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Kia won't build Soul Koup, but it could

Wed, 19 Mar 2014

There are no plans whatsoever to bring a Soul coupe to the market, Kia said when we gave a spokesperson a call. "We're constantly evaluating the market," he told us, "but there are no future Soul derivatives in the works, no ideas currently being explored."

This contradicts a rumor currently spreading across the Internet. They have all concluded that Kia's two-door Soul will look like the above. Kia is vehemently denying all plans -- even going as far to say they didn't know who one source's "insiders" were. That's how the automotive news sausage is made.

Initially, we believed the reports too.

After all, it makes sense. Kia already offers a Forte Koup, a two-door compact whose only competition is the Honda Civic and the relatable Hyundai Elantra. If Kia were to introduce another car to the Two Door Kia Club, you can bet that they'd differentiate it significantly from the regular Soul. Why pay for the decreased practicality if it doesn't come with some uniqueness?

Kia introduced two concepts that could lead anyone into believing that a Soul spinoff is coming. Kia showed the first, the Track'ster concept, at the Chicago Auto Show two years ago. It has an orange roof, wider fender flares, big fog lights and almost-center-mounted exhausts; it also has -- you guessed it -- two doors. In fact, the design of the Track'ster predated the Soul facelift that occurred this year.

A potential Soul Koup would be thrown into the sparse two-door compact crossover segment with the aspirational Range Rover Evoque and the awkward Mini Paceman -- a segment once ruled by the Geo Tracker.

Kia's other concept is like that, too. Could the Soul'ster concept of 2009 be a Korean Geo Tracker? Then again, rumors of its production buzzed a whopping five years ago, then fizzled out. Hopefully the Track'ster -- and, ultimately, a two-door Soul -- doesn't await the same fate.

The only thing we ask is that if Kia does introduce a two-door Soul Koup, it be named the "Soup."

By Blake Z. Rong