While it could be argued that Volkswagen was really the company that started the box-that-it-came-in styling trend with its old vans, vehicles like the Honda Element and Scion xB made it popular again. Besides being a rolling fashion statement, this shape of vehicle also happens to be extremely practical and allows for much more interior space than more streamlined bodywork, so we're happy to hear that Kia is planning on offering its upcoming Soul small car in the U.S. in addition to the Chinese market. We have seen what appears to be production-ready pictures of the vehicle already, and the production Soul should retain most of what we've seen in the concepts, minus the crazy paint jobs. The Soul is certainly a bold step for Kia, which has so far erred on the safe side when it comes to vehicle styling. Automotive News reports that the front-wheel-drive Soul will be equipped with a 2.0 liter four-cylinder engine and should arrive in both China and the States next March. Hopefully a production version of the KOUP Concept will be right on its tail.

[Source: Automotive News - sub. req'd.]

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