The Kia Soul and Mazda CX-30 are appealing in different ways. The Kia has some practical benefits, like lower pricing and a longer warranty, but the CX-30 has standard all-wheel drive and a more upscale interior.

Let’s take a closer look at the Mazda CX-30 and Kia Soul and find the right subcompact SUV for you.

2023 Kia Soul

The Kia Soul is a stylish compact that could be considered an SUV or a hatchback. Whatever you want to call it, it’s a great value in new cars thanks to its affordable pricing and outstanding warranty. Pricing starts at $19,890.

Kia Soul Highlights:

Value pricing — The Kia Soul has a lower starting price than the Mazda CX-30 by more than $3,000. Even the mid-range S trim, which has desirable features like a 10.25-inch infotainment system, navigation, blind-spot monitoring, and wireless phone charging, is still more affordable than the base CX-30.

Excellent warranty — The Kia Soul comes with an outstanding 5-year/60,000-mile basic warranty and a 10-year/100,000-mile powertrain warranty. This is much longer coverage than what you get with the CX-30, a 3-year/36,000-mile basic warranty, and a 5-year/60,000-mile powertrain warranty.

Better fuel economy — The Kia Soul is a bit more fuel-efficient than the Mazda CX-30. The Kia has a combined fuel economy rating of up to 31 mpg, while the most fuel-efficient variant of the Mazda gets up to 29 mpg. According to the EPA, the result is $100/year in fuel savings for the Soul compared to the CX-30.

Check this week’s Fair Purchase Price or see the Kia Soul models for sale near you.

2023 Mazda CX-30

The 2023 Mazda CX-30 seen from a rear quarter angle

The Mazda CX-30 is an appealing subcompact SUV with standard all-wheel drive, an upscale cabin, and an exciting optional turbocharged engine. Pricing starts at $22,950.

Mazda CX-30 Highlights:

All-wheel drive — All-wheel drive isn’t available on the Kia Soul, but it comes standard with every Mazda CX-30. The i-Activ AWD system improves traction on slippery roads and optimizes grip on dry pavement for a better driving experience in all road conditions.

Fun to drive — In typical Mazda fashion, the CX-30 has an eager driving character. The base engine makes this SUV feel quick, and the well-tuned chassis gives the CX-30 good handling. Upgrade to the optional turbocharged engine, and you’ll get exciting performance that’s hard to match in this class.

Premium interior — Mazda has a reputation for building premium cars and SUVs without a premium price tag, and the CX-30 is no exception. This interior is comfortable and well-appointed, especially in the upper trims, which rival some luxury SUVs.

Check this week’s Fair Purchase Price or see the Mazda CX-30 models for sale near you.


Standard 4-cylinder engine, similar safety, and infotainment tech, similar size.


The Kia Soul is more value-oriented thanks to its more affordable pricing, longer warranty, and better fuel economy. However, the extra cost of the CX-30 is justifiable since it’s more fun to drive, has a nicer interior, and comes standard with all-wheel drive. Which is right for you depends on your priorities.

2023 Kia Soul 2023 Mazda CX-30
Starting Price $19,890 $22,950
Popular Powertrains
Engine 2.0-liter 4-cylinder 2.5-liter 4-cylinder
Horsepower 147 hp @ 6,200 rpm 191 hp @ 6,000 rpm
Torque 132 lb-ft @ 4,500 rpm 186 lb-ft @ 4,000 rpm
Transmission CVT automatic 6-speed automatic
Drivetrain FWD AWD
Fuel economy 28 city/33 highway/30 combined mpg 26 city/33 highway/29 combined mpg
Also Available N/A 2.5-liter turbocharged 4-cylinder
Basic Warranty 5 years/60,000 miles 3 years/36,000 miles
Powertrain Warranty 10 years/100,000 miles 5 years/60,000 miles
NHTSA Overall Safety Rating 4 stars 5 stars
Max Seating Capacity 5 5
Wheelbase 102.4 inches 104.4 inches
Overall Length 165.2 inches 173.0 inches
Width 70.9 inches 70.7 inches
Height 63.0 inches 61.7 inches
Turning Diameter 34.8 feet 37.3 feet
Headroom, Front 39.9 inches 38.1 inches
Headroom, Rear 39.5 inches 38.3 inches
Legroom, Front 41.1 inches 41.7 inches
Legroom, Rear 38.8 inches 36.3 inches
Shoulder Room, Front 55.5 inches 55.6 inches
Shoulder Room, Rear 54.7 inches 53.6 inches
Cargo Volume 24.2/62.1 cubic feet 20.2/45.2 cubic feet

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