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  • 3/4 Front Glamour 2017 Kia Forte
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Expert's Rating

4.45Excellent | Details

MPG

25 City / 34 Highway
Automotive Editor -

Kia's popular compact sedan is known for offering plenty of upscale features to go with its snappy styling. With even more equipment on the roster this year, the Forte simply shines when it comes to content for the money.

What's New for 2017

The Forte receives a new base engine and an updated automatic transmission. The front end has been reshaped for a smoother appearance. Advanced driver-assistance technology is available for the first time, and a sport-themed S model joins the lineup. The base LX carries plusher seat fabric, while leather upholstery is now standard on the line-topping EX.

Choosing Your Kia Forte

The Forte offers legitimate comfort for four adults and 14.9 cubic feet of trunk space, more than some midsize sedans. There's also a hatchback version, dubbed Forte5, with wagon-like room in back. Last year's standard 1.8-liter engine is gone, replaced by a 2-liter four-cylinder with 147 horsepower, matched to your choice of a six-speed manual or six-speed automatic transmission. The optional direct-injected 2-liter four-cylinder produces 164 horsepower and comes with the automatic only.

The Forte is now available in three trim levels:

LX

Comes with all the expected equipment for this class, plus heated side mirrors, a trip computer, Bluetooth phone and audio, and a four-speaker sound system with satellite radio. Models equipped with the automatic transmission are eligible for a Popular package with upgraded interior trim, a rearview camera, a display audio system with six speakers, automatic headlamps, and selectable driving modes (Normal, Eco, Sport). The LX rolls on 15-inch steel wheels.

S

Gets the LX's options as standard (including the automatic transmission), plus a sport-tuned suspension, LED running lights, a spoiler, a chrome exhaust tip, and 16-inch alloy wheels. The interior features specific black seats with white stitching, and leather trim on the steering wheel and shift knob. The infotainment system gains a 7-inch screen and Android Auto and Apple CarPlay compatibility. The available Technology package adds blind spot monitoring, lane keeping assist, rear cross-traffic alert, and front collision mitigation with automatic braking. The bundle also includes a series of convenience upgrades like exterior welcome lighting, keyless ignition, power-folding mirrors, and express up/down front windows. With those features in place, you can top off the S with a Premium package that includes heated front seats, a 10-way power driver seat with memory, a sunroof, and a built-in navigation system.

EX

Carries the more powerful 2-liter engine, adjustable-effort steering, leather seating, a cooled glovebox, and 17-inch wheels—all of which are exclusive to this trim level. The Premium Plus package gets you all the contents of the S's option packages, plus ventilated front seats.

CarsDirect Tip

Even though the EX carries the highest MSRP, it's clearly the best value of the bunch. You get enhanced performance, leather, and cool goodies at a price that still undercuts less-equipped competitors.

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Best Kia Deals & Lease Offers: October 2018

Expect to see the same sort of deals as last month for buying or leasing a Kia. The 2018 Sportage leads the way with a $3,000 cash incentive, $500 more than before. Alternatively,... View All Kia Lease Deals »

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