IMHO Lease and NEVER buy

Kia Soul EV Forum

Help Support Kia Soul EV Forum:

This site may earn a commission from merchant affiliate links, including eBay, Amazon, and others.


Active member
Aug 13, 2016
We own a 2016 and with 113,000km on the odometer it is due for a new battery. We currently get 54km/charge.
We have seen a linear degradation from day 1. We had a small bump in range when the dealer did a software update that pretty much eliminated the upper buffer on the battery. Once we had no buffer the degradation continued on its merry march to the 35% it has now.

FYI We do about 60% highway travel at around 105km/h. We live in Ontario Canada which has cold winters and hot summers. We charged to 100% about 95% of the time and we scheduled that to finish 1hr before we drove to work. We would leave the car at 80% or less if not being driven for a day (scheduled for 80% charge on Sundays). Our car has NEVER had a fast charger hooked up to it. We charge 99% of the time at home on a Eaton level 2 charge. We drive about 50% of the time in "B" mode.

Trade in value as of two days ago is $10,000, meaning the car cost us $35,000 for 5 years of ownership (fuel savings aside).

With the new battery we will rarely charge to 100%.
We will keep our speed at or below 105km/h on highway.
We will NOT use "B" mode much, especially on highway off ramps (dealer tech tip)
We will not use a rapid charger.

If we ever do this again we will lease. It makes absolutely no sense to buy an EV. ALL batteries die eventually and cost a freakin' fortune to replace.
First: trade-In value means very little, frankly. Sure they'll give you $10,000, but that doesn't mean the value is $10,000 - go look on AutoTrader if you don't believe me. Anyone will buy it for that price and flip it - why don't you? Easy $5000 there.
Second: the 2016 Kia Soul EV models all seem to have defective batteries from the factory. Thankfully this seems to have been an issue which works in the customer's favor as it occurs within the warranty and the replacement battery that they give you is a different chemistry with better energy density and better resistance to degradation overtime.
Third: for someone who bought this vehicle brand new I totally understand your opinion and what got you to that point, but compared to other electric vehicles on the market, Kia is the only car company I know that both had a battery issue and resolved it in an acceptable manner to customers vs others like Nisssan.
Lastly: while I don't doubt the technician is trying to give you useful advice but the issue wasn't your behavior, the issue is: Kia sourced defective cells and put them into battery packs. The tips that you were given will have an effect, but nowhere near the anything that'll have a meaningful measurable difference.
Just to reinforce that, my built-in-2017, supplied-in-2018 30kWh model has covered over 35,000 miles (56,000 km) and is still over 100% SOH, i.e. over 30 kWh. In Winter, the GOM says 120 (192), in Summer 145 (232) or a bit more. I always drive in B mode. The new-technology battery cells make all the difference.
As the recipient of someone else who had your experience, I can say that as the buyer of a 2015 Kia Soul EV in 2020 for 10K - and the car is now eligible for a new battery replacement under warranty I feel like I got a great deal.

I think not buying new is an important caveat to your post - because I do not think you can get a better used car for 10K.
As battery tech improves, I think it will become increasingly common for battery packs to last the life of the car.

I also think cars will be depreciating far less in the future. If you bought a 2015-2019 Soul EV, you got a battery pack less than half the size of most 2020-2022 Soul EVs. Plus the 2020 model was upgraded to CCS, and got the heads-up display, and got liquid cooling for the high-voltage battery, and more. So of course the 2019 and earlier will have depreciated a bunch. But I note with interest that the 2020 model has so far depreciated very little versus the very similar 2022 model.

Since I don't think we're going to see a Soul EV with more than double the battery size of the 2020 anytime soon, and I don't think we're going to see massive improvements in battery management or electronics in the near term (versus the 2022 models), I don't think the 2020 and later will depreciate nearly as quickly.

We see this with Teslas. A 2017 Model 3 isn't that much different than a 2022 Model 3 (it gained the octovalve and the heat pump, but lost some external sensors), and as such hasn't depreciated nearly as much. I think the 2020 and newer Soul EV, and other newer EVs equipped with large battery packs, will follow a trajectory much closer to the Model 3 than the 2019 and earlier Soul EV.

In a very real sense, there was a phenomenon of the competition catching up to Tesla. It was that rapid improvement that caused rapid depreciation in the second-hand market. but that pretty much HAS to slow down, the opportunities for equally rapid improvement just aren't there any more. Even if they make an E-GMP version of the Soul EV for 2023 that has vehicle-to-load and a 77.4 kWh battery (if that large a battery pack is even possible in the Soul form-factor), it will still be a significantly smaller overall improvement than the jump from the 2019 to the 2020 Soul EV.