Concept Soul EV showcases electric off-road fun
Gets lift, wood decking, fridge, and board racks
Kia UK has turned a Soul EV into something truly special. It’s a lifted and big-tired Kia that might make Ford Bronco Sport buyers think twice, and it’s called the Soul EV Boardmasters edition.
The automaker’s UK press office calls it a “recycled” pre-production car because the Soul was a prototype bound for the crusher before the fun side of the brand’s team got hold of it. This Kia Soul EV was then transformed into a show car for Boardmasters 2021, a surfing and music festival held in Cornwall in the UK.
Kia’s 64 kWh battery pack and 201 hp motor weren’t changed, but the underside was. A three-inch lift was fitted to the Soul using custom adapters and modified struts that give it more than 300 mm of ground clearance. The 16-inch white steel wheels wear 265/75 Maxxis Bighorn sand tires designed for slinging dirt in the dunes and on the beach. Even with the lift, the 30-inch tall tires required big changes to the firewall as well as the front footwells.
On top of the Neptune Blue paint and graphics, the Soul EV has a steel roof rack custom-built to hold a pair of 7-foot 9-inch Tahe Bic Malibu surfboards. The rack is shaped to avoid overhead clearance issues, but also to make sure the tailgate can still open with boards equipped.
Inside, the rear bench was ditched for a wooden deck cargo area (from sustainably sourced spruce). A fold-out bench in the tailgate gives surfers a place to sit and there is a swing-out arm to hold a towel or to let a wetsuit dry. Lastly, a solar charging system can boost the car or can power a 12V fridge in the back.