2017 Kia Soul: Car Seat Check

img1792506950 1484679371026 jpg 2017 Kia Soul | photos by Angela Conners

CARS.COM — The cool, cubical Kia Soul generally endears itself to society’s younger circles, but that doesn’t mean it can’t cater to the really young — your car-seat-age children. The biggest change for the five-seat Soul in the 2017 model year is a new pepped-up powertrain available on its top Exclaim trim. The Soul lost a letter grade in one area since the last time we tested it for the 2015 model year — that model was the electric-powered Soul EV — but overall, it continues to accommodate the kiddies nicely.

More Car Seat Checks

How many car seats fit in the second row? Two

What We Like

  • Its two sets of lower Latch anchors in the outboard seats are exposed, making them easy to find and use, while three exposed top tether anchors with plastic housing near the tops of the seatbacks also are easy to access.
  • Our convertible seat installed easily and fit well in both the rear- and forward-facing positions, with no need to move the front passenger seat forward.

What We Don’t

  • Our infant safety seat installed easily, but we had to move the front passenger seat forward to accommodate it. Although our 5-foot-8-inch tester had enough knee room for comfort, that’s mainly thanks to the upright design of the dashboard and glove compartment.
  • Although our booster seat also fit well, the seat belt buckles are on floppy bases and store in wells in the seat cushions when not in use. This could make it more difficult for kids to strap themselves in.
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Grading Scale

A: Plenty of room for the car seat and the child; doesn’t impact driver or front-passenger legroom. Easy to find and connect to Latch and tether anchors. No fit issues involving head restraint or seat contouring. Easy access to the third row.  

B: Plenty of room. One fit or connection issue. Some problems accessing third row when available.

C: Marginal room. Two fit or connection issues. Difficult to access third row when available.

D: Insufficient room. Two or more fit or connection issues.

F: Does not fit or is unsafe.

About’s Car Seat Checks

Editors Jennifer Geiger, Jennifer Newman and Matt Schmitz are certified child safety seat installation technicians.

For the Car Seat Check, we use a Graco SnugRide Classic Connect 30 infant-safety seat, a Britax Marathon convertible seat and Graco TurboBooster seat. The front seats are adjusted for a 6-foot driver and a shorter passenger. The three child seats are installed in the second row. The booster seat sits behind the driver’s seat, and the infant and convertible seats are installed behind the front passenger seat.

We also install the forward-facing convertible in the second row’s middle seat with the booster and infant seat in the outboard seats to see if three car seats will fit; a child sitting in the booster seat must be able to reach the seat belt buckle. If there’s a third row, we install the booster seat and a forward-facing convertible. To learn more about how we conduct our Car Seat Checks, go here.

Parents should also remember that they can use the Latch system or a seat belt to install a car seat, and that Latch anchors have a weight limit of 65 pounds, including the weight of the child and the weight of the seat itself.

Photo of Matt Schmitz
Former Assistant Managing Editor-News Matt Schmitz is a veteran Chicago journalist indulging his curiosity for all things auto while helping to inform car shoppers. Email Matt Schmitz

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