Huge win for car owners! All TSBs to be made public. The Center for Auto Safety just made the NHTSA (US Government) make public the full text of all TSBs from now on. They are the same organization that has petitioned the NHTSA & filed lawsuits to protect car owners over exploding gas tanks & other major safety issues. Whenever you drive in your car, you are safer thanks in part to a lot of work over the years by this small but very effective consumer advocacy group.

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definitely annoying
Crashes / Fires:
0 / 0
Injuries / Deaths:
0 / 0
Average Mileage:
25,050 miles

About These NHTSA Complaints:

This data is from the NHTSA — the US gov't agency tasked with vehicle safety. Complaints are spread across multiple & redundant categories, & are not organized by problem.

So how do you find out what problems are occurring? For this NHTSA complaint data, the only way is to read through the comments below. Any duplicates or errors? It's not us.

2012 Kia Soul electrical problems

electrical problem

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2012 Kia Soul Owner Comments

problem #7

Oct 192015


  • 88,700 miles


My car's heater assembly control has failed and in doing so my car's heater defaulted to cold and face making it impossible to defrost the windshield. Kia wants an astronomical fee to diagnose the problem and even more for the part and installation.

- Laurel, DE, USA

problem #6

Jan 232014


  • miles
I purchased the vehicle in December and every so often the gauges and the lights in the dash will not work. The vehicle failed to shift into gear. I had contacted the dealer from whom I purchase the vehicle, I then took it to their repair shop. The gentleman (mechanic) was unable to determine the cause. I then called the dealership and requested another vehicle, of course they refused. In a matter of days, the dash materials began to work again. Unfortunately, 20 days later, the same thing happened again. None of the lights and gauges in the dash work, and the vehicle will not go into drive. I am simply unhappy with the matter, because they are charging me nearly $20,000. For the vehicle.

- Jackson, TN, USA

problem #5

Feb 112014


  • 14,700 miles
The computer system for the radio had a service advisory instead of a recall, so I wasn't notified by mail. But the problem is that in addition to the radio, it affects the backup camera and eventually the dashboard, making both of them inoperable. The repairmen at Ford Kia in richmond, ca tried to play this off like it's not a serious problem. But if the dashboard controls are useless when driving down the highway, and you need to try and pull over to restart the car, that is a problem waiting to happen.

- Oakland, CA, USA

problem #4

Nov 182013

Soul 4-cyl

  • 53,000 miles


Nov. 2013 I was driving the car and the odometer stopped working, I went to Kia and they said they had to order a part for it but it was okay to drive. I continued to drive it from ky to indianapolis in when the speedometer stopped working then the entire instrument panel stopped working, I called Kia dealership in elizabethtown ky and they said they had ordered the entire cluster but car was okay to drive, I went out the next day and the car started but you could not engage the gear shift. Had to have the car towed to dealership. They had car 3 weeks and said it is fixed. January 13th 2014 started all over with odometer going out, took it back to Kia and they had to order yet another cluster (2nd in 2 months) okay to drive car, I refused and required them to provide loaner (which is not allowed to be taken out of state). This is not a safety issue but goes to electrical, they had to replace the entire glove compartment because the light kept going on and off when the door was closed. They said a sensor had gone out and they had to replace the entire thing not just a bulb.

- Sonora , KY, USA

problem #3

Jul 012012


  • 0 miles
Faulty wiring harness. Car was 3 weeks old.

- Washington, DC, USA

problem #2

Jun 262013

Soul 4-cyl

  • 12,100 miles
The radio froze and I couldn't change the station, program, or use the cd. Next the backup camera wouldn't work. After driving further, the signals and lights on the dash ceased to function. I didn't drive more than 8 miles going to and from work and to the store. It has reset itself so far after the car sat for 3-9 hours. The Kia toll free number referred me to the dealer in richmond, ca where I bought the used car, but was told it cannot be fixed until the car is brought in while trouble occurs. It has happened 6 times since June 26, 2013.

- Oakland, CA, USA

problem #1

Jan 202013

Soul 4-cyl

  • 6,850 miles
Started car Sunday at 1:30 pm. Notices gas gauge needle was below empty. Backed out of parking space, put the car into drive - no instrumentation at all. Tach at O, temp gauge at O, fuel gauge below empty. Shut off ignition and restarted engine - still no instrumentation drove slowly to nearest gas station to fill tank (I did not remember but I never lat the tank get below 1/4 full) too 2.6 gallons to fill. Speedometer and odometers not working. Only dashboard light working is temp (outside) and the econ light. Made an appointment with university Kia - huntsville, al - left car after describing problem. The call Monday pm said they were unable to determine the problem and since it was mlk day there was no tech support available - need to keep car overnight. No loaner could be authorized. U. Kia called Tuesday pm at 1:30 said they rebooted the computer and the gauges appear working but they probably would fail. Kia tech services were to order and instrument cluster from Korea as there were none in the us. Would take several weeks to obtain and reprogram. I requested a loaner from the service manager but he could not authorize one. I requested he elevate the request ot the dealership owner or to Kia management. He ([xxx]. Kia service person) said he would forward my request and call me tomorrow (Wednesday) this is just not an acceptable level of service. I cannot be without a vehicle for several weeks - especially since this is a major failure in a new auto that they are not prepared to repair quickly. Information redacted pursuant to the Freedom Of Information Act (FOIA), 5 U.S.C. 552(B)(6).

- Brownsboro, AL, USA

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