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2020 Kia Forte

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Make
Kia
Model
Forte
Year
2020
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Kia Forte OEM Exterior Primary Photo
OEM Interior Primary
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Used Car Price Range
$11,799 - $19,995
$11,799 $19,995
Select a Trim
Select a Trim
2020 FE 4dr Sedan w/Manual
most popular
Price:   -  From $17,890
2020 FE 4dr Sedan w/CVT Price:   -  From $18,790
2020 LXS 4dr Sedan w/CVT Price:   -  From $19,290
2020 GT-Line 4dr Sedan w/CVT Price:   -  From $20,490
2020 EX 4dr Sedan w/CVT Price:   -  From $22,090
2020 GT 4dr Sedan w/DCT Price:   -  From $22,490
2020 GT 4dr Sedan w/Manual Price:   -  From $23,090
Expert Rating
3 (Good)

Our expert ratings are based on seven comprehensive criteria: quality, safety, comfort, performance, fuel economy, reliability history and value.

You can interpret our ratings in the following way:

: Outstanding vehicle. Only the most exceptional vehicles achieve this rating.

: Very Good vehicle. Very good and close to being the best vehicle in its class.

: Good vehicle. Decent, but not quite the best. Often affordable, but lacking key features found in vehicles of the same class.

: Below average vehicle. Not recommended, and lacking attributes a car buyer would come to expect for the price.

: Poor vehicle. Simply does not deserve to be on the road.

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Overview

What's New

For all the recent strides in quality and content taken by the Korean powerhouse that is Hyundai/Kia, performance cred still remains largely elusive. The compact 2020 Kia Forte hopes to help change this with the all-new GT model.

The GT goes about its mission seriously: a 201-horsepower ,1.6-liter turbocharged four-cylinder engine, seven-speed dual-clutch automatic transmission, and more sophisticated multilink rear suspension are all part of the package. A flat-bottomed steering wheel and optional six-speed manual transmission drive home the intentions of this car.

A new GT-Line trim doesn't have the hardware of the GT, but gets all its glossy-black exterior trimmings and sporty interior touches, including the flat-bottomed tiller.

For those not so interested in performance, a new Special Edition Package for the EX will be offered in late 2020. It will come loaded up all the luxuries one can imagine in a car of this class, including Harman Kardon audio, a sunroof, two-tone interior, navigation, and wireless charging.

Choosing Your Kia Forte

The Forte is offered in five trims: FE, LXS, GT-Line, EX, and GT. Pricing starts at $18,715 for the base FE and climbs to $23,815 for the manual-equipped GT.

All US-market Fortes are front-wheel-drive sedans, but fingers are crossed the Forte5 hatchback returns to do battle with the Honda Civic Hatchback and Toyota Corolla Hatchback.

Engine Choices

All Fortes but the GT will be sporting a 2.0-liter four-cylinder engine. Most come paired with a continuously variable transmission; the only exception is the base FE, which comes standard with a six-speed manual transmission, but the CVT. The GT spices things up with a 1.6-liter turbo-four.

Engine TypeHorsepowerTorqueFuel Economy (Combined)
2.0L 4-Cylinder147 hp132 lb-ft35 mpg
1.6L Turbo 4-Cylinder201 hp195 lb-ft30 mpg

Coupled to either a six-speed manual or seven-speed dual-clutch transmission, the turbo engine promises to offer better acceleration than the base engine's 8.2-second 0-60 mph time.

Passenger and Cargo Capacity

As a five-passenger compact sedan, the Forte is about as spacious as can be expected but by no means a limousine. Leg room in the rear beats out the Toyota Corolla and Mazda Mazda3, but falls a good 2 inches short of the Honda Civic.

The large trunk offers 15.3 cubic feet of space, which is better than all three of its Japanese competitors.

Kia Forte

Safety Features

The Forte comes with plenty of standard active safety features. These include forward collision warning, automatic emergency braking, lane departure warning, lane keeping assist, and driver attention warning. The GT-Line and EX also get blind-spot monitoring and rear cross-traffic alert as standard.

Only the GT offers any optional safety equipment. It's all bundled within the $2,200 GT2 Package and includes blind-spot monitoring, lane change assist, rear cross-traffic alert, audible parking sensors, and adaptive cruise control.

Connectivity

Even the base FE includes an 8-inch color touchscreen, though it offers limited functions beyond AM/FM/MP3 compatibility. High-trim cars also use an 8-inch screen but offer additional features such as cloud services and satellite radio. All trims include standard Apple CarPlay and Android Auto.

Depending on trim level, other amenities include one or two 12-volt outlets, multiple USB ports, and four or six speaker audio. Optional on the GT-Line, EX, and GT is a Harman Kardon audio system with eight speakers and 320 watts.

Wireless charging, a luxury not normally found in the compact class, is optional on the EX and GT.

Kia Forte

FE - From $18,715

The base Forte FE isn't lavish but is nonetheless well equipped for the price point. Unlike some loss leaders, the FE gets body-color mirrors and door handles, and also wears 15-inch steel wheels with hubcaps.

Standard convenience features include remote keyless entry, an alarm, and cruise control. Six-way manual seats, cloth upholstery, and single-zone manual climate control keep passengers comfortable.

The only option on the FE is the $900 automatic transmission, which also comes with a three-option drive mode selector.

LXS - From $20,115

One step up from the FE is the LXS. Upgrades over the FE include split-folding rear seats, more soft-touch materials, and 16-inch wheels. The automatic transmission and its drive mode selector have also been made standard equipment.

GT-Line - From $21,315

While the new GT looks to bring real performance to the Forte lineup, the GT-Line model is tasked with the less daunting order of merely looking good. To that end, the GT-Line cribs all its gloss-black trim from the GT, including accents, side sills, grille, mirrors, and spoiler. Unique 17-inch wheels set it apart from its more powerful sibling.

The interior takes a leap upscale when compared to the FE and LXS trims. To begin with, there's push-button start, cloth-and-leatherette seats, a six-speaker audio system, and a leather-wrapped gear shifter. The steering wheel is the flat-bottomed leather-wrapped piece also found in the GT. Rear passengers enjoy additional storage space.

If that's not enough, the GT-Line Premium Package is available. For $1,500, this package adds a sunroof, cloud services and satellite radio functionality, Harman Kardon audio, wireless charging, and LED interior lighting.

EX - From $22,915

The most luxurious Forte is the EX. This is the trim where passengers enjoy heated and cooled front seats with 10-way power adjustment, dual-zone automatic climate control, and the upgraded 8-inch touchscreen found in the GT-Line's Premium Package. Additional standard features include rear air conditioning vents, an illuminated glovebox, a front-console sliding armrest, and dual USB ports in the center console.

There are currently no optional packages to choose from, but later in the year Kia will offer the EX Special Edition Package. It's expected to include a black spoiler, two-tone red interior with leatherette seating, navigation, Harman Kardon audio, and a sunroof. Pricing will likely be in the ballpark of $1,500 to $2,000.

GT - From $23,215

The performance GT aspires to woo shoppers with its 201-hp turbo engine and exclusive multi-link rear suspension. Eighteen-inch wheels, sport seats, red stitching, and its flat-bottomed steering wheel all play up the theme of performance.

Presumably to keep costs down, the luxuries found in the EX have been stripped away. Climate control is again single-zone manual, seats revert to manual adjustment and cloth upholstery, and rear cross-traffic alert and blind-spot monitoring are also left at the factory.

All this de-contenting can be negated by opting for the $2,200 GT2 Package. It essentially adds back all the luxuries found on the EX as well as those offered in the GT-Line's Premium Package. Along with all this, there's also adaptive cruise control, rear parking sensors, and leatherette sport seats.

Compare Forte Trims Side-By-Side

CarsDirect Tip

Buyers should focus their 2020 Kia Forte search primarily on one of the upper trims. The generous amount of standard equipment on the GT-Line and EX make both well worth the extra cash over the rather spartan FE and LXS models.

author image
Automotive Editor
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Expert Review

Pros
  • Fancy looks
  • Spacious cabin
  • New GT trim
  • Ample safety and tech features
Cons
  • Weak base engine
  • Uninspiring base trim
  • We miss the hatchback
Expert Rating
3 (Good)

Our expert ratings are based on seven comprehensive criteria: quality, safety, comfort, performance, fuel economy, reliability history and value.

You can interpret our ratings in the following way:

: Outstanding vehicle. Only the most exceptional vehicles achieve this rating.

: Very Good vehicle. Very good and close to being the best vehicle in its class.

: Good vehicle. Decent, but not quite the best. Often affordable, but lacking key features found in vehicles of the same class.

: Below average vehicle. Not recommended, and lacking attributes a car buyer would come to expect for the price.

: Poor vehicle. Simply does not deserve to be on the road.

author image
Contributing Editor

Not an econobox. Manufacturers got the message that inexpensive cars don’t have to look cheap. The 2020 Kia Forte is a sterling example of just how well a premium look plays out. At first glance, the Forte features some of the styling elements of the gorgeous Kia Stinger, including a sleek set-back windshield and handsome rear design.

The tiger-nose grille, common to all Kia models, gives the Forte a sporty look. The flared headlights, big lower grille opening, and corner cutouts add to that mystique. The new GT trim provides an extra measure of sportiness.

Inside, the cabin has a cut-above feel thanks to much attention to detail. The round air vents with silver matte trim on some models looks expensive. We just wish Kia would employ more color instead of the typical black and gray interior.

Performance is a mixed bag. The Kia Forte is a tale of two engines. On the one hand, the base 2.0-liter four-cylinder that generates 147 horsepower can be lackluster. However, it places a big emphasis on efficiency and earns an EPA-estimated 35 miles per gallon combined.

The better choice from a performance standpoint is the 1.6-liter turbocharged four-cylinder with 201 hp that only the GT trim gets. The rear suspension system and dual exhaust port system are two other benefits, while it earns a solid 30 mpg combined.


Kia Forte

Generous safety and tech features. Kia has long emphasized its value proposition, and the Forte holds that banner high. It's priced from under $19,000, which makes it a strong entry among compact sedans.

On the safety front, Kia equips the Forte with standard automatic emergency braking, lane departure warning, and lane keeping assist. You’ll also find blind-spot monitoring and rear cross-traffic alert on the EX and GT. Some of Kia’s competitors aren’t as generous safety-wise.

As for tech features, the Forte comes with an 8-inch touchscreen, multiple USB ports, Bluetooth, and both Android Auto and Apple CarPlay smartphone compatibility. The four-speaker audio system isn’t anything worth noting, but we don’t recommend the base model anyway. You’ll find six-speaker systems on most trims along with satellite radio.

Spacious interior. The roomy interior is one of the Forte’s strengths, as it makes this sedan a midsize model based on one government classification. You’ll find ample head, shoulder, hip, and legroom in the first row. The second row loses a few inches here and there, but you can fit three in a pinch.

Trunk space is simply voluminous for this segment, measuring 15.3 cubic feet. In some models, the hands-free operation is included, a feature common to the Kia Optima and not available in many premium models. Consider that most models come with a 60/40-split fold-down rear seat and the storage possibilities improve considerably.

Final thoughts. The market may have shifted from cars to crossovers, but Kia hasn’t abandoned the segment, nor are they likely to do so. That’s good news for consumers wanting value.

Along with the Hyundai Accent, the 2020 Kia Forte offers an excellent one-two punch for entry-level new car shoppers. With shrinking demand, incentives remain strong in pricing, leasing, and financing. Consider funneling some of your savings to bump up a trim level, especially if long-term ownership is part of your plan.

Check prices for the 2020 Kia Forte »

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Specs & Features

Highlights
Overall Crash Safety Rating
Engine - Cylinders/Horsepower/Torque
2.0L I-4 / 147 HP / 132 ft.lbs.
Transmission
6-spd man w/OD
Drive Type
Front-wheel
Fuel Economy - City/Highway/Combined
27 / 37 / 32 Mpg
Passenger Capacity
5
Bumper to Bumper Warranty
60 Months / 60,000 Miles
Mechanical Specs
Engine - Cylinders/Horsepower/Torque
2.0L I-4 / 147 HP / 132 ft.lbs.
Drive Type
Front-wheel
Fuel Economy - City/Hwy/Combined
27 / 37 / 32 Mpg
Brakes
4-wheel Disc
Front Suspension
Strut
Rear Suspension
Semi-independent Torsion Beam Beam
Spare Tire And Wheel
Fuel Tank
14.0 Gal.
Recommended Fuel Type
Regular Unleaded
Average Cost To Fill Tank
$53
Dimensions & Capabilities
Maximum Cargo Volume
15.3 Cu.ft.
Passenger Volume
96 Cu.ft.
Exterior Length
182.7 "
Exterior Width
70.9 "
Exterior Height
56.5 "
Front Headroom
38.8 "
Rear Headroom
37.5 "
Front Legroom
42.2 "
Rear Legroom
35.7 "
Front Shoulder Room
56.1 "
Rear Shoulder Room
55.3 "
Front Hip Room
Rear Hip Room
Curb Weight
2,707 Lbs.
Wheel Base
106 "
Turning Radius
17.4 '
Exterior Features
Door Count
4 Doors
Wheels
15.0 " Steel
Paint
Clearcoat Monotone
Exterior Mirrors
Dual Power Remote
Bumpers
Body-colored
Grille Moldings
Black W/chrome Surround
Rear Spoiler
Exhaust
Stainless Steel
Interior Features
Seating
Passenger Capacity
5
Seat Trim
Cloth
Front Seat Type
Bucket
Heated Front Seats
Front Driver Seat Direction Controls
6-way
Front Passenger Seat Direction Controls
6-way
Front Armrests
6-way
Rear Armrests
Rear Seats
Bench
Radio & Infotainment
Radio
Am/fm, Seek-scan
Speakers
4
Radio Steering Wheel Controls
Apple Car Play
Android Auto
Bluetooth w/ Hands-Free Connectivity
Convenience Features
Steering Wheel Type
Telescopic Tilt
Climate Control
Cruise Control
With Steering Wheel Controls
Sun Roof
Rearview Mirror
Day-night / Auto-dimming Day-night
One Touch Open Window
Driver
Tinted Windows
Light
Vanity Mirrors
Remote Keyless Entry
Keyfob (all Doors)
Power Outlets
2
Safety Features
Overall Crash Safety Rating
Overall Front Crash Safety Rating
Overall Side Crash Safety Rating
Rollover Crash Safety Rating
Front Impact Airbags
Driver And Passenger
Driver Side Impact Airbags
Seat Mounted
Knee Airbag
Passenger Side Impact Airbag
Seat Mounted
Rear Side Airbag
Seatbelt Pretensioners
Front
Anti-Lock Brakes
4-wheel Anti-lock Brakes (abs)
Forward Collision Warning
Forward Collision-avoidance Assist (fca) Forward Collision Mitigation
Blind Spot Sensor
Lane Departure Warning
Lane Keeping Assist-line (lka-l) Lane Departure
Autonomous Cruise Control
Pedestrian Detection
Driver Attention Alert
Driver Attention Warning (daw) Driver Attention
Daytime Running Lights
Auto High Beams
Adaptive Headlights
Parking Sensors
Security Systems
Security System
Panic Alarm
Ignition Disable
Warranty
Bumper To Bumper Months Miles
60 Months / 60,000 Miles
Major Components Months
120 Months / 100,000 Miles
Included Maintenance Months
Roadside Assistance Months
60 Months / 60,000 Miles
Corrosion Perforation
60 Months / 100,000 Miles
Accessories Months
60 Months / 60,000 Miles

Used 2020 Kia Forte for Sale

22 vehicles found within 50 miles of your area
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LXS
Color: Clear White
Mileage

15,470 mi

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Car Pros Honda El Monte (24 mi)

Phone: (626) 471-5479
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California Motors Direct (34 mi)

Phone: (714) 515-6100
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Phone: (818) 632-3015
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Hertz Car Sales Norwalk (18 mi)

Phone: (562) 863-8526
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