2019 Nissan Sentra vs. 2019 Kia Forte: An Affordable Used Car Shootout

The selection of used cars may be in short supply these days, but there will always be shoppers on the hunt for an affordable, easy-to-drive used car that will last. The 2019 Nissan Sentra can be a great option for budget buyers, but it isn’t the only option out there. 2019 was a great year for compact cars, and Kia’s Forte sedan saw a number of updates and upgrades. Compare the 2019 Nissan Sentra and Kia Forte to see which of these cars is the better fit.

The 2019 Nissan Sentra’s turbo is well worth the price

Select Nissan Sentra trim levels offer a 188-horsepower turbocharged 1.8-liter four-cylinder engine that’s one of the most powerful in its class. The addition of that engine does bump of the price of the otherwise-cheap Sentra, but it may be well worth the price. SR Turbo and NISMO trims, equipped with the turbo, are potent and fun to drive. 

However, it’s worth noting that the 2019 Kia Forte gives you more horsepower right from the get-go. Its standard 2.0-liter four-cylinder engine makes 147 horsepower and 132 lb-ft of torque. It’s also one of the most fuel-efficient cars you can drive.

The 2019 Kia Forte brought significant new styling updates

Lime green 2019 Kia Forte compact sedan parked in front of a building
2019 Kia Forte Federation | Kia

The Kia Forte was all-new for 2019 and featured a stylish update to the exterior and interior. Kia took some visual cues from the popular Stinger sports car and applied them to this compact car. That means a used 2019 Forte will look a lot sharper than any used Nissan Sentra. While other small sedans have upped the ante in styling over the last few years, the Forte packs a punch.

While there are some common Kia Forte problems you should know about, looks are not one of them.

A used 2019 Forte offers more standard and available features than the Sentra

The 2019 Kia Forte came loaded with a ton of standard and available features. These included safety and driver-assistance features like automatic emergency braking, lane-keep assist, lane departure warning, and a drowsiness monitor. The interior offered an upgraded 8.0-inch touchscreen radio with Apple CarPlay and Android Auto standard on all trim levels.

A used 2019 Forte also offers available features that are comparable to a luxury sedan, like Qi wireless charging, navigation, and ventilated front seats. The 2019 Sentra had some bells and whistles, but it can’t stack up.

Which is better, the 2019 Forte or the Sentra?

Kelley Blue Book names the 2019 Forte “the clear winner” in this competition. It goes on to say that the Forte’s “new design is sporty and sophisticated, its interior handsome and modern, and its list of standard and available features better than any car in this class. Toss in the reasonable price and impressive standard warranty, and there’s just no contest.”

While you could likely find some great deals on a lower-mileage used Nissan Sentra, you’ll likely be more satisfied in a used Forte, one of the safest Kia cars. The 2019 model brings a lot to the table.

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