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FEATURES | 8 out of 10
undercuts the Japanese opposition handily, particularly when compared on a standard equipment basis
The standard Bluetooth system is greatly appreciated at this price point and even downloads your contacts list automatically
All Fortes have steering-wheel-mounted audio, cruise-control, and wireless-cell-phone-link buttons--a welcome standard feature.
If it were our money, we would stick with the cloth buckets.
Leather isn’t available without the $900 sunroof—all the better to prematurely age and crack it
Car and Driver
The 2013 Kia Forte lineup, in general, includes a few more features than rival models at about the same price. The only exception at the base level is that telescopic steering adjustment still isn't included in all models; you need to step up from the base LX to the EX for that.
Air conditioning remains optional on the Forte LX, but all Forte trims get Bluetooth, Sirius satellite radio, and an auxiliary input jack for the audio system, plus steering wheel controls and voice activation. The EX model adds A/C and power accessories—and larger 16-inch alloys, for Koup models—while the SX adds fog lamps, plus upgraded upholstery and trim.
The SX models step up the performance flavor with a sport-tuned suspension, larger brakes, and showy 17-inch alloy wheels.
A Technology Package brings navigation, Sirius XMTraffic, automatic climate control, and push-button start, plus other upgrades. Other options are limited mostly to a power sunroof, leather seat packages (heated in front), and a Convenience Package that adds A/C and other upgrades to the LX.
Forte Koup models are spiced up just a bit in features and appearance versus Sedans of the same level; for instance, Koup EX models include 16-inch alloys, instead of the 15-inch steel wheels of their Forte EX sedan counterparts.
The 2013 Kia Forte includes more standard equipment than most rival models.