Head into your local Kia dealer and you’re likely to see their brand new Forte Koup sitting in the showroom. Based off the cool Kia Koup Concept at SEMA 2008, the Forte Koup looks surprisingly attractive. We are driving the Forte sedan right now as a test car (2010 Kia Forte Review,) and are rather impressed with it. I get into details in the review.
Just like its sister company Hyundai, Kia seems to be making a serious effort to turn itself around in image and quality lately, which is definitely getting them noticed. The 2010 Kia Soul review we did last month shows the first step in the direction they’re trying to follow.
The Forte sedan is also a step away from their typical boring vehicles, and now we have this spicy little number, which is…dare we say…exciting?
I’m surprised at how good the Forte actually looks (and it looks better in person,) a lot like a sharper Honda Civic, but with more room and less expensive. And better fuel economy. Don’t get me wrong, I like the Honda Civic, but the Forte might just be enough to be a good competitor.
The 2010 Kia Forte Koup wil be powered by a 2.0-liter four-banger producing 156 horsepower and 144 lb-ft of torque, which is more than its competitors, of course. The SX trim level upgrades the engine to a 173 hp 2.4-liter four-cylinder, just like the sedan.
Both the coupe and sedan have standard 5-speed manual transmissions with optional 4-speed autos. The SX model, thinking it’s so much better than the other trims, bumps it up to a 6-speed manual or 5-speed auto.
Keeping with the young and modern theme, the Forte Koup has standard MP3/CD audio playback with a 6-speaker stereo system, and steering-wheel mounted controls. Like other Kia/Hyundais, it also has both a USB and aux jack as well as iPod connectivity standard. This is a very good system, and other car-makers need to follow suit here.
Other impressively standard features include well-bolstered sport seats, a driver\’s seat height adjuster, tilt steering column, power windows, power door locks with remote keyless entry and cruise control with steering wheel controls.
The cocky SX trim gets sport cloth seats with red stitching, tilt and telescoping steering column, leather-wrapped steering wheel and shift knob, metal pedals, metal finish trim and a Supervision gauge cluster, whatever that means. Optional are leather and moonroof, among other things.
Strangely, I’m a bit excited to drive the Kia Forte Koup; I’d love to see how it compares to the Civic Coupe, Ford Focus, and Scion tC. So far the sedan has impressed me, and you know I love coupes.