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If you’re looking for a safe, reliable used car, the 2020 Kia Forte should be at the top of your list. Redesigned in 2019, it features sporty styling and a lot of features and value for the money. Available as a four-door sedan, it lacks some of the performance and versatility of cars like the Honda Civic, Mazda3, and Subaru Impreza but is a competent performer with lots to offer in the compact sedan segment.  

2020 Kia Forte Specs

A blue 2020 Kia Forte GT driving down a treelined street
2020 Kia Forte GT | Kia

The 2020 Kia Forte is available in five trim levels and offers two engine choices. 

The Kia Forte FE is the entry-level trim and comes with a 147-horsepower 2.0-liter four-cylinder engine. It’s also available with either a manual transmission or continuously variable automatic (CVT). Standard features include an 8-inch touch-screen infotainment system with USB input and Bluetooth connectivity that’s compatible with Android Auto and Apple CarPlay. Safety features include a rearview camera, lane keeping assist with driver drowsiness and lane departure warnings, as well as a forward collision warning with automatic emergency braking.

A step up from the FE, the Kia Forte LXS includes all of the FE’s features and adds alloy wheels, the CVT transmission, and a split-folding rear seat as standard equipment.

The Forte GT-Line adds more sporty touches but still comes with the base engine. It includes sport cloth seats with synthetic leather side bolstering, an upgraded stereo with six speakers, and a push-button start. It also includes additional safety features like lane change assist, blind spot monitoring, and rear cross-traffic alert. 

Representing the top of the line, the Kia Forte EX adds a 10-way power-adjustable driver’s seat, heated and ventilated front sport seats, and dual-zone automatic climate control. It also includes standard satellite radio, two additional USB chargers, UVO eServices, and trim-specific badges.

For people seeking more performance, the Kia Forte GT gets a 201-horsepower turbocharged 1.6-liter four-cylinder engine with either a six-speed manual or seven-speed dual-clutch automatic transmission sport-tuned suspension, LED projector headlights, and a six-way manually adjustable driver’s seat.

Performance in the Kia Forte

According to Car and Driver, performance for the base Kia Forte engine is sluggish, taking 8.2 seconds to go from 0 to 60 mph. However, it offers excellent fuel economy, averaging 33 mpg combined and up to 41 on the highway.

Performance improves significantly in the Forte GT. 0-60 times drop to 6.7 seconds, putting it midfield in the sport compact car class. The added performance drops fuel economy to 30 mpg combined and 37 mpg on the highway. Car and Driver felt the GT was “interesting in most daily driving situations” but wasn’t as exciting as its Kia Stinger-inspired styling suggested. 

How reliable is the 2020 Kia Forte?

The 2020 Kia Forte won the U.S. News award for Best Compact Car, beating out the Honda Civic and Toyota Corolla. Reliability on previous models was below average, but the 2020 Forte has a J.D. Power predicted reliability score of 90, which is a great rating. According to the Drive, the Kia Forte has one of the better factory warranties as a used car with its 5-year/100,000-mile powertrain coverage.   

Are used Kia Fortes good cars? 

A 2020 Forte GT parked next to a glass wall
2020 Kia Forte GT | Kia

If you’re shopping for an inexpensive used car, the 2020 Kia Forte should be on your list. It comes with many standard features and offers a comfortable ride. The base engine is a bit underwhelming but gets good gas mileage. Additionally, it scores well in safety. It earned a rating of “Good” from the IIHS and a four-star rating from the NHTSA. 

For buyers looking for a bit more performance, the Kia Forte GT offers all of the advantages of the other trim models with a more powerful engine. The fuel economy suffers a bit, but if you like your bulgogi spicy, the GT is the one to get.