Naza Kia Forte 1.6 SX Test Drive Review
Finally I got the chance to test drive our Malaysia’s all time favorite Kia Forte 1.6 SX. Why do I say so? Look around the cities, town, villages and on the everywhere on the Malaysia roads, Kia Forte 1.6 SX is just about everywhere on the streets and even inside parking lots too. Now I get to test the car by myself and find out why this car is so popular.
Kia Forte 1.6 SX outlook has been revitalized to one of the best looking C-segment cars (Honda Civic, Toyota Altis same segment category) in the market at bargained price of B-segment cars (Toyota Vios, Honda City) that is between RM75,000 and RM96,000. Many people who opt for a C-segment car may actually go for the Kia Forte since the price is so much lower compared to its close rivals.
The Kia Forte 1.6 SX has fresh and sport outlook exterior, comes with headlamp furnished with Transparent Lense Type, and the Outer Handles Door coated with shinning chrome. Equipped with a full set of skirting, your ride will be like one of the those cars you see in the “Too Fast Too Furious” movie.
One of the drawbacks of the Kia Forte 1.6 SX exterior is the car’s lack of a high end feature, such as projector headlamps with HID. But for the price that consumers are paying, to ask for more than what already have would be too greedy.
Inside the Kia Forte 1.6 SX is furnished with luxury black leather seats. Other luxurious features included the keyless entry system, the engine push start button, a rear view camera on the back mirror and auto dual air conditioning. These high tech features which used to be only available in luxury cars priced that above RM200,000 are now available for users at price less than RM100,000. Other vehicles such as the Toyata Altis, Honda Civic and other C-segment cars failed to come with such high tech features at such a competitive price.
Other than the high tech features in the interior of Kia Forte 1.6 SX, the interior design of the car is elegant and sporty as well. I like the red line dial meters which give me a sporty spirit.
Not to forget the beautiful design of the gear knob that glows red amber light.
Once we have done admiring the interior of the car, we proceed to test out this Kia Forte 1.6 SX. We started the car by the push-to-start engine button, with the right foot on the brake pedal. The engine started smoothly but I noticed that the engine noise is louder than its closest rival, the Honda Civic, when idling. It seems the Kia Forte 1.6 SX sound proofing at the engine bay is not as good as its rivals.
We proceed to driving by released the handbrake, and the gear position shifted from the “Parking” mode to “Drive” mode. Stepping on the accelerator with the left foot and the car move effortlessly.
The car doesn’t seem under power even with 1600cc engine to move the big chassis of Kia Forte 1.6 SX. During I making the turning with the car, the steering which powered by Hydraulic Power Steering does not responsive as Toyota Vios and it’s rival, Honda Civic. Even though the steering is stiff and give me solid, stable feeling on this car but not the precise controlling of the car.
As I cruising on the Jelutong highway, I get the chance to floor the gas pedal to the carpet. Surprisingly, Kia Forte 1.6 SX exceed my expectation,the car accelerate almost as powerful as its rival, Honda Civic 1.8S. Even though we did not record the accelerating time from 0-100km/h in the professional way, but the momentum of the acceleration from both of these cars are similar and I assure this car is not underpower.
During the cruising on the road, I manage to try out the 6-speed automatic transmission. The 6-speed transmission was fun with paddle shifts and on the gear knob but there is some lag or short delay before the gear shifted accordingly.
The gear will automatic override by electronic controller to shift to appropriate sequence of gear according to the Kia Forte 1.6 SX’s speed on the road. This feature is to protect the engine and gearbox from over revving condition.
Good thing about this is protection to your Forte but bad thing is less fun, due to we can’t rev the car to the red line. Unlike Honda City, the car 5-speed is fully in manual control when ‘S’ mode kicked in.
Packed with 215/45/17 tyre profile and McPherson Struts & stabilizer on the front suspension while Coupled Torsion Beam Axle (CTBA) on the rear suspension, cruising with over 100km/h on the highway wasn’t a problem for Kia Forte 1.6 SX. The car grip on the road confidently with acceptable noise level. Bodyroll of the car was moderate and drive through bumpers wasn’t really that bumpy as compared to my Toyota Vios.
Kia Forte 1.6 SX is build for comfortable ride with suspension wasn’t that rigid. I can sense the noise level and bumpy feeling are far less than my car when I sitting my friend’s Kia Forte 1.6 SX.
Safety wise, Kia Forte 1.6 SX equipped with 2 air bags,Dual Front air bags. That was more than enough to ensure you and your family safe during the unexpected crash. Kia Forte 1.6 SX also owned compared to its rivals in the vehicle stability management where Forte have Electronic Stability Control (ESC), Anti-Lock Braking System (ABS), Electronic Brake-Force Distribution (EBD), Brake Assist System (BAS), Traction Control System (TCS).
There is another awesome safety where the salesman manage to show me before I leave, which is he put the keyless remote in the boot luggage and close the trunk. The trunk simply just can’t be closed until we take away the keyless remote from the boot. What a great feature 🙂
Overall, Kia Forte 1.6 SX was a value to money car with a lot luxury specifications, great safety features and stylish. The only drawback are the steering isn’t give me solid and precise handling and the transmission isn’t responsive. Price at RM85,800, what else can we expect more?
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