at this point I would rather eat a big bowl of broken glass than darken a KIA dealerships door again.
I bought a Kia 2016 Kia Soul last year and had the battery replaced within the first month. Once the battery was replaced the car has been great however I give you this warning When it drops below 50 the battery goes from having a 100 Mi to the charge to 70 Mi or maybe even 65. I'm not positive of the temperatures in Seattle but my guess is that this would be really cutting it close for you. My commute is 44 miles a day in Maryand round trip, And I have it set up on a charging schedule with a home level 2 charger.
lol I would probably go for a classic Ioniq - they seem to handle themselves a hell of a lot better than the Soul (pre 2018); batteries are a lot more stable to boot. Less degradation, less chances to rapidgate and coldgate (battery overheat and battery too cold resulting in low fast charge speeds), and the Ioniq is very efficient (well it’s not a box…)

But I still love mine (at this point my 2016 has had a warranty reman battery replacement, new suspension and frame - stupid accident I did to myself - getting a new version OBC squeaking under the warranty as well) and I got the gas savings from driving an EV so if you put me back in 2016 when I bought the car, I’d have probably waited for the Ioniq had I given it more thought but hey hindsight is 20/20.