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2010 Kia Forte

patpat Posts: 10,421
Let's talk about the new Forte!
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  • I've had the car (FORTE EX Sedan 5MT) for about a week now.

    PROs
    1) Peppy 2.0-L. engine, loves to rev. 2) The clutch takes a bit of getting used to and the shift lever is a little notchy, but if you're assertive with your shifts, it's not a problem, regardless of what you've read in the automotive press. 3) All trim levels get the same generous array of safety features. 4) Front cupholders are deep and snug, so even tall cups are unlikely to tip over. My $3 Butt Bucket sits so low, it looks like it's OEM. 5) Heated mirrors. 6) Standard Bluetooth, SIRIUS radio and a decent stereo system. 7) The dash, steering wheel, and door controls are all back lit (BUT... see below).

    CONs
    1) No cigar lighter or ashtray, and no available "Smoker's Package". 2) Instrument panel lamps are always on, day and night. At night, they're so bright they fools you into thinking that your headlamps are on when they're not, especially so on a rainy night or on a well-lit boulevard. 3) All doors unlock when the ignition key is removed (it's a possibility that can be modified by the dealer). 4) No adjustable lumbar support on driver's seat. 5) No engine temperature gauge. 6) No alarm system, ergo no supplemental insurance discount (my insurer offers 20%). *THAT* really sucks, especially since all the infrastructure's in place. 7) This is totally subjective, but I'm not a big fan of glowing red interiors, and this car is awash with glowing red, everywhere, from the distracting odometer/tripmeter, to the glaring center stack, to the steering wheel and door controls. I can only be grateful Kia didn't incorporate the Soul's disco speakers.

    If you opt for an EX with the automatic, and aren't planning to add the Premium Package (sunroof, 16" alloy wheels), I highly recommend the Economy Package. Among other modifications, you get a 5-speed AT: at 75 mph in top gear, the engine's barely turning 2300 rpm, unlike the 5MT or the 4AT (around 3,000 rpm), resulting in less wear and tear on the engine, better fuel economy, better engine response, and a quieter ride.

    EX vs. SX
    If you happen to reside, as I do, in one of the states complying with California emission requirements, when you compare weight to horsepower ratios, the EX is not at that much of a performance disadvantage against the SX. With manual transmissions, the SULEV EX (154 bhp) is at 17.6:1 vs. the SX (165 bhp) at 17.3:1. You then have to decide whether the 11 bhp difference (and the reduced fuel economy), along with the other niceties (215/45R17 tires, 6-speed MT, sport-tuned suspension, fog lamps, trip computer, to name a few), are worth the extra $1500 to upgrade.
  • m6userm6user Posts: 2,999
    I'm wondering how well the bluetooth works with cell calls. Is the sound from the speakers good and does the person on the recieving end hear your calls well?
  • I've only had three calls thus far, and each time I've asked the caller about the quality of the sound. They've all said that, on the initial connect, it was hard to hear me, but otherwise, it sounded normal, like any other cell phone call, and they're impressed when I tell them I'm on a speaker-phone in the car. The sound quality over the car's speakers is excellent.

    My cell phone does not support downloading its phone book to the car's Bluetooth device, which is disappointing. If you have a phone that does, you can use voice commands to place calls by name. I can still place calls by reciting the number, but with computerization, who remembers anyone's phone number these days? I think there's a way to add contacts directly into the car's Bluetooth, but I haven't had the time to investigate it yet.
  • Could one of you new Forte owners please look in the owners manual for the trailer towing capacity for the Forte.
    I tow a small camping trailer with my 2004 Hyundai Elantra with no problems.
    Thank you.
  • According to the PDF version of the Owner's Manual:

    (page 5-45) TRAILER TOWING
    We do not recommend using this vehicle for trailer towing.

    (page 5-47) Towing capacity
    We do not recommend using this vehicle for trailer towing.
  • steven39steven39 Posts: 636
    i have owned my 2010 kia forte EX sedan with auto for about 4 months now.i test drove a mazda 3,honda civic,elantra,and corolla,before deciding on the forte.despite the reputations of the mazda 3 and the honda civic the forte won out over those cars.forte is much quieter,more power,more standard features,and longer warranty.
    i have the forte in the dark cherry metallic color and i get compliments on it
    everywhere i go.not bad for a car that cost me with rebates just under $16,000.00
    my bluetooth works fine with no problems and the speaker quality is excelent.what iam really impressed with is the little things on this car such as haveing illuminated window switches on the drivers side for all 4 windows which is a nice touch for a car in the forte's price range.not all cars have this..
  • I finally got around to manually adding names and numbers into the car's Bluetooth Phonebook. It's slightly tedious, but well worth it. I only added 10 numbers that I call fairly often, like voicemail, home, my wife's cell and work, etc. It works like a charm. If you speak quickly enough (without pauses), you can avoid all the intermediate system prompts. For example, saying "CALL BY NAME JOE ON MOBILE" will cause the system to go directly to the final confirmation prompt, greatly speeding up the process.
  • Thanks jimpimms.
    I might ask Kia if the warranty is void if you tow. It is strange that similar cars in Europe are rated for towing 3000 to 3500 pounds trailers.
  • steven39steven39 Posts: 636
    just wanted to say that iam really impressed with the little touches that my forte has such as illuminated window switches on the drivers side door for all four windows and the auto-locking and unlocking doors when you put the car in drive and unlocking the doors when put into park.i looked at some more expensive cars that didn't have these features.mazda 6,mazda 3,toyota corolla,just to name a few.
  • I'm an older driver with lots of sports car experience (Lotus, Alfa, RSX-S, Supra TT). I really like the Koup, corners well and ride is not too harsh...unless you are on some really rough pavement. I have a bad back, but no complaints with the Koup. Head room is tight for my 6'3", but OK. Stereo is very good for stock...lots of bottom on the bass...but have noticed a few rattles.

    Reviewers mention killing the motor starting out in first. I believe this is because of a dead spot when pushing the accelerator. You let out the clutch expecting rpm to increase, but with the dead spot, it does not...killing the engine. Its hard to get used to and I hope to get it adjusted.

    I've had a few problems, but the dealership is really trying to get everything right.

    If you have questions...post them and I'll answer...

    Jim
  • wise1wise1 Posts: 90
    I have a friend who had a Dodge Colt that had that dead spot glitch and I never learned how to get around it. It was never corrected!! Hope they can get it cleared out for you. :blush: ;)
  • jimpimmsjimpimms Posts: 81
    edited March 2010
    A few weeks ago, out of the blue, Kia mailed me a complimentary iPod interface cable; since then, I'd been wondering if I had to buy an iPod or MP3 player to take advantage of the Forte's USB/Auxiliary interface. Some time ago, I had purchased an 8-GB SanDisk micro-cruzer flash drive, to use for computer data portability, but had never gotten around to using it for that purpose, so I loaded some MP3s I'd downloaded from the web, to see if the Forte's head unit would be able to play its contents. The songs are in Documents / Music / [band name] folders. Sure enough, as soon as I plugged the flash drive into the USB port, the radio switched to USB input, and started playing the first song in the first folder, while displaying the band and song title. Folders can be selected by the up/down buttons to the right of the tuning knob, and turning the tuning knob sequentially displays the other available songs; pushing the knob selects the currently displayed title. Since I own a few hundred CDs, I downloaded a free CD-to-MP3 ripper, and now I'm in the process of copying many of those to the flash drive. I also noticed that two of the radio preset buttons are used for random (RDM) and repeat (RPT) functions. For anyone interested, Staples has a 4-GB SanDisk cruzer on sale this week for $15, which also includes a free $10 gift card.
  • steven39steven39 Posts: 636
    hello folks,i was reading alot about people with forte's who said they are haveing problems with the bluetooth as far as not being able to be heard by the other person on the other end.if you read the drivers manual it tells you how to deal with this situation.i will share the info with you..
    1st,make sure that the volume isn't turned up to loud on the radio volume control or you will get a echo sound on the other end.2nd,make sure that you and the other caller talk one at a time and don't try to talk at the same time or else your voice might not be heard on the other end.3rd,talk directly into the microphone with a normal voice and don't shout or yell.if you follow these easy steps you won't have any issues regarding the bluetooth feature on the forte's.hope this helps....
  • hmownerhmowner Posts: 23
    I picked up the car yesterday from the dealer who had to find one about 130 miles away. It was not the greatest feeling to see the mileage on the new car with over 130 miles, but I wanted SX manual without any other option... (because I sit tall and the sun roof option actually touches my head... and the leather, I hate it during summer.)

    I drove various manuals for over 25 years, but this is the first car that I stalled 4 times already getting off in the 1st gear. The clutch is so light and as other poster here mentioned, and the accelerator response doesn't seem to be linear. When you give a little bit of gas, the engine doesn't respond until past certain point and then you get slammed with abrupt power. Until I get the hang of it, I am releasing the clutch.. so very slowly while giving a barest of gas. I hope I will get used to the clutch/gas control quickly.

    Handling... It's not a sports car.. but for a compact car, you can't ask for more. Plenty of acceleration is ready to be felt with a slight pressure on the gas. There is a slight body roll (compared to Mazda 3 that I also tested), but it's not like Toyota Collora or Hyundai Elantra (which I also test drove) which bounce and rolls a lot. It's easy to forget that you are REALLY accelerating hard when you shift up based on engine noise only - without looking at the tachometer.

    Gear throw is longer than Mazda 3 and some what rubbery compared to Mazda 3 manual. However, it's very easy to shift, even with two fingers. I have not yet tried to shift very quickly as I haven't got used to the clutch/gas interaction. The gear box feel is on par with Hyundai 2010 Elantra (blue)

    Ride quality. It's a bit firmer than Honda Civic (which I test drove too), and almost feels like driving a Honda Accord, but harsher than Toyota Camry (definitely) and a bit bouncier than Hyundai 2011 Sonata. No where near Suzuki Kizashi's firm yet gentle ride quality. Make sure the tire pressure is near 32 psi. (mine was set at 34 by the dealer who filled it with nitrogen for free). Some cars come off the lot with like 45 psi and you can FEEL every crack in the road with this much pressure.

    MPG - did not use up the first tank yet, but the trip computer says avg MPG is about 27 mpg for mostly suburb driving where the max speed is about 40-50 mph with a lot of stop signs.

    The audio and bluetooth control on the steering wheel is very convenient. I had 3 calls so far via the car's bluetooth and one caller told me there was too much static.

    IPod Cable. The manual says to use Kia's official Ipod cable (which is exactly the same one as the Hyundai Ipod cable), and not use the default Ipod cable as this may break the audio system. The audio is okay.

    I really did not truly notice before, but the height of the hood and the trunk is a lot higher than other compacts. While backing out of the garage, I could not see the drive way clearly...

    Will keep you guys updated. :)
  • steven39steven39 Posts: 636
    seems to be a shortage of sx koup's on dealers lots or kia is only sending each dealer a few sx koup models.down here the sx koup is rare with the majority of kia dealers in south fla only getting the EX koup models.i got lucky and found a sx koup with auto and sunroof in the color i wanted"corsa blue metalic" sitting on my dealers showroom floor and purchased it the same day..traded in a 07 honda civic coup EX and the forte blows it away.never thought in a million years that i would be saying that about a kia over a honda but it's true.
  • rockinrnrockinrn Posts: 16
    Had my Koup for about 4 months now and I must say it is a pretty good car for the money. However, I do have a few complaints about some of the engineering decisions made by Kia. First of all the "alloy" wheels on the Koup SX are half alloy and half plastic. The silver parts of the wheel are plastic inserts. I would hate to see what happens to them if I nick a curb. Secondly, the car does not have any real carpet in it. The "carpet" is more like a piece of cardboard with some kind of fuzzy material on it , no padding at all. The carpeted floor mats are not much better and are very thin.

    The bluetooth is a nice feature, however, my wife says that she cannot hear me because I talk too loud. You must talk in a very quiet voice which is unnatural in a car. Also the audio system tells you that it is updating the phone book everytime you start the car. I don't use the bluetooth feature anymore.
  • I got my Forte SX sedan in about 2 weeks ago and I must say this is the most fun car Ive owned since my 2001 Mazda Miata. After cross shopping the Mazda 3, Honda Civic, and others I think this is the best all around car. The standard bluetooth and Sirius radio along with more interior room and power than the others sealed the deal for me. Oh and getting all that for much less money surely didnt hurt. MSRP was just over 19K and I payed just over 16K, and got KBB "good" value on my trade.

    I didnt like the rims on the SX coupe but the 17 inch rims on the SX sedan are very nice, no plastic. Also the EX and SX have a much nicer soft touch dash, so I prefered them over the LX. The carpets are a bit thin I will admit that, but not bad overall. I am coming out of a midsize Mercury Milan and this car has nearly the room and is just as quite. The bluetooth was a strong selling point to me. I read about the problems some had with being able to be heard but Ive made several calls and Ive had no problems. With one call I did have to turn it up a notch or two to hear them, but still well within what I would consider normal volumn. The bigger engine in the SX is a blast to drive and as a matter of fact made me sacrafice a bit of MPG to go with the 2.4 liter over the 2.0 liter in the EX.

    The one complaint I do have is it seems the lower dash plastic is alittle soft and seems to scratch easily.
  • pittsypittsy Posts: 15
    The Homelink/Compass mirror option is not offered in Canada but can be purchased as an "add-on" accessory ($250.00) from the U.S. Has anyone added this accessory to a Canadian Forte and was it a "plug-n-play". Canadian Dealer did not know if car pre-wired for plug-n-play or not.
  • pittsypittsy Posts: 15
    Just bought a Forte so a couple of questions Dealer could not answer - Does Bluetooth only link with Cell "phone" feature. I have a Blackberry with Garmin Nav application. Would be nice if Bluetooth would play turn-by-turn over radio as well.
  • iluvmysephia1iluvmysephia1 Posts: 5,700
    edited May 2010
    two questions for you man.

    1) What kind of BlackBerry are you fortunate to have? I have a Blackberry Pearl 8130 but tomorrow FedEx is shipping me a BlackBerry Curve 8530. That phone sounds just awesome. BlackBerry's are da best! 3G and Wi-fi both with a cool looking design and very user-friendly e-mail features, texting and great mobile web-browsing capabilites. Can't wait ta get that pup. I love the music buttons on the top of the phone, too. Here she is. The Smokey Violet color is the bee's knees, man.

    image

    2) Are you a Tragically Hip fan? How far away from where you live is the home of The Tragically Hip, which is Kingston, Ontario.

    Not sure what you mean about Bluetooth playing turn-by-turn over radio.

    2008 Mitsubishi Lancer GTS

  • jim1977jim1977 Posts: 14
    The Bluetooth does not play the directions from my TomTom Go 720 over the radio. I looked into it, and found that there is a different protocol for that type of thing as compared to the 2-way cell phone. Whether that holds true for the Garmin I don't know, since it might use the cell phone protocol.
  • pittsypittsy Posts: 15
    It's a Blackberry Bold (9700) with the Garmin Mobile Nav application ($99.00) uses Blackberry GPS for routing. Works same as stand-alone Garmin Nuvi, speaks turns and street names through BB speaker.
  • pittsypittsy Posts: 15
    This is actually the Garmin mobile application that runs on the BB using the BB GPS module and BB speaker to speak directions. If Forte Bluetooth links with full audio then should work.
  • netranger4netranger4 Posts: 149
    Just drove a new Forte last week. EX with automatic. I'd have to pass this one up. The car was quiet and fairly quick, but the suspension is designed for sportier handling so the ride quality was not as I'd hoped. Compared to the Spectra, which it replaced, it's an entirely different vehicle. The Spectra was far smoother riding.

    Judging from the rough ride I had, maybe the tires were overinflated as even small
    irregularities in the pavement made themselves heard and felt. The door panels were another area of disappointment.

    On the positive side, the build quality seemed very good and the controls well placed and smooth in operation. I think Kia should change some things to appeal to a larger demographic group.
  • conwelpicconwelpic Ontario, CanadaPosts: 600
    Kia US, just posted some info on their website with regards the 5-door. Its under future vehicles/upcoming. As usual the Canadian site has nothing, they don't even mention the new Optima or Sportage.

    http://www.kia.com/#/upcoming/
  • hmownerhmowner Posts: 23
    I now have about 4,000 miles.
    First of all, I "fixed" the dead spot/engine stall problem. I love the car now that it responds like a normal stick shift.

    See http://www.forteforums.com/forums/do-yourself-articles/1342-best-throttle-mod-ev- er.html

    Likes after few months of driving:
    - good acceleration
    - decent mileage: 31.5 mpg based on 65% highway/ 35% city driving
    - roomy inside. It doesn't feel like a compact
    - using voice controlled bluetooth to make phone calls
    - decent stereo
    - ok seats
    - responsive cruise control that doesn't slow down when going up hill
    - back center console with cupholders. pretty handy during travel.
    - the sun visor with the extension. I use it every day to keep the sun out !

    Dislikes
    - the back trunk sits too high ==> less visibility ==> difficult to estimate distance when backing into a parking spaces

    - the need to down shift to 5th or 4th during highway speed when trying to pass (from 6th gear). If I keep it in 6th gear, you don't get much acceleration at all

    - need to keep air conditioner fan at "2" instead of "1" when hot (because the roof is not insulated too well causing the car to heat up quick). I don't like the noise of the fan setting on 2.

    - wide front bumper has too many stone chips already.

    - burns a bit of engine oil - need to "refill" about 1/16 of a quart every 1000 miles

    - Had warranty issues:
    1) paint defect under the clearcoat
    2) leaking fluid from fuel injector (waiting for parts)

    Dislikes
  • iluvmysephia1iluvmysephia1 Posts: 5,700
    question about the stick shift on your Kia Forte 6-spd. sedan. How is the shifting working out? There were some early concerns/complaints about the "clunky" Forte shifter or clutch. More than just a few complained so I'm curious how your experience is. The new Forte sedan is along with the Soul and the new '11 Optima my favorite new Kia's being produced so I'm curious.

    2008 Mitsubishi Lancer GTS

  • hmownerhmowner Posts: 23
    edited June 2010
    The issue is not really the shifter or the clutch. The shifter is a bit rubberly, but ok. The clutch is soft, but you get used it to very quick.

    The main issue is the dead spot on the accelerator.

    Without the throttle mod, there is about 3/4 inch dead spot when you press on the accelerator before the engine would respond. The impact of this dead spot is that when you shift and engage gear by releasing the clutch, it's very hard to find the right pressure to push down on the gas pedal to rev the engine and engage the gear correctly. First timer to Forte would either stall the engine (most common) or really chirp the tires because you over compensate. It took me about couple of weeks to get it right. Even after that, you really have to watch how you let out the clutch and give gas.

    With the throttle mod, where you basically eliminate the dead spot, the gear shift is very smooth like any other "normal" stick shift
  • iluvmysephia1iluvmysephia1 Posts: 5,700
    edited June 2010
    hmowner, I spose this was an ECU computer fix that Kia Motors did for all of you all with this problem then, paid for by Kia Motors?

    Pardon me if I've missed it when you've talked about this problem before on this thread, but I'm still just a titch bit curious how it all worked out as far as the fix. And, of course, one would think that Kia Motors is no longer producing manual-trannied Forte sedans (or Koup's, for that matter) straight-from-the-factory anymore with this throttle problem. Kind of a DUH, but I just want to read of your concurrence on this matter. Thank you and happy Kia motoring to all of you.

    2008 Mitsubishi Lancer GTS

  • hmownerhmowner Posts: 23
    iluvmysephia1,

    This is not a ECU fix, but a slight movement to one of the accelerator assembly that controls voltage output from the accelerator which in turn controls how the throttle responds. BTW, this is done via very minute shift of a plastic cover, either forward or backward. My guess is that this somehow changes the resistance setting within the assembly and thus changes the output voltage value associated with when the accelerator is in "idle" mode.

    Please read the link above.

    Anyway, after the "fix", you no longer feel the dead spot and the clutch/gas interaction feels like any other normal stick shift.
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