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Kia Forte Towing Capacity: Can It Tow a Camper Trailer, Boat, or Jet Ski?

The American/Mexican-made Kia Forte is a compact sedan sold at a very economical price. In this article, we’ll discuss whether this car provides a decent towing capacity and how it performs compared to other cars in the same category.

All new and old generations of Kia Forte provide an unofficial braked towing capacity of 1,800 pounds. However, Kia does not recommend this car for towing purposes. Therefore, it is not advisable to test the towing capacity of this car up to/beyond its defined limits.

In this article, we’ll discuss in detail the change in the towing capacity of Kia Forte over the years. We’ll then match this capacity with the weight of several types of trailers and find if this car can tow them or not. Lastly, we’ll look at its competition and analyze its performance.

kia forte towing a small camper trailer
Image courtesy

Also read: How Many Miles Can A Kia Forte Last?

Maximum Towing Capacity By Year

The following table highlights the towing capacity of several generations of Kia Forte. We can see that Kia has not provided any official numbers since the inception of this car. They have maintained their claim over the years that this compact sedan is not designed for heavy towing.

If you try to test the figures obtained by market researchers, you may violate your terms and agreement with the manufacturer and thus terminate your warranty. We mainly concluded that Forte’s can tow 1,800 pounds because owners have tried it, just like the owner’s comment in the quote below.

The most I pulled was 1800 lb total weight. Car handled it well, although it was a very tough one, because front wheels were not getting much grip. Keep in mind 1.6T has very high torque in the low end, so it was easy to spin them.

Source
YearTowing capacity (lbs.)Note
20221,800This vehicle is not recommended for towing.
20211,800This vehicle is not recommended for towing.
20201,800This vehicle is not recommended for towing.
20191,800This vehicle is not recommended for towing.
20181,800This vehicle is not recommended for towing.
20171,800This vehicle is not recommended for towing.
20161,800This vehicle is not recommended for towing.
20151,800This vehicle is not recommended for towing.
20141,800This vehicle is not recommended for towing.
20131,800This vehicle is not recommended for towing.
20121,800This vehicle is not recommended for towing.
20111,800This vehicle is not recommended for towing.
20101,800This vehicle is not recommended for towing.
20091,800This vehicle is not recommended for towing.
20081,800This vehicle is not recommended for towing.

Can It Tow a Trailer, Boat, or Jet Ski?

Not all trailers have the same weight and size. Therefore, we have done extensive research to identify the weighing limits of different types of trailers. We have then matched these weight limits against the towing capacity of Kia Forte.

All generations of the Kia Forte can tow small and medium-sized EMPTY trailers with a maximum weight limit of 1,800 pounds. These include canoe/kayak, jet ski, teardrop, and small open utility trailers. This vehicle is not an ideal option for heavy-duty towing. It would be best if you only tow with this car in the case of an emergency.

Also read: How Well Does A Kio Forte Drive In The Snow?

Trailer TypeAverage Empty Weight (lbs.)Average Total Loaded Weight (lbs.)
Canoe / Kayak Trailer200400
Jet Ski Trailer3001,800
Motorcycle Trailer5002,400
Teardrop Trailer1,7002,400
Small Open Utility Trailer7002,500
A-Frame Camper1,7002,900
Small Enclosed Utility Trailer1,0003,200
Fishing Boat Trailer6003,300
Pop Up Camper2,3003,400
Small Travel Trailer2,8003,600
Tow Dolly6004,000
Large Enclosed Utility Trailer2,7007,100
Small Horse Trailer2,9007,200
Large Travel Trailer6,7008,300
Car Trailer1,9009,000
Large Flatbed Trailer3,00010,400
Large Boat Trailer2,20013,600
Dump Trailer4,50016,900
Toy Hauler7,60017,900
Large Livestock Trailer7,30018,700
5th Wheel Camper12,70018,700
Gooseneck Flatbed Trailer7,20023,200
  • Kayak: All Kia Forte models will be able to tow a kayak trailer. On average, an empty kayak trailer will weigh 200 pounds. A loaded kayak trailer will weigh an average of 400 pounds with a maximum of 800 pounds which is well within the range of the Kia Forte.
  • Jet Ski Trailer: All Kia Forte models will be able to tow an empty jet ski trailer. On average, an empty jet ski trailer will weigh 300 pounds. A loaded jet ski trailer will weigh an average of 1,800 pounds with a maximum of 3,000 pounds, outside of the range of the Kia Forte.
  • Motorcycle Trailer: All Kia Forte models will be able to tow an empty motorcycle trailer. On average, an empty motorcycle trailer will weigh 500 pounds. A loaded motorcycle trailer will weigh an average of 2,400 pounds with a maximum of 3,500, outside of the range of the Kia Forte.
  • Teardrop Trailer: All Kia Forte models will be able to tow an empty teardrop trailer. On average, an empty teardrop trailer will weigh 1,700 pounds. A loaded teardrop trailer will weigh an average of 2,400 pounds, outside of the range of the  Kia Forte. Some teardrop trailers will weigh a maximum of 6,000 pounds which is also outside of the limits of the  Kia Forte.
  • Small Open Utility Trailer: All Kia Forte models will be able to tow an empty small open utility trailer. On average, an empty small open utility trailer will weigh 700 pounds. A loaded small open utility trailer will weigh an average of 2,500 pounds with a maximum of 3,000 pounds, outside of the range of the Kia Forte.
  • A-Frame Camper: All Kia Forte models will be able to tow an empty a-frame camper. On average, an empty a-frame camper weighs 1,700 pounds. A loaded a-frame camper will weigh an average of 2,900 pounds with a maximum of 3,600 pounds, outside of the range of the Kia Forte.
  • Small Enclosed Utility Trailer: All Kia Forte models will be able to tow an empty small enclosed utility trailer. On average, an empty small enclosed utility trailer weighs 1,000 pounds. A loaded small enclosed utility trailer will weigh an average of 3,200 pounds with a maximum of 7,000 pounds, outside of the range of the Kia Forte.
  • Fishing Boat Trailer: All Kia Forte models will be able to tow an empty fishing boat trailer. On average, an empty fishing boat trailer weighs 600 pounds. A loaded fishing boat trailer will weigh an average of 3,300 pounds with a maximum of 6,000 pounds, outside of the range of the Kia Forte.
  • Pop-Up Camper: No Kia Forte models will be able to tow a pop-up camper. On average, an empty pop-up camper weighs 2,300 pounds. A loaded pop-up camper will weigh an average of 3,400 pounds with a maximum of 4,000 pounds, outside of the range of the Kia Forte.
  • Small Travel Trailer: No Kia Forte models will be able to tow a small travel trailer. On average, an empty small travel trailer weighs 2,800 pounds. A loaded small travel trailer will weigh an average of 3,600 pounds with a maximum of 4,500 pounds, outside of the range of the  Kia Forte.
  • Tow Dolly: All Kia Forte models will be able to tow an empty tow dolly. On average, an empty tow dolly weighs 600 pounds. A loaded tow dolly will weigh an average of 4,000 pounds with a maximum of 5,000 pounds, outside of the range of the Kia Forte.
  • Large Enclosed Utility Trailer: No Kia Forte models will be able to tow a large enclosed utility trailer. On average, an empty large enclosed utility trailer weighs 2,700 pounds. A loaded large enclosed utility trailer weighs an average of 7,100 pounds with a maximum of 10,000 pounds, outside of the range of the  Kia Forte.
  • Small Horse Trailer: No Kia Forte models will be able to tow a small horse trailer. On average, an empty small horse trailer weighs 2,900 pounds. A loaded small horse trailer weighs an average of 7,200 pounds with a maximum of 8,000 pounds, outside of the range of the  Kia Forte.
  • Car Trailer: All Kia Forte models will be able to tow an empty car trailer. On average, an empty car trailer weighs 1,900 pounds. A loaded car trailer weighs an average of 9,000 pounds with a maximum of 15,000 pounds, outside of the range of the Kia Forte.
  • Large Flatbed Trailer: No Kia Forte model will be able to tow an empty large flatbed trailer. On average, an empty large flatbed trailer weighs 3,000 pounds. A loaded large flatbed trailer weighs an average of 10,400 pounds with a maximum of 26,000 pounds, outside of the range of the Kia Forte.
  • Large Boat Trailer: All Kia Forte models will be able to tow an empty large boat trailer. On average, an empty large boat trailer weighs 2,200 pounds. A loaded large boat trailer weighs an average of 13,600 pounds with a maximum of 34,000 pounds, outside of the range of the Kia Forte.

Also read: Types Of Gas A Kia Forte Takes (All Generations)

Can You Install A Hitch On A Kia Forte?

From the factory, Kia Forte do not come with a trailer hitch. However, you can install an aftermarket class 1 hitch on your Accord. Class 1 hitches are rated for a maximum towing weight of 2,000 pounds and a maximum tongue weight of 200 pounds.

Therefore, they can carry more than what’s advised for the Kia Forte. Expect to pay around $150 – $200 for a class 1 hitch.

How Well Can It Tow Compared to its Competitors?

The following table mentions the towing capacity of a few cars that compete with Kia Forte in the same category. We can notice that it provides a below-par towing capacity compared to other cars on this list, such as the 2021 Mazda 3, 2021 Toyota Corolla, and 2021 Honda Civic, each of which has a towing capacity of more than 2,200 pounds.

Year / Make / ModelMax. Towing Capacity (lbs.)
2021 Honda Civic2,645
2021 Hyundai Elantra1,500
2021 Mazda 33,306
2021 Toyota Corolla2,866
2021 Volkswagen Jetta2,000