The 2014 Kia Soul has rolled over the competition once again: Fresh from a segment win in the recent AutoPacific Vehicle Satisfaction Awards, the Soul now has led its class in the 2014 Strategic Vision Total Quality Awards (in a tie with the VW Golf). The latter recognition program, based on input from 38,361 respondents to this year's Strategic Vision New Vehicle Experience Study, is positioned as a "holistic" measure of vehicle quality. As explained by Alexander Edwards, president of Strategic Vision, noting that: "What we learn from this year's Total Quality results is the need for complete understanding of how buyers are influenced, and it's not just by counting problems."
On the other hand, it is worth noting that when one does look at quality "just by counting problems”—a bit of shade no doubt thrown at J.D. Power—the 2014 Kia Soul still comes out looking pretty good. In fact, the funky one from Kia finished second in its segment in the 2014 Initial Quality Study, which relies on a more quantitative approach to quality.
And if you're keeping count at home, that's three key industry honors for the 2014 Kia Soul in June alone. Then, with the 2014 Kia Optima also finishing in a first-place tie in the Strategic Vision ratings, the Kia brand as a whole claimed the top spot for Total Quality among all non-luxury brands for 2014.
Reported the Strategic Vision experts: "The Kia brand has come on strong with segment winners Soul and Optima, with models strong in youthful, cool styling cues and that not only makes a strong statement but offers a strong foundation of quality. As if to highlight these results ... Strategic Vision's data shows the Kia K900 as taking some sales from luxury brands."