2014 Kia Forte vs. Its Competition

2014 Kia Forte
Martin Padgett Martin Padgett Editorial Director

The Kia Forte finds itself in a style-conscious, value-minded niche where it's never been more difficult to find space to breathe.

The Ford Focus is a tough challenger to tackle: it has excellent handling, great style, more optional features than anything in the class, and a rip-roaring ST sport edition all under its umbrella.

The Honda Civic stumbled badly in the 2012 model year, but it's picked itself back up with more sound deadening, a defanged front end, and revamped handling.

The Forte's cousin, the Hyundai Elantra, has spread its wings to include coupe and GT models, and as a lineup, it's a worthy cross-shop, with excellent interior space and feature content.

The Subaru Impreza's appeal lies within its crisp handling and its standard all-wheel drive, for which buyers willingly pay a premium.

Lastly, there's the Toyota Corolla, which is new for 2014, and promises much better styling and engaging feel.

2014 Kia Forte2014 Kia Forte
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2014 Ford Focus2014 Ford Focus
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2014 Honda Civic Coupe2014 Honda Civic
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2014 Hyundai Elantra2014 Hyundai Elantra
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2014 Subaru Impreza 5dr Auto 2.0i Angular Front Exterior View2014 Subaru Impreza
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2014 Toyota Corolla S2014 Toyota Corolla
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Quick Specs
The 2014 Kia Forte finds better focus with well-rounded performance and grabby good looks, but its safety scores concern us.
Even without considering the top-performance ST, the 2014 Ford Focus is one of the best-driving small cars on the market--with the impression of being an accessible premium car, not a spruced-up econobox.
The 2014 Honda Civic brings better refinement back to the lineup, but there's more to come, we're told.
The Hyundai Elantra already had the bases covered--we'll see if a new engine and new tuning draws it even closer to best in class.
The 2014 Subaru Impreza remains the only option in its class to come equipped with standard all-wheel-drive, where many don't offer it all. It's tough, practical, and looks good, too.
The 2014 Toyota Corolla keeps its frugal, responsible core but adds a lot more verve.
MSRP From     
Gas Mileage     
21 MPG City / 37 MPG Hwy23 MPG City / 37 MPG Hwy22 MPG City / 47 MPG Hwy24 MPG City / 38 MPG Hwy25 MPG City / 36 MPG Hwy27 MPG City / 42 MPG Hwy
Regular Unleaded I-4Regular Unleaded I-4Regular Unleaded I-4Regular Unleaded I-4Regular Unleaded H-4Regular Unleaded I-4
EPA Class     
Midsize CarsCompact CarsCompact CarsMidsize CarsCompact CarsMidsize Cars
Style Name     
4-Door Sedan Manual LX4-Door Sedan S2-Door Manual LX4-Door Sedan Manual SE (Ulsan Plant)4-Door Manual 2.0i4-Door Sedan Manual L (SE)
Front Wheel DriveFront Wheel DriveFront Wheel DriveFront Wheel DriveAll Wheel DriveFront Wheel Drive
Passenger Capacity     
Passenger Doors     
Body Style     
Manual w/ODManual w/ODManual w/ODManual w/ODManual w/ODManual w/OD
Detailed Spec Comparison
 2014 Kia Forte vs. 2014 Ford Focus2014 Kia Forte vs. 2014 Honda Civic2014 Kia Forte vs. 2014 Hyundai Elantra2014 Kia Forte vs. 2014 Subaru Impreza2014 Kia Forte vs. 2014 Toyota Corolla