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Kia Forte vs Toyota Corolla vs Hyundai Elantra vs Mazda3

steven39steven39 Posts: 636
hello folks,iam haveing a tough time getting a kia forte for below msrp.most of the dealers iv'e been to down here in south fla are treating this car as if it were a honda or toyota and not going much below the msrp.would like to just get an idea of what others are paying in different parts of the country..i will not pay anything close to msrp for a car that is basically going to loose about half it's value as soon as i drive off of the dealers lot given kia's horrible resale values..


  • steven39steven39 Posts: 636
    well folks,i finally purchased a forte EX today after test driveing several cars including toyota corolla,elantra,and mazda car for $16,000.00 plus TTT.this forte blows away the corolla, and the mazda 3 as far as power,handleing,quiet interior,and warranty..color is metallic dark cherry with coffee interior so they call it.
  • sandman_6472sandman_6472 Coral Springs, FLPosts: 4,173
    Did you buy from Gunther or Bachrodt and how much $ did you get for the Lancer EX?

    The Sandman :sick: :shades:

    2015 Audi A3 (wife) / 2015 Golf TSI (me) / 2009 Nissan Versa SL Hatch (daughter #1) / 2008 Hyundai Accent GLS (daughter #2)

  • steven39steven39 Posts: 636
    hi sandman,i purchased the forte from gunther a pretty good deal from them being that i purchased a few cars from them over the years.they gave me $13,000.00 for the lancer EX which is about what the kelly blue book value is for that car..i got the forte for $16,000.00 which is just about invoice price.
  • iluvmysephia1iluvmysephia1 Manson, WAPosts: 6,920
    I know, the new Kia Forte is a very cool design. Keep us updated as to how your Forte sedan ownership plays itself out, OK? Sounds like you got a very fair price, too.

    2011 Kia Soul Sport 5-speed

  • steven39steven39 Posts: 636
    as i mentioned in my previous post here i test drove a 2010 corolla,civic,mazda 3, and as strange as it may sound the forte beat out these cars by a wide margin..i never thought i would say this about any kia product let alone own one of these cars.but it's true i think kia has hit a home run with this car and can only improve upon far as features for the buck as well as the warranty the forte can not be beat although resale value is a concern.
  • iluvmysephia1iluvmysephia1 Manson, WAPosts: 6,920
    could you tell us again which car you were most serious about besides the Kia Forte? Was it the Maz3 or the Civic?

    2011 Kia Soul Sport 5-speed

  • steven39steven39 Posts: 636
    as i mentioned in my previous post here,i test drove the mazda 3,toyoto corolla,and the honda civic before purchasing the kia forte...the mazda 3 came in very close but the forte won me over with it's styling,more standard features,and best of all the longer far,iam not regretting my decision.i have the metallic dark cherry color and people compliment me on the car and color..i would suggest to anyone who is in the market for a car in this class to atleast test drive the will be pleasently suprised just like i was..i never thought in a million years that i would even consider a kia product but they have my respect now with this new forte...check it out!!!!!!!
  • jim1977jim1977 Posts: 14
    The way to avoid worry about trade-in value is to not do it. You lose each time you trade. My Infiniti G20 just gave out after 207,000 miles, and I think I got my money's worth. But the Forte will probably be better than the previous Kia's anyway.
  • autonomousautonomous Posts: 1,769
    so far,iam not regretting my decision
    Considering you bought the car a day or two ago, I hope not. :surprise:

    p.s. what is the curb weight of the Forte?
  • steven39steven39 Posts: 636
    according to the 2010 kia forte brochure the forte sedan with auto trans weighs in at 2,740 pounds...however it feels like a much heavier car especially on the highway where it stays planted to the pavement and doesn't get blown all over the highway from crosswinds like the 2010 toyota corolla that i test drove did.
  • jim1977jim1977 Posts: 14
    It seems big for its weight too. I rented a Ford Fusion for a couple of weeks last fall, and the interior room on the Forte seems about the same, even though the Ford was about a foot longer and weighed over 500 pounds more. And of course the Forte gets better fuel economy. The handling and ride were good for both, but I prefer the smaller cars.
  • steven39steven39 Posts: 636
    there are several nice features in the forte that i like that are really not found in this price range.illuminated window switches,auto locking and unlocking doors just to name a few.sunglass holder also..
  • autonomousautonomous Posts: 1,769
    forte sedan with auto trans weighs in at 2,740 pounds
    Excellent! That's about 300 pounds lighter than a Mazda3.
  • I'll admit I didn't even test drive the Forte. Not that every car in this class has independent rear suspension but I think that helps keep the costs down and add some other options other vehicles it it's class don't have. Up in Canada, I find solid rear suspension get a little loose in our potholed wasteland.

    Forte is a nice looking car, looks a little like the civic.
  • bhmr59bhmr59 Posts: 1,601
    Since the long warranty is important to you I assume you do not plan on trading in this car anytime soon or with low mileage. I wouldn't be conerned about resale value if you plan to keep the car for 5 or 6 years or over 75,000 miles.

    Enjoy the car. Sounds like you did good.
  • mnfmnf Spokane WaPosts: 405
    WOW saw two the last few days they look nice on the road. Here are some reviews on the pro and cons but it looks like Kia did good here. Like all new models only time will tell but they do have a nice look. - html - -Forte-car-review-Kias-new-look

  • steven39steven39 Posts: 636
    hello folks,just returned from an almost 500 mile roundrip from hallandale beach,fla to orlando and back.these are my impressions of the forte EX model..first off,this car is very smooth on the highway with very little wind or road noise to speak of.this car also feels solid and feels like iam actually driveing a much more expensive car..i test drove all of the cars in this segment including toyota corolla,mazda 3,civic sedan,and the elantra.the forte blew away those cars...not a misprint,a kia actually performed better than a honda or toyota but this is just my opinion..however if you read the owners reviews of the forte on this site as well as other sites you will see that this car is getting high phrase from owners and auto critics alike...never thought i would mention kia in the same breath as toyota or honda but here
  • toro99toro99 Posts: 2
    What's the difference between EX and LX?
  • steven39steven39 Posts: 636
    these are the differences between the forte EX and the LX.the EX has power windows,locks,cruise,side mirror blinkers,remote keyless entry,and a few interior upgrades over the LX.both models however share the same engine.hope this helps.
  • toro99toro99 Posts: 2
    Thanks steven39. You helped me a lot. I testdrived Forte LX yesterday. It was a nice car, and the dealer offered a reasonable deal (forte EX + tax + registration fee = $16k), because his dealership is required to sell 10 more cars until the end of this month. But, it is still over my budget. I have to forget forte. I'm considering 2009 elantra. In addition, i was worrying that forte's safety test result was not disclosed yet.
  • steven39steven39 Posts: 636
    your very welcome..that's what these forums are all about,helping people with there car buying decisions and giveing advice,so that people can know what's out there rather than haveing to rely on the dealers info which is sometimes inacurate..good luck
  • Hello steven39! Just curious... are you still happy with the Forte after another month? I am seriously considering purchasing one in the next couple weeks. Well, I still need to test drive and research comparables. My budget is limited though. And I am pretty much looking at this car or the Ford Focus (because I can get A/Z plan through a family member). From what I've read so far, the standard features are so much better on the Forte, and of course, you get the KIA Warranty with that.

    So yeah... just wondering how you two are still getting along! ;-) Thanks!
  • well so far after 1 month of ownership it's been so far so good with the forte i mentioned in my previous post i test drove and compared many cars in this segment such as toyota corolla,civic,elantra,mazda 3 just to name a few and the forte had the best price to features ratio than the others.the forte is a very good value compared to the rest of these cars and the long warranty was the iceing on the cake for me as far as i was far as the focus goes,the forte again has it beat with more standard features and a better warranty.i never thought in a million years that i would ever own a kia product but compared with the rest of the cars that i mentioned here it was the much better value..hope this review helps...steve
  • Thanks Steve! Yeah, it helps know that a month down the road you are still happy! I'm working on my dealer emails today so I can send them off and see what kind of offers I can get. I wish there were some real incentives out there right now (not just 0% for 36 months). I'm not bothering with a trade-in because my current car is a 2001 Kia Sephia that I bought new and have since put 130k + miles on it, so I think I'll just donate it.

    Another question, did you get an automatic or manual? I'm looking at manuals just because of the $1,000 difference.

    (have recently been drooling over the dark cherry colour too!)
  • steven39steven39 Posts: 636
    went with a friend of mine who is looking for a new car to several area car dealers to compare.first stop was toyota to look at corolla's.msrp for 2010 corolla base unit was just over $17, cruise,no bluetooth,no sat radio,no rear disk brakes,and only 132 h.p..test drive was bad...took corolla out on highway and it got blown all over the place by passing cars and trucks and by the slightest gust of wind and didn't handle very good at all.test drive was stop kia dealership to look at a kia forte which i own already and my friend wanted to check them out since he likes mine.looked at the same model forte that i own which is a forte EX with auto.msrp is 17,490.00 and includes bluetooth,sat radio,4wheel disk brakes,cruise,and 156 h.p. and a long warranty..he test drove the car a few blocks without going on the highway and was sold on the forte immediatly..blows the corolla out of the water with more standard features,more power,much better handleing,and better warranty.the corolla actually felt inferior to the forte.once again msrp for 2010 corolla base car is $17,047.00,while the msrp for 2010 forte EX is $17,490.00 with far more features,power,handleing,and long do the math.........steve
  • autonomousautonomous Posts: 1,769
    The strong suit for Toyota vehicles is reliability. The Kia brand does not have the same track record. But, the Hyundai and now the Kia brands have been reborn in the last few years with much better offerings, so sales of Korean cars are now the envy of many a Japanese automanufacturer. Hooray for competition and the marketplace!
  • keyser2keyser2 Posts: 25
    I am concerned that Kia is making the decision to offer more engine/transmission combinations. I think they want to position themselves like the Japanese manufacturers. I think they're risking quality issues. Just look at the more marginal Japanese brands like Mazda and Nissan. Their quality ratings have suffered in recent years, and one reason is the fact that they're making small numbers of cars with different powertrain combinations, and having transmission failures. I know the piece/parts that Kia is working with are of high quality (Hyundai), but making small numbers of vehicles with relatively odd engine/trans combos is a recipe for problems. Just ask anyone who owned a Saturn Vue with CVT.
  • iluvmysephia1iluvmysephia1 Manson, WAPosts: 6,920
    the problem is they are trying to satisfy their current and potential customers by offering more engine and tranny options. In an increasingly internet-savvy automotive marketplace, buyers can see what all the different manufacturer's are offering and say they want what so and so is offering on their rigs, so on and so forth.

    I say don't underestimate Kia's ability to pull this off. They're absolutely amazing in the last 5 years or so. Quality is up and they're winning quality awards for some vehicles they sell. Let 'em at it, I'm not discounting what you're saying, though. It is a big challenge.

    Nissan is having some problems with these issues, yes they are.

    2011 Kia Soul Sport 5-speed

  • autonomousautonomous Posts: 1,769
    I think they're risking quality issues. Just look at the more marginal Japanese brands like Mazda and Nissan.

    I would not describe either Mazda or Nissan as marginal Japanese brands. They may not be as large as Toyota and Honda but that does not make them marginal. Also, you imply that Mazda has quality issues. When I check Consumer Reports which provides a large user base of information about vehicle reliability that is not the impression I have. Specifically, which Mazda vehicles do you think have "quality issues"?

    In my opinion, the major issue with powertrains is fuel efficiency. To those auto manufacturers which produce heavier vehicles with more powerful engines that do not improve their fuel consumption. I say you are driving in the wrong direction. Let's hope all the manufacturers, whether Korean, Japanese, European or US, get the message: build more efficient vehicles
  • You got the Kia Forte EX for $16000. That's amazing!

    The cheapest Forte EX that my Kia dealer sells is about $17740 before taxes. Granted, that car is loaded but without sunroofs. The other EX cars have sunroofs so the price jumps to 18500 before taxes.

    I test drove a Forte LX and found the car amazing. It was fast and responsive. The features included in the car were plentiful. However, there was no power locks, windows or mirrors, so I will probably move to an EX.

    After testing drive the Forte, I test drove a 2010 Toyota Corolla. The Corolla was just as powerful and responsive, but some reason, it felt rather boring to drive. I don't know whether it was just me or the time of the day. The Corolla's they had were about 18000.

    I am increasingly leaning toward the Forte, but since the car is the first generation and it still lacks a safety rating, I am rather apprehensive. Plus, maybe it was just brand name or something, but the perception of "KIa=crappy, Toyota=quality" still lingered in my mind.

    I'm due back at the dealer for another set test drives. Hopefully my decision will be finalize by then.

    Finally, How did you get a forte for $16000? Tell me your secret!
This discussion has been closed.