The Kia Forte has been refreshed and updated for 2017 with exterior and drivetrain changes. First of all, the exterior has been refreshed to make the car look a little more refined or sporty, depending on the trim, and a little less hamster-like. There’s a new front bumper and grille, along with new headlights, with Xenon HIDs optional, that really class up the front end. The rear fascia has stayed the same, but there’s redesigned taillights, with LED ones optional.
There’s also new trim levels for the 2017 Forte. Between the base model LX and the top trim EX sits a new, sportier, S trim. It adds a “sport-tuned” suspension, 16 inch allow wheels, LED positioning lights, a rear spoiler and a chrome exhaust tip. Interior wise for the S, you’re looking at black cloth seats with white stitching and a leather wrapped wheel and shift knob. In the EX you’re looking at a car with leather, heated front seats, dual-zone full auto climate control, rear vents, push button start, and a 7 inch UVO3 infotainment system with Android Auto and Apple CarPlay integrated. The infotainment system also comes standard on the S trim, as well. Safety tech wise, the 2017 Forte comes with available Autonomous Emergency Braking, Forward Collision Warning, Lane Departure Warning, Blind Spot Detection, and Rear-Cross Traffic Alert.
Replacing the base 1.8-liter engine last year’s car was equipped with is a new 2.0-liter four banger that puts out 147 horsepower at 6,200 rpm and 132 lb-ft or torque at 4,500 rpm. Transmission options are a six-speed manual or a six speed automatic. For the 2.0-liter GDI I-4, which is the other available engine, you only have a newly-revised six speed automatic to choose from transmission wise. The 2.0 GDI makes 164 horsepower at 6,200 rpm and 151 lb-ft of torque at 4,000 rpm. The new Forte will be built in Kia’s new Monterrey, Mexico plant, and will be the first car built there.