2018 Kia Stinger GT Preview Jan 31, 2017 by Cedric (Driver Weekly)

The 2018 Kia Stinger GT was a true show stopper when it debuted at the 2017 Detroit Motor Show. It made another appearance a bit later at the Australian Open, which Kia has been a major sponsor of since 2002, making it the perfect chance to show off. Thanks to these two appearances, we already know a great deal about this upcoming model.

Incredible Power

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The Kia Stinger GT is the most powerful version of this five-door sports sedan, running on a 3.3-liter twin-turbocharged V6 engine that will treat you to 376 pound-feet of torque and 365 horsepower. It comes standard with rear-wheel drive or optional all-wheel drive. The rear-wheel drive system has a multi-plate Torsen limited-slip differential, while all-wheel drive has brake-based dynamic torque-vectoring control. The Stinger GT has the same eight-speed automatic transmission as the regular model. If you want to get a feel for this transmission, it’s proved itself in the Kia K900 and the luxurious new Genesis. The GT has a variable gear ratio rack and offers Brembo brakes complete with four-piston calipers in front and two-piston ones in back. The combination of features means that the Stinger GT is aiming for zero-to-sixty in five seconds.

Styling

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The design of the 2018 Stinger GT is modeled after the Kia GT Concept from 2011. This concept was styled by the head of Kia design at the time, Peter Schreyer. Subsequent design for the Stinger was led by Gregory Guillaume, the European design chief for Kia. When you look at the Stinger GT, your eyes may go directly to the functional side vent or the notched windshield. While you won’t see the winged front end or the suicide doors from the concept model, you will notice that the Stinger GT has a metallic arc going from its rear deck to the A-Pillar similar to the earlier concept car. The Stinger GT has a purposeful silhouette with a cab-backward profile and curves reminiscent of the “soda bottle” styling. Buyers will have to decide if these design elements are spoiled by the Kia badging, or if this powerful new model can cast a halo around the thrifty automaker.

General Construction

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The Stinger GT makes heavy use of advanced high-strength steel reduce the weight of the vehicle. Although Kia hasn’t officially released the weight, experts predict that a fully loaded model with all-wheel drive will be over 3,800 pounds. All that steel is supported by a five-link rear suspension and MacPherson strut front suspension. The 2018 Stinger GT is 190.1 inches long, 73.6 inches wide, and 55.1 inches tall, making it bigger than either the Audi A5 Sportback or the BMW 4 Series Gran Coupe. Thanks to the extra space, you get an impressive amount of interior space that can easily fit those over six feet.

Intended to compete with smaller sports sedans such as the BMW 3-Series, Mercedes C-Class, or Alfa Romeo Giulia, the Kia Stinger faces an uphill battle for eyes and dollars. While we are impressed with the styling efforts, we will have to wait to see if the specifications and driving experience can match the competition.

 

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