Popular Mechanics has published the first long-awaited comparison of the three value-oriented box cars in the market: Kia Soul, Nissan Cube, and the veteran Scion xB. After a 300-plus mile journey throughout Los Angeles and Santa Barbara, California, the editors have chosen the winner of the B-car trio: the Kia Soul.
Editors praised the Soul’s personality and commented on the effectiveness of the sport-tuned suspension and the 142 hp 2.0L engine. They also complimented the large 18-inch tires and its responsive steering feedback. The muscular design also met well with the jury and the interior was quoted as “the most innovative of any Kia thus far.” With the large wheels, however, the ride was noted to be on the firm side. The small hatch opening was also criticized.
The three cars in the comparison all were priced below $18K, with the Nissan Cube S w/ CVT stickering the lowest at $15,585. The Soul Sport was the middle of the pack with an as-tested price of $17,645. The Scion xB topped the numbers at $17,789. The Soul Sport is powered by a 142 hp 2.0L 4-cylinder engine, which is also the median of the three. The Cube was the weakest with its 122 hp 1.8L engine, while the xB topped the list again with its 158 hp 2.4L 4-cylinder engine derived from the Toyota Camry. Out of the bunch, however, the Soul achieved the best average fuel economy of 31.2 MPG. To read the full story, head to Popular Mechanics, syndicated for you below.
[Source: Popular Mechanics]