Kia’s Compact 2025 K4 Sedan Replaces the Forte

New York, NY – The all-new 2025 Kia K4 sedan, featuring a fresh design, new technology, and two engine options, made its global debut at the New York International Auto Show. The K4, Kia’s fourth-generation compact sedan, will replace the outgoing Forte when it arrives at dealers in the second half of 2024. It is the latest Kia to feature the company’s “Opposites United” design language, which began with the launch of the fully electric EV9 SUV last year.

The K4 has standard vertical LED headlights and LED taillights inspired by those on the EV9. It has a fastback profile, with rear door handles integrated into the rear C-pillar. Despite its sleek proportions, the K4 has a sizeable 14.5 cubic-foot trunk (413 liters). Of note, this trunk is smaller than the 15.3 cu-ft. (433 liters) compartment in the Forte.

Sporty GT-Line and Top-level GT-Line Turbo Trims

The Kia K4 next-generation compact sedan is the widest model in the segment. Photo: Kia

Like the Forte, the K4 will be available in sporty GT-Line trim, which includes unique front and rear fascias with gloss black accents, mirror caps, window trim, and side sill. A satin chrome beltline and 18-inch alloy wheels are also standard. The top-level GT-Line Turbo Tech trim in Canada will also receive small cube LED projector headlights, integrated LED fog lights, and grade-specific 18-inch alloy wheels. GT-Line Turbo trims are also outfitted with a multi-link rear suspension. 

The K4 model lineup for the U.S. had not been revealed at the time of writing, but five trims will be available in Canada: LX, EX, EX+, GT-Line Turbo, and GT-Line Turbo Tech. 

Dimensionally, the K4 is 185.5 inches (4,709 mm) long and 72.7 inches (1,849 mm) wide, making it the most expansive car in its segment and with the biggest footprint overall. It is 2.9 inches (73.6 mm) longer and 1.8 inches wider (45.7 mm) than the outgoing Forte. Full specs were unavailable at the time of writing, but Kia says the K4 has 37.9 inches (965 mm) of rear-seat legroom and 37.2 inches (947 mm) of rear-seat headroom. 

K4 Power Includes Two Engine Options

2025 kia k4 compact sedan side view studio shot2025 kia k4 compact sedan side view studio shot
Two engine options, including a 1.6L turbo. Photo: Kia

Under the hood, the new Kia sedan is powered by a standard 2.0L four-cylinder engine (147 horsepower / 132 lb-ft.) that’s paired with a CVT. A more powerful 1.6L turbocharged four-cylinder (190 hp / 195 lb-ft.) mated to an eight-speed automatic transmission is available as an option. Power output versus the Forte is identical for the 2.0L engine, but horsepower is down by 11 for the 1.6L turbo. Both engines drive the front wheels only.

2025 Kia K4 Interior

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The clean, horizontal layout inside the new K4. Photo: Kia

Inside, the K4 features a single panel with large digital screens for the instrument cluster and multimedia touchscreen. Kia had not revealed the size of each screen individually at the time of writing, but it says the display has a combined width of almost 30 inches. 

The display is powered by Connected Car Navigation Cockpit (ccNC), Kia’s new operating system which was originally introduced with the EV9. The ccNC has faster processing, higher graphical fidelity, uses Quick Controls for swiping, and has over-the-air update capability. 

Other K4 tech features include standard wireless Apple CarPlay and Android Auto and the available Digital Key 2.0 with Ultra Wideband, which is compatible with Apple and Samsung devices. Digital Key 2.0 can be used to lock, unlock, and drive and is shareable with other users via text message on compatible devices. A Harman / Kardon premium audio system is optional, as is a wide sunroof. 

As for interior color schemes, in Canada, the K4 will be offered with Medium Grey, with GT-Line models also receiving Onyx (black) and Off-White. Heated front seats are standard on all trims, while ventilated seats, heated steering wheel, and driver’s memory seat are optional on upper-level trims. Colors and packaging for U.S. models had not been revealed at the time of writing. 

On the safety front, the K4 comes with eight standard airbags and a suite of advanced driver assistance system tech. In Canada, Intelligent Speed Limit Assist, Lane Keeping Assist, and Smart Cruise Control with Stop & Go are standard, while Forward Collision Assist 1.5 and Evasive Steering Assist are optional.

Pricing and fuel consumption figures for the 2025 Kia K4 will be announced closer to launch. 

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