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#6

in Affordable Small Cars

MSRP: $15,900 - $21,900
Invoice: $15,599 - $20,658
MPG: 25 City / 36 Hwy
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Kia Forte Interior

Critics agree that the 2014 Kia Forte’s cabin is constructed with materials that look and feel acceptable for the class’ price point. One reviewer says that details such as chrome button surrounds suggest good quality, while another test driver is pleased with the quietness of the Forte’s cabin.

  • "Inside, there are new plastics with varying degrees of softness. The material still overwhelmingly populates the space, but there's no blatant feeling of cost-cutting here. The most notable improvements are the smallest ones: A black monochromatic scheme, the neatly positioned switchgear, available chrome button surrounds, and the optional 4.2-inch LCD cluster set between the tachometer and speedometer are welcome touches." -- Motor Trend
  • "The interior feels solidly built, and the faux carbon-fiber trim doesn't look cheap." -- Tampa Tribune
  • "Materials are generally good, especially in the front seats, but cost-cutting is inevitable at this price point and you'll find some hard plastics on the back of the front seats. Kia doesn't skimp on build quality, and that shows throughout the cabin. The Forte's interior should exceed most customers' expectations." -- MSN
  • "One element that does stand out, though, is how quiet this car is in operation. Interior noise was an issue with the outgoing car, but the engineering team has tamed that gremlin on the new model. Although there's some tire sensitivity-and attendant road noise-on coarse pavement, the general impression is that this latest Forte is among the quietest cars in its class." -- Car and Driver

Seating

All Forte models seat five. The sedan and coupe come standard with cloth seats and a six-way adjustable driver’s seat. Upgraded cloth upholstery, leather upholstery, a 10-way power-adjustable driver’s seat, heated front and rear seats, a ventilated driver’s seat and a heated steering wheel are all available as options or on upper trims.

The Forte’s seats earn praise for their spaciousness and overall comfort. One reviewer says that the front seats are comfortable for long durations. Others say that the back seats of the sedan have plenty of space. One test driver says that outward visibility in the sedan is very good, while another notes some difficulty seeing out of the back.

  • "The increase in size translates well inside. The 2014 Forte's rear seat provides adult-size comfort in the outboard positions, although the center seat, like those in all compacts, is habitable only by small creatures of great flexibility." -- Car and Driver
  • "The redesign makes legroom and headroom slightly tighter than before, this by Kia's own measurements, but both remain adequate for 6-footers. Taller occupants might wish for more rearward seat travel, though. The seats themselves don't look special but seem long-haul comfortable, and drivers will appreciate the standard tilt/telescope steering wheel. Outward vision benefits from a relatively high seating position, but is compromised aft by the new sloping roofline and its fairly thick rear pillars." -- Consumer Guide
  • "Seat comfort front and rear is very good thanks to thick, well-bolstered seats and, with this year's growth spurt, plenty of room in back. Even adults taller than 6 feet should be comfortable seated in the rear." -- Edmunds
  • "That said, all-around visibility from inside is spectacular, as is front passenger comfort." -- Motor Trend

Interior Features

The 2014 Kia Forte comes standard with a four-speaker stereo with satellite radio, USB and auxiliary inputs and Bluetooth. Optional features include cruise control, a six-speaker stereo, push-button start, dual-zone automatic climate control, a backup camera, navigation, HD Radio, Kia’s UVO infotainment system and a power sunroof.

Reviewers are pleased that the Forte’s climate, stereo and infotainment controls are easy to see, reach and use. Both the navigation system and the UVO infotainment system are praised for being easy to use, and critics like that the center stack is angled toward the driver, which makes the display easier to see.

See full 2014 Kia Forte features and specs »

  • "The list of standard equipment is comprehensive, including power everything, Bluetooth and more, and upscale options like a ventilated driver's seat and a heated steering wheel add a premium feel." -- Left Lane News
  • "The Forte sedan's controls and the 4.2-inch LCD touch screen are easy to reach thanks to the angled center stack, and the navigation is intuitive." -- Motor Trend
  • "A stylish new-design dashboard puts most everything within easy view and reach, and we're glad a separate engine-temperature gauge has been added. Climate controls are a bit low, but simple and intuitive, though the red-colored settings display washes out easily in even moderately strong light." -- Consumer Guide
  • "The EX comes with Kia's UVO touch-screen infotainment system, which is simple to operate thanks to large, easy-to-read on-screen buttons as well as a few redundant hard buttons. And the entire cabin looks sharp and modern-the fonts and shapes of the physical items match those in the (optional) 4.2-inch color gauge-cluster display. This is something many brands neglect to do." -- Car and Driver

Cargo

The Forte sedan has 14.9 cubic feet of trunk space, which is very good for the class. The Koup has 13.3 cubic feet of trunk space, and the hatchback model has 23.2 cubic feet of cargo space. Reviewers have primarily tested the sedan, and they’re impressed with the amount of space the trunk offers. They note that the Forte’s trunk is among the most spacious in the class, and that it has a useful, wide opening, which makes it easy to load wide or bulky items. One tester mentions that small-item storage in the cabin is fairly good.

  • "There's an exceptionally roomy trunk by compact-sedan standards-14.9 cubic feet-and the rear seatbacks can flop forward to expand that capacity. The only asterisk is that the inside of the trunklid is unfinished, which seems a little out of step with the otherwise high quality of the Forte's assembly and materials." -- Car and Driver
  • "Big trunk measurements are dandy, but trunk size doesn't mean squat if the opening is small. The Forte's trunk opening is extremely wide and gains 2 inches of width for 2014. It's ready to swallow golf clubs, strollers and other wide-load items. All models feature a 60/40-split folding rear seat." -- Cars.com
  • "Cargo volume is decent at 14.9 cubic feet, but packing is slightly compromised by wheel arch intrusion and sickle-shaped trunklid hinges. At least the trunk's opening is large enough for fairly bulky suitcases, and the rear seat backs can be folded to extend the load space. Interior small-item storage is pretty good, with a roomy glovebox, handy center-console bin, a covered bin ahead of the shifter, and narrow but long door pockets with bottle holders." -- Consumer Guide
Review Last Updated: 5/13/14

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