Kia has introduced its 2014 Forte sedan this week at the L.A. Auto Show. The model is scheduled to go on sale in Q1 2013 and will be available with a choice of two 4-cylinder engines. The South Korean automaker plans on introducing later on coupe and five-door hatchback variants of the Forte. Depending on the market, the car will be sold under the Cerato name (Brazil, Australia and others) and as the K3 (Korea) and will be positioned above the Rio and below the Optima. Compared to the previous model, the new Forte’s chassis is 1.2 inches longer, 0.6 inches lower and 0.2 inches wider, with a 2-inch longer wheelbase that now measures 106.3 inches.
The 2014 Kia Forte rides on a McPherson strut front suspension and a torsion beam rear axle, and features electric power steering as opposed to the previous model that had a hydraulic system. Clients can get the new model with a flex steer system that comes with three settings: comfort, normal and sport.
The base engine is a 1.8-liter generating 148 hp at 6,500 rpm and a peak torque of 131 lb-ft reached at 4,700 rpm. The power is channeled through the front wheels thanks to a 6-speed manual transmission or the optional 6-speed auto. The EX variant comes with a larger 2.0-liter 4-cylinder GDI engine producing 173 hp at 6,500 rpm and 154 lb-ft at 4,700. This power unit is exclusively connected to a 6-speed auto.