There’s Only 1 Terrible Compact Sedan That Consumer Reports Predicts Owners Will Hate

While Consumer Reports is often right about its reviews, car shoppers may sometimes disagree with what the car critic has to say. That said, there is one thing Consumer Reports is often confident in: a car’s owner satisfaction score, as this score is based on what car owners think about their car. In the popular compact sedan segment, there is one terrible option Consumer Reports predicts owners will hate. 

What the owner satisfaction score actually judges

A kia logo, maker of a great compact Sedan.
Kia logo | Getty Images

When Consumer Reports measures a car’s owner satisfaction, what it’s doing is sending out an annual survey to folks that ask them about their car. This survey asks drivers if they enjoyed their car’s driving experience, if the car’s comfort features were good, if the styling was up to par, and if the car was a good value.

That said, while those questions reveal what owners liked or didn’t like, they don’t represent a car’s overall owner satisfaction score. That score is based on another question, which asks drivers, all things considered if they would buy their car again. The percentage of drivers who said “definitely yes” to this question then becomes the car’s overall owner satisfaction score.

The 2022 Kia Forte compact sedan has a poor owner satisfaction score

And in regards to compact sedans, according to Consumer Reports, not only is the 2022 Kia Forte a terrible car, but it also has the lowest owner satisfaction rating. There was a significant gap between its owner satisfaction score and the next closest competitor, the Toyota Corolla Hatchback. Great sedans like the Honda Civic had an even higher owner satisfaction score compared to the Forte.

Not only were owners not satisfied with their purchase, but owners did not rate the Forte highly in all relevant categories. In terms of Kia’s driving experience, a slim majority of owners were satisfied, but many weren’t satisfied with the car’s performance capabilities. The Forte’s comfort score was even worse. A majority of owners were not satisfied with the car’s comfort qualities. 

However, the Forte, which starts at $19,000, is still a cheap car, so owners gave it a good value rating. It wasn’t a great rating, though. The best score that owners gave the Kia sedan was for its styling. But it wasn’t that much higher than the other categories. 

Here are the positives and negatives of the 2022 Kia Forte compact sedan

Overall, Consumer Reports generally agrees with drivers in terms of what works and what doesn’t work. The Forte is a simple and cheap car with what folks would expect in a simple and affordable car. Primarily this means that its fit and finish have a lot of cheap materials. It also means that Kia didn’t invest too much into the car’s comfort features. 

Its ride quality is stiff, and drivers and passengers will feel “every road bump, seam, and pothole.” Its cabin isn’t well-protected from noise, and folks will also hear a lot of engine and road noise when they’re in the Kia sedan. The seats are basic and are uncomfortable when combined with the car’s poor ride quality.

As for the positives, it’s cheap and simple, which is a good thing regarding the car’s controls. There’s an 8-inch touch screen as standard, and it’s simple and easy to use. Plus, its standard 2.0-liter four-cylinder engine gets 147 hp and 34 mpg combined. That’s a great fuel economy, and it’s part of why Consumer Reports gave the Forte a green choice badge.

RELATED: A Fully-Loaded 2022 Kia Forte Is Still a Cheap New Car Under $30,000