Car Comparisons

2022 Honda Civic Hatchback vs Kia Forte5 GT Comparison Test

Comparison Data

2022 Honda Civic Hatchback Sport
2021 Kia Forte5 GT
Engine Displacement
Engine Cylinders
Peak Horsepower
180 hp
201 hp
Peak Torque
177 lb-ft
195 lb-ft
Fuel Economy
8.5 / 6.3 / 7.5 L/100 km cty/hwy/cmb
9.9 / 7.6 / 8.8 L/100 km cty/hwy/cmb
Cargo Space
693 L
741 L
Base Price
$25,895; $27,995 (2022)
A/C Tax
Destination Fee
Price as Tested
$27,640; $29,740 (2022)
Optional Equipment
$300 – Paint, $300

Editor’s Note: With the global pandemic wreaking havoc on automotive supply chains, the Kia Forte5 tested here is a 2021 model, with the revised 2022 Forte5 unavailable in time for this evaluation. The 2022 version is mechanically identical but features the brand’s new logo and a different front bumper design, and is offered in a new top trim level called the GT Limited.

Compact hatchbacks are the perfect blend of practicality, style, and value.

The 2022 Honda Civic Hatchback and Kia Forte5 GT are two of the best hatchbacks available, packing a ton of features at attractive prices, and even promising some sporty fun. They are, however, very different cars, with one skewing to the sporty side and the other sticking to everyday usability.


Both hatchbacks seem to be hiding their true form with a swept-back, almost coupe-like profile. In many ways, the Civic hatch looks very similar to its sedan sibling, while the Forte5 GT looks a bit more upscale. “It looks like a BMW from some angles,” said Editor-in-Chief Jodi Lai of the sleek Kia.

It’s not like the Civic looks utilitarian, but rather the design seems less inspired and more familiar despite being new for 2022.

Both cabins are impressive, though. The Honda appears more premium, with a good blend of materials that hides unseemly plastics out of sight and touch. The mesh pattern on the dash is also unique, while trim pieces are textured instead of the glossy plastic that’s typical these days. Finally, the layout with the gauge cluster and the central screen is easy to get used to and isn’t distracting.

The Forte5 loses out in the cabin a bit due to the use of harsher plastics, which can make the cabin feel cold and uninviting. Otherwise, the controls are well laid out and easy to access and understand.

Honda Civic Hatchback: 8/10; Kia Forte5 GT: 8/10

Also See: Top 10 Cheapest Cars in Canada for 2022

User Friendliness

Design and usability are altogether separate matters. The Civic feels more intuitive at times, with a responsive touchscreen and easy-to-understand digital dash. “I like how, when using adaptive cruise control, the digital dash shows you the surrounding vehicles,” said Lai, suggesting a level of confidence with the safety features in the Civic.

However, occasionally the wireless Android Auto or Apple CarPlay would slow down to the point of unresponsiveness, which led to frustration. The heated steering wheel button has also been placed gracelessly on the steering wheel, while the trunk release is located awkwardly low on the door, hidden behind the armrest.

The Kia Forte5 GT doesn’t come with a navigation system, requiring users to connect their devices to those same smartphone mirroring systems. While not wireless, the systems work fine. The eight-inch touchscreen doesn’t feel quite as premium or well laid out as the nine-inch display in the Civic, however.

Honda Civic Hatchback: 7/10; Kia Forte5 GT: 7.5/10


The Civic Hatchback takes the gold here with a comprehensive suite of driver assistance and safety features that work as expected and communicate their capabilities clearly to the driver. Our well-equipped Civic Sport Touring included automatic high-beam headlights, automatic emergency braking, lane-keeping assistance, traffic sign recognition, blind-spot monitoring, and adaptive cruise control.

Models equipped with the optional automatic transmission feature adaptive cruise control that can come to a complete stop and easily resume again, whereas the system in manual models can’t do the same due to the propensity to stall. All of this has led the Civic hatchback to earn the Top Safety Pick+ rating from the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety (IIHS), and our kudos during testing.

The Forte5 GT arrives with just a few of these features, including forward collision warning, blind-spot monitoring with rear cross-traffic alert, and lane-keeping assistance, all of which worked well during testing. The new-for-2022 GT Limited trim, meanwhile, comes with adaptive cruise control.

Honda Civic Hatchback: 8/10; Kia Forte5 GT: 7/10


The Forte5 GT struggles to impress with its features, lacking leather upholstery or power-adjustable seating. Both vehicles tested here include power sunroofs, dual-zone climate control, heated front seats, and heated steering wheels. The Civic added heated rear seats, navigation, and wireless phone charging. These features, as well as air-cooled front seats, are available in the 2022 Kia Forte5 GT Limited.

Honda Civic Hatchback: 8/10; Kia Forte5 GT: 7/10


The Forte5 GT manages to feel more spacious in the front and rear seats, with significantly more head- and legroom compared to the Civic. Lai, our fearless leader, was disappointed with what the Civic had to offer, and found the rear seats in the Forte5 far more comfortable.

Behind the rear seats, you’ll find 741 L of space in the Kia, which seems far more accommodating than the Civic’s 693 L.

Honda Civic Hatchback: 7/10; Kia Forte5 GT: 8/10


Almost immediately after setting off in the Forte5 GT, there’s a feeling that’s almost reminiscent of the Volkswagen Golf GTI. It has a rowdy side, with a louder exhaust, stiffer suspension, and heavier clutch – a moot point since the manual transmission was sadly discontinued for 2022.

It offers up a distinctly different flavour than the Civic, which feels more mainstream and accommodating. The Honda is smoother, with a light clutch, light steering feel, and quieter cabin, leading to something a bit more modern and refined.

Honda Civic Hatchback: 7.5/10; Kia Forte5 GT: 7/10

Driving Feel

Kia laid its cards on the table, with the Forte5 GT arriving as a hotter take than the standard EX model. It’s rougher around the edges and provides constant feedback. The heavier steering feel leads to more engagement, which is exactly the point in a vehicle that’s touted as being sportier than the standard model.

The Civic is less sporty but never feels less responsive. Every input feels a touch smoother and more refined. Driving the two cars back-to-back on a windy country back road demonstrated the advantages of the Forte5 GT’s setup, “but not by a significant margin,” said Lai about the drive in the Civic.

The Honda was still enjoyable to pilot through the curves, just not quite as focused. During drives through traffic and on the highway, the Civic maintained its level of competence and comfort, whereas the Forte5 GT felt a bit tedious.

Honda Civic Hatchback: 7.5/10; Kia Forte5 GT: 8/10


Under the hood of the Forte5 GT is a turbocharged 1.6L four-cylinder engine that makes 201 hp and 195 lb-ft of torque. The motor has plenty of grunt to get going, and can even overwhelm the front tires at times; push hard and you even get a bit of torque steer. A 2.0L non-turbo engine comes in the EX trim and makes 147 hp and 132 lb-ft of torque, which is paired with a continuously variable transmission (CVT) instead of the GT’s dual-clutch automatic.

The Civic Hatchback also offers a 2.0L four-cylinder in its base LX model, which makes 158 hp and 138 lb-ft of torque. The Sport and Sport Touring models use a turbocharged 1.5L engine that puts out 180 hp and 177 lb-ft of torque. It doesn’t feel as exciting as the Forte5 GT but gets the job done, bringing the car up to speed quickly and confidently. “It only struggled to gain speed when going uphill,” reported Lai. Both Civic motors are available with a six-speed manual transmission or a CVT.

Honda Civic Hatchback: 7/10; Kia Forte5 GT: 7.5/10

Fuel Economy

The turbocharged motor in the Honda Civic is rated to get 8.5 L/100 km in city conditions, 6.3 on the highway, and 7.5 combined, though automatic models are a bit more efficient, returning 7.1 combined.

The Forte5 is far less fuel-friendly, with manual models delivering 9.9 L/100 km in city driving conditions, 7.6 on the highway, and 8.8 combined. Automatic models are rated at 8.0 combined.

Our experiences matched these expectations, and after driving them on the same route back-to-back, we found the Civic was far easier to drive efficiently, with an easy-to-use eco mode and efficiency coach.

Honda Civic Hatchback: 8/10; Kia Forte5 GT: 7/10


The 2022 Honda Civic Hatchback starts at $29,700 for the LX model, including its non-negotiable freight charge. The Sport model runs $33,200, while the fully equipped Sport Touring is $36,700. Honda doesn’t charge shoppers anything extra for preferring a different transmission, but paint finishes other than grey will set you back an extra $300.

The 2022 Kia Forte5 starts at $24,340 for the EX model including delivery, making it far more affordable than the base Civic Hatchback. The GT is an extra $5,300, with a total price of $29,640, while the fully loaded GT Premium is an additional $3,000 for a pre-tax total of $32,640.

Honda Civic Hatchback: 7.5/10; Kia Forte5 GT: 8/10

The Verdict

The Kia Forte5 GT delivered loads of fun in an attractive and spacious package, but it feels a bit too stiff and loud at times. If anything, it would be perfect for the enthusiast on a budget. However, the 2022 Honda Civic Hatchback is smooth, refined, and modern, and includes an excellent assortment of features, making it better suited for more buyers.