- New exterior facelifts for Forte and Forte5
- New, standard 2.0-liter 4-cylinder engine
- Forte sedan gains a new S trim
The 2017 Kia Forte is a compact car that comes as a sedan or a 5-door hatchback (Forte5). The Forte sedan competes with the Honda Civic, Toyota Corolla, and Hyundai Elantra, while the Forte5 has competition in the Mazda3, Ford Focus, and Volkswagen Golf. This year, it received exterior, interior, and safety mid-cycle updates.
The sedan has three trims available: the LX, S, and EX. The Forte5 also offers three trims: the LX, SX, and EX.
Both the Forte and Forte5 have received new front-ends, which includes revisions to the front grille, fascia, and headlights. The grille has a more squared-off, prominent appearance. The headlights are exaggeratedly long, stretching back to the middle of the hood. The Forte’s fascia has a more simplified, sporty look than the previous version. The Forte5’s fascia went with a more conventional look with its rectangular mouth. Standard features include heated side mirrors and 15-inch wheels. HID headlights, front fog lights, power side mirrors, turn signal indicators at the side mirrors, and a power moonroof are available as well. The Forte S and Forte5 SX come with sport-tuned suspension.
Under the hood, the Forte is powered by a new, standard 147-hp, 2.0-liter 4-cylinder engine mated to a 6-speed manual or automatic transmission. Fuel economy for the Forte is an EPA estimated 29/38 mpg city/highway. The Forte/Forte 5 EX trim receives a more powerful 173-hp, 2.0-liter 4-cylinder. A 201-hp, turbocharged 1.6-liter 4-cylinder mated to a new 7-speed dual clutch automatic comes exclusively to the higher-end Forte5 SX.
Inside, the Forte has a revised, black/gray stitched cloth interior with a 60/40 split-folding rear seat. The center stack features a standard audio system that include CD/MP3 playback, Bluetooth connectivity for phone and audio, and a USB port. It can be upgraded to the updated UVO3 multimedia system, which includes a 7-inch touchscreen, an integrated navigation system, Apple CarPlay/Android Auto compatibility, and dual USB outlets. Remote keyless entry, power windows/locks, a tilt/telescoping steering wheel, and air conditioning come standard. Available features include dual-zone automatic climate control, push-button start, cruise control, an automatic dimming rear mirror, power/heated front seats, ventilated front seats, and a memory seat.
The Forte earned a full 5-star overall crash test safety rating from the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA). Standard safety features include front airbags, antilock brakes, and an electronic stability system. A blindspot monitoring system, rear cross-traffic alert, a lane departure warning system, lane keep assist, forward collision warning, and automatic emergency braking are also available.