2014 Kia Forte EX Long-Term Road Test

Performance


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2014 Kia Forte: Four-Star Safety Rating

June 19, 2014

2014 Kia Forte

The 2014 Kia Forte earned four out of five stars in the overall safety rating from the NHTSA.

It breaks down like this:

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2014 Kia Forte EX: Easy Commuter

May 27, 2014

2014 Kia Forte

In the past, I've commented on what a good road trip car our 2014 Kia Forte is. But the Forte also serves very well in the considerably less glamorous, but much more commonplace role as a commuter. From start to finish, the Forte makes it as easy as possible. Walk up to the car and the perimeter lights automatically greet you. Open the door, hop in and fire it up. All while leaving the key in your pocket thanks to the optional keyless entry/ignition system.

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2014 Kia Forte: Find Some Bumpy Roads During Your Test-Drive

April 2, 2014

2014 Kia Forte

Early on in our test of the 2014 Kia Forte, Mark Takahashi wrote about the rear suspension and how its relatively unsophisticated design can lead to awkward undulations coming from the rear of the car when driving over bumpy or choppy pavement.

This isn't something you'll encounter on a daily basis necessarily. But it is a quality that cars like the Mazda 3 or Ford Focus don't suffer from, and it's important enough that I'd encourage a shopper to factor it in for his or her car purchasing decision.

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2014 Kia Forte EX: Two Sides of Fuel Economy

February 24, 2014

2014 Kia Forte EX

Each year Edmunds editors hold a "Fuel Sipper Smackdown" to show how different driving conditions provide very different fuel economy results. On a recent trip to Las Vegas in our long-term 2014 Kia Forte EX, I conducted a mini-smackdown of my own by isolating the city driving from the two highway legs. The results were amazingly different.

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2014 Kia Forte: Steering Feel

February 21, 2014

2014 Kia Forte

Last week I spent five days in a 2014 Nissan Altima S while my Leaf was in the shop. It reminded me how important extended test drives are in selecting the car you want to buy. Case in point: the Altima is a pleasant commuter car, but after a few days I began to notice that the light steering requires frequent adjustment to stay centered in the lane. As soon as I identified this issue, it grew in my mind to the point where I think it might be a deal breaker. Was I being overly critical?

Enter the 2014 Kia Forte EX.

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2014 Kia Forte: Let's Drive to Vegas for the Holidays

January 2, 2014

2014 Kia Forte

Vegas would never be my first choice for a holiday destination, but when one side of my family decreed that we'd meet up in Sin City (instead of our usual spot: subfreezing central Illinois) the week of Christmas, my husband and I were obliged to make the drive. Never mind the annoyance of good weather, though. This would be an opportunity to take our long-term 2014 Kia Forte on a short road trip.

I hadn't spent much time with the redesigned Forte before this trip. Experience with the previous-generation car shaped my expectations, though. I knew I would enjoy all the amenities packed into our $25,735 long-term car but figured I'd find the actual driving experience rather dull, no more than adequate.

But after spending close to 1,000 miles in our 2014 Forte, I like our Kia a great deal more than that.

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2014 Kia Forte: Flex Steer

December 24, 2013

2014 Kia Forte

It's pretty cool that the 2014 Kia Forte EX has adjustable steering effort, called Flex Steer. Especially considering the segment and price-point this car falls into.

There are three settings: Comfort, Normal and Sport, and you can adjust them by pressing that button with the little steering wheel on it just above the cruise control.

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2014 Kia Forte: Can You Tow It Behind a Motorhome?

November 8, 2013

2014 Kia Forte

You can tow anything behind a motorhome if you load it on a trailer first. But most RV regulars see this as a huge hassle, and they'd rather not have to resort to a two-wheel tow dolly, either.

The ideal scenario is shown above. A so-called "dinghy" vehicle tags along behind on its own four wheels, ready to be unhooked and driven on side trips while the motorhome sits moored with its awnings unfurled and its sliders popped out in full relaxation mode. Flat-towing makes it unnecessary to fret about the extra towed weight, loading time and storage problem that a trailer or dolly represents.

That's all well and good, but could I tow our 2014 Kia Forte behind a motorhome?

Sorry, but the answer seems to be "no." The owner's manual in our 2014 Kia Forte does not authorize it for such duty.

This answer isn't spelled out specifically because, quite frankly, the owner's manual creates the impression that Kia doesn't even know what dinghy towing is. There's no acknowledgement that flat-towing exists beyond the need for vehicle recovery after a mechanical breakdown.

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2014 Kia Forte: In Relative Terms, the EX's Engine Is Strong

September 24, 2013

2014 Kia Forte

Our long-term Kia Forte is the EX model, and that means it comes with the upgraded engine. This 2.0-liter four-cylinder produces 173 horsepower and 154 lb-ft of torque, as compared to LX trim level's 1.8-liter engine that's rated at 148 hp and 131 lb-ft of torque.

As we reported a while back in track testing, our long-term Forte accelerated to 60 mph in 8.4 seconds. (In an earlier test of a different Forte EX, we recorded an even quicker time, 8.1 seconds.) But either way, this is actually one of the quickest times you'll see for a 2014 small sedan.

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2014 Kia Forte EX: Darn Good Day Tripper

September 19, 2013

2014 Kia Forte EX

I recently took the 2014 Kia Forte to one of my favorite day-tripper destinations, Solvang, CA, which is located about 125 miles north of L.A. This quaint Danish village is surrounded by beautiful vineyards and also has an unexpected treat for guys like me in the form of a motorcycle museum. The latter's eclectic collection includes such gems as a Brough Superior and a number of early-1900s bikes. Oh yeah, a trip there also includes a really nice drive.

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2014 Kia Forte: 10 Things I Like About You

August 22, 2013

2014 Kia Forte

Aside from our Tesla, this 2014 Kia Forte is my current favorite car in our long-term fleet.

I have a soft spot for cars in this economy compact segment. They are the workhorses of the middle class. And in the real world (that world that exists outside the fantasy of automotive journalism), this is probably the level of car I would buy for myself.

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2014 Kia Forte: Track Test

August 21, 2013

2014 Kia Forte

We took our 173-horsepower 2014 Kia Forte EX to the test track. To read how it fared in our acceleration, braking, slalom and skid pad testing, click here.

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2014 Kia Forte EX: What's Not to Like?

August 19, 2013

2014 Kia Forte

I tried hard to find something about the 2014 Kia Forte that I didn't like. Ultimately — and this is pretty lame — the only thing I really disliked were the wheels and the graphics on the nav screen. Everything else worked so effortlessly, was so well designed, and so nicely balanced, that it was beyond reproach.

I did, however, find several features worth calling out.

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2014 Kia Forte: The Second Impression

August 8, 2013

2014 Kia Forte

Kias make a tremendous first impression. They look great on paper, even better in the metal and even if they aren't great to drive, all their other positive attributes make them seem like smart purchases. That was certainly the case with our long-term Optima, but over time, our enthusiasm waned.

Now we have a new 2014 Kia Forte. I, for one, was very positive about it in the Edmunds video review, ultimately concluding that it's a worthy alternative to the Ford Focus, Honda Civic and Mazda 3. However, will my appreciation for the Forte hold up over the course of a year?

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2014 Kia Forte: Rear Suspension

August 6, 2013

2014 Kia Forte

So there I was, making my daily migration to Santa Monica in our long-term Kia Forte. There's a small section on my drive where the road is pockmarked and choppy. And that's when I felt something familiar.

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2014 Kia Forte: Smooth, Quiet and Not Very Fast

July 29, 2013

2014 Kia Forte

When you upgrade to the "EX" trim level of the Kia Forte you get the bigger 2.0-liter, four-cylinder engine. With 173 horsepower and 154 pound-feet of torque, it's one of the more robust engines in the compact segment. And combined with a standard six-speed automatic you would think it would be pretty quick.

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2014 Kia Forte EX: Las Vegas Road Trip, Part 1

July 10, 2013

2014 Kia Forte EX

A road trip to Las Vegas in the summer? Pure insanity, even with the cooled driver's seat in our 2014 Kia Forte EX.

So why did I go? Good question. Honestly, I still question it myself.

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Edmunds Insurance Estimator

The Edmunds TCO® estimated monthly insurance payment for a 2014 Kia Forte in VA is:

$184 per month*
* Explanation
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