Looking for affordable reliability? Look to the Kia Forte!
Are you in the market for a commuter car or a reliable, comfortable car that feels sporty for your growing family? The 2017 Kia Forte might be the perfect option. Prices start at just over $16,000 making this a truly affordable option. A four-door sedan with many safety features and a stylish interior are just a few ways that Kia has updated the Forte model into a sportier choice. The tiger nose grille on the front of the Forte gives you the feeling that you are driving an expensive sports car.
What this car costs:
- Starting price for the LX model, which includes a 6-speed manual transmission (automatic is a $1,000 upgrade), Bluetooth, A/V, remote keyless entry, heated mirrors, USB and 2 12V power ports, cloth seats and steering wheel radio controls: $16,600
- Mid-level S Model (S for Sport) which includes automatic transmission, 7″ UVO touch screen infotainment system, rear view camera, sport cloth upholstery, Active Eco drive system, push button starter and the option of a sun roof and active safety including blind spot monitors, lane departure assist and forward collision warning: $19,300
- Top of the line EX model adds: motion activated smart trunk, leather trimmed seats, heated front seats, 17″ wheels, sliding front armrest, the option of a sun roof: $21,300
- Sunroof package with leather trimmed heated front seats and sliding armrest adds $2,500
- Active safety features package including blind spot monitors and lane departure assist adds $1,490
Comfort plus convenience, a winning combination
We found this car to be very comfortable, enjoyable to drive, and extremely safe. A perfect car for a young family, or daily commuter. My 6’3″ son fit nicely in the front seat and he found the car to be comfortable, even on long drives. My daughter enjoyed plenty of leg room in the back row.
As the driver I found the seat to be comfortable. I loved the lumbar support! The controls were right where I needed them to be. The front control panels were easy to use and figure out. The steering wheel buttons were some of the best I have ever used. Each button was in a perfect spot and it was so easy to control the radio, cruise control, and other buttons without taking your hands off the wheel. The dashboard was laid out in such a way that everything was really easy to access.
Cubbies for toys & plenty of USB ports = happy family!
The 2017 Kia Forte had lots of cup holders, bins, and cubbies. My daughter loves to bring lots of small toys, pens, and papers with her to school. She found plenty of places to store her stuff and really enjoyed the back seat view and ride. Keeping our phones charged was no problem. The Kia Forte had lots of USB ports, 12 volts outlets, and auxiliary ports too.
Our phones paired easily and Bluetooth was easy to setup and use. Apple CarPlay immediately connected to our phones as well. The Kia Forte has a lovely sound system that is intuitive. Within seconds our favorite radio channels were saved as favorites, and we were singing along as we toured the open roads in Virginia.
Power, gas mileage and safety options
The LX and S versions have a smaller motor, while the EX has more horsepower. Eco, Sport, and regular modes are all available to you in the Forte. While using the Eco mode you could feel that the car had slower pickup and more hesitation while merging or getting started at a red light. But, while using the Eco mode we got 40MPG which is excellent.
Safety features were quite abundant for a car with an affordable price tag. If you purchase the S technology package, at just under $1,490, you will also receive these safety upgrades:
- Lane departure warning
- Rear cross traffic alert
- Lane keep assist system
- Forward collision warning
- Autonomous emergency braking with pedestrian detection
- Blind spot warning
The lane keep assist worked really well in the Kia Forte and did not feel intrusive at all. This feature can really help new drivers stay in their lanes better.
The premium package priced at $4,490 includes the safety technology packaged noted above, sunroof, heated front seats, and 7” touchscreen navigation system.
What we loved
- Great sound system
- Easy to reach driver controls
- Stylish and affordable
- Abundant USB charging ports
- Cubbies and cup holders–enough to keep my daughter happy!
What you need to know
- Seating for 5 but more comfortable for 4
- Uses regular fuel
- 147 4-cylinder horsepower engine
- 29MPG city/38 MPG highway
- 40MPG in Eco Mode – YAY!
- 60 month/60,000 mile bumper-to-bumper warranty; 120 months/100,000 mile powertrain warranty
Final Thoughts about the Kia Forte
The only thing that I did not like about the Kia Forte was the driver’s armrest. It was not long enough and my right arm was uncomfortable on a long drive. Otherwise, the car was exceptionally comfortable and so nicely priced. With the reliability that you receive when buying a Kia, this car is my best pick for those on a budget.
Disclosure: The Kia Forte was provided for this review; all opinions are my own.