Sittin', Chillin - 2014 Kia Forte EX Long-Term Road Test

2014 Kia Forte EX Long-Term Road Test

2014 Kia Forte EX: Sittin', Chillin'

September 9, 2013

2013 Kia Forte EX

A semi-tropical heatwave has settled in Southern California, bringing heavy air from Texas and storm leftovers from Mexico's Baja peninsula. The Forte registered an ambient temperature of 90-degrees F. at noon today, slightly unseasonable but not unusual. Sixty-percent humidity makes the day stickier and sweatier, so it's a good time to be grateful that we spec'd our long-term 2013 Kia Forte with a ventilated driver seat.

You don't expect to find bum coolers in the Forte's class. Granted, we ordered them in a $2,600 package that also includes a sunroof, power-adjustable leather front seats, heated rear seats, push-button start and a heated steering wheel. But even with that package and other features we opted for, our loaded EX comes in under $26,000. Not exactly budget compact money, but not bank-busting either.

The ventilated seat isn't the best. The spread feels a little uneven, as if you're sitting on thin dowels of chilled air instead of a cool pad. There's no back cooling. But these are absurd criticisms. This is not an Equus, a Quoris or whatever else Kia's eventual luxury flagship will be called. With the 2014 Forte, Kia further hones its value equation. You feel like you get a lot of car for the money here.

Dan Frio, Automotive Editor


  • yellowbal yellowbal Posts:

    I'd rather get a new Accord with a strong engine and independent rear suspension. $26,000 for a compact KIA, ouch!

  • evodad evodad Posts:

    you can get a LOT of used car for $26k, I think I'd pass on the kia even if it means sacrificing a couple model years and some miles/warranty term

  • Am I the only one who would buy a car for this feature? Any time I drive for more than 30 minutes, my back starts to sweat. And no, I'm not overweight. Whether it's a leather seat, cloth seat, minivan with big windows or small sedan, and whether it's hot outside or not! It's really annoying! And given the (un)popularity of ventilated seats, it seems like I'm the only one too, which I know isn't true. So, honestly, the fact that it doesn't ventilate the back portion makes this feature high on my priority list to top of the disappointment list.

  • @mistygreen06, I'm right with you. No joke, I consider this to be the greatest advance in driver comfort since AC itself. I am not at all interested in a heated seat, but I would absolutely go out of my way for a cooled seat. Why isn't this the biggest

  • quadricycle quadricycle Posts:

    @mistygreen06 & misterfusion: I don't have the issue that you guys are talking about, but I still think that ventilated seats are pretty awesome, especially after strenuous activities in the heat in which case the cooling sensation is just about divin

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