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3/4 Front Glamour 2013 Kia Forte Koup

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Expert's Rating

4.4Excellent

MPG 23 City / 33 Highway
Pros
  • Good power for four-cylinder
  • Excellent warranty
  • Excellent fuel economy
  • Attractive styling
Cons
  • Entry level interior quality
  • Transmission lacks refinement
, Automotive Editor -
The Kia Forte Koup offers more style to the basic Forte sedan and remains one of the least expensive ways to inject some coupe styling to the basic compact car.

Introduction

While it shares the Forte's interior and mechanicals, the Koup is lower and more aggressive, while still delivering the efficiency of something in the compact class. It's also loaded with standard features and backed by Kia's long 10-year powertrain warranty. For people who want something attractive but inexpensive to run, the Forte Koup could be just the thing.

The Forte Koup comes in EX and SX trim levels. The EX gets a 2.0-liter four-cylinder engine with 156 horsepower and either a six-speed manual or six-speed automatic. Also included are features like 16-inch alloy wheels, power windows, mirrors and locks with remote keyless entry, cruise control, tilt-and-telescoping steering wheel, Bluetooth and a six-speaker audio system with satellite radio, USB input and iPod interface. The faster SX gets a 2.4-liter four-cylinder with 173 horsepower and either a six-speed manual or automatic. It also gets more equipment in the form of automatic headlamps and front fog lights. The SX benefits from performance upgrades like 17-inch alloy wheels and a lowered sports suspension. Features like leather upholstery, keyless entry and start and satellite navigation are optional.

The Honda Civic coupe is more efficient and comes with a promise of good reliability, but the interior is cheap and some features are hard to get unless you buy a top trim level. The Hyundai Elantra Coupe has better fuel economy, stylish looks and is well priced, but the engine can be weak. The Volkswagen Golf offers hatchback versatility and a well-finished interior, but features like a sunroof or Bluetooth quickly add to the price and it's not as attractive as the Kia. The Mini Cooper is efficient and fun to drive with great fuel economy, but offers less space than the Kia and gets very expensive.

So while it may not be the most premium competitor out there, the Forte Koup comes with lots of standard features and an aggressive style that makes its low price more surprising. It's also something that is backed by a long warranty and comes with decent fuel economy that should make it affordable for the young audience it's targeting. For something inexpensive with good looks, the Forte Koup merits consideration.

Which Style To Buy?

2013 Kia Forte Koup
Starting price
$12,500

2013 Kia Forte Koup EX

Recommended for: Buyers looking for an inexpensive, attractive small coupe

The Forte Koup EX comes standard with many desirable features. The engine is a 2.0-liter four-cylinder with 156 horsepower and mated to either a six-speed manual or six-speed automatic. Standard on the EX are power windows, mirrors and locks with remote keyless entry, air conditioning, 16-inch alloy wheels, six-speaker audio system with satellite radio, Bluetooth and USB input, steering wheel-mounted audio controls and cruise control, tilt-and-telescoping steering wheel, dual lighted vanity mirrors, height-adjustable driver's seat and split-folding rear seat. The Technology Package adds navigation with traffic, automatic climate control, keyless entry and start, front fog lights and automatic headlamps. A power sunroof is also available.

2013 Kia Forte Koup
Starting price
$12,500

2013 Kia Forte Koup SX

Recommended for: Drivers who want more performance and more equipment

The SX adds a more powerful 2.4-liter four-cylinder engine with 173 horsepower and either manual or automatic transmission. The SX gets a lowered sports suspension, 17-inch alloy wheels, automatic headlamps, front fog lights, trip computer and a leather-wrapped steering wheel. The Leather Package adds leather upholstery, heated front seats and an auto-dimming rearview mirror. The Technology Package includes navigation, automatic climate control and keyless entry and start. A power sunroof is optional.

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