Kia Preparing Forte Hatchback

Automobile Staff
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In addition to the sedan and sleek Koup models, it seems Kia is hard at work at a third body style for its Forte -- a hatchback.

Motor Trend caught photos of a prototype Forte five-door undergoing testing in Sweden. Although much of the test car is camouflaged quite nicely, the car retains the Forte’s styling ahead of the C-pillars. Although Kia is growing fond of spreading its new design language across the lineup, company officials had previously indicated that a hatchback Forte was in its product plans -- so we’re not completely surprised to see such a car show up on public roads.

What’s still unknown is the car’s chances of making its way to North America. It’d be easy enough to federalize the car for U.S. consumption, allowing Kia to compete against the likes of the Mitsubishi Lancer Sportback, but Kia has been known to leave some of its most stylish hatchbacks -- the C’eed, notably -- as European exclusives.

If the Forte hatch crosses the pond, expect it to use either a 156-hp 2.0-liter I-4, or a 173-hp 2.4-liter I-4. Transmission choices will likely remain identical to the sedan and coupe, meaning the 2.0-liter will be mated to either a four-speed automatic or a five-speed manual, while the larger four-banger will receive either a five-speed auto or a six-speed manual.

Source: Motor Trend

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