The 2017 Kia Forte received a light refresh that included new headlights, an updated fascia, and new taillights. With the paint on these updates still drying, we expect no changes to the looks of the Forte in 2018. Unfortunately, the two-door Forte Koup has been discontinued.
Other than the elimination of the two-door, the rest of the Kia Forte’s styling will likely carry into the new year unchanged. Thanks to its refresh last year, the Forte features a more mature look it has lacked in recent years and should remain fresh for a few more years. Those hoping for a full redesign will probably have to wait until at least 2019.
Also likely continuing without changes will be its cabin, which is surprisingly roomy. It has plenty of space for adults over 6-feet tall and up to 14.9 cubic feet of cargo room in the sedan. Those looking for more room for cargo, there is the Forte5 hatchback with 23.2 cubes of space with the seats up.
With its looks remaining the same, we also expect Kia to leave the standard features as is. If this proves true, then we expect to see 15-inch steel wheels, heated mirrors, air conditioning, power accessories, Bluetooth connectivity, and a four-speaker audio system in the base LX trim.
We also expect the powertrain to remain the same in 2018. Both the sedan and hatchback versions will likely continue to come standard with a 2.0-liter four-cylinder that will produce 151 horsepower and 164 pound-feet of torque.
The hatchback model gets an extra performance wrinkle in the SX model’s 1.6-liter turbocharged engine with 195 hp and 201 lb-ft of torque. The 2.0-liter is available with either a six-speed manual or automatic transmission, while the 1.6-liter engine will pair with a seven-speed dual-clutch transmission.
The Forte missed the IIHS’ Top Safety Pick designation due to its lack of a small-overlap crash test. It does, however, have “good” ratings in four crash tests and a “superior” rating in front-crash prevention with its optional autonomous emergency braking. The only area it suffers is the new headlights test, which it receives a “poor” in. These ratings should carry into the new model year unchanged.
Expect a full review closer to launch.