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Used test: Kia Soul vs Ssangyong Tivoli

Two small SUVs; two budget price tags; two long warranties. Both the Kia Soul and the Ssangyong Tivoli make tempting used buys – but which one should you choose?

Words By Alex Robbins

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Kia Soul side

What will they cost?

Given that it’s so little-known, it might come as a surprise to learn that it’s actually the Ssangyong Tivoli that has held its value best in the three years since these two cars were new. The downside of that, of course, is that it’ll cost you more to buy used; in fact, the Kia Soul looks considerably cheaper to buy, and you’ll have a far wider choice of examples for sale, because there are so many more of them around.

However, the Ssangyong fights back with better fuel economy: an impressive average of 65.7mpg to the Kia’s 58.8mpg, according to the official figures. And while the gap between their consumption figures in the real world is likely to be closer, the Kia still falls behind.

As a result of its commendable efficiency, you’ll also find the Ssangyong to be cheaper to tax. It’ll cost you just Β£30 a year, whereas the Kia will set you back Β£110 a year. It’s worth keeping in mind, of course, that both of these figures change to the flat rate of Β£140 a year if you go for an example registered after 1 April 2017.

You will, however, find it easier to get your Kia serviced, because there are far more dealers around and far more specialists who’ll have had experience of Kias in the past. It’s the Kia that benefits from the cheapest service pricing, too.

Both of these cars came with long warranties when they were new. The Kia’s was the longer of the two, though, with seven years to the Ssangyong’s five. And while the Kia’s showing in our 2017 Reliability Survey was very respectable, placing fourth out of the 33 small SUVs that featured, we can’t make any comparison with the Ssangyong, because we didn’t get enough responses from Tivoli owners to provide us with any meaningful conclusions.

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