Camaro5 Chevy Camaro Forum / Camaro ZL1, SS and V6 Forums - Camaro5.com
 
autoguy
Go Back   Camaro5 Chevy Camaro Forum / Camaro ZL1, SS and V6 Forums - Camaro5.com > Members Area > General Automotive + Other Cars Discussion

General Automotive + Other Cars Discussion Come chat about other cars.

Reply
 
Thread Tools
Old 05-02-2011, 10:09 AM   #1
Stew


 
Drives: 92 Luminadead/01 Dakota/97 F150 4x4
Join Date: Jul 2009
Location: Eastern, Ky
Posts: 3,759
Weekend Test Drive: 2011 Kia Forte Hatchback

Well, the search continues and the 11 Kia Forte was the next victim. After driving the Elantra I went in with high expectations........ Well unfortunately Kia isn't quite up to the level of their sister company, at least on their smaller cars.

Basics: EX 5 door, 2.0 4 cylinder, 156 HP, 36 MPG highway, with sunroof, and a couple other options, 19,500

Exterior: I have always thought the Forte was a very nice and upscale looking small car and it carries over to the 5 door as well. The only questionable thing is the 'rear Applique" for $70 dollars. This turns out to be a small sticker on the rear bumper that says "Forte" A waste of money IMHO. Otherwise it has very good lines and it all comes together well.

Interior: The interior has an excellent look to it. It is probably the roomiest of all the cars I have driven. Excellent headroom, even with the sunroof. Excellent legroom, even in the rear with the front seat in a comfortable driving position for taller drivers. It had plenty of features, including bluetooth for your phone, auto-dimming rearview mirror and a sunroof. There were a few cheap bits, primarily the 2 stalks on the steering wheel which were made of a very shiny plastic. The dash was also hard plastic, but the sheens and designs used on the plastic are really nice looking. For me the worst part is the bright red text on the clock, odometer, and stereo. I am colorblind so all this just came across as washed out to me. I am sure i could do with the available Navigation system which shouldn't have this issue. Also, the AC came across as really weak. It took a long time to cool down and didn't really do a good job of cooling the cabin when it was cooled down. Also, when turned up to high there was a lot of noise, speaking of noise, well, read on once you get to engine/transmission.

Suspension/handling: Easily the best part of the car. It had a decently stiff suspendion with little body roll. The steering felt good, though maybe a wee bit on the heavy side. The ride could get a little starchy, but was never too abrupt or harsh. A really good feeling car to drive. There was a bit of tire noise though....

Engine/transmission: This is the part that really disappointed me. The engine at 156 HP is on the higher side for the class, and 2.0 liters is also slightly bigger than the class is generally running these days. You would think it would be peppier than it's sister car, the Elantra, which has a 148HP 1.8. Simply put, it's not. It seemed to struggle a bit in passing and going up steeper grades. Also the transmission just loved to hunt gears, especially on steeper grades where it either felt like it wasn't producing enough power and needed a downshift or the transmission was constantly moving between 2 or 3 different gears, while under the same constant pressure on the throttle. And the engine drone..... Of all the issues this is probably the most annoying to me. At cruising speeds the engine would drone and the noise just penetrate the cabin. It was constant and pretty annoying. It seems as if the transmission was tuned to keep the engine at too low of an rpm and that was causing the drone, probably to help the gas mileage. That with the aforementioned tire noise was a bit much for me. Some additional sound deadening would help this a lot. As a side note, what I have read leads me to believe the SX with the bigger 2.4 does not suffer this issue and is quieter and considerably smoother than the the 2.0, though with 3-4 MPG loss.. I will find this out eventually.

Pros and Cons:

Pros: Good gas mileage at 36 highway, roomy, plenty of cargo room, hatchback availability, good features, pricing, good looks, good handling, good steering, relatively fun to drive.

Cons: Weak engine, transmission constantly hunting for gears, some plasticky bits on the interior, engine drone, red interior lighting, some tire noise.


Overall: This is a good package in need of some fine tuning. I know the little Rio is getting the 1.8 liter motor from the Hyundai Elantra, so hopefully the Forte will follow suit as this would be a much better base engine than the 2.0, especially if they used the Elantras tuning for the 6 speed automatic. Also, give us some better interior lightning and displays, even if i was not colorblind the red on black still would not look very good. Some additional sound deadening would also be welcome. I do understand that the Forte, at least here in the US, is the oldest design of the cars I have driven, but i still don't see this being passable when came out in 09.
Stew is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 05-02-2011, 01:05 PM   #2
Scrappy Doo


 
Scrappy Doo's Avatar
 
Drives: Taylor Made SLDR
Join Date: Jul 2009
Location: W8n 4 Snow, Minnesota
Posts: 4,629
Send the KIA to the glue factory.....


Stew by the time you buy a new car, they will have the redesigns out. LOL
Scrappy Doo is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 05-02-2011, 01:35 PM   #3
Stew


 
Drives: 92 Luminadead/01 Dakota/97 F150 4x4
Join Date: Jul 2009
Location: Eastern, Ky
Posts: 3,759
Quote:
Originally Posted by Scrappy Doo View Post
Send the KIA to the glue factory.....


Stew by the time you buy a new car, they will have the redesigns out. LOL
That is a good possibility and then i will have to start again, or at least know what is the best on the used market haha. Still got at least the Focus to go. just have to decide if I want to go all the way to Johnson City Tn to test the Jetta, Scion TC, and Subaru impreza haha.
Stew is offline   Reply With Quote
Reply

Thread Tools

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off

Forum Jump

Similar Threads
Thread Thread Starter Forum Replies Last Post
2011 Test and Tune @ VMP & MIR & Elsewhere thesnoopster USA - Mid-Atlantic 171 04-04-2011 05:47 AM
Test Drives: 2011 Dodge Avenger mainstreet vs 2011 Malibu LTZ Stew General Automotive + Other Cars Discussion 13 01-18-2011 03:30 PM
C&D Test Drive of new BMW M3 LSxcellent General Automotive + Other Cars Discussion 5 10-15-2010 01:00 AM
Think about this and the Z28 5th gen 13F20 Camaro ZL1 Forum - ZL1 Specific Topics 41 09-04-2010 12:59 AM
TEST DRIVE NEW CAMARO’s FRI and SAT Silverplate USA - Southeast 10 04-09-2009 11:16 PM


All times are GMT -5. The time now is 08:21 AM.


Powered by vBulletin® Version 3.8.7
Copyright ©2000 - 2014, vBulletin Solutions, Inc.