Son's Automotive Group Compares 2016 Kia Forte Koup VS 2016 Fiat 500 Near Tucker, GA

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2016 Kia Forte Koup

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2016 Kia Forte Koup

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2016 Fiat 500

Safety Comparison

To maximize occupant safety, the front seat shoulder belts of the Kia Forte Koup have pretensioners to eliminate dangerous slack in the event of a collision and force limiters to limit the pressure the belts will exert on the passengers. The Fiat 500 doesn’t offer pretensioners.

Both the Forte Koup and the 500 have standard driver and passenger frontal airbags, front side-impact airbags, side-impact head airbags, front wheel drive, four-wheel antilock brakes, traction control, electronic stability systems to prevent skidding, daytime running lights and available rearview cameras.

Warranty Comparison

The Forte Koup comes with a full 5 year/60,000 mile basic warranty, which covers the entire car and includes 24 hour roadside assistance. The 500’s 4 year/50,000 mile basic warranty expires 1 year and 10,000 miles sooner.

Kia’s powertrain warranty covers the Forte Koup 6 years and 50,000 miles longer than Fiat covers the 500. Any repair needed on the engine, transmission, axles, joints or driveshafts is fully covered for 10 years or 100,000 miles. Coverage on the 500 ends after only 4 years or 50,000 miles.

There are almost 4 times as many Kia dealers as there are Fiat dealers, which makes it much easier should you ever need service under the Forte Koup’s warranty.

Reliability Comparison

The camshafts in the Forte Koup’s engine are driven by a hardened steel chain, with no maintenance needs. The 500’s camshaft is driven by a rubber belt that needs periodic replacement. If the 500’s cam drive belt breaks the engine could be severely damaged when the pistons hit the opened valves.

A reliable vehicle saves its owner time, money and trouble. Nobody wants to be stranded or have to be without their vehicle while it’s being repaired. Consumer Reports predicts that the Forte Koup’s reliability will be 86% better than the 500.

J.D. Power and Associates’ 2015 Initial Quality Study of new car owners surveyed provide the statistics that show that Kia vehicles are better in initial quality than Fiat vehicles. J.D. Power ranks Kia second in initial quality, above the industry average. With 75 more problems per 100 vehicles, Fiat is ranked 33rd, below the industry average.

J.D. Power and Associates’ 2015 survey of the owners of three-year-old vehicles provides the long-term dependability statistics that show that Kia vehicles are more reliable than Fiat vehicles. J.D. Power ranks Kia 20th in reliability. With 115 more problems per 100 vehicles, Fiat is ranked 30th.

Engine Comparison

The Forte Koup has more powerful engines than the 500:



Forte Koup EX 2.0 DOHC 4 cyl.

173 HP

154 lbs.-ft.

Forte Koup SX 1.6 turbo 4 cyl.

201 HP

195 lbs.-ft.

500 1.4 SOHC 4 cyl.

101 HP

98 lbs.-ft.

500 Turbo 1.4 turbo 4 cyl.

135 HP

150 lbs.-ft.

500 Abarth 1.4 turbo 4 cyl.

157 HP

183 lbs.-ft.

500 Abarth 1.4 turbo 4 cyl.

160 HP

170 lbs.-ft.

Fuel Economy and Range Comparison

To lower fuel costs and make buying fuel easier, the Kia Forte Koup uses regular unleaded gasoline. The 500 requires premium for maximum efficiency, which can cost 20 to 55 cents more per gallon.

The Forte Koup has 2.7 gallons more fuel capacity than the 500 (13.2 vs. 10.5 gallons), for longer range between fill-ups.

Brakes and Stopping Comparison

For better stopping power the Forte Koup’s brake rotors are larger than those on the 500:

Forte Koup EX

Forte Koup SX


500 Abarth/Turbo

Front Rotors

11 inches

11.8 inches

10.1 inches

11.1 inches

Rear Rotors

10.3 inches

10.3 inches

9.4 inches

9.4 inches

Tires and Wheels Comparison

For better traction, the Forte Koup has larger standard tires than the 500 (205/55R16 vs. 185/55R15). The Forte Koup SX’s tires are larger than the largest tires available on the 500 (225/40R18 vs. 205/40R17).

For better ride, handling and brake cooling the Forte Koup EX has standard 16-inch wheels. Smaller 15-inch wheels are standard on the 500 Pop/Lounge. The Forte Koup SX’s 18-inch wheels are larger than the 17-inch wheels optional on the 500 Abarth.

The Kia Forte Koup’s wheels have 5 lugs for longer wheel bearing life, less chance of rotor warping and greater strength. The Fiat 500 only has 4 wheel lugs per wheel.

Suspension and Handling Comparison

The Forte Koup has standard front and rear gas-charged shocks for better control over choppy roads. The 500’s suspension doesn’t offer gas-charged shocks.

For a smoother ride and more stable handling, the Forte Koup’s wheelbase is 15.7 inches longer than on the 500 (106.3 inches vs. 90.6 inches).

For better handling and stability, the average track (width between the wheels) on the Forte Koup is 5.6 inches wider in the front and 6.5 inches wider in the rear than the track on the 500.

For better maneuverability, the Forte Koup’s turning circle is 2.8 feet tighter than the 500 Abarth’s (34.8 feet vs. 37.6 feet).

Passenger Space Comparison

Because it has more passenger and cargo room, the Forte Koup is rated a Compact car by the EPA, while the 500 is rated a Minicompact.

The Forte Koup has standard seating for 5 passengers; the 500 can only carry 4.

The Forte Koup has 18.3 cubic feet more passenger volume than the 500 (92.3 vs. 74).

The Forte Koup has 1.5 inches more front legroom, 5.9 inches more front hip room, 6.5 inches more front shoulder room, .8 inches more rear headroom, 4.2 inches more rear legroom, 10.9 inches more rear hip room and 6.6 inches more rear shoulder room than the 500.

Cargo Capacity Comparison

The Forte Koup has a much larger trunk than the 500 with its rear seat up (13.3 vs. 9.5 cubic feet).

Ergonomics Comparison

To help each driver find a more comfortable driving position, the Forte Koup has a telescoping steering wheel. Much better than just a tilt steering wheel or adjustable seat, this allows a short driver to sit further from the steering wheel while maintaining contact with the pedals. The 500 doesn’t offer a telescoping steering wheel.

The Forte Koup’s front power windows open or close with one touch of the switches, making it more convenient at drive-up windows and toll booths, or when talking with someone outside of the car. The 500’s power windows’ switches have to be held the entire time to close them fully.

The Forte Koup’s standard power window controls are mounted on the armrest for easy access. The 500’s available power window controls are spread out on the center console where they can’t be seen without the driver completely removing his eyes from the road.

The Smart Key optional on the Forte Koup allows you to unlock the driver’s door, trunk and start the engine all without removing a key from pocket or purse. This eliminates searching for keys before loading groceries, getting in the vehicle in bad weather or making a hurried start to your trip. The Fiat 500 doesn’t offer an advanced key system.

The Forte Koup has a standard locking fuel door with a remote release located convenient to the driver. A locking fuel door helps prevent vandalism, such as sugar in the tank and fuel theft. The 500 doesn’t offer a locking fuel door.

The Forte Koup has a standard automatic headlight on/off feature. When the ignition is on, the headlights automatically turn on at dusk and off after dawn. The 500 doesn’t offer automatic headlights.

To shield the driver and front passenger’s vision over a larger portion of the windshield and side windows, the Forte Koup has standard extendable sun visors. The 500 doesn’t offer extendable visors.

Optional air conditioned seats in the Forte Koup keep the driver and front passenger comfortable and take the sting out of hot seats in Summer. The 500 doesn’t offer an air conditioned driver’s seat.

On extremely cold Winter days, the Forte Koup’s optional heated steering wheel provides comfort, allowing the driver to steer safely and comfortably before the car heater warms up. The 500 doesn’t offer a heated steering wheel.

The Forte Koup has a standard center folding armrest for the rear passengers. A center armrest helps make rear passengers more comfortable. The 500 doesn’t offer a rear seat center armrest.

The Forte Koup’s optional dual zone air conditioning allows the driver and front passenger to choose two completely different temperatures so people with different temperature preferences won’t have to compromise. This makes both the driver and front passenger as comfortable as possible. The 500 doesn’t offer dual zone air conditioning.

For greater rear passenger comfort, the Forte Koup has standard rear heat vents to keep rear occupants more comfortable. The 500 doesn’t offer rear vents.

The Forte Koup’s available GPS navigation system has a real-time traffic update feature that plots alternative routes to automatically bypass traffic problems. (Service not available in all areas.) The 500’s available navigation system doesn’t offer real-time traffic updates.

Economic Advantages Comparison

The Forte Koup will cost the buyer less in the long run because of its superior resale value. Kiplinger’s estimates that the Forte Koup will retain a greater percentage of its original price after three and five years than the 500.

Forte Koup


Five Year

33% to 38%

19% to 21%

Three Year

49% to 55%

31% to 36%

Recommendations Comparison

Consumer Reports® recommends the Kia Forte Koup, based on reliability, safety and performance. The Fiat 500 isn't recommended.

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