Thanks to Lifetime Kia, the world's largest Kia dealership, we've managed to assemble a gallery of Kia Soul's that have recently been shipped out to American dealers. Nothing special about that, right? Wait a minute, what's that we spot underhood? It turns out that these cars are actually Korean- and Euro-spec Souls, and every dealership is getting one to use as a demo. Let the speculation begin!
Are these cars here to gauge the reaction of US buyers? Is the Korean automaker seriously considering bringing an oil-burner to the States? Perhaps none of the above. If that's the case, this seems like a cruel thing to do since we've heard that the non-US models are actually better equipped and nicer to drive with the 128-horsepower 1.6L CRDi engine than the 2.0L gasoline-powered Souls destined for our shores, not to mention significantly more fuel efficient.
In somewhat related news, Kia is set to debut a new concept Soul at the upcoming Detroit Auto Show. From the side profile (the only image released; see it after the jump), it appears that this Soul concept may sport only 2 doors. Will the impending launch of a small diesel be far behind? We can only hope. Thanks for the tip, Bryan!