2014 Kia Forte EX Review

2014 Kia Forte e^x today now this is by viewer-request that we’re taking a look at this particular model it’s the top of the line trim for the Kia Forte we’ve also taken another viewer request under consideration and we’re filming this from a completely
different parking garage for 2014 the

Forte gets entirely new nose this integrates it with the rest of the kia lineup it’s definitely bringing an awful lot of that successful Kia Optima into this new Forte we have these more aggressive headlamps here since we’re in an e X model with all the options we have the LED daytime running lamps as well as the HID headlamps up front they give it a very aggressive very modern look and also a look that you’d find more commonly in more luxury oriented vehicles like BMWs Lexus IS Audi’s etc because of that daytime running lights hoop as well as those HID headlamps the
forte also has a completely different

profile because 2014 isn’t a refresh of
the existing forte this is a complete redesign of that model so you’ll find that the car has grown overall it’s a little bit longer than last year’s model but most importantly the wheelbase has increased so the distance between the front wheels and the rear wheels has been increased by about two inches that really pays dividends with rear seat room we have an all-new more aggressive back in on the Forte for 2014 as well an optional LED tail lamps LX models give you 15 inch wheels DX models get you 16 inch wheels and re X model is fully loaded with the optional 17 inch wheel and two 1545 r17 rubber you’ll find two different engines under the hood of the kia forte depending on which model you buy if you get that base LX model you’re
gonna get a 1.8 liter multi-port

injection engine not a direct injection
engine produces 148 horsepower and 131 pound-feet of torque if you opt for the e X model like we have here then you get it bumped up to a 2-liter direct injection 4-cylinder engine produces 173 horsepower and 154 pound-feet of torque now that base model the LX model can opt for either a 6-speed manual transmission or a 6-speed automatic but that automatic will cost you a little bit more whereas the 2.0 liter direct injection engine comes only with the 6-speed automatic kia is not claiming segment busting mileage for the 2014 forte so you should keep that in mind mileage is 25:37 for that 1.8 liter engine and the six-speed manual transmission 2536 for that engine with these speed automatic and 2436 for this

2-liter direct injection engine and a

six-speed Automatic front seat comfort in the Forte is very good for 2014 it’s also much improved over the previous Forte model if not for that base LX model of the Forte you get basic cloth seats by jumping up to the e ex model II get slightly nicer cloth and our particular model has the optional leather interior we have a 10-way power seat it’s also part of that leather interior package with a power adjustable lumbar support now all models of Forte do get a tilt telescoping steering wheel with a decent range of motion which makes it a lot easier to find an ideal driving position in any model of Forte regardless of which trim you get the rear seats in the kia forte are much improved over last year’s model not only are they more comfortable like the front seats but they’re also a bit cozier than last year as well they’re probably some of the best in the segment now compared

to something like a Nissan Sentra
there’s a lot less legroom going on back here so I can’t stretch out quite as far when this front seats adjusted for me but I still have about 3 inches of legroom left as you can see there now the seat bottom cushion is close to the floor like most other entries in this segment but again like that Nissan Sentra I can’t stretch out my legs quite as far the seat is much more comfortable however then that Sentra the seat angle is a little bit more reclined than some of the other entries in the segments that’s something to keep in mind but it is very comfortable if I move over to the right side this front seat was adjusted for a 6 foot 5 passenger that I had in the car so you’d say I still have about an inch and a half of legroom left so still a decent amount of room back here now thanks to the overall profile

of the Forte for 2014 if I lean back in

the seat my hair is brushing the ceiling
and I’m only about 6 feet tall so if you routinely carry larger rear seat passengers that is something to keep in mind this fully loaded 40 X has a number of rear cabin features that you’d be hard-pressed to find in larger mid-sized sedans at larger price points we have rear air vents here in the center console we have a nicely padded center armrest with dual cupholders these rear seats are also heated so that’s something you wouldn’t find normally in a subcompact or compact car we have folding rear seat backs these don’t fold completely flat with the cargo area like a number of other entries in this segment it is a little bit deeper there in the cargo area than this seat back but they do fold almost completely flat which is a nice touch when this is upright like this you can also see how much thicker these rear seats are than a number the competition these rear door plastics

are also much better than the
competition that’s not to say that there are the most luxurious weird or plastics I’ve ever seen they are still hard on the upper but they are a soft touch in the middle and we have a padded armrest as well this e^x has been equipped with the optional soft touch door plastics that replaces the top part of the plastic as well as that plastic insert there with softer touch materials over here on the passenger side we have a soft touch airbag which is a nice change from last year that leaves the hard plastics to up here high on the dashboard where it’s further out of the reach of passengers and drivers alike we have a fairly large glovebox here this is cooled in the e X models you can see
that’s the little air-conditioning vent

back there over here we have some faux
carbon fiber trim which is done fairly nicely and it wraps all the way around the dashboard and then all the way around the driver’s side now our ax model does have the leather wrapped shifter and a leather wrap steering wheel which is a very nice steering wheel this is a new design for them as well over here we have our radio controls mode volume up/down mute etc over here on the right we have our cruise control buttons this is steering effort which is part of a package on the forte which allows you to adjust your steering effort right there on your steering wheel these controls right here those control that little LCD in the center of that gauge cluster that is part of the e X as well it’s not available on the LX model or here we have our Bluetooth voice controls and the Bluetooth phone interface is standard on every model of e^x over here on the center console we have an 8 inch UVO infotainment screen this is standard on all X models it’s not available in the LX model at all below that we have dual zone climate control we have another nice change for 2014 under here and that is that kia has hidden the USB and auxiliary input as well as 2 power ports right here in a nice roller top container so they’re out of the way of prying eyes we have our shifter our ax
model has the optional cooled driver

seat passenger seat is just heated in
this particular model parking sensors front and rear as well over here we have two large cupholders that can hold the largest size of carry-on drink that we were able to throw at it and then behind that we have a padded center armrest with a decent amount of storage space the 2014 40 X score is 8 out of 10 points in our exclusive Comfort index because it’s furnished very nicely it’s not quite as big as the Nissan Sentra’s and I do keep mentioning that Sentra just because it is bigger it’s not as nicely upholstered either in the trunk or in the cabin as this 2014 Forte so definitely keep that in mind it’s favoring size over creature comforts as well as build quality but this Forte struck is very nicely put together has a very nice mat this is the largest roller bagging and Karen a domestic flight you can definitely fit five people’s worth of luggage inside the forte without too much of a problem we also have a very convenient handle on this trunk lid allowing us to close the trunk more easily let’s take a look at the infotainment system now again since we’re in an IX model we have this 4.2 inch LCD between the speedometer and the

tachometer if you don’t care about
infotainment or if you’re just bored easily then you can go ahead and follow the instructions on your screen below and fast-forward to the drive section of the review now this display is controlled via the buttons on the steering wheel and it allows you to change vehicle settings as well as see your trip computers like you see here range fuel economy etc if you move over to the iPod screen you’ll notice a deficiency in that it doesn’t show actual track information there it will show more information if you’re on Sirius satellite radio or if you have a CD with CD text or you have an mp3 CD or USB device certain other devices it will show more information there but on the iPod it does very little this screen will either show you your navigation instructions so your next turn etc or if you don’t have navigation enabled it’ll just show little compass this is your service screen and then over here you can change all sorts of vehicle settings from what the car does when you how it locks the doors when you put it in park or drive a certain speed

you know how many turn signal flashes

you get when you just touch the turn signal stock settings service interval etc because we’re in an e X model we have this 8 inch touch screen in the dashboard but this touch screen does not include navigation by default if you want navigation you have to add the technology package to your IX which will also bring HD radio a 4.2 inch LCD between the gauges HID headlamps 2 zone automatic climate control rear air vents and the LED tail lamps other than that nav software the rest of the system is essentially the same between those two versions we get a single disc CD player right up here plays mp3 discs regular CDs etc we have a USB interface you the image interface that’s if you want to import pictures onto your UVO system we have a standard iPod interface which is fully featured allows you to completely browse your iPod using these on-screen controls it is very fast very snappy over here in the menus where you’d find repeat and shuffle we hit back to the media button you’ll find also an auxilary input again that’s down there in the dashboard bluetooth streaming audio and my music is the hard

drive database in the system that allows

you to rip songs from CDs right into the hard drive on the system the system is controlled with these direct access buttons on the bottom which makes it easier to use in something like my for touch which has only touch buttons over here you’ll find AM and FM radio will have satellite that’s separated from our AM and FM it’s kind of an interesting touch there some systems combine those two in one button this gives you a little bit more direct access on the phone button you’ll find your Bluetooth phone interface Bluetooth phone interface is standard on all models of forte over here you’ll find your mapping interface it is a very quick fully featured mapping interface and it does display radio traffic and the source of this radio data is not tied with your XM subscription so you don’t have to have the subscription order to get live traffic on the system destination entry is over here on the destination button very easy to use this system the system is very responsive as well when you’re actually entering an address you can see here how quickly we respond there we go

it’s faster than I am in its recognition
obviously and destination entry is very quick setting destination routing is also pretty quick in a system compared to certain other systems all the route options over here on the route buttons if you want to cancel the route route overview about options detours etc that’s all there on a direct access button over here on info and setup is where you’ll find your UVO services eula services include roadside assistance vehicle diagnostics parking minor help you find your car you can download directions from Google right into the system it also offers 9-1-1 assist where you can use the system to call 9-1-1 or the car will automatically dial nine-one-one if you’re in an accident it also gives you the ability to schedule service reminders and things like that with your dealer the set of options where you’ll find all the configurations for this system not necessarily the vehicle as some of those are changed we have that little display in the instrument cluster you will find you bow services over here and your crash notification assistant compared to the other entries in this segment UVO is very responsive it’s very snappy very easy to use the only feature that it’s really missing is voice command of your music library which is a feature that most other entries in this segment now offer the X model is definitely the Forte to get not only does that 2-liter
direct injection engine under the hood

give us more horsepower and more torque

but the horsepower and torque curves are more advantageous they’re broader and they’re flatter leading to better acceleration we hit 0-60 in 8.2 4 seconds in this 2-liter direct injection model and the 1.8 liter model takes about a second longer or so but we also get decent fuel economy for that improved performance we’ve been averaging a solid 29 miles per gallon in this car despite me living up and over a twenty two hundred foot mountain pass it’s a very good fuel economy rating for a vehicle like this it also is because the forte is a terribly heavy vehicle when you compare it to some of the competition you’ll appreciate that power more in the X model because Kia went back to the drawing board and redesigned the forte suspension for 2014 not only did they make it a little bit more compliant that extra two inches of wheelbase also helps with that but they’ve also improved the ride and the handling the suspension is just very well sorted and doesn’t get upset over rough roads or big bumps or washboards or speed bumps like the old fort a suspension did this just feels rock-solid it has a very Germanic feel to it which is a very positive thing now is a little bit stiffer than some people might like but it is very middle of the road in terms of actual suspension stiffness so it’s not not a rock hard do you know Focus ST kind of suspension but it’s not quite a soft Nissan Center either this well-sorted suspension really makes me wish that Kiev is offering a sport package in the forte because I think the suspension and this

chassis would adapt themselves to that very well something along the lines of the Focus ST would be quite an interesting entry in the segment tossin a turbo adds some wider rubber and I think you might have the perfect Forte segment is all about value and that means it’s all about knowing which corners to cut and which trades to make when you’re putting together your vehicle and I really think the Kia has been making the best choices in this segment when it comes time to making those hard choices because their entries like the Ford the Ford Focus is a very nice vehicle but it’s more expensive when you option it up to the same level now on the Ford we get nice or dashboard plastics we get better fit and finish on the dashboard as well in this Kia I’m staring at a few scenes here that are a little bit questionable however the Forte offers a number of features that you won’t find in the focus at any price like this heated steering wheel that I’m enjoying right now something that I really do appreciate so heated steering wheel these power folding mirrors you know memory seats this 10 way adjustable driver’s seat that’s heated and cooled again that’s one of these other trade-offs however because the passenger seat in this car is heated but not cooled and those back seats only the seat bottom is he did not the seat back so the car is full of trade-offs but I think that Kia has made the right

choices in each of these trade-offs and that’s something unusual in this segment cabin noise is a bit of a problem in the forte and I think it’s highlighted by the fact that this cabin and the car overall has a very premium almost near luxury feel to it but in terms of wind noise and road noise and engine noise it is a decent step behind things like the Passat the Cruze the Focus and a number of other Japanese and American entries if you haven’t driven a Kia recently in your vehicle shopping you need to get behind the wheel of one and test drive because this is an all-new Kia this is nothing like the Kia’s of 10 years ago those were penalty boxes that people bought because they were cheap now Kia’s are sort of the car that people buy because they’re well featured well put-together vehicles that happen to be good value not necessarily the cheapest in their segment but the feature level for the price is hard to beat in this kia forte kia has kept the pricing for the 2014 Forte pretty simple things start out with that base LX model at fifteen thousand nine hundred dollars we’re told by most kia dealers in our area that they expect the average transaction price to be the eighteen thousand three hundred dollar LX model with most of the options our particular model here is the fully loaded ax model it clocks in at twenty-five thousand four hundred dollars which is still a very good deal

when you consider

all the features and options that this
vehicle has in it the kia 14 is quite a compelling vehicle it’s probably my favorite at this moment in this category and this is a very constantly changing category so it’s important that you take a look and see when we shot these videos as far as how we like the cars because I just said that relatively recently about the completely refreshed 2013 Honda Civic but kia has upped their game for 2014 and this model is now my current favorite in this segment that’s primarily because I don’t value fuel economy quite as highly as others so if fuel economy is your prime concern then you might want to look elsewhere because 35 miles per gallon on the highway we’ve been averaging about 30 miles per gallon in this car in mixed driving is not the best in the segment not when a lot of other cars are advertising 40 miles per gallon in certain driving situations for me the combination of features and definitely value in the Kia Forte are what pushed this to the top of the list for me not to mention that really long warranty that Kia always advertises but in my book I value things like that cooled seat the memory seats the power folding mirrors the eight inch touchscreen infotainment system just rank higher on my list than overall fuel economy and that’s really what pushes this to the top of my list depending on your particular needs of course your mileage may vary I want to thank everyone for taking the time.

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