2016 L.A. Auto Show | 2017 Kia Soul Turbo Speeds into City of Angels

Kia added a little more pep to one of its most popular models and trotted out the result at the 2016 L.A. Auto Show. With a new 201 horsepower turbocharged engine, the 2017 Kia Soul Turbo should make an already fun vehicle that much more entertaining.

Essentially designed as a small SUV or crossover for urban use, the Kia Soul can be surprisingly tough and fun to drive under the right circumstances. The arrival of this turbo version should only enhance that reputation.

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The new 1.6 liter turbo engine adds 40 horsepower, while keeping the fuel economy at 28 mpg, city/highway combined. If the numbers check out, that’s actually an improvement than the combined mpg of the 2.0 liter, naturally aspirated, 161 horsepower engine in the Soul Plus or the 1.6 liter, 130 horsepower Soul Base engine.

To nudge the better performance along, Kia added a new, seven speed Dual Clutch Transmission to reduce shift time and keep the new power flowing smoothly. The rest of the Turbo’s sport package throws 18-inch wheels, red body trim, a chrome grille surround, new badging and dual chrome twin-tip exhaust.

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Christened the Exclaim trim level, the Soul Turbo adds special features inside, also. Drivers enjoy a standard leather-wrapped, D-shaped steering wheel, push-button start with a smart key, a 315-watt Harman Kardon audio system with eight speakers and navigation via an eight inch touchscreen display.