Kia isn’t a name often linked with performance cars but the new Stinger is set to change all that.
First teased as the GT Concept in 2011, many never expected this elegant gran turismo to go into full production and as such, the Stinger is generally accepted as the most adventurous car in the brand’s history.
Looks-wise, it is certainly the most out-there Kia we’ve ever seen, with a strong, wide stance and pinned-back headlights. Not only is it the first rear-wheel drive Kia ever but also the Korean brand’s fastest-accelerating model, racing from zero to 60mph in 4.7 seconds.
This kind of pace comes from the range-topping Stinger GT S, which uses a 3.3-litre twin-turbo V6 engine with 365bhp, but there is also the more modest 244bhp two-litre petrol and 197bhp 2.2-litre turbodiesel in the range.
Each engine comes linked to an eight-speed automatic gearbox, with the flagship GT S adding adjustable electronic suspension damping and Brembo brakes.
Don’t mistake this for a hard-edged sports car; Kia says the Stinger is a classic grand tourer that harks back to a time when travelling was centred around the joy of the journey, rather than racing to the destination (a nod to 'floats like a butterfly…' perhaps?) and the plush interior has been geared to make it a pleasure to sit in.
The Stinger features the most luxurious cabin to appear in a Kia, with snug leather-wrapped low-slung seats, a high-mounted wing-shaped dashboard, aluminium-finish centre console, suede-like headlining and alloy pedals.
There’s also more than its fair share of gadgets. Every model comes with DAB radio, MP3 compatibility and Bluetooth with voice recognition and music streaming. GT-Line models get 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 centre speaker.
Prices start from £31,995 for the two-litre diesel, reaching up to £40,495 for the 3.3-litre V6.
Stephen Hasley, brand manager at Petrol News, comments: “Kia has really shocked the world by producing their fastest car yet. The Stinger looks like it is more than capable to live up to its name.”
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