Editor’s note: If you’re looking for information on a newer Kia Forte, we’ve published an updated review: 2019 Kia Forte Review.
The 2015 Kia Forte 5 is a car that could take Kia to the next level. Kia’s been making really good cars for a while now, but the company hasn’t had a big hit in the compact segment — until now. The Forte has all the features to compete against the best, but more than that, it’s a genuinely desirable car. Here are five reasons to give the Forte your full attention.
In case you haven’t heard, Kia’s president used to be Audi’s chief designer, and you can definitely see his influence. From every angle, the Forte 5 hatchback looks dynamic and upscale. Aside from the sleek bodywork, there are also cutting-edge touches such as LED headlight accents and taillights. And the SX model’s head-turning 18-inch wheels look like they came off of a German sport sedan, not an economy hatchback.
Spirited Performance, Stingy Fuel Economy
The Forte 5 SX has one of the best engines in any compact. The 1.6-liter turbocharged 4-cylinder pumps out 201 horsepower (versus 173 hp for the base EX), and it’ll do 0-to-60 in about 7 seconds. We also like the sport-tuned SX’s capable handling and precise steering. When you get right down to it, the Forte 5 SX has enough performance to make VW GTI shoppers think twice. The 1.6 turbo still gets a reasonable 24 miles per gallon in mixed driving, including 29 mpg on the highway, so you’re not giving up too much efficiency to get the extra fun. See the 2015 Kia Forte models for sale near you
Some small hatchbacks barely have any space in the trunk, but the Forte 5 bucks the trend. There’s 23 cu ft. of space behind the rear seatbacks, which is more than even the largest sedans. And when you fold down the rear seatbacks, there’s so much room that it’s like a miniature SUV. In fact, that’s one way to think about the Forte 5: a compelling alternative to crossover SUVs, which are taller, handle worse and typically cost more, too.
Remarkably Low Price
Speaking of cost, the Forte 5 is going to be pretty easy on your wallet. Even though it comes packed with features, this hatchback is aggressively priced. The base EX model checks in at less than $20,000, while the turbocharged SX only costs another grand or so. For the price, you’ll be hard-pressed to find comparable performance and luxury anywhere else.
Three Available Body Styles
Our test car was a hatchback, but keep in mind that there are two other body styles, as well. The Forte Koup is a sporty 2-door version, and there’s also the mainstream Forte sedan. Our favorite is the handy Forte 5, but it’s always nice to have options. With the three options for body styles, the Forte isn’t just a viable substitute for hatchbacks such as the VW Golf and Mazda3; it also rivals sedans such as the Chevy Cruze and Toyota Corolla and two-doors such as the Honda Civic Coupe.
The 2015 Kia Forte 5 might just catapult Kia to the head of the compact class. If you’re looking for a small car with style, performance and value to spare, make sure you give the Forte lineup a try. Find a Kia Forte for sale