Kia unveils its much awaited performance saloon. Called the Stinger, the new model will be available with two engine options including a twin-turbo V6.
Hyundai’s sister brand, Kia, is mainly known for making affordable and dependable hatchbacks, sedans and SUVs around the world. However, while the company is doing well globally, its cars are often criticized for being a little ho-hum to drive. In order to change its perception among buyers now, Kia has turned up the heat as it took the wraps off its fastest and most expensive performance car at 2017 Detroit Motor Show. Dubbed the Stinger, the new sports sedan is tasked to uplift the brand’s perception so as to show the world that Koreans can also make sportier and more aspirational cars!
The Kia Stinger takes cues from the brand’s GT concept from 2011. However, in the past the 6 years, Kia has worked relentlessly to ensure that the Stinger is everything that’s not supposed to be, erm, a Kia. It’s for the same reason that it’s been developed in Europe – Nurburgring, to be more precise.
At the ongoing Detroit show, Kia unveiled two new variants of the final product – Stinger and Stinger GT. Now the standard or entry-level Stinger is fitted with a turbocharged 2.0-litre four-cylinder petrol engine that churns out 255bhp and 350Nm of torque. But if you want to get yourself the whole deal, you should be opting for the GT derivative. It comes with a 3.3-litre V6 twin-turbo petrol that develops 365bhp and 512Nm of torque! Kia claims 0-100km/h will be dismissed in 5.1 seconds aboard the Stinger GT.
What will interest “enthusiasts” about the new Kia however is the fact that it’s a rear-wheel driven sedan – all-wheel drive will also be offered at a later stage. And what’s more, the Stinger will be equipped with a mechanical limited-slip differential. There is however no manual gearbox on offer- only an eight-speed automatic with paddle shifters.
Kia claims 55 per cent of the Stinger’s chassis is made of high-strength steel that improves stiffness, and will make the Stinger an agile handler. The Stinger also gets electrically adjustable damping system, or Dynamic Stability Damping Control in company-speak, that offers five driving modes – Personal, Eco, Sport, Comfort and Smart. Vented discs and Brembo calipers will provide braking force to the GT derivative.
Since the Kia Stinger will be squarely pitched against big fast German saloons like the Audi A4, BMW 3 Series, etc, it sports a sumptuous cabin featuring leather sports seats and a raft of equipment. The car will be equipped with a seven-inch infotainment screen and a six-speaker set-up as standard. The GT will get a more powerful nine-speaker system. An optional 720W Harman/Kardon audio system with 15 speakers is also on offer!
Kia hasn’t confirmed the global launch date of the Stinger, but it’s expected to go on sale in the second half of 2017 in European markets. Prices are also not out as of now. But considering that the Kia Stinger will compete against more premium rivals from Germany, expect it to be priced aggressively and undercut its arch rivals.