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Kia Soul'ster concept – Click above for high-res image gallery

If you've been crossing your fingers for a production version of the Kia Soul'ster concept from the 2009 Detroit Auto Show, prepare to be disappointed. According to a report from Ward's Auto, Kia says that expanding the Soul lineup beyond the current five-door hatch would prove to be more difficult than you might think. Earlier reports stated that Kia was keen to the idea of building an open-top Soul, but changing economic times seem to have crushed those plans.

The Soul has done extremely well for itself since going on sale in early 2009, but since this is a niche vehicle that would only appeal to a very narrow segment of the market, the business case for building new variants doesn't make sense at this time. Kia's director of product planning, Orth Hendrick, tells Ward's that the Soul'ster, specifically, would have to be developed as an all-new model, due to its vast structural differences from the standard Soul.

Come 2012, the Soul will undergo its mid-cycle refresh, and we're expected to see more upscale content, as well as slight changes to both the front and rear fascias. In the meantime, those of you who are super hot for a Soul'ster will just have to scan the local used car lot for a soft-top Isuzu Amigo, instead.

[Source: Ward's Auto]

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    • 1 Second Ago
      Sarah Adams
      • 2 Years Ago
      I want one so bad, I have a Kia Soul and love it the soul'ster would be AWESOME!!! i want one PLEASE!! :)
      • 4 Years Ago
      I just keep hoping they will kill the Soul, it is just so freaking ugly
      • 4 Years Ago
      I hope that when Kia refreshes the current Soul, they use
      the front end of this concept. The headlights look great
      along with those fender vents and wheels.
      • 4 Years Ago
      All I hear:

      "Building cars people might actually be passionate about and aspire to own does't make sense at this time..."
      • 4 Years Ago
      Shame. I've been seeing alot of the Souls around my area. I believe they are picking apart at the Scion's Xb Xa's demographic both the old and the younger crowd.
      Jackie Johnson
      • 3 Years Ago
      this was the better gas alternative to the Jeep. I like it because it was a modern look of a the old Ford small body Broncos. I think fans of those two cars would have welcomed the change. I really wanted to mess around with the Soul'ster....I hope something changes. Do a survey Kia!
      • 4 Years Ago
      When is the KIA Soul going to get a 6 speed automatic?
      The 1.6 is the better engine, compared to the old 2.0
      • 4 Years Ago
      So sad. This would have been great. Ragtop, efficiency, stick it had everything. I guess i will stick with my 03 tracker
      • 4 Years Ago
      What a shame. Seriously, I really like this. Hopefully once all of this economy crap blows over Kia will be able to produce one. It looks brilliant; the Soul itself isn't a bad looking car (despite it being a box on wheels).
      • 4 Years Ago
      Well that kinda stinks... :-/

      I kinda liked this quirky vehicle... :(
      • 4 Years Ago
      How can the economy improve when people in power are too busy issuing debt and giving all that money to teachers, welfare employees and other civil servants.

        • 4 Years Ago
        And why exactly did you have to get into politics here, Sea Urchin? jesus christ.
        • 4 Years Ago
        I think you meant to say:

        How can the economy improve when a corporation rewards a failed CEO who ran a company that caused hundreds of billions of dollars worth of oil-spill damage by giving him millions of dollars in the form of a golden parachute?

        But apparently your posted came out all garbled and turned into some gibberish nonsense.
        • 4 Years Ago
        Hazdaz, did i ever say that i somehow support BP or something?
      • 4 Years Ago
      That is sad. I would have loved to see this in production.
        • 4 Years Ago
        Or if you live in Japan, you could just go buy a used Toyota bB Open Deck (which is exactly identical in concept, but I think looks better anyway).

        • 4 Years Ago
        Toyota BB open deck.. looks silly.. reminds me of a 'SD' version of this car:

        • 4 Years Ago
        that yellow really screams yuppie tool...but this thing reminds me of the old Suzuki Samurai's = awesome

        a small open top 4wd with a 4cyl, good gas mileage and a lot cheaper than a wrangler sound good to me. But I'm usually opposite of what the majority wants
        • 4 Years Ago
        True, but you can get a Wrangler if you really want a car that looks like Soulster.
        • 4 Years Ago
        When I saw this, it was the first time I considered not having a real truck. Too bad, I was hoping this was Kia's gradual foray into the truck market and was definitely the target demographic.
        • 4 Years Ago
        Sure I could, but the Wrangler looks nothing like the Soulster.
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