Overall, the quirky-looking SUV has been made longer to incorporate a new front end. In keeping with the rest of the new Kia range, the front now boasts larger fog lamps and a wider air intake.

Elsewhere, the general box-like shape of the SUV remains but extra touches such as LED indicators in the door mirrors, new door handles and 18" alloy wheels have been added to give a more upmarket feel to the exterior.

Inside, the changes are more obvious with a new centre console fitted with LCD controls and a choice of three new interior fabrics including a premium leather option.

Kia says the interior is now more durable, a feature replicated in the likes of the new Kia Picanto and Kia Rio as the South Korean brand moves away from its budget image.

Under the bonnet, the Kia Soul now boasts more efficient engines including a 140PS 1.6-litre petrol option and a 128PS 1.6-litre diesel. Both are available with six-speed manual or automatic transmissions and promise lower fuel consumption and CO2 emissions.

Kia expects to launch Start/Stop technology in an Eco version of the Soul after launch, reducing CO2 emissions still further in its popular SUV.

The original Kia Soul was launched only two years ago and sales have been strong in the UK. Special edition models such as the 'Soul Searchers' range have proved a hit with UK buyers, but Kia is keen to extend its popularity with urban-based buyers with the new 2012 Kia Soul.

New models will come with Kia's seven-year warranty, which is available on all new Kia cars. Prices for the new Kia Soul will be revealed closer to the launch date next month.

Askaprice.com holds a wide range of manufacturers and models at the new car quotation website helping you get the best new car deals available in the UK, free of charge. That means you can compare Kia prices and get the best Kia Soul quotes around.