DAILY - UPDATED
Kia launches China-built Forte sedan
Following the official US unveiling, Kia Forte compact sedan has now been launched in China. Kia will build it at its brand-new China manufacturing plant owned by Kia Motors and Dongfeng Yueda company.
Kia Motors announced today that it has launched the Forte compact sedan in China market. The official launching ceremony was held at Nanjing International Expo Centre in front of 600 invitees. The all-new Forte sedan made its first appearance at Shanghai Auto Show in April and it received rave reviews from local automotive media, as well as auto show visitors.
The China-built Forte has been praised for its refined and dynamic exterior design, ample interior space and cutting-edge features that surpass the local market’s expectations. The all-new Forte sedan is a very important car for Kia as the company wants to strengthen its presence in China market. With the slew of new models including Forte compact sedan, the company plans to establish itself as an affordable premium automaker and a leading car brand in the world’s largest car market.
The C-segment Forte sedan is a strategic model for the brand globally but also has a special significance in China where Kia has seen its new car sales increasing by more than 13 percent so far this year. The China-produced Forte will be sold under the name Fu-Rui-Di (sounds funny, doesn’t it!?) but according to Kia, the name combines Chinese characters for luck, auspiciousness and advance. The name alludes to a car designed for those who lead the road to success.
Kia will manufacture the new Forte sedan at one of its two China manufacturing plants in the Jiangsu province. When compared to the US-spec Forte sedan, the China-built model received some exterior and interior styling updates along with its convenience features to better satisfy the China consumer tastes.
Already sporty exterior design has been enhanced with slightly redesigned fog lamps. Some minor styling changes have been also made to the radiator grille, head lamps and tail-lamps. Inside the Forte benefits from chrome finishings that were adopted to the center fascia and main switches while high-lustre metal grain has been generously used to meet the Chinese consumer tastes.
In China, Kia Forte will be available in two four-cylinder gasoline configurations. Bas Forte sedan will be powered by 1.6L Gamma engine (also found in the Soul crossover) while the top of the range Forte will be equipped with advanced 2.0 Theta engine. Both engines are known to deliver superb fuel economy, but Forte will also be equipped with “eco lamp” that will help the driver maximize their gas mileage.
Interior of the China-built Forte will not lack any of convenience features seen on US-spec Forte models. The model will have a push start ignition, smart key, Supervision TM gauge cluster and auto cruise control. Information on the instrument cluster and audio screen are all displayed in Chinese, instead of English.
To provide the local consumers a first-hand experience, Kia Motors announced it plans to hold large-scale road shows and test drives for the new Forte sedan in major cities across China. The company has also decided to set up exclusive showrooms for the visitors to review the car’s newest technologies and experience the superior quality of Kia’s new Forte compact sedan.