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?...

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Alex Robbins
24 Jun 2017 6:0 | Last updated: 12 Jul 2018 11:7

Our Verdict

Is the Ssangyong Tivoli the best used car you’ve never heard of? Er, no. Nevertheless, there’s an argument to say it doesn’t deserve its obscurity. This is a competent and likeable small SUV, with plenty of space, lots of equipment, impressive fuel economy, low tax costs and a reasonable price.

Trouble is, what with the cheaper interior finish, noisier engine, notchier gearchange and the rough and ready ride and handling, that price still doesn’t quite feel low enough, leaving you paying over the odds for a car that is inferior to the Kia in most ways.

Granted, the Kia isn’t perfect; there are undoubtedly better used small SUVs out there. But if you’re willing to accept its compromises, few SUVs can offer the value for money it offers. It's a much better car than the Ssangyong all round – and a cheaper one. It’s the one that does funky yet practical SUV motoring on a budget the best – and all without compromising on any of those requirements. See? We told you so.

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Also consider:


1st – Kia Soul

Used test: Kia Soul vs Ssangyong Tivoli

For Spacious interior; low price; plenty of kit; decent to drive

Against High tax costs; lifeless steering

Verdict A fine all-rounder and extremely good value for money

Rated 4 out of 5

Read the full used Kia Soul review

Find a used Kia Soul in the What Car? Classifieds


2nd – Ssangyong Tivoli

Used test: Kia Soul vs Ssangyong Tivoli

For Loads of kit; spacious interior; low tax cost; fuel economy

Against So-so ride and handling; noisier engine; higher price

Verdict Worth a look if you fancy something a bit different

Rated 3 out of 5

Read the full Ssangyong Tivoli review

Find a used Ssangyong Tivoli in the What Car? Classifieds


Specifications: Kia Soul 1.6 CRDi 134 Connect

Engine size 1582cc, 4cyl, diesel

List price when new £16,600

Price today £8500

Power 134bhp@4000rpm

Torque 192lb ft@1500-3000rpm

0-60mph 10.9sec

Top speed 112mph

Fuel economy 58.8mpg (official average)

CO2 emissions 128g/km


Specifications: Ssangyong Tivoli 1.6 D EX

Engine size 1597cc, 4cyl, diesel

List price when new £15,850

Price today £9500

Power 114bhp@3400rpm

Torque 221lb ft@1500-2000rpm

0-60mph 10.8sec

Top speed 109mph

Fuel economy 65.7mpg (official average)

CO2 emissions 113g/km

Price today is based on a 2015 model with average mileage and full service history, correct at time of writing

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