Kia unveils the 2020 Forte GT packed with turbocharged engine, sportier suspension
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Today Kia Motors America (KMA) unveiled the 2020 Forte GT at the SEMA Show 2019 in Las Vegas, marking the introduction of two GT sport trims new to the Forte family of compact sedans. A turbocharged engine, sportier suspension, race-inspired visual upgrades and premium amenities are just some of the elements that come as part of the GT sport trims, taking the Forte’s performance and fun-to-drive athleticism to the next level.
“The fantastic capabilities of our team of engineers really shined in the development of the Stinger and we’re thrilled to continue injecting a bit more sport into some of the other models in the lineup” said Orth Hedrick, executive director, Car Planning and Telematics, KMA. “Whether you want a practical commuter or performance compact sedan, there’s now a Forte that appeals to several types of car shoppers. The Forte is already one of our top sellers, and we believe adding more diversity to the model line will appeal to a broader range of consumers.”
With the new sport additions, the 2020 Forte will be available in FE, LXS, EX, GT Line, and GT trim levels. For those who want the most out of the Forte GT, the trim can be elevated with available GT1 and GT2 packages. Pricing will be announced closer to the 2020 Forte’s on-sale date.
The amount of sport injected into the Forte varies on the GT designation. Characterized by cosmetic upgrades only, the “GT Line” trim spices up the Forte’s presentation with a racier looking gloss black grille offset by red accents. The gloss black treatment is also applied to heated outside mirrors with LED turn signals, sport side sills, and on the rear spoiler perched atop the decklid.
To match the exterior, the interior of the Forte “GT Line” is upgraded with alloy sport pedals and a flat bottom steering wheel with white contrast stitching. Exclusive black sport cloth seats continue the theme with the same color stitching, while front seats gain performance side bolsters to keep occupants firmly ensconced through the corners.
Moving up the ladder, the GT trim is outfitted more aggressively with sport tuned dual exhaust and 18-inch alloy wheels that pop thanks to a GT-exclusive two-tone finish. Standard LED headlights, racier red contrast stitching and Smart Key w/ Push Button Start are also part of the GT treatment, as well as LED ambient interior lighting with an illuminated GT dash inlay.
While models wearing the “GT Line” badge keep the naturally aspirated 147-HP 2.0-liter MPI four-cylinder engine and Intelligent Variable Transmission (IVT), the higher GT trim takes the Forte’s performance and athleticism to the next level with a DOHC turbocharged 1.6-liter I-4 GDI engine.
Output is an estimated 201 HP and 195 lb-ft. of torque which is sent to the front wheels via a 6-speed manual transmission or 7-speed dual clutch transmission (models with the latter transmission receive steering wheel-mounted paddle shifters).
A fully independent front and rear suspension, paired with larger front disc brakes and sway bars, deliver better handling and cornering, improved ride quality, and enhanced stability and steering. Befitting a true compact sport sedan, the Forte GT is available with sticky 225/40R-18 Michelin Pilot Sport Summer tires.
A suite of Kia Drive Wise technologies continues to be standard, meaning both GT sport trims are equipped with Forward Collision Warning (FCW)1, Forward Collision-Avoidance Assist (FCA)1, Lane Departure Warning (LDW)1, Lane Keeping Assist-Line (LKA-Line)1, and Driver Attention Warning (DAW)2. Opting for the GT1 package adds Blind Spot Collision Warning (BCW)1 with Lane Change Assist (LCA)1 and Rear-Cross Traffic Collision Warning (RCCW)1 to the roster of technologies, while the GT2 package tops it off with the addition of Smart Cruise Control (SCC)1.
Both GT1 and GT2 packages improve the Forte’s interior environment with LED overhead lighting and power sunroof, a 320-watt Harman Kardon 3 premium eight-speaker audio system complete with Clari-Fi TM 4 technology, wireless charging5, 4.2-inch center LCD screen and dual-zone full-automatic air conditioning. Forte GTs with the GT2 package are further differentiated with heated and ventilated SOFINO GT sport seating and a 10-way power driver’s seat.
The 2020 Forte GT sedan will go on sale next summer, but pricing it’s still unknown. The Kia Forte for the North American market is manufactured at the company’s assembly plant in Pesqueria, Nuevo Leon.