About the only things the 2014 Kia Forte sedan and 2013 Audi RS 5 cabriolet have in common are the fact that they both have four wheels, and Kia’s lead designer Peter Schreyer worked for both companies. Oh yeah, and both of them got prices attached to their sheetmetal today, which is a pretty big deal. Let’s start with the Kia.
2014 Kia Forte Sedan Priced from $16,700
The 2014 Kia Forte will go on sale within the next 30 days starting at $16,700 for a base LX model with a six-speed manual transmission, including $800 for destination and handling. That still includes a decent amount of equipment for the cash, including power windows, steering wheel-mounted audio controls, Sirius XM radio, air conditioning, and heated power-folding mirrors. Opting up to the Popular package on the LX automatic-equipped cars yields 16-inch alloy wheels, cruise control, an adjustable armrest, and keyless entry. The price of the package has not yet been announced.
The 2014 Kia Forte LX with the automatic will start at $18,200. Forte LX models will come equipped with a 1.8-liter, 148-horsepower engine shared with the Hyundai Elantra. In that car, it is EPA-rated at 28 mpg city/38 mpg highway; we think Kia might be tweaking it to edge nearer to the magic 40-mpg number.
Moving up the the 2014 Kia Forte EX offers up a 2.0-liter, 173-horsepower engine not shared with its corporate cousin. Coming only equipped with a six-speed automatic transmission, the Forte EX starts at $20,200. In addition, it comes standard with the new UVO with eServices infotainment system, keyless entry, rear camera, sliding armrest, and a cooling glovebox. Navigation, FlexSteer adjustable heft, heated front and rear seats, a cooled driver’s seat, leather, sunroof, HID headlights, and a long list of other features are available.
When we drove the 2014 Kia Forte EX earlier this year, we remarked that it had the potential to be a class-leading car. Let’s see how it stacks up, dollar for dollar, when options packages are finalized in the next month with the Forte 5-door and Forte Koup to follow.
2013 Audi RS 5 Cabriolet to Start at $78,795
At a price some $9,000 dearer than its coupe counterpart, the drop-top 2013 Audi RS 5 enters showrooms at $78,795, including $895 for destination and handling. With a high-revving 4.2-liter V-8, the RS 5 cranks out 450 horsepower, can run from 0 to 60 in an estimated 4.9 seconds–it’s a heavy car–and tops out at 174 mph. Power is routed through a seven-speed dual-clutch transmission to all four wheels, and it achieves what Audi calls class-leading fuel economy: 16 mpg city/22 mpg highway, which outdoes the BMW M3 with its dual-clutch gearbox.
If you’re looking at this sort of car for its fuel economy, you’re missing the point, though.
The 2013 Audi RS 5 comes with a soft top instead of the hardtop you get in the M3, helping it preserve a modicum of practicality. The only option Audi felt the need to highlight was the RS 5′s carbon ceramic front brake rotors, a $6,000 option. Most automakers offer them on all four corners; the M3 is on its way out and has never offered them as a standalone option in the U.S.
Much is the case with the Kia, the Audi RS 5 cabrio goes on sale next month.
Sources: Kia Motors, Audi