The Kia Cerato -- called Forte overseas -- Koup lineup just got a whole lot sportier at the 2013 New York Auto Show: the new 201-horsepower, turbocharged Koup SX has made its debut alongside the base Koup EX.
With 148kW of power and 264Nm of torque from its 1.6-litre, direct-injected turbo four-cylinder engine -- the same one used in the Hyundai Veloster SR Turbo -- the Cerato Koup SX is the most powerful Koup model ever.
With front-wheel drive and a six-speed manual transmission (a six-speed automatic is available), the Koup SX aims to be Kia's sportiest model. The base-model Koup EX comes standard with an automatic transmission for its 2.0-litre, 129kW/209Nm four-cylinder engine -- a rise of 14kW and 15Nm over the current Koup's 2.0-litre.
"The Forte Koup is arguably the sportiest vehicle in our award-winning lineup, and it has helped raise Kia’s brand awareness significantly among automotive enthusiasts," said Michael Sprague, executive vice president of marketing & communications, Kia Motors America. "Its rakish design, premium amenities and powerful turbocharged engine set it apart from the competition."
The Koup SX and EX join the Cerato sedan and hatchback, and despite the performance-directed marketing and turbocharged engine, there's still plenty of Kia value going on as well.
As with the Koup EX, standard features include UVO eServices with Rear Camera Display, Bluetooth wireless, SiriusXM satellite radio, LED lighting, and a leather-wrapped steering wheel--but adds 18-inch alloy wheels, dual chrome exhaust tips, and LED tail lights. Optional extras include HID headlights, dual-zone climate control, SmartKey with push-button start, 10-way power driver's seat, and more.
The Kia Cerato Koup SX also has its own aesthetic features, with a larger opening in the bumper and grille, black gloss grille inserts, larger front brakes, alloy pedals, and "carbon fiber-style" interior and exterior accents.
The new Cerato Koup range is likely to go on sale in the fourth quarter of 2013. Pricing and details of Australian specification will be announced closer to its launch. And while there is no indication yet of whether we'll get the turbocharged Koup SX, Hyundai's success with the Veloster suggests Kia will be looking seriously at the business case.