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Unread 2017-01-08, 03:17 PM   #1
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Lightbulb The Kia Stinger GT Is Kia's Fantastic 365 HP Rear-Wheel Drive Sport Sedan



The Kia GT4 Stinger concept from 2014 was the concept car you wished was real, and it lives—it lives quite wonderfully. The production version naturally isn’t as wild as that concept looked, but it does have a bit more power. Say hello to the Kia Stinger GT, Kia’s new rear-wheel-drive sedan with 365 horsepower.

There were teases of the new Stinger GT in the month or so before this week’s Detroit Auto Show, but it’ll finally be on the floor for everyone to get a good look on Monday. The sauce will come from a 3.3 liter, twin-turbo V6, and it’ll also have 376 lb-ft of torque. Its zero-to-60 time will also apparently be 5.1 seconds.
What’s hard to believe here is that this thing is a Kia. The styling and power behind this thing are reminiscent of higher-end manufacturers like BMW or Audi, but here we are, dropping our jaws over a Kia.









But let’s get to the sad part here. The car will have an eight-speed automatic transmission, with no manual option. Granted, fewer and fewer new sport sedans these days have those, but it’s still a bummer.
To help you move on from that hit, here are photos of the Stinger GT in all of its wonderful glory:
















Nice. It sounds like we’ll have more for you on Monday.

related http://www.kcsr.org/showthread.php?t...hlight=Stinger
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Unread 2017-01-08, 03:29 PM   #2
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Throw in Kia's 100k warranty and this looks like a winner.
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Unread 2017-01-08, 03:32 PM   #3
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agreed, poor man's s7
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Unread 2017-01-08, 08:51 PM   #4
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The 2018 Stinger fulfills Kia's sport-sedan destiny





A little more than five years ago, Kia rolled out the GT Concept - a sheetmetal hypothetical musing on where the brand's sporting aspirations might go. Today on the eve of the Detroit Auto Show Kia unveiled the Stinger, the production version of that 2011 show car. While Kia Motors America says "the Stinger really is a dream car for us," enthusiasts anticipating something a lot racier have sobered up over the distance between the concept and the production reality. Nevertheless, the new Stinger will be the sportiest Kia ever, and not by a little.

True, there's a lot of Optima in the body - it's too bad they couldn't have made the 2014 GT concept - but details everywhere separate the Stinger from the bread-and-butter sedan. The Stinger's wheelbase is four inches longer than the Optima's, yet overall length is an inch shorter. The brand's corporate face looks to have dabbled in CrossFit, the wide, narrow "tiger-nose" grille jutting out ahead of plenty of black mesh, new LED headlamps, and a new hood with twin hood vents. Side vents and sharp sills carve up the flanks, and side mirrors mount on the bodywork instead of at the A-pillar. In back, the deck lid gently curves upward becoming an integrated spoiler above elongated LED taillights, and a full-length rear diffuser houses four oval tailpipes.

The five-seat interior remains a mystery, but Kia says there'll be a dual-zone instrument panel boasting a "large" color touchscreen for infotainment, metal-accented dash gauges with red needles, and a small, color TFT screen in the binnacle for displaying tidbits like G-forces and lap times. Luxury touches include a heads-up display, an optional 720-watt, 15-speaker Harmon/Kardon audio system with two subwoofers, a driver's seat that can be had with air-cell bladders for a snug fit, and lots of driver assistance systems.

When the Stinger goes on sale late this year customers get a choice of two engines that are currently still in development. The base model employs a 2.0-liter turbocharged four-cylinder with around 255 horsepower and 260 pound-feet of torque. The upper trim goes with the 3.3-liter twin-turbo V6 found in the Genesis G90 and expected to put out the same numbers: 365 hp and 376 lb-ft. Both motors will shift through the eight-speed automatic shared with the Kia K900 but refined with a centrifugal pendulum absorber for reduced vibration. If all goes to plan, the dash from zero to 62 miles per hour will take 5.1 seconds with the 3.3-liter V6, with top speed capped at 167 mph.

Kia picked up ex-BMW M honcho Albert Biermann in 2014 specifically for this kind of exercise. To make the most of the Stinger's talents, Biermann's team tuned five available driving modes: Personal, Eco, Sport, Comfort, and Smart. Each mode commands a particular specific steering feedback, throttle and transmission mapping, and handling feel via the MacPherson front and multi-link rear suspension. Putting the power down falls on 18-inch, 225/45 performance tires on the base model, whereas the 3.3-liter trim comes standard with staggered tires on 19-inch wheels and vented Brembo brakes.

The two drivetrain choices are rear-wheel drive for purists, and all-wheel drive for purists who live in regions with seasons. The AWD option comes with a brake-based torque vectoring. A mechanical limited-slip differential graces the all-wheel drive. Kia says it will announce pricing closer to the on-sale date.
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Unread 2017-01-08, 09:01 PM   #5
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I'd consider an AWD model for sure, once the deprecation sets in and provided they offer it with the TTV6
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Unread 2017-01-08, 09:09 PM   #6
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Quote:
Originally Posted by mild83 View Post
I'd consider an AWD model for sure, once the deprecation sets in and provided they offer it with the TTV6

That's the same combo I am interested in, I think with the changes that Hyundai/KIA are doing (ie with this car, the Genesis line and bringing on the talent they are bringing on with the BMW M guy, the Bugatti designer they are attempting to prevent a lot of depreciation) beginning with this car
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Unread 2017-01-08, 09:23 PM   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by JDLM View Post
That's the same combo I am interested in, I think with the changes that Hyundai/KIA are doing (ie with this car, the Genesis line and bringing on the talent they are bringing on with the BMW M guy, the Bugatti designer they are attempting to prevent a lot of depreciation) beginning with this car
I think they will need another 10-15 years of solid vehicles to start to overcome the "cheap" reputation.
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Unread 2017-01-08, 09:30 PM   #8
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it appears their compact models take a hit the worst of all from both Hyundai/KIA
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Unread 2017-01-08, 10:41 PM   #9
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2018 Kia Stinger debuts with twin-turbo V-6, rear-wheel drive








It was at the 2011 Frankfurt auto show that Kia first hinted at the launch of a rear-wheel-drive sports sedan with the unveiling of the GT concept. More than half a decade on, the production version of the striking concept has been revealed as the 2018 Kia Stinger.
Kia's finally taking the covers off its new coupe-like sedan on Sunday at the 2017 Detroit auto show. Joining the K900 in Kia’s small but growing rear-wheel-drive arsenal, the car promises to be the most dynamic model ever launched by the Korean brand. Extensive development took place on the Nürburgring, with former BMW M engineering boss Albert Biermann tasked with honing the chassis.
The Stinger’s suspension features MacPherson front and multi-link rear setups plus adaptive dampers, the latter adjustable viable a drive modes selector. There is also electronic power steering and an available all-wheel-drive system with electronic torque vectoring. (Rear-wheel-drive versions get a mechanical limited-slip differential.)
Two powertrains will be offered at launch. The base option is a turbocharged 2.0-liter inline-4 delivering an estimated 255 horsepower and 260 pound-feet of torque. Those seeking more performance will be able to opt for a twin-turbocharged 3.3-liter V-6 delivering an estimated 365 hp and 376 lb-ft. The sole transmission is an 8-speed, paddle-shifted automatic.
The 4-cylinder Stinger is fitted as standard with 18-inch wheels shod with 225/45-size tires. The V-6 model comes with staggered 19-in wheels with 225/40-size tires up front and a 255/35-size set in the rear. The V-6 model also benefits from Brembo brakes with 4-piston calipers up front and 2-piston calipers in the rear. Performance specs are yet to be announced but we know the V-6 model hits 60 mph from rest in 5.1 seconds.
At 114.4 inches, the Stinger’s wheelbase is longer than that of rival coupe-like sedans such as the Audi A5 Sportback, BMW 4-Series Gran Coupe and Mercedes-Benz CLS , which means interior space should be generous for the class. Kia also boasts that cargo space is also larger than in many rivals.
2018 Kia Stinger via Motor1
Enlarge Photo
Inside, you’ll find all the modern touches as well as a few premium options such as Nappa leather and a 15-speaker Harman/Kardon sound system. The center console is split into two specific areas: the infotainment controls sit below a large color touchscreen, while the climate and ventilation controls nestle beneath. There are also electronic driver aids such as adaptive cruise control, collision warning, and blind spot and cross traffic warning.
Kia has confirmed that sales of the Stinger will start in late 2017. Pricing information will be announced closer to the market launch but should fall somewhere between the $32k starting price of the Cadenza and $50k price of the K900.
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Unread 2017-01-08, 11:05 PM   #10
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The Kia Stinger GT won't get a manual, but the US does get a louder exhaust





Kia revealed its new Stinger GT hatchback grand tourer tonight. Unfortunately for fans of the clutch pedal, a manual transmission won't come any time soon. Albert Biermann, Kia's head of vehicle testing and high-performance development, told us there are no plans for a manual. Instead, buyers will have to settle for an eight-speed automatic, which Kia's director of corporate communications, James Bell, said was chosen for its quick shifts coupled with low-speed refinement. Biermann did admit that he would enjoy driving a manual Stinger, if he had one.

If the lack of a manual transmission has diminished your enthusiasm for the stylish new Kia, perhaps this will help bolster it: Biermann told us that the US will get a market-specific exhaust, and it's louder than what Europe will get. He said that the US has less restrictive exhaust sound regulations, allowing up to 80 decibels. So even though the Stinger GT won't exercise your left foot much, your ears may be in for a treat. We certainly look forward to hearing it ourselves.
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Unread 2017-01-08, 11:13 PM   #11
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#NAIAS: Kia Sets Out To HURT The Germans With The All-New Stinger — RWD, 360+ HP And MUCH More




Agent 001 and I were pretty taken by the direction Hyundai and Kia took in both brands' resurrection.

We've been following the Korean automakers' journey since we saw that their products have gotten much better.

But, to be honest, it seemed like there was a bit of a stall in the past year for Kia. Well, not anymore.



That's because Kia has brought forth something at the 2017 Detroit Auto Show (NAIAS) that sounds tremendous on paper. That would be the all-new Stinger.

Coming standard with rear-wheel drive and optional all-wheel drive, it sounds like Kia isn't playing around this time. But, it gets even more serious. That's because the Stinger will be offered with two engine choices: A 2.0-liter, four-cylinder motor estimated to put out 255 horsepower, and a 3.3-liter V6 good for about 365 ponies. Mated to these will be an in-house developed, eight-speed automatic transmission.





Kia's press release follows:

2018 KIA STINGER MAKES WORLD DEBUT AT NORTH AMERICAN INTERNATIONAL AUTO SHOW

Powerful all-new Fastback Sport Sedan Redefines the Kia Brand
  • Kia Motors follows through on the promise of a production model of the GT concept
  • Designed in Frankfurt, developed on the Nurburgring, industry-leading quality by Kia
DETROIT, January 8, 2017 – At an event typically dominated by introductions from American auto companies, Kia Motors America (KMA) today stole the spotlight with the world debut of the all-new 2018 Kia Stinger (hereafter Stinger) at the North American International Auto Show. A five-passenger fastback sports sedan poised to redefine a segment currently populated by European automakers, the Stinger promises to be the highest-performance production vehicle in the company’s history and is backed by Kia Motors’ industry-leading quality and reliability. Offered with multiple engine and drivetrain configurations and luxurious accommodations, the Stinger is planned to go on sale in the U.S. late this year. Pricing will be announced closer to the vehicle’s launch date.
“Unlike any Kia that has come before it, the Stinger really is a dream car for us, and here today in Detroit, that dream is now a reality after years of commitment and hard work from a passionate group of designers, engineers and executives around the world,” said Orth Hedrick, vice president, product planning, Kia Motors America. “From its GT concept-car origins to the years of tuning and refining on the legendary Nurburgring circuit, no detail was too small to be obsessed over, and the result is simply stunning.”
Instantly recognizable as a direct evolution of the concept that preceded it, the all-new 2018 Kia Stinger design was overseen by Peter Schreyer, Kia Motors’ chief design officer, and his talented team of designers in Frankfurt. Ride and handling development was looked after by Albert Biermann, head of Kia’s Vehicle Test and High Performance Development and his group of engineers in Korea and on the grueling Nurburgring racing circuit.
But what makes a true gran turismo? This question was the foundation for a years-long journey that began when the GT concept was first unveiled at the 2011 Frankfurt Motor Show. Although every Kia design study has a purpose, the GT concept was something considered by many outside the company as little more than a dream for a brand known for producing mass-market transportation rooted in value. But the GT ignited embers of passion that sparked a fire within the organization and over the next five years that fire would grow beyond fantasy and morph into reality.
Once the Stinger was green lighted, that gran turismo question became a mantra as development commenced. Coming from Kia, the design had to be bold. And it was. But it also had to be nimble and fast while also luxurious and quiet. It had to achieve the perfect balance of ride and handling and seat five comfortably with room for luggage. It had to be a lot of things, but most of all, it had to be an authentic gran turismo. And it is.
Design
Turning a concept into a production car is no small task and Schreyer looked no further than Kia’s Frankfurt studio – the birthplace of the GT concept – to bring the Stinger to life. “A true gran turismo, a car for spirited long-distance driving, is not about outright power, hard-edged dynamics and brutal styling, all at the expense of luxury, comfort and grace,” notes Gregory Guillaume, chief designer, Kia Motors Europe. “The Stinger has nothing to do with being the first to arrive at the destination – this car is all about the journey. It’s about passion.”
From its sleek front clip through its svelte flanks, and up to its powerful haunches, the Stinger exudes a muscular confidence. Key to its road presence are the rear-wheel-drive proportions; a long hood and short front overhang, an extended wheelbase to deliver a spacious cabin, and a long rear overhang with strong shoulders. The Stinger’s stance and visual balance are designed to lend the car an air of elegance and athleticism, rather than boy-racer aggression.
The wide front and rear track, along with the recessed contours along the doors, enhance the visual power of the Stinger’s shoulder line as well as its fastback silhouette. Other purely functional elements of the exterior design – the front air curtains, wheel arch gills, smooth underbody, and integrated rear diffuser – aid its aerodynamic efficiency. The rear valance houses four oval exhaust pipes. Kia’s signature ‘tiger-nose’ grille sits proudly between complex LED headlamps.
The low-slung cabin with its steeply raked windshield and backlight, sits toward the rear of vehicle, creating a fast silhouette. Inside is a space dedicated to the thrill of driving while cossetting the occupants in luxury. Available ultra-soft Nappa leather covers the deeply contoured seats and the driver’s seat has available air-cell bladders in the seatback and bolsters for optimal support and comfort. A confident dashboard creates a strong horizontal plane for the driver to work. The center console is intuitively split into two specific areas: the infotainment controls sit neatly below a large color touchscreen, while the climate and ventilation controls nestle beneath. Front and center of the driver is a thick, leather-wrapped steering wheel and a single instrument binnacle with a combination of analog and digital instrumentation. The large gauges are ringed in metal and accentuated with sweeping red needles. A color TFT screen between the gauges relays performance data such as cornering G-forces, lap times and engine-oil temperature, along with ancillary information such as the trip computer, driver settings, navigation and diagnostics. Aeronautically-inspired spoked circular vents are found front and rear and a tasteful satin chrome trim piece encircles the cabin. The effect is a feeling of cocooned intimacy. But the long wheelbase allows for generous front and rear leg room and the low seating position provides ample head room front and back.
Chassis
Joining the company from BMW in December, 2014, Albert Biermann’s first look at the Stinger signaled to him a car that had to live up to its stunning design from behind the wheel. “I think for the Kia brand, the Stinger is like a special event,” notes Biermann. “Because nobody expects such a car, not just the way it looks but also the way it drives. It's a whole different animal.”
Setting the manufacturing hard-points of the body-in-white would define Stinger and the engineers looked carefully across a landscape dotted with contenders. At 114.4 inches, the Stinger’s wheelbase is longer than the Audi A4, Infiniti Q50, Lexus IS, BMW 4 Gran Coupe and even the Lexus GS and Mercedes CLS1. It’s also longer overall (190.2 inches) and wider (73.6 inches) than the others in the segment, allowing for spacious accommodations. The Stinger’s cargo area is also larger than many in its class, with enough space for full-size luggage or golf bags and a power liftgate with Smart Trunk functionality is available.
Riding on a chassis comprised of 55 percent advanced high-strength steel, the Stinger provides an ultra-stiff foundation for the ride-and-handling engineers to work with. This rigidity also contributes to reduced NVH and a quiet cabin. The MacPherson front and multi-link rear suspension has been tuned to provide optimal feedback to the driver. A Kia first, ride-damping and vehicle handling traits may be modified by the driver through an electronically adjustable suspension known as Dynamic Stability Damping Control. While always reacting predictably to the driver’s inputs, depending on road conditions and driving style, the Stinger can be tuned to respond with more agility through corners as the system softens the front shocks and firms up the rear. Conversely, improved high-speed stability is achieved when the system stiffens the front shocks and softens the rear. The system is accessed through five drive modes (another Kia first): Personal, Eco, Sport, Comfort and Smart.
Standard variable ratio Rack-mounted Motor Driven Power Steering (R-MDPS) offers razor-sharp feedback through direct mounting of the electric motor on the steering rack, enhancing steering response and reducing unwanted vibration from transmitting through the column. Steering boost is also adjustable through the five selectable drive modes.
Powertrain
If the chassis symbolizes the bones of a gran turismo, then surely the available powertrains represent its heart. Oriented longitudinally and set rearward beneath the long, sculpted hood, a choice of two turbocharged engines are available.
While both engines are still under development, the standard 2.0-liter turbocharged four-cylinder Theta II engine produces an estimated 255 horsepower at approximately 6,200 rpm. Max torque of 260 lb.-ft. is available from 1,400 – 4,000 rpm. Performance credentials are further enhanced through the available 3.3-liter twin-turbo V6 Lambda II engine, which is anticipated to produce 365 horsepower at an estimated 6,000 rpm and offer max torque of 376 lb.-ft. from 1,300 – 4,500 rpm. Kia is targeting 5.1 seconds to 62 mph and a top speed of 167 mph with the twin turbocharged V6.
The Stinger features a second-generation eight-speed rear-drive automatic transmission. First offered in the K900 luxury sedan, the gearbox has been designed in-house and rewards drivers with crisp shifts and maximized fuel efficiency. More typically found in aviation- and racing-engine applications, the transmission features Kia’s first use of a Centrifugal Pendulum Absorber (CPA) torque converter to help reduce torsional vibrations through the drivetrain. Drivers can let the gearbox manage shifts on its own or may selectively run through the gears via paddle shifters mounted aft of the steering wheel. As with the suspension and steering, up to five different shift patterns may be selected through the vehicle’s electronic drive-mode system. Throttle mapping is also adjusted accordingly.
Recognizing that passionate drivers may not always reside in optimal climes, the Stinger is Kia’s first sedan available with rear- or all-wheel drive. Rear-wheel biased for optimal control in the wet or dry, the AWD system features a new Dynamic Torque Vectoring Control system which monitors driver inputs and road conditions and automatically applies power and braking force to the appropriate wheels to maintain course in adverse conditions. Rear-drive vehicles get the benefit of a mechanical limited slip differential to help evenly distribute power through the rear wheels.
A choice of alloy wheels and tires are also offered. The 2.0-liter turbocharged 4-cylinder models ride on 225/45R-18 performance tires while the 3.3-liter V6 is shod with staggered ultra-high performance rubber; 225/40R-19 in front and 255/35R-19 at the rear. Vented Brembo®2 disc brakes are standard on the 3.3-liter twin turbo and feature quad-piston front calipers and dual-piston rear calipers.









































































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Unread 2017-01-08, 11:13 PM   #12
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Advanced Technology & Convenience
Offering luxurious amenities and unexpected features have become part of Kia’s DNA and the Stinger continues that tradition. Multiple Advanced Driver Assistance Systems (ADAS) seamlessly work together to enhance the driving experience.
In the United States, The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration conservatively estimates that 100,000 police-reported crashes are the direct result of driver fatigue each year3. This results in an estimated 1,550 deaths, and 71,000 injuries annually. A Kia first is the new Driver Attention Alert (DAA)4 system to help combat distracted or drowsy driving. The system monitors a number of inputs from the vehicle and the driver and will sound a warning chime and display a graphic in the instrument binnacle that it’s time to take a break from driving if it senses the driver’s attention level has been significantly reduced.
Forward Collision Assistance (FCA)3 with integrated Autonomous Emergency Braking (AEB)3 with pedestrian detection can detect a potential collision with another vehicle or pedestrian and help bring the car to a halt. Advanced Smart Cruise Control (ASCC)3 maintains a pre-set distance between the Stinger and the vehicle in front and can bring the car to a full stop in congested traffic. Lane Keep Assist (LKA)3 actively monitors the vehicle’s intended lane and will alert the driver with an audible warning along with providing steering input to help maintain the vehicle’s position. Rear Cross Traffic Alert (RCTA)3 scans the area behind the vehicle when backing from a parking space and will alert the driver with an audible warning if cross traffic is detected.
Connectivity, entertainment and vehicle information can be as important as a dynamic driving experience and the Stinger comes to market with the latest infotainment systems. The height-adjustable color Head-Up Display (HUD)5 display enables the driver to see key driving information reflected on the windshield glass, including speed, turn-by-turn navigation, audio and cruise control settings and Blind Spot Detection information. Resting within the center console is a wireless Smartphone charging pad and Bluetooth®6 hands-free operation is standard while many of the vehicle’s subsystems may be accessed through the steering-wheel-mounted controls.
Long-distance travel is a hallmark of the gran turismo ownership experience and there is a trio of high-performance audio systems designed to turn the interior into a dynamic concert hall as the miles blur by. The base audio system for the 2.0-liter turbo features six-speakers and a seven-inch haptic touchscreen with the latest version of UVO, Kia’s award-winning telematics systems. The standard system found in the 3.3-liter twin turbo ups the speaker count to nine and includes an external amplifier. The available premium Harman/Kardon®7 audio system pumps out 720 watts through an external amplifier to provide crystal-clear music. With 15 speakers and Kia’s first under-seat mounted subwoofers tucked beneath the driver and passenger seats, the system features Clari-Fi™8, a patented music restoration technology that rebuilds audio signals that are lost in the digital compression process. This technology returns a high-fidelity listening experience to any compressed digital source. The system also comes equipped with next-generation QuantumLogic™9 Surround Sound technology, which extracts signals from the original recording and redistributes them into an authentic, multidimensional soundstage for playback that is clear, refined and full of detail.
* The Sorento and Optima GDI (EX, SX & Limited and certain LX Trims only) are assembled in the United States from U.S. and globally sourced parts
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Unread 2017-01-09, 07:31 AM   #13
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Just read around a bit and saw that the AWD v6tt will likely be around $50k.
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Unread 2017-01-09, 07:36 AM   #14
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Sounds about right priced between the Cadenza and K900
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Unread 2017-01-09, 08:45 AM   #15
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I like the looks of this. We owned a '15 Cadenza, and Whitebird took me for a ride in his K900 and that thing moved our for a land yacht.


This should be a nice car for the price point.
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Unread 2017-01-09, 01:49 PM   #16
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I like the looks of this. We owned a '15 Cadenza, and Whitebird took me for a ride in his K900 and that thing moved our for a land yacht.


This should be a nice car for the price point.
Did you get rid of the cadenza already?
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Unread 2017-01-09, 01:53 PM   #17
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Really sharp looking car.
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Unread 2017-01-09, 01:55 PM   #18
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This might be the next car for the wife, if the Regal GS doesn't look good.
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Unread 2017-01-09, 01:57 PM   #19
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Did you get rid of the cadenza already?

Yup.
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Unread 2017-01-09, 02:33 PM   #20
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Yup.
Damn son, how long did you own it, 2 months?

Why did you get rid of it?
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Unread 2017-01-09, 05:14 PM   #21
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Default 2018 Kia Stinger

In my own personal opinion as far as looks go, Kia just gave BMW and Audi a giant middle finger in the looks department. I think this is a really nice looking car! I'm not really sure which segment this car is aimed at, but if I had to guess based on the length it appears to be, I'd say it's comparable to likes of maybe the Bimmer 4 series. It'll be interesting to see what the driving dynamics are like and how it measures up to the other established players.

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Unread 2017-01-09, 05:19 PM   #22
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This car absolutely kills it in the looks department. Looks a lot better than any of the current BMW or Audi offerings IMO.
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Unread 2017-01-09, 05:52 PM   #23
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This car absolutely kills it in the looks department. Looks a lot better than any of the current BMW or Audi offerings IMO.

That's a bold statement, but the more I look at this car the harder time I have arguing with that statement. At least when it comes to four door sedans.
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Unread 2017-01-09, 05:53 PM   #24
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I'm Worried No One Is Going To Buy The 2018 Kia Stinger GT





Well, maybe “worried” is a bit of a stretch. My personal welfare, and that of most of my friends and loved ones, thankfully does not hinge on the success of the 2018 Kia Stinger GT. But here’s the kind of car that enthusiasts have been after, the kind of car internet commenters say they’ll buy, and I’m not convinced anyone’s going to buy it.

If you’re just joining us, at the Detroit Auto Show this week Kia pulled the wraps off a legit, honest-to-God rear-(or all-) wheel drive sport sedan, one that in GT form has a twin-turbo V6 putting out a very robust 365 horsepower. They even tuned the thing on the Nürburgring, which I do not think you can say about the Soul.



It looks good, too—low and wide and long with tasteful scoops on the hood. It’s not as ostentatious as some high-performance sedans, but it’s quite attractive and even compelling in person. It puts that A7-ish shape to good use too, being a legitimate liftback and not just a sedan that looks like one.



If I have one criticism it’s that to the casual observer, it may not look too far off from the Kia Optima, a handsome and highly competent but otherwise boring and pedestrian front-drive sedan.


Either way, it’s something new and different and kind of exciting from Kia, a formerly bargain basement Korean brand that’s been making some strong products over the last few years but has never done anything this bold. Done right, it could almost kind of be a Korean competitor to the BMW 3 Series, which is certainly how it’s been billed by the automotive press. (No, there’s no manual option, but those are dying off so fast the decision should surprise no one.)
But who’s going to buy this thing? That’s what I worry about. The last Optima I drove—again, a fine machine, and one I liked better than I thought I would!—was close to $40,000, loaded. This will clearly slot above that sedan, and in top-trim GT form with most of the boxes checked, will probably sticker in at the mid-$40,000 range. (To be clear that’s just an estimate on my part; pricing has not been announced, but after seeing this thing in person and sitting in it I can tell you that reasonably equipped it’s no $25,000 car.)



Who’s going to pay that much for a Kia? No matter how good it gets, it’s not a luxury brand, and it’s one with no performance credibility or heritage at all. Granted, you have to start somewhere, and the Stinger is exactly that. But it’s a very hard game to break into.










There’s also the matter of the dying sedan market. It’s no coincidence that almost all the cars you’ve seen out of the Detroit show today have been SUVs or boring crossovers. Those are the profit-makers now. Buyers are flocking away from sedans in droves. I hate to say it but Kia probably should have done this four or five years ago. Oh yeah, did you hear the Chevrolet SS is dead too? It is.




The original Stinger concept was a small-ish rear-wheel drive coupe with a turbo four-cylinder engine, a kind of base Camaro/BRZ-fighter. That didn’t happen, and it’s probably for the best for Kia that it didn’t because the sports car segment is even more screwed than sedans are.

Reporter Michael Harley over at Forbes went to Korea to drive some pre-production Stingers around a track. He nailed a nice exclusive first test of the car and walked away impressed, and wanting more. Here’s what its designer, himself a veteran of Audi, had to say about it there:

“You cannot believe how excited I am about this car,” says Peter Schreyer, Kia’s Chief Design Officer. “The new Kia Stinger is going to fundamentally change the global image of Kia. I have no doubt it will revolutionize the way people think about us. It’s going to propel us upwards into a different era.”
I hope so, actually. This is a cool car, and again, the kind of stuff people who love cars ask automakers to build. It’s not a massive crossover, it’s not autonomous, it’s not electric or hybridized—it just seems like a solid, good-looking performance car from a brand that hasn’t done that before. I hope it works out. I’m just not confident it will.
Buy this thing if you like it. Send the car companies the right message. And if nothing else, it will be a hell of a used car bargain.


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Unread 2017-01-09, 06:23 PM   #25
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Yep, at $50k+ for a fully loaded AWD model, while it packs a lot of the right stuff, it's still a nice chunk of change.
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