Back at the end of March, we have seen a set of pictures of the refreshed Kia K3 (also known as Kia Forte or Cerato in overseas markets) caught during commercial filming. Despite both images were a little bit blurred, today we have a new clear image coming from Kia’s Workshop manual that allow us to see the final design of the All-New K3.
What we know so far?
We recently tested the most powerful Kia Forte, the GT trim with its 204 hp engine and 7-speed DCT (you can check the review here) and Kia could be hurrying up to release a facelift of the K3 in order to compete against Avante/Elantra success in South Korea.
As on the original post, we shared the very first spy pictures of the Forte facelift, but it was pretty difficult to see something under the heavy camouflage (also the pics were not the best ones) we cannot say to much about what changes will have, but like with the i30 facelift or CEED MY2021, we can expect the arrival of new engines, like the 1.5 T-GDi or the new CVVD 1.6 Turbo while we also dream about a more powerful GT version.
We are sure Kia will also add its innovative IMT transmission, the ‘clutch-by-wire’ intelligent manual transmission which already has two variants, one with a clutch pedal and one without it. It is expected that refreshed Forte (that could change its name to K3 in the US-market) start its production in May.
Detail of the Kia K3 facelift new Digital Cluster
It is pretty difficult to see what’s under the heavy camouflage, but these new pictures allow us to see the first changes. The front has now a new headlights and a new grille too that still has red accents like the current GT version, but with a different design. There are also a new 17″ wheel design and the graphics of the rear taillights are also new.
The Forte should receive latest safety pack, as well as new Infotainment system, moving from original 8 inch to 10,25 inch and also adding a digital gauge cluster (the 3rd gen CEED which is parent of this K3/Forte already had it since the 2021 model year).
We recently shared Kia’s new logo timeline, and the launch of the refreshed K3 that will come with the new logo is set for May. Recently Artur Martins, Head of Global Brand & Customer Experience, confirmed that Kia models in the US-market will use their global names as part of a new strategy, so we can expect a rebranding for the Forte to K3.
Detail of the Kia K3 facelift regular halogen light vs new Full LED light
Photo Source: Bobaedream
The first picture of the leaked workshop manual shows a 1.6 T-GDI engine, which is the Hyundai Gamma engine used in the current GT model of the current Forte/Cerato and not the newer Hyundai Smartstream G1.6T CVVD engine used in the Hyundai Elantra and Kia K5. If that really is the case, it’s a bit disappointing that they’re not using newer engines in the refresh.
Edit: Just realised the Smartstream engine also has the nomenclature G1.6 T-GDI. So, the refresh may well come with the newer engine. Will reserve judgement until specs are released.