Four official product photos of the new Kia Forte sedan has been released by Kia. It will hit Korean showrooms first in August 2008, with the rest of the world to get it later, including Malaysia as a new Cerato or Forte sedan. The current Cerato is sold here as a 5-door hatch, but a sedan from this current generation is not likely to be introduced with Naza Kia management most probably deciding to skip the current generation Cerato sedan and going straight for this new Forte.
The new Kia Forte is more angular and up to date with current design trends compared to its predecessor. While Europe gets the cee’d, this model is the cee’d’s equivalent for the rest of the world. So while exterior styling is radically different from the cee’d (which is a hatch in the first place), expect the interior to follow the cee’d’s interior design closely. It’s quite good looking indeed.
The rear looks like the current generation Hyundai Elantra we have here in our market, but the shoulder profile thankfully misses the odd Audi A5-like wave that the Elantra has. The front end sports Kia’s new corporate nose that is also found on the facelifted Optima.
1.6 litre and 2.0 litre CVVT engines will be offered, but the cee’d’s 1.6 litre VGT turbodiesel is a question mark at this point as the markets where this car will be introduced are not really mad about diesel.
Kia intends to introduce a two-door coupe version of this Forte later, which will more closely resemble the KIA KOUP Concept that this Forte was based on.