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2014 Kia Forte 5 Door Debut

Korea's answer to the Ford Focus?

2014 Kia Forte Research Click to hide

What's New

Hot Hatches are experiencing a renaissance here in the U.S. at present. Ford recently touted the "European-inspired" Focus, Hyundai recently got into the game with its Hyundai Elantra GT, and of course there's the ever-popular Volkswagen Golf. Not wanting to miss out on playtime, Kia decided it was time to join the bunch with the 2014 Kia Forte 5 Door. But looking at the just debuted Forte hatchback, we wonder if we haven't already seen this car before. In fact, it looks strikingly similar to the Ford Focus at a glance, and not a far cry from its other competitors. But we like the looks of those cars, so Kia may be OK here, if a little late. With EX and SX models available, and two four-cylinder engine options--a 1.6-liter turbocharged engine and a 2.0-liter offering--buyers will have plenty to choose from.

Who It's For

The Kia Forte 5 Door is a European-inspired hatchback. A newly introduced 1.6-liter turbocharged option will give buyers a spritely, sportier option on SX models, with a choice of a six-speed manual transmission, or a six-speed automatic one. The automatic transmission is the only one offered on the EX trim, with the 2.0-liter engine. Kia will tango with its Korean cousin Hyundai here, with its Elantra GT. Domestic competitors will include the Ford Focus--no surprise here--and the Mazda3, both of which are offered as five-door hatchbacks.

Key Features

The 2014 Kia Forte 5 Door gives the Korean automaker a compact five-door hatchback to contend with the competition.
  • European 5-door styling and utility
  • Choice of two trims, EX, or sportier SX
  • Two four-cylinder engine options to choose from, 2.0-liter with 173-hp, or 1.6-liter turbo with 201hp

What We Think

Ever evolving and expanding, Kia has just introduced the Forte 5 Door model to match the competition. We liked the styling of the Kia Forte when that was recently introduced, and we think the hatchback model looks good, too. But shoppers here must remain econo-minded, as we don't think dynamically the 2014 Kia Forte 5 Door will outshine the popular competition. But a choice of two engine options, two trims, and a host of standard equipment common on Kia's cars should make this a wise offering for the Korean automaker.

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