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2020 Kia Forte GT - An Affordable Bargain

Published on Thu, Apr 30, 2020

By: Harold Osmer

With crossovers and SUVs taking over the market with wildly varying prices, affordable sedans seem to be a thing of the past. However, the 2020 Kia Forte GT looks to give buyers an affordable option without sacrificing quality.

Kia’s third generation Forte is a welcome surprise for us at LACar. Our GT test version features a wonderfully smooth 1.6L turbocharged engine producing 201 horsepower channeled through a 7-speed Dual clutch transmission. This translates to a remarkably easy car to handle and drive.

2020 Kia Forte GT
2020 Kia Forte GT

The three drive modes: NORMAL – SPORT – SMART, offer different attitudes for various conditions. Normal is fine for most driving, while Sport produces longer shift times and a degree of engine braking. We let Smart be whatever it wanted to be and let it sit in the corner by itself. Paddle shifters have gone from gimmick to expected add-ons, though we didn’t see much need for them either.

Our Forte GT benefits from wide, grippy Michelin 225/40s mounted on 18-inch wheels. The rear squatted and dug in nicely while roaming the local twisty roads at about 85% with no drama. Easy acceleration and firm brakes make it easy to see how so many average drivers get to thinking they are behind-the-wheel heroes.

2020 Kia Forte GT
2020 Kia Forte GT

Kia’s conference calls to BMW (with the resultant Stinger) are evident in the Forte GT. Styling is sharp, details are clean, and driving is rewarding. Forte is small on the outside yet roomy enough inside to fit my 6’3” frame easily. The trunk is another surprise at over 15.3 cubic feet capacity and folding rear seats.

Apple CarPass and Android Auto Smartphone integration works seamlessly. Multiple USB port and a 115V outlet will prove helpful in the long run. The GT base model starts at $22,290 while our GT2 option package adds a Harmon/Kardon Premium sound system, heated/cooled front seats, and proximity warning sensors for people, cars, and lane departure. Our Forte GT ‘as driven’ costs $26,445.

2020 Kia Forte GT
2020 Kia Forte GT

Auto companies are getting away from building sedans. SUVs and Crossovers are all the rage—cost and needs be damned. A base model Forte runs just under $18,000. First time car buyers typically have no need or desire for a minivan or SUV. Thus Kia sold 95,609 Fortes last year. That’s reason enough to keep improving and selling more of them. We wholeheartedly agree.

Check out our video review of the Kia Forte on our YouTube channel:


(Base Forte) $21,625; Forte GT $22,290

As tested (Forte GT2 package) $29,495


GT2 Package includes:

  • Automatic Climate Control System
  • Blind Spot Collision Warning
  • Parking Distance Warning-Reverse
  • Harmon/Kardon Premium Audi with Clari-Fi system

Engine type:

Turbocharged 1.6-liter 4-cylinder w/Dual Overhead Cam, 16-valve


201hp @ 6000 rpm


195 lb.-ft @ 1500-4,500 rpm

Drive configuration:

Front Wheel Drive

Transmission type:

7-speed Dual Clutch Automatic


Front: MacPherson Strut

Rear: Multi-link

Wheels and tires:

18″ Alloy Wheels, P225/40 R18 Michelin Summer Radials


4-wheel disk with antilock

Overall length/wheelbase:

182.7 inches/106.3 inches

Overall width:

70.9 inches

Overall height:

56.5 inches


3079 pounds

EPA mileage estimates City/ Highway:



10 Year/100,000 miles Powertrain

5 Year/60,000 miles Limited Basic Warranty

5 Year/60,000 miles Roadside Assistance Plan

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