Traded in our '04 Optima EX V-6 @ 133,000 for our Forte.
The Optima was a great car.
Only had to replace the starter.
Absolutely luv the forte.
Spirited 2.0L, great 6sp auto.
Outstanding gas mileage, on a trip from Jax, Fl to Philly it avg over 40 mpg during 1 tank run, i.e. 403 miles and only took 9.7 gal to fill.
Averaged 37-38 mpg on the trip.
A definite gas saver over the 2.7L Optima.
I am 6'1", 256#, a little cramped but otherwise REALLY like this car.
Started out with a 2001 Sephia, bought '02 Optima EX V-6 for Mama, Traded both cars in on the same day in Dec '03 for an '04 Spectra and the '04 Optima.
Still have the Spectra @ over 103,000 miles.
Gas mileage, Blue Tooth, Sirius [for long trips], comfortable for my wife and she says it rides well!
Spirited acceleration with the 6sp auto.
Much more aggresive over the old 4sp auto.
Maybe more padding on the seats for us BIG guys [although I could stand to lose quite a few #'s.
A larger gas tank for longer legs while traveling [maybe a 16 gal tank = over 600 mi per tank] 16 X 37 mpg = 608 mi!
Have had this car since July. Have 7300 miles. Car is loaded with Nav, sunroof, leather, Sirius radio,
rear camera, etc...It's comfortable inside, good drive on the highway, handling isn't bad but the Jetta I also tested didn't handle any better surprisingly. It has great acceleration for a 4-cylinder, non-turbo and the 2.5 engine is what makes the difference. My only complaints so far are the suspension and the gas mileage. I do mostly highway driving and am only getting 26 - 28 mpg. Also, I feel every bump, big or small in this car. Great value for the money and will be a good car to hand down to the kids but not sure I would purchase another.
I traded in my 8 year old Pontiac Vibe for the Forte EX (ECO), which I use as a long-distance commuter car. I purchased the Forte on price and decent reviews after test driving some of the competition in this class.
I am happy with the acceleration, comfort, interior space, and styling of the vehicle.
Combined gas mileage thus far through the first 2k miles has averaged in the low 30s mpg in my commute of mixed highway and city driving, which is virtually identical to my former Vibe and acceptable to me as the Forte ECO is rated 37/27.
Steering still feels a bit uncertain to me and handling on windy roads does not compare to my former Vibe, which I did not notice in my initial test drive.
Space (best that I experienced in this class and suitable for the car seat in the rear seat), comfort, and generous standard features
More confident steering and centering of steering wheel, does not stick to the pavement in "fun" driving on curvy roads as well as a vehicle in this class should
Purchased Forte in late May 2011. Interioe comfort is good. Mileage could be better that current average of 26 mpg. Took it on vacation and the average mpg jumped to 30.5-more highway miles at higher speeds. On rain slick streets it handles good.
I insisted on having fog lights and with that upgrade package got the sport steering wheel which I love. Having arthritis in hands the grips make it easier to hold onto. I like the automatic lights except I have to turn them to "true on" when it rains in order to have the lights on when the wipers are on.
If the sedan had the 2-door model interior seats it would be a perfect car. Those seats wrapped around you and made it more secure. Upgrading to similar 'on while in gear' and lights off when not in driving gear would make this car comparable to a Subaru.
I have now owned my new Forte for one month.
Have driven it just over 1,000 miles in mostly city driving and have achieved an average of 30MPG.
I am a BIG guy, 6'3" and 260#.
I find more leg, head, shoulder and hip room in this Kia than others in its class.
It is comfortable to drive - but maybe not so much on a long trip.
Has many creature comforts not found without extra cost on the competition.
If I have a complaint it is that it feels a little light and "squirelly" in Interstate driving, so one must pay attention.
I was used to a big Oldsmobile before checking on most cars in this class, all of whom came up short except for the Hyundai Elantra.
The Kia won the coin toss.
Steering wheel audio and bluetooth.
Comfort for legroom, headroom & shoulder room.
Surprising get up and go from a fuel efficient engine.
Room for golf clubs in trunk.
Prefer a little more stability on the highway, but if you pay attention, you will be ok.