The Kia Corporation has been in the business of manufacturing automobiles since June 9, 1944, when it was originally founded as Kyunsung Precision Industry. This South Korean company first began as a manufacturer of steel tubing and bicycle parts. In 1952, it became Kia Industries, naming itself after the Asian term "Rising from Asia" as the company continued to grow by size and reputation. At one point, they were building Honda-licensed motorcycles and Mazda-licensed vehicles.
After a struggle in the industry that forced a 1981 shutdown, Kia got back into automotive production in 1986. Since then, the company has continued to expand, becoming the second largest producer of automobiles in South Korea. Hyundai remains as the first but it and Kia share a business relationship where one has minority shares in the other. Although they're still separate entities, they often operate as one.
Kia and Hyundai
Since teaming up with Hyundai, Kia has produced some notable models such as the Kia Forte, Kia Rio, and Kia Sportage. There are at least ten cars that are similar to the Forte that have so much in common with the compact car that became Kia Spectra's replacement in 2008. The Kia Forte, otherwise known as the K3 has three different variants between its two-door coupe design, four-door sedan, and five-door hatchback. The availability of the Kia Forte in the markets belonging to Australia, Brazil, China, and Costa Rica go with the name Kia Cerato.
Kia Forte is currently in its third generation, which began in 2018. Since 2018, the two-door coupe design has become a thing of the past as this model now only comes as a four-door sedan or as a five-door hatchback. It took the styling cues from its sister model, the Kia Stinger. The new construction came with high-strength steel that's offered in four different trim levels. This current Kia Forte model comes either as a six-speed automatic or manual transmission. It also offers a seven-speed continuous variable transmission (CVT) as an option. There are also a few different 1.4-liter engine options, as well as 1.6-liter.
The wheelbase's measurements are 106.3 inches with a vehicle length of 177.6 inches for the hatchback and 182.7 inches for the sedan. Its width is 70.9 inches and this car stands 56.7 inches tall. As of 2021, the Kia Forte sedan model has experienced a facelift. The horsepower range of the Kia Forte varies from 115 with its 1.5-liter Smartstream G1.5 MPI engine to 204 with two different 1.6-liter engine options, namely the 1.6 Gamma T-GDI and the 1.6 gasoline turbo. A 2023 Kia Forte sedan MSRP starts at $19,490.00 USD as a vehicle capable of transporting five passengers. In fuel economy ratings, the 2023 Kia Forte has a thirty miles per gallon rating in the city and a thirty-four miles per gallon rating on the highway.
1. Audi A3
Priced considerably higher than the 2023 Kia Forte at $34,900.00 USD, the 2022 Audi A3 comes as a four-door sedan hybrid, regardless of the trim option. This is a luxury vehicle equivalent to the compact Forte. It has a 2.0-liter i$ turbo engine and an all-wheel drivetrain. The fuel economy rating is at twenty-eight miles per gallon in the city and thirty-six miles per gallon on the highway.
2. Honda Civic
The 2022 Honda Civic starts at $22,550.00 USD as a slightly pricier alternative to the 2023 Kia Forte. However, Honda's reputation earns the brand this right as a vehicle manufacturing company that has continually proved its weight in cold. Speaking of weight, the Civic is slightly heavier at 2,877 pounds. It's also a slightly bigger vehicle when it comes to length as it measures 184 inches. As for the width, both vehicles are the same. The Civic is a little bit shorter at a height of 55.7 inches. As far as cargo space goes, Honda's model is measured at 14.8 cubic feet while Kia's Forte is 15.3 cubic feet.
3. Hyundai Elantra
Hyundai and Kia, despite each company being classified as its own entity, technically work as a team as they serve as minor shareholders in each other. For Hyundai, the Elantra has entered its seventh generation as of 2020 as a vehicle that is identical to the Kia Forte in the measurements as both models share the exact same Hyundai-Kia K3 platform. The engine options are also exactly the same. However, the Elantra comes as a four-door sedan model only.
It also has a slightly lighter curb weight than the Forte, ranging from 2,557 to 2,954 pounds. Forte's curb weight sits between 2,712 to 2,789 pounds. When comparing the 2023 Forte with the 2023 Elantra, Hyundai's model has a minor advantage in the fuel economy department at thirty-three miles per gallon in the city and thirty-seven miles per gallon on the highway. Elantra's price tag is a bit higher than Forte's, starting at $20,500.00 USD.
4. Kia Ceed
The Kia Forte is not available in the European market. The Kia Ceed is what's offered in its place, except for Russia and Ukraine, as their automotive market trends are slightly different. As the Kia Ceed, this is a compact five-door hatchback model that's available for its market. In Europe, coupes and sedans aren't nearly as popular as hatchbacks and notchbacks.
5. Mazda Mazda3
Mazda's Mazda3 model shares the option as a four-door sedan or five-door hatchback like the Kia Forte. The pricing begins at $21,150.00 USD for a front-wheel drive automobile. The fuel economy rating isn't quite as good at twenty-eight miles per gallon in the city and thirty miles per gallon on the highway. However, as a suitable alternative that shares the same basic schematics as the Forte, the Mazda3 works.
6. Nissan Sentra
The first of two Nissan models similar to the Kia Forte is the Sentra. As a four-door sedan, it shares many similar measurements inside and outside the vehicle. It is slightly heavier at 3,036 pounds as curb weight and has a slightly less fuel economy rating. On the highway, it's at thirty-three miles per gallon, and in the city, it's twenty-nine miles per gallon. The starting price of a Nissan Sentra is $19,810.00 USD.
7. Nissan Versa
As a four-door sedan, the Nissan Versa is the most affordable vehicle on the list as a Kia Forte alternative. The price point begins at $15,380.00 USD and also has the front-wheel drivetrain. On the road, its fuel economy rating is higher at thirty-two miles per gallon in the city and thirty-five miles per gallon on the highway. In measurements, Versa is slightly shorter and skinnier at a length of 177 inches and a width of 68.5 inches. It is taller, though, at 57.3 inches. The wheelbase for the Versa, however, is 103.1 inches and it has a lighter curb weight of 2,650 pounds.
8. Subaru WRX
The Subaru WRX comes as a compact four-door sedan, just like the Kia Forte. However, there are some key differences here. For starters, it's an all-wheel drive, not a front-wheel. A WRX also starts at $29,605.00 USD, which is considerably higher. The engine is definitely more powerful at 271 horsepower and its fuel economy rating is significantly lower at nineteen miles per gallon in the city and twenty-two miles per gallon on the highway.
However, when it comes to comparing the size, the WRX has a wheelbase of 105.2, which is slightly shorter than Forte's 106.3-inch measurement. It's a full inch wider, but just over an inch longer. It's taller at 57.8 inches and heavier at 3,279 pounds. This is why it's not as fuel efficient as the Forte. Inside this five-passenger vehicle, it is slightly roomier for the passengers but at the cargo space's expense. It measures at 12.5 cubic feet.
9. Toyota Corolla
Just like the Kia Forte, the Toyota Corolla gives the option between a four-door sedan or a five-door hatchback. The price point begins at $20,425.00 USD and shares the same front-wheel-drive and fuel economy performance ratings. The wheelbase measurements are the same, as well as the height of these two models. The Corolla is a hint shorter in length at 182.3 inches and a bit skinnier at 70.1 inches. The biggest difference between the two is the cargo volume capacity as Corolla's is only 13.1 cubic feet compared to Forte's 15.3 cubic feet measurements.
10. Volkswagen Jetta
Starting at $20,365.00 USD, the Volkswagen Jetta is a similar alternative to the Kia Forte when it comes to its performance as a four-door sedan. It also has a near-perfect consumer rating, which makes Jetta a very hard act to follow. Like the Kia Forte, it offers a front-wheel drivetrain and has measurements that place this automobile in the compact car category. On average, the fuel economy rating of the Jetta in the city is twenty-nine miles per gallon and it's forty miles per gallon on the highway.
Written by Benjamin Smith
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