Jump to content
Create New...
  • William Maley
    William Maley

    2013 Kia Forte Koup SX

    By William Maley

    Staff Writer - CheersandGears.com

    April 25, 2013

    The compact front-wheel drive coupe class has been on the decline in recent years. Once a bright light in the automotive world with a number of manufacturers competing, the class has shrunk down to just four models; the Honda Civic Coupe, Scion tC, Hyundai Elantra Coupe, and Kia Forte Koup. The oldest one of this group, the Forte Koup, has fallen to the wayside since the other three have either been refreshed or are a new model. But does being the oldest model in this group mean that you shouldn’t take a look at it? I recently found out as I spent a week with a 2013 Kia Forte Koup SX.

    gallery_10485_647_867469.jpg

    Doing my first walk around the Koup when it first arrived, my inner monologue chimed in with “wait, is this a Honda Civic Coupe doppelganger?” Looking at the front and side profile, the Forte Koup does seem to pull some liberties from the Civic coupe in the overall design. Thankfully, Kia did make some changes to make it not seem like a carbon copy of a Civic coupe. The front has the now familiar Kia grille all blacked-out and a unique bumper treatment. The side profile features a set of muscular lines and a set of sharp seventeen-inch wheels.

    Inside, the Forte Koup doesn’t have the same styling exuberance as the exterior. It's pretty much the same interior you’ll find in the Forte sedan and five-door model. It's not the nicest interior, but most of the interior bits are screwed in very well (aside from one door panel that rattled slightly when I was playing certain types of music) and the layout is very utilitarian.

    gallery_10485_647_1515016.jpg

    Space is very much at a premium thanks to short roof height. Up front, the limited headroom space is eaten up by the optional sunroof. I had to adjust the drivers seat in such a way that my head wasn’t touching the roof, which meant I wasn’t in the most comfortable position during my time. Combine that with a seat that I found to be very uncomfortable, and I would come out feeling very sore from a drive. The backseat should only be reserved for small kids thanks to the tight head and legroom.

    However, the Forte Koup does fight back with an abundance of equipment. My tester came with such amenities such as heated leather seats, navigation, Bluetooth, automatic climate control, hands-free calling, alloy pedals, and a proximity key. Kia still knows how to do the value argument very well.

    Under the hood for the Forte Koup SX is a 2.4L DOHC four-cylinder engine producing 173 horsepower and 168 pound-feet of torque. At low rpms, the 2.4L pulls surprisingly well, making it plenty quick for those who drive in the drive in the city or suburbs. Moving higher in the rpm range, the engine begins to run out of steam. This is very noticeable when entering a freeway or deciding to throw the Koup around.

    gallery_10485_647_195737.jpg

    Transmissions for the Forte Koup are a six-speed manual or an automatic with paddle shifters. My car came equipped with the automatic and found it to be a perfect companion. The paddle shifters are a great addition since they can operated when the transmission is in Drive or manual mode. My only complaint with the paddle shifter are the placement the paddles. Mounting them on the steering wheel is horrible place since the paddles are always moving around. Putting them on the steering column would be a better idea.

    Fuel economy for the Forte Koup SX stands at 23 City/31 Highway/26 Combined when equipped with six-speed automatic. My average for the evaluation stood at 26 MPG. Highway driving saw the number climb to 30.2 MPG.

    The Forte Koup’s ride is decidedly mixed. On one hand, the Forte’s suspension tuning and heavy-weighted steering make it a pleasure to drive around corners. On the other hand, the Forte Koup’s suspension needs to go to finishing school. I found the ride to be unbearable when driving on the rutted Michigan roads as the suspension has no give at all. The steering also needs some refinement as its too heavy in daily use.

    gallery_10485_647_1407816.jpg

    At the end of my time with Forte Koup SX, I was left conflicted. The Koup has a lot going for and against it. It's a great value and has some snazzy looks, but the ride and steering are a mixed bag. The big problem is the current Forte Koup isn’t a standout anymore like it used to be. Honda and Scion have introduced new versions of their compact coupes, the Civic and tC respectively. There is also the Hyundai Elantra coupe in play which brings some very startling looks and impressive fuel economy to the class.

    It's better to wait for the new Forte Koup, due out sometime later this year, than to get the current one.

    gallery_10485_647_609491.jpg

    Disclaimer: Kia provided the vehicle, insurance, and one tank of gasoline.

    Year - 2013

    Make – Kia

    Model – Forte Koup

    Trim – SX

    Engine – 2.4L Inline-Four

    Driveline – Front-Wheel Drive, Six-Speed Automatic

    Horsepower @ RPM – 173 @ 6,000 RPM

    Torque @ RPM – 168 @ 4,000 RPM

    Fuel Economy: City/Highway/Combined - 23/31/26

    Curb Weight – 2,891 lbs

    Location of Manufacture – Hwaseong, Gyeonggi; South Korea

    Base Price - $19,800.00

    As Tested Price - $24,520.00* (Includes $775.00 destination charge)

    (Note: This Forte Koup didn't come with a window sticker, so I'm guessing the as tested price here)

    Options:

    SX Technology Package - $1,800

    Leather Package - $1,000

    Sunroof - $795

    Rear Spoiler - $395

    William Maley is a staff writer for Cheers & Gears. He can be reached at [email protected] or you can follow him on twitter at @realmudmonster.


    User Feedback

    Recommended Comments

    The Forte has an optional cooled driver's seat as well. I think that is a great feature because no one wants to stick to hot leather in the summer, and most cars under $30k don't offer that.

    Link to comment
    Share on other sites

    I wonder if the next Forte will have a Koup version also.. Nice to see a few car makers (Hyundai, Kia, Honda, Toyota) still offer coupe versions of their FWD compacts, considering the Big 3 gave up on them.

    Link to comment
    Share on other sites

    There will be a Koup version, it is on Kia's website as a 2014 coming soon vehicle. They also offer a 201 hp turbo 4, most in this segment don't offer that kind of power in a coupe either. You have to spend more on a Golf GTI or Focus ST and those aren't coupes.

    Link to comment
    Share on other sites



    Join the conversation

    You can post now and register later. If you have an account, sign in now to post with your account.
    Note: Your post will require moderator approval before it will be visible.

    Guest
    Add a comment...

    ×   Pasted as rich text.   Paste as plain text instead

      Only 75 emoji are allowed.

    ×   Your link has been automatically embedded.   Display as a link instead

    ×   Your previous content has been restored.   Clear editor

    ×   You cannot paste images directly. Upload or insert images from URL.


  • google-news-icon.png



  • google-news-icon.png

  • Subscribe to Cheers & Gears

    Cheers and Gears Logo

    Since 2001 we've brought you real content and honest opinions, not AI-generated stuff with no feeling or opinions influenced by the manufacturers.

    Please consider subscribing. Subscriptions can be as little as $1.75 a month, and a paid subscription drops most ads.*
     

    You can view subscription options here.

    *a very limited number of ads contain special coupon deals for our members and will show

  • Community Hive Community Hive

    Community Hive allows you to follow your favorite communities all in one place.

    Follow on Community Hive
  • Similar Content

  • Posts

    • Yeah, it doesn’t pass the sniff test at all. No vehicle, not even a full size SUV, takes even 10 minutes to fill up much less 22. That doesn’t even qualify as making sense to believe it takes 22 minutes to fill up ANY vehicle that only has four tires on it. 
    • I've literally timed myself AND posted it here at one time. I don't know if your PNW nozzles are the size of a drinking straw, but it never takes more than 5 minutes at a pump.  You have lost your mind if you think you'll convince any human that you've stood at a pump for TWENTY-TWO MINUTES just filling up an Escalade. There a 100% chance you're lying if you're saying it took you 22 minutes to fill-up an Escalade from E every time.  Damn. 14 minutes. That's a good 9-10 minutes longer than it would take to fill-up most anything with a gasoline engine.  @Drew Dowdell, your Avalanche probably has the same or very similar size gas tank of an Escalade, right? Do you stand there for 20 minutes or more regularly? 
    • FUD - Unless your driving a subcompact, 5 minute fueling is not true. Compacts to Midsize to Full size can take from 8 to 22 minutes to fuel. If the filters of the gas station are dirty, it can take longer. Yes I realize not everyone drives an Escalade ESV, but that is 22 minutes of standing and fueling at Costco, longer at other stations it seem to be. Yes, I spent a few minutes waiting, but over all I got all my shopping done, so a few minutes was no different than at a gas station. I charged this morning for the wife, was 52 degrees outside and the 350kW Electrify America charger did the 80% charge from 14% in 15 minutes and then I left to go get the grandkids and drop them off at school, so the 10 to 80% charge is fast as my Escalade.
    • You just said you still had to wait a few minutes after you were done shopping. That few minutes is all it takes to go from E -> F in an internal combustion vehicle. Until you're charging at home, overnight, there is no real savings or convenience involved. Once your free trial period of public charging has expired, it costs about the same to charge publicly at those fast chargers.  At home charging is really the only way to save money and time with an EV, when it comes to fuel costs. 
  • Who's Online (See full list)

    • There are no registered users currently online
  • My Clubs

×
×
  • Create New...

Hey there, we noticed you're using an ad-blocker. We're a small site that is supported by ads or subscriptions. We rely on these to pay for server costs and vehicle reviews.  Please consider whitelisting us in your ad-blocker, or if you really like what you see, you can pick up one of our subscriptions for just $1.75 a month or $15 a year. It may not seem like a lot, but it goes a long way to help support real, honest content, that isn't generated by an AI bot.

See you out there.

Drew
Editor-in-Chief

Write what you are looking for and press enter or click the search icon to begin your search

Change privacy settings