2016 Kia Forte Review
Pros & Cons
- Spacious interior for both sedan and coupe
- numerous standard and optional features are available
- quick acceleration from Forte EX and SX
- dashboard and infotainment controls are easy to use
- warranty coverage is better than most in the segment.
- Some rivals offer better fuel economy
- ride quality can get uncomfortable at times
- IIHS frontal-impact safety scores are lower than most competitors.
List Price Range
$12,998 - $18,690
Used Forte for SaleSee all for sale
Edmunds' Expert Review
Most helpful consumer reviews
LX 4dr Sedan (1.8L 4cyl 6A)
Bought the 2016 LX Forte automatic equipped with the popular equipment package, floormats, mud guards and a spare tire for $18,000.00 cash including all fees and taxes out the door. Be aware, it actually only comes with a tire repair kit and inflator as standard equipment. No trade was involved and that price included a $2,000.00 cash back and $400.00 military offer. I can honestly say that I haven't found anything that I don't like about this car. I have mostly been driving in the city and I have averaged a solid 29 MPG over the past 1,250 miles with the a/c always on. The 1.8 L engine has ample power and is smooth. The car rides and handles well and is very quiet. The seats both front and rear are very comfortable and I love the overall driving experience. I haven't found a single fault in this car and I have been over it with a fine tooth comb. I buy all my cars new and I usually keep them for about 12 years. I also do all of my own maintenance. I've owned Toyota, Honda and Nissan vehicles and to date this is the best example of value, function, and quality that I've encountered. I compared and drove all of the other cars in the Forte's class and for me this was the clear winner, even if I ignored the higher pricing of the competition. If you want a very well made car, packed with tons of standard options at a very good price, put this car at the top of your list!
SX 4dr Hatchback (1.6L 4cyl Turbo 6M)
Got my 2016 Forte5 SX (6-speed, manual transmission) brand new five months ago, and I am still in love with my turbo hatchback. For my needs, it is the perfect fun-to-drive commuter. It is not as sporty/fast as a VW GTI (which is arguably the leader in affordable hot hatchbacks), but it is much less expensive, it should be much more reliable, and it has a much better warranty. Also, the Forte5 SX has the best seat and driving position I found in any compact car I test-drove (I'm a larger fellow, at 6'2 and 220 lbs). Another plus? The Forte5 SX takes regular gas (not premium like many turbos). I had already decided to buy the car before I even found that out. I'm only getting 27.8 mpg so far, but the gas mileage is slowly getting better the more miles I put on the car. No regrets at all, and I plan on keeping it for a long time. For you car guys out there, the driving dynamics may be a little bit different, but the fun-factor/value reminds me of my old 1998 Civic EX but with a comfortable seat. I'm starting to think that Kia is doing now what Honda was doing in the late 1990s--which is a very good thing indeed. Update: I remain very happy with my Forte5 SX, and I can't believe that more people don't know about this gem. I can even fit my mountain bike in the back of the hatch with the rear seats folded down (granted that the bike's front wheel needs to be taken off to fit). The ride is sporty but comfortable--perfect for real-world driving--and the car is so practical yet fun, and it is reliable. I have also found the Kia dealerships to be awesome; clearly they place a premium on excellent customer service. Update: by Feb. 2019, I will have owned it for two years. Still loving it, and not a single mechanical problem. Great car! Update: Feb. 2020--owned it for three years. Continue to love it, and it still hasn't had a single mechanical issue.
EX 4dr Sedan (2.0L 4cyl 6A)
Ride handles well for the most part. Steering feels sluggish at times and engine sounds cheap. But overall the car accelerates quick and delivers a sportier driving feel than most cars in the segment. It also has good looks and nice technology options. Would buy another forte
EX 4dr Hatchback (2.0L 4cyl 6A)
We shared the '12 for over 3 years and over 80,000 miles until I bought myself a 2015 Sonata Sport 2.0T Limited 6 months ago. Love that car and reviewed it on here also. Got a great deal. Now that we're back to two cars, mileage will accumulate a lot less. While I was getting the 12 serviced 2 weeks ago and "someone" took my car to work, I was asked "Do you think you can get me a deal on trading my car like you did buying yours ?" So I walked the lot and found a Snow White Pearl Forte5 EX 2.0 GDI - loaded with Premium/Technology package and remote start with black leather with white stitching. I texted the pictures. "I really wasn't a fan of white until you got yours (Quartz White Pearl) but I really like it. See what you can do. If it works out, I'll come sign the papers". The 12 was in excellent condition except for the 82,000 miles they beat down the trade in value on, but with the rebate and financing, it was a good deal regardless. The 12 had leather and sunroof. Great little car. No complaints other than it could have used more sound insulation. Compared to the 12: The tech options are great. Stereo is better. Bluetooth streaming is a world better. It's quieter. Much better legroom - we're both 6ft tall. Headroom was never an issue even with the 12 - sunroof in both. The 2.0GDI doesn't have the off the line punch of the 2012s 2.4 port-injected engine but feels fine overall (same 173hp rating) and better fuel mileage makes it worthwhile. Neither are pocket rockets but we're not race car drivers lol. Has plenty of zip. Warranty can't be beat. This now makes 4 Hyundai / Kia products since 2008 and don't regret any of them. I'm a semi-retired mechanic and choose my/our cars wisely. The only 2 gripes with the 16: 1 - gone with the 2014+ 5 door redesign is the split-folding rear seat bottoms which was great when we needed to haul stuff around. A minor gripe really because the 16 is still plenty roomy with the seat backs folded down. 2 - For the 2016 Forte line up, HID headlights were deleted, even with the Tech package. I remedied that with the same brand HID kit I installed in the 2012. Also installed LED plate and reverse lights - nice difference with the back-up camera at night. Experience has us anticipating the same reliability. The 2008 Sonata we traded for the 2012 Forte is still on the road with nearly 250,000 miles on it. Traded with nearly 120,000 trouble-free miles and came across it recently. UPDATE 3/27/2017 Six months and 7,500 miles now. Engine has loosened up. Feels puncher. Averaging 31-32mpg which is 7-8mog better than the 2012. Nothing other than an oil change and tire rotation. UPDATE 9/28/17 15,000 miles. Just did the 3rd oil change and replaced the cabin filter - I change them once a year. Zero issues. More of a novelty but my other half loves the heated steering wheel on cold mornings. UPDATE 3/28/18 A little over 25,000 miles now. Between work, grad school, and internship, the other half has racked up some miles. Nothing really to report. Still runs and looks great. Wiper blades replaced other than oil changes and tire rotation. The only gripe is the OE Nexen tires. While they certainly look like they will go another 15 or 20 ,000 miles, they have gotten a bit noisy. Probably just going to run them through the summer and replace them.