Pope's Tiny Car Fascinates South Koreans

Image: Pope Francis in South Korea
Pope Francis arrives at Seoul military airport on August 14, 2014 in Seoul, South Korea. This trip is the third trip abroad for the pope following Brazil and the Middle East. Song Kyung-Seok / Getty Images

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Pope Francis' choice of wheels during his five-day South Korean visit has surprised many in this painfully self-conscious country, where big-shots rarely hit the streets in anything but expensive luxury cars.

After his arrival Thursday, the pope left the airport in a compact black Kia Soul that many South Koreans would consider too humble a conveyance for a globally powerful figure.

The images of the smiling pope in his little car struck a chord online, with many playing on the car's name. One South Korean user tweeted: "The pope rode the Soul because he is full of soul."

Pope Francis waves from a car after his arrival in Seongnam, south of Seoul, on Thursday.Shin Jun-hee / Yonhap via AP

— The Associated Press