The Kia Stinger has made its way to the United Kingdom, headlined by the Stinger Gran Turismo version. Five versions are available in the UK, all with turbocharged direct-injection engines mated to an eight-speed automatic gearbox and featuring state-of-the-art electronic driver aids and connectivity systems.
The GT-Line and GT-Line S offer the choice of a 2.0-liter 244bhp T-GDi petrol engine or a 2.2-liter 197bhp CRDi turbodiesel, while the range-topping GT S has exclusive use of a 3.3-liter 365bhp twin-turbo V6. The GT S, as the fastest and most powerful in the range, also has adjustable electronic suspension damping and Brembo brakes.
2018 Kia Stinger: Classic GT look
In looks, the Stinger takes up classic gran turismo proportions along with these elements: long bonnet, short front overhang, long wheelbase, cabin positioned towards the rear of the car, lengthy rear overhang beneath broad shoulders. Highlights include the signature ‘tiger-nose’ grille, castellated upper edge to the windscreen, flanks, large lower grille and air intake, dark chrome highlights and bold rear diffuser, as well as quad tailpipes on petrol models and twin tailpipes on diesels. There are 18-inch alloy wheels on GT-Line and GT-Line S versions and 19-inch wheels on GT S. Tyre sizes follow 225/45 R18 for GT-Line and GT-Line S, while the GT S has 225/40 R19 at the front and even wider 255/35 R19 at the rear.
Kia Stinger GT: Interior refinement at top level
Moving inside, the Stinger has a premium-feel interior which consist of the leather low-slung seats or Nappa leather seats (GT S); high-mounted, wing-shaped dashboard; 8.0-inch touchscreen; door armrests in leather; D-shaped steering; and chromed gearshifter. Moreover, there’s an aluminium-finish center console, a chrome strip running all the way around the cabin, suede-like headlining, satin chrome interior door handles, alloy pedals, stainless steel door scuff plates and five aeronautically inspired spoked circular air vents.
To enhance comfort, dual automatic air conditioning is fitted to every variant, while to aid the driver there is a 7.0-inch LCD Thin Film Transistor (TFT) supervision cluster and a customizable head-up display. Every Stinger has a DAB radio with MP3 compatibility and Bluetooth with voice recognition and music streaming. In GT-Line there is a nine-speaker sound system with front under-seat subwoofer, while GT-Line S and GT S have a concert hall quality 15-speaker harman/kardon premium system with subwoofer, external amp and front center speaker. It features Clari-Fi, which restores the sound often lost when digital music files are heavily compressed, and QuantumLogic Surround Sound, which redistributes signals from the original recording to deliver multi-dimensional playback.
The standard touchscreen navigation has full European mapping and a Traffic Messaging Channel. Stinger also has Kia Connected Services with TomTom, giving access to traffic, speed camera and weather information plus local search details in a number of categories. This is supplemented by Android Auto and CarPlay connectivity. And that’s not all; there are front and rear USB ports and wireless charger (GT-Line S and GT S).
To ensure occupants can enjoy the refined sporting tones of the Stinger’s turbocharged engines, the car is the first Kia to be fitted with an Active Sound System. This relays the engine note to the cabin through the car’s audio system rather than the more conventional actuator. It was engineered in Europe and can be customized through the Drive Mode Selector.
All versions have fully independent suspension through MacPherson struts at the front and a five-link set-up featuring double wishbones at the rear, but there are two different systems. GT-Line and GT-Line S have a passive set-up, while GT S introduces adaptive Dynamic Stability Damping Control (DSDC).
A variable-ratio version of Kia’s rack-mounted Motor Driven Power Steering (R-MDPS) is fitted to the GT S grade, and this can also be adjusted via the Drive Mode Selector.
Stinger’s brakes have had more development work than those on any previous Kia to ensure they are up to the performance of the engines. There are ventilated discs at all four corners for the 2.0-liter T-GDi and 3.3-liter T-GDi V6 variants, with ventilated front discs and solid rear discs for the 2.2l CRDi models.
The disk brakes for the 3.3-liter GT S were co-developed with Brembo and are 350mm on the front and 340mm on the rear and are holed and grooved, to provide high heat capacity with low fade, even in repeated heavy use.
As for driver assistive systems, the Stinger is fitted with Autonomous Emergency Braking, Lane Keep Assist, High Beam Assist, Driver Attention Warning and Speed Limit Information system. GT-Line S and GT S supplement this with Blind Spot Detection with Rear Cross Traffic Alert. An Active Bonnet is standard with all three trim grades to provide additional protection for pedestrians’ heads in a collision.
Stinger has Electronic Stability Control linked to Vehicle Stability Management (VSM) to correct potential skids without any intervention from the driver.
The Kia Stinger is available in the U.K. at a starting price of 31,995 pounds.