2012 Kia Forte Koup

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Key Specs
Our Take
Overview
Photos
Reviews
Safety & Recalls
Warranty & CPO
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Key Specs

of the 2012 Kia Forte Koup. Base trim shown.

Our Take

From the Cars.com Vehicle Test Team

The Good

  • Crisp, clean styling
  • Linear braking
  • Powerful 2.4-liter four-cylinder
  • Sensibly arranged controls
  • Hatchback versatility

The Bad

  • Firm ride
  • Raspy four-cylinder engines
  • Six-speed automatic holds low gears too long
  • Backseat legroom
  • Optional heated front seats only have one level

Notable Features of the 2012 Kia Forte Koup

  • Sedan, coupe or hatchback
  • Choice of four-cylinder engines
  • Standard USB port
  • Optional push-button start

2012 Kia Forte Koup Overview

By Cars.com Editors
Vehicle Overview

The five-seat Forte is Kia's entry in the compact-car segment, and it's available with a choice of four-cylinder engines and comes standard with numerous safety features. It's sold as a sedan, a four-door hatchback and a coupe, which Kia calls the Koup. Competitors include the Honda Civic, Ford Focus and Toyota Corolla.

New for 2012
For the 2012 model year, EX trim levels of the Forte gain a telescoping steering wheel and the Forte five-door hatchback is no longer available with a manual transmission.

Exterior
The Forte sports crisp styling that gives the sedan an athletic shape. You don't have to look too closely to find resemblances to other small cars. The front end, for instance, looks similar to a Civic, and the Forte's taillights look like the Mitsubishi Lancer's. Exterior features include:

  • Standard 15-inch steel wheels with covers
  • Optional 16-inch alloy wheels
  • SX version gets sport suspension and 17-inch alloy wheels
  • Optional sunroof

Interior
There are available steering-wheel-mounted audio and cruise controls. Kia says the sedan's trunk offers 14.7 cubic feet of cargo space, and the hatchback has 19.4 cubic feet of space. Interior features include:

  • Standard cloth seats
  • Optional leather upholstery
  • Optional heated front seats
  • Optional air conditioning
  • Optional keyless entry
  • Optional telescoping steering wheel
  • Optional navigation system with backup camera
  • Optional push-button start

Under the Hood
LX and EX models are po...

Vehicle Overview

The five-seat Forte is Kia's entry in the compact-car segment, and it's available with a choice of four-cylinder engines and comes standard with numerous safety features. It's sold as a sedan, a four-door hatchback and a coupe, which Kia calls the Koup. Competitors include the Honda Civic, Ford Focus and Toyota Corolla.

New for 2012
For the 2012 model year, EX trim levels of the Forte gain a telescoping steering wheel and the Forte five-door hatchback is no longer available with a manual transmission.

Exterior
The Forte sports crisp styling that gives the sedan an athletic shape. You don't have to look too closely to find resemblances to other small cars. The front end, for instance, looks similar to a Civic, and the Forte's taillights look like the Mitsubishi Lancer's. Exterior features include:

  • Standard 15-inch steel wheels with covers
  • Optional 16-inch alloy wheels
  • SX version gets sport suspension and 17-inch alloy wheels
  • Optional sunroof

Interior
There are available steering-wheel-mounted audio and cruise controls. Kia says the sedan's trunk offers 14.7 cubic feet of cargo space, and the hatchback has 19.4 cubic feet of space. Interior features include:

  • Standard cloth seats
  • Optional leather upholstery
  • Optional heated front seats
  • Optional air conditioning
  • Optional keyless entry
  • Optional telescoping steering wheel
  • Optional navigation system with backup camera
  • Optional push-button start

Under the Hood
LX and EX models are powered by a 2.0-liter four-cylinder engine that makes 156 horsepower. Choosing the SX trim brings a 2.4-liter four-cylinder that generates 173 hp. Mechanical features include:

  • Standard six-speed manual transmission
  • Optional six-speed automatic
  • Front-wheel drive


Safety
Standard safety features include:

  •  Side-impact airbags for the front seats
  •  Side curtain airbags
  •  Antilock brakes
  •  Electronic stability system
  •  Active head restraints for the front seats

 


Latest 2012 Forte Koup Stories

Consumer Reviews

Exterior Styling
(4.3)
Performance
(4.4)
Interior Design
(4.3)
Comfort
(4.2)
Reliability
(4.5)
Value For The Money
(4.4)

What Drivers Are Saying

(5.0)

Fun car to drive and own!

by KiaFan from Indianapolis on October 10, 2018

Besides the great color and styling of the car, I love how the interior controls are laid out. Easy to access. Easy to use. The blue tooth setup takes about 30 seconds. This car is very responsive on ... Read full review

(4.0)

Fun and Reliable with Great Gas Mileage

by Jacob K from Kent on June 16, 2018

I bought this car after owning and loving a 2008 Kia Spectra SX. I loved the Spectra's size and peppiness, but wanted a bit more power and I LOVED the look of the Forte Koups. It's been incredibly ... Read full review

Safety & Recalls

Recalls

The 2012 Kia Forte Koup currently has 2 recalls

Crash and Rollover Test Ratings

The 2012 Kia Forte Koup has not been tested.

Manufacturer Warranties

Backed by Kia
New Car Program Benefits
  • Bumper-to-Bumper

    60 months / 60,000 miles

  • Powertrain

    120 months / 100,000 miles

  • Roadside Assistance

    60 months / 60,000 miles

Certified Pre-Owned Program Benefits
  • Maximum Age/Mileage

    5 years or newer/less than 60,000 miles

  • Basic Warranty Terms

    12 months/12,000 miles

  • Powertrain warranty

    10 years/100,000 miles

  • Dealer Certification Required

    164-point inspection

  • Roadside Assistance

    Yes

  • View All Program Details

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Cars.com Car Seat Check

Certified child passenger safety technicians conduct hands-on tests of a car’s Latch system and check the vehicle’s ability to accommodate different types of car seats. The Forte Koup received the following grades on a scale of A-F.*
* This score may not apply to all trims, especially for vehicles with multiple body styles that affect the space and design of the seating.

Warranty FAQs

What is a Bumper-to-Bumper warranty?

Often called a basic warranty or new-vehicle warranty, a bumper-to-bumper policy covers components like air conditioning, audio systems, vehicle sensors, fuel systems and major electrical components. Most policies exclude regular maintenance like fluid top offs and oil changes, but a few brands have separate free-maintenance provisions, and those that do offer them is slowly rising. Bumper-to-bumper warranties typically expire faster than powertrain warranties.

What is a Powertrain warranty?

Don't be misled a 10-year or 100,000-mile powertrain warranty doesn't promise a decade of free repairs for your car. It typically covers just the engine and transmission, along with any other moving parts that lead to the wheels, like the driveshaft and constant velocity joints. Some automakers also bundle seat belts and airbags into their powertrain warranties. With a few exceptions, powertrain warranties don't cover regular maintenance like engine tuneups and tire rotations.

What is included in Roadside Assistance?

Some automakers include roadside assistance with their bumper-to-bumper or powertrain warranties, while others have separate policies. These programs cover anything from flat-tire changes and locksmith services to jump-starts and towing. Few reimburse incidental costs like motel rooms (if you have to wait for repairs).

What other services could be included in a warranty?

Some automakers include free scheduled maintenance for items such as oil changes, air filters and tire rotations. Some include consumables including brake pads and windshield wipers; others do not. They are typically for the first couple of years of ownership of a new car.

What does CPO mean?

A certified pre-owned or CPO car has been inspected to meet minimum quality standards and typically includes some type of warranty. While dealers and third parties certify cars, the gold standard is an automaker-certified vehicle that provides a factory-backed warranty, often extending the original coverage. Vehicles must be in excellent condition and have low miles and wear to be certified, which is why off-lease vehicles feed many CPO programs.

See also the latest CPO incentives by automaker