This year’s 2014 Kia Forte seems to be on a mission to convince the world that it is in fact anything but the brand we’ve come to recognize over the years. Having originally debuted last year at the annual Auto Show in LA, the 2014 Forte has been picking up awards and accolades left, right and center ever since.
While the compact segment is of course about far more than aesthetics alone in terms of the US crowd, there’s little denying the way in which one of the most striking updates of all to the 2014 Kia Forte comes by way of external design – or redesign, as it were. From end to end, the new Forte is sportier, sleeker and more refined than any version to date, offering the kind of downright desirability this particular end of the compact market doesn’t usually deliver on.
On the inside, Microsoft UVO takes pride of place and delivers entertainment and information by way of a superb-quality 7-inch screen – features including satellite radio, Bluetooth and a rear-mounted reversing camera.
Given the price-tag of just $18,000 give or take a little, the quality of the leather interior and trim as a whole is simply off the scale. The 2014 Kia Forte has mercifully done away with the tired old plastics and fabrics, instead being enriched with superb leather and plenty of carbon-fiber.
Under the hood things are largely as expected – the power-plant doesn’t exactly live up to the sporty exterior of the new Forte, but then again it was never supposed to. As far as the base-model goes, grunt is delivered by way of a four-cylinder 1.8-litre engine capable of 148BHP, though the ante can be upped to 173BHP courtesy of the 2.0-liter EX trim.
Fuel-economy is also looking pretty good for the 2014 Forte, with current figures pointed to a good 37MPG highway driving for the upper-end 1.0-liter version – official stats for the 1.8-liter are pending but of course expected to be something to be proud of.
In terms of bang for buck, there could well be a new front-runner out there in the form of the 2014 Kia Forte.