Stinger

PRESS PACK

GENERAL

Kia Stinger Press Pack - Updated March 2020

THE STINGER ON (JUST OVER) A PAGE                                                      

A quick resume of the Stinger for those with an urgent deadline

General

  • Five-door, five-seater fastback-style grand tourer
  • Takes Kia into a new market sector
  • Kia's first rear-wheel-drive car in the UK
  • Captures style and character of cars from golden age of grand tourers
  • Evolved from the Kia GT Concept unveiled at 2011 Frankfurt Motor Show
  • Designed in Europe with input from main design centre at Namyang in Korea
  • Many prototypes have completed 1.1 million kilometres of testing - 27 times around the world
  • Many development cars have done 10,000 kilometres – 480 laps – around Nürburgring
  • Built at Sohari in South Korea

Body

  • Stinger is a halo performance car and a template for Kia's bold and exciting future
  • Classic gran turismo proportions with a long bonnet, short front overhang, long wheelbase and long rear overhang with broad shoulders
  • 'Coke-bottle' nip in waist
  • Typical Kia identifiers include 'tiger-nose' grille between complex headlights, castellated windscreen and simple, unadorned flanks
  • Special aerodynamic features include front air curtains, wheel-arch gills, a smooth underbody tray and an integrated rear diffuser

Interior

  • Cocooning intimacy with space for five and their luggage
  • 406-litre boot with rear seats in use and 1,114 litres with them folded
  • Winged dashboard with high horizontal sweep interrupted only by central touchscreen
  • Nappa leather upholstery
  • Leather also trims D-shaped steering wheel, gearshifter, dashboard and door armrests
  • Five aeronautically inspired air vents
  • Aluminium finish centre console, satin chrome interior door handles, aluminium pedals, suede headlining and stainless-steel door scuff plates emphasise gran turismo luxury and quality

Powertrains and running gear

  • 361bhp 3.3-litre twin-turbocharged V6 engine
  • Stinger ’GT S’ is fastest-accelerating Kia ever (0-60mph in 4.7 seconds)
  • Eight-speed automatic transmission is standard
  • Power is sent to the rear wheels
  • MacPherson strut front suspension with multi-link rear suspension
  • Electronically controlled Dynamic Stability Damping Control
  • Suspension of right-hand-drive cars benefits from additional testing on UK roads
  • Rack-mounted Motor Driven Power Steering (R-MDPS) with two modes standard, with variable gear ratio
  • Ventilated disc brakes front and rear, developed with Brembo
  • Limited Slip Differential is standard equipment
  • 19-inch alloy wheels with 225/40 R19 (front) and 225/35 R19 (rear) tyres
  • Body constructed from 55 per cent high-strength steels for strength with lightness

Technology and safety

  • Standard equipment includes Forward Collision Avoidance Assist, Blind Spot Detection, Lane Keep Assist, High Beam Assist, Rear Cross Traffic Alert, Speed Limit Information warning, Driver Attention Warning and an Active Bonnet to protect pedestrians in a collision
  • Vehicle Stability Management system incorporates dynamic torque vectoring
  • 8.0-inch touchscreen navigation system, Kia Connected Services with TomTom and Android AutoTM and Apple CarPlayTM with voice control standard
  • Bluetooth with music streaming, a DAB radio with MP3 compatibility, a customisable head-up display and a 7.0-inch full-colour Thin Film Transistor supervision cluster
  • 15-speaker harman/kardon premium sound system with subwoofer, external amp and front centre speaker
  • 360-degree Around View Monitor and a wireless mobile phone charger are standard 

 

INTRODUCTION

  • Kia's first grand tourer and first rear-wheel-drive car in the UK
  • Fastback-style 5-door gran turismo based on Kia GT Concept
  • Evokes memories of the golden age of beautiful grand tourers
  • Twin-turbocharged V6 engine, with an eight-speed automatic gearbox 
  • Capable of 0-60mph in 4.7 seconds – faster than any previous Kia
  • Adjustable, all-independent suspension
  • Equipped with state-of-the-art driver aids and connectivity systems

Kia is bringing back the golden age of beautiful and elegant high-performance gran turismo cars with the stunning Stinger, the most adventurous model in the company's history.

Stinger is the first classic grand tourer from Kia and the first rear-wheel-drive model the company has introduced to Europe. It is also the fastest-accelerating Kia ever, with a 0-60mph time of 4.7 seconds.    

Six years in the making, it has evolved from the Kia GT Concept revealed at the 2011 Frankfurt Motor Show. In the intervening years many people questioned whether Kia would be bold enough to step outside its comfort zone and sanction a production model, but the company was simply waiting until the time was right to do so. That time is now. 

Stinger was designed in Europe at the Frankfurt studios under the watch of President of Design and Chief Design Officer Peter Schreyer and European Head of Design Gregory Guillaume. Prototypes have covered the equivalent of 27 trips around the Equator, taking in extreme climate testing in Europe, Asia, the Middle East and North and South America, to perfect the car, and many development cars have done at least 480 laps (10,000 kilometres) of the tortuous Nürburgring Nordschleife. The testing regime was headed by Albert Biermann, Head of Research and Development Division for Hyundai Motor Group.

A single high-specification car is available in the UK, with a twin-turbocharged V6 direct-injection engine mated to an eight-speed automatic gearbox and featuring state-of-the-art electronic driver aids and connectivity systems. The ‘GT S’ is sold exclusively with a 3.3-litre 361bhp twin-turbo V6. The fastest and most powerful model in the Kia range has electronic suspension damping and Brembo brakes.      

A gran turismo, not a sports car
Stinger is not a hard-edged sports car created to be brutally fast at the expense of comfort. Rather, it is about the joy of the journey, where getting to the final destination can be an anti-climax.

"The Stinger has nothing to do with being the first to arrive," says Gregory Guillaume. "This car is all about the journey. It's about passion. To embody that passion we believe that proportion is everything. From the wheelbase to the greenhouse, the width and the height – even the shape of individual body panels – getting the perfect balance is critical." Stinger is 4,830mm long, 1,870mm wide and just 1,400mm tall, and has a 2,905mm wheelbase.

It was inspired by the elegant grand tourers Guillaume saw as a child growing up in 1970s France, wafting their occupants effortlessly from Paris to St Tropez and other glamour spots on the Riviera. Even as a young boy Guillaume was drawing his own ideas for elegant grand tourers, hoping that one day they might become reality. They were his inspiration for the 2011 GT Concept and, subsequently, Stinger.     

Stinger exhibits classic gran turismo proportions – long bonnet, short front overhang, long wheelbase, cabin positioned towards the rear of the car, lengthy rear overhang beneath broad shoulders and a 'Coke-bottle' nip in the waist. It sets a template for Kia's bold and exciting future and is the final step in the company's transition from a manufacturer of purely rational, durable, value-centric cars to one able to compete with the world's best for desirability, design and technology.   

This may be a new kind of Kia, but the design cues which have stood the company in good stead since Schreyer joined in 2006 are all in evidence. What Guillaume calls the "sleek and sharky" front end has a new interpretation of Kia's 'tiger-nose grille mounted between complex headlamp units. There is a castellated upper edge to the windscreen. And the flanks are simple and unadorned. Visual engagement also comes from the large lower grille and air intake, dark chrome highlights and bold rear diffuser with quad tailpipes, and 19-inch wheels.

What exterior decoration does appear is there to aid aerodynamics and ensure the car remains stable at the high speeds it is capable of. There are air curtains at the front and finned gills behind the rear wheel arches to reduce wake as turbulent air passes around the large wheels and tyres. The final shape of Stinger called for intense collaboration between designers and aerodynamicists to make airflow around the car as clean as possible without diluting its stunning styling. As a result, the bodywork has been tapered slightly towards the rear and there is a partially flat underfloor tray, while the rear spoiler has taken on a slight ducktail shape to reduce lift. Even the roof was lowered slightly to give Stinger more of an aerofoil profile.

An interior fit for cross-continent travel
Stinger's luxurious interior is a blend of cocooning intimacy and space for five people and their luggage. Occupants slip down into their Nappa leather low-slung seats.   

There is a horizontal sweep to the high-mounted, wing-shaped dashboard – also covered in leather – which is broken only by the 8.0-inch touchscreen for the navigation and infotainment system. Leather also adorns the door armrests, the D-shaped steering wheel and the gearshifter, which also has chrome sections.

The seats are snug and enveloping, and the two in front have eight-way power adjustment – with a memory function on the driver's side – and a two-way power cushion extender plus four-way power lumbar adjustment. The front seats and steering wheel are heated, and the chairs are also ventilated, while the outer rear seats are also heated.    

The luxurious ambience is enhanced by an aluminium-finish centre console, a chrome strip running all the way around the cabin, suede-feel headlining, satin chrome interior door handles, aluminium 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 model, while to aid the driver there is a 7.0-inch LCD Thin Film Transistor (TFT) supervision cluster and a customisable head-up display which allows key information – speed, navigation instructions and audio, cruise control and blind spot detection information –  to be projected onto the windscreen. There is also a 360-degree around-view monitor. 

DAB radio with MP3 compatibility and Bluetooth and music streaming is standard, along with Apple CarPlay™ and Android Auto™ offer voice control. A concert hall quality 15-speaker harman/kardon premium system with subwoofer, external amplifier and front centre speaker is also standard. 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.

 

DESIGN AND PACKAGING
In 2011 Kia unveiled its GT Concept on the eve of the Frankfurt Motor Show. It was created at the company's European design studios next door to the show site, and a pointer to the fact that Kia did not intend to remain rooted in its then range of workaday hatchbacks, saloons, estates and SUVs forever. Since that day, the most frequently asked question at Kia events has been "when are you going to put the GT into production".   

Gregory Guillaume, the Head of the European design studio, says: “All of our concept cars have a reason, a purpose. They are not designers' indulgences. They illustrate what we are thinking. Ultimately, what matters is what comes on to the street, not what stays in the design studio – and we knew the GT Concept would, one day, go into production.”

So, when a rear-wheel-drive gran turismo based on the GT Concept was signed off for production, where better to turn than Guillaume and the Frankfurt studio, with the whole project being overseen by Peter Schreyer, Kia President of Design and Chief Design Officer.

Turning a concept into a production car is no small feat, however. "On a concept car everything is exaggerated. It's an abstract," says Guillaume. "Actually, we think the production car came out nicer than the project car – there were some areas we were never really satisfied with, like the C-pillar. So we started to change that area and it affected the whole car."

Exterior
The idea behind the concept car was simple. It would echo the spirit of iconic 1970s gran turismo cars, the elegant and powerful vehicles capable of powering passengers from Paris to the Côte d'Azur for the weekend in impeccable style and at high speed. "As a child growing up in France in the 1970s, I was unconstrained by the limits of engineering and I drew cars that were to my eyes, beautiful, dynamic, original and, of course, very fast. I believed those dreams could be a reality.

"Those dreams were the inspiration for the GT concept in 2011. It embodied that grace, flair and dynamism, without being aggressive or gauche. But it was more than just a design exercise. Once Stinger was given the green light for production, the idea was to channel the spirit of those iconic gran turismos to create something emotional and elegant."

The GT Concept embodied grace, flair and dynamism, without being aggressive. “We were convinced from day one that we would take this concept car from motor show plinth to the road, knowing that we have the freedom within Kia to stretch the brand in many directions," says Guillaume. “Stinger is not about outright power, hard-edged dynamics and brutal styling at the expense of luxury, comfort and grace. 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."

Guillaume believes that to embody that passion, proportion is everything. From the wheelbase to the greenhouse, width and height – and even the shape of individual body panels – getting the perfect balance is critical.

Key to its road presence are its rear-wheel-drive proportions – a long bonnet and short 830mm front overhang, an extended wheelbase (2,905mm) to deliver a spacious cabin, and a long rear overhang (1,095mm) with strong, broad shoulders. Stinger’s stance, proportion and visual balance are designed to lend the car an air of elegance and athleticism, rather than aggression and brutality. Stinger measures 4,830mm in length and 1,870mm in width, and is 1,400 tall. The ‘Coke-bottle’ shape of the car’s flanks highlight the shoulder line, as well as the fastback silhouette.

This may be a new kind of Kia, but the design cues which have stood the company in good stead since Schreyer joined in 2006 are all in evidence. What Guillaume calls the "sleek and sharky" front end has a new interpretation of Kia's 'tiger-nose grille mounted between complex headlamp units. There is a castellated upper edge to the windscreen. And the flanks are simple and unadorned. Visual engagement also comes from the large lower grille and air intake, dark chrome highlights and bold rear diffuser.

What exterior decoration does appear is there to aid aerodynamics and ensure the car remains stable at the high speeds it is capable of. There are air curtains at the front and finned gills behind the rear wheel arches to reduce wake as turbulent air passes around the large wheels and tyres. The final shape of Stinger called for intense collaboration between designers and aerodynamicists to make airflow around the car as clean as possible without diluting its stunning styling. As a result, the bodywork has been tapered slightly towards the rear and there is a partially flat underfloor tray, while the rear spoiler has taken on a slight ducktail shape to reduce lift. Even the roof was lowered slightly to give Stinger more of an aerofoil profile.

Schreyer says: “You cannot believe how excited I am about this car. Stinger is going to fundamentally change the global image of Kia. It will revolutionise the way people think about us. It’s going to propel us upwards into a different era.”

Interior
External gran turismo visual cues are complemented by the layout and atmosphere of the low-slung cabin, with a steeply-raked windscreen and high dashboard running along a horizontal plane. The dashboard’s centre console is split into two specific areas: the infotainment controls sit neatly below a large colour touchscreen, while the climate and ventilation controls are lower down. In front of the driver is a thick, leather-wrapped steering wheel and a single instrument binnacle with a combination of analogue and digital instrumentation. The large gauges are ringed in metal and accentuated with sweeping red needles.

Stinger's luxurious interior is a blend of cocooning intimacy and space for five people and their luggage. Occupants slip down into their Nappa leather low-slung seats. There is 974mm of headroom in the front and only slightly less – 939mm – in the rear. The respective figures for legroom are 1,083mm and 925mm, and for shoulder room they are 1,433mm and 1,391mm. The boot capacity with the 60:40 split rear seats upright is 406 litres, which extends to 1,114 litres when they are lowered.     

The wing-shaped dashboard – also covered in leather – is broken only by the 8.0-inch touchscreen for the navigation and infotainment system. Leather also adorns the door armrests, the D-shaped steering wheel and the gearshifter, which also has chrome sections.

The seats are snug and enveloping, and the two in front have eight-way power adjustment – with a memory function on the driver's side – and a two-way power cushion extender plus four-way power lumbar adjustment. The front seats and steering wheel are heated, and the chairs are also ventilated, while the outer rear seats are heated. The chunky transmission tunnel that separates the driver and passenger compartments reinforces the car’s rear-drive layout.

The luxurious ambience is emphasised by an aluminium-finish centre console, a chrome strip running all the way around the cabin, suede-feel headlining, satin chrome interior door handles, aluminium pedals, stainless steel door scuff plates and five aeronautically inspired spoked circular air vents.

To enhance comfort, dual automatic air conditioning is fitted, while to aid the driver there is a 7.0-inch LCD Thin Film Transistor (TFT) supervision cluster and a customisable head-up display which allows key information – speed, navigation instructions and audio, cruise control and blind spot detection information –  to be projected onto the windscreen. There is also a 360-degree around-view monitor. 

DAB radio with MP3 compatibility and Bluetooth and music streaming is standard, along with Apple CarPlay™ and Android Auto™ offer voice control. A concert hall quality 15-speaker harman/kardon premium system with subwoofer, external amplifier and front centre speaker is also standard. 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.

 “Working on this car was a dream. I still get a buzz, a thrill when I think about it, and I have been thinking about it for a very long time. It fills me with pride, and now I just cannot wait to see it on the road,” says Guillaume.

 

DYNAMICS 
The Nürburgring Nordschleife (North Loop) became known as 'The Green Hell' for very good reason. It runs for more than 13 miles through the Eifel mountains in Germany, and contains 73 corners, a 300-metre difference in height between its highest and lowest points and has gradients of up to 17 per cent.

Driving round it demands constant hard acceleration and braking and heavy cornering. There are changing surfaces and cambers offering an unrivalled test of a car's dynamic prowess. As a test facility it is merciless, which is why Kia has established a base there. Every new model – including Stinger – is tested there to hone its suspension, steering and brakes. The testing regime was so punishing that brake pads had to be changed halfway through each day.

During the development of Stinger, prototypes were put through at least 10,000km, or 480 laps, of high-stress driving around the Nordschleife – not to set a lap time which would be irrelevant to customers, but to ensure the finished product would be a genuine gran turismo.

The automatic transmission was a key focus for powertrain testing. Nordschleife testing identified a need to manage heat in the transmission more efficiently: initially, the temperature of the gearbox oil was rising higher than what was deemed acceptable by the engineers. To counteract this, an oil cooler with a larger surface area was adopted.

Suspension and steering
Stinger’s dynamics presented the engineers with a new challenge. Because this was going to be a totally new kind of car for Kia, the chassis engineers were given a blank canvas for the suspension and steering characteristics. Their brief was to create a true gran turismo which would drive the way it looks. The shape of the car inspired efforts to imbue Stinger with agile handling and high levels of body control for enthusiastic driver, but with a compliant ride that would ensure high-speed cruising comfort over long distances.

The Stinger has MacPherson struts at the front and fully independent multi-link suspension at the rear. Dynamic Stability Damping Control (DSDC) adapts the stroke length of the dampers on the move, and is controlled by acceleration, braking and steering sensors. Drivers can change the characteristics of the shock absorbers via the Drive Mode Selector, which offers five modes - Eco, Normal, Sport, Sport+ and Smart settings. In Normal mode, low levels of damping force ensure maximum cruising comfort. The suspension continues to firm up slightly under heavy cornering, but the effect is less pronounced than in Sport mode.

Stinger’s rack-mounted motor-driven power steering system (R-MDPS) provided the chassis engineers with greater flexibility for tuning. R-MDPS lets drivers choose between two steering modes via the Drive Mode Selector: Normal and Sport. These modes change the level of steering effort required, and also the variable steering ratio.

In Sport mode, Stinger requires increased on-centre steering effort, and has shorter gearing, reducing the need for larger steering inputs. Normal mode reduces the steering effort from the on-centre position for more measured steering responses at a cruise. Normal mode also requires more effort as the steering wheel turns, with a linear build-up of resistance to give driver’s greater confidence. The result is a steering system providing the same duality as the suspension – one that’s as relaxing and confidence-inspiring to use in a straight line as it is immediate and engaging on more enjoyable roads.

Right-hand-drive versions of the Stinger were put through a further level of dynamic testing in the UK to hone the steering and suspension for the country's uniquely challenging roads.

There are 19-inch alloy wheels with 225/40 R19 tyres at the front and even wider 255/35 R19 tyres at the rear.

Brakes
The 361bhp 3.3-litre twin-turbo V6 in the Stinger ’GT S’ enables the car to accelerate from 0 to 60mph in just 4.7 seconds, making it the fastest-accelerating production Kia ever. Its high-performance brakes therefore needed to be equal to the task.

To ensure this would be the case, a rigorous range of braking challenges was devised, taking in the famous Grossglockner High Alpine Road in the Austrian Alps for constant downhill brake testing. Private test facilities in Northern Germany and Eastern Spain, as well as the Nürburgring, were also used.

Stinger’s brakes not only had to offer strong and consistent braking power. A reassuring and responsive feel to the pedal was also demanded by the engineers, even after repeated heavy braking, for maximum driver confidence. More development work has been carried out on the Stinger’s brakes than on any previous Kia.

The ’GT S’ features a new braking system developed with Brembo. The 350mm front and 340mm Brembo discs are holed and grooved, providing high heat capacity and reduced fade levels under repeated heavy use. They are paired with the most powerful calipers ever found on a Kia.

Early in Stinger’s development, engineers considered carbon ceramic brakes to maximise the braking power. However, as a Kia, Stinger needed to remain affordable to buy and maintain. Brembo’s brakes proved more than up to what was required of them.

Kia’s internal tests are designed to validate brakes at temperatures of up to 700°C (1,292°F). Engineers went even further for the Brembo brake system, with temperatures rising to more than 800°C (1,472°F). Even at these temperatures, Stinger’s brakes continue to offer consistent braking power and pedal feel.

All roads and all weathers
Kia did not confine Stinger testing to the Nürburgring. Prototypes have been driven for more than 1.1 million kilometres – the equivalent of 27 times around the Equator – to test Stinger's durability. Extreme climate testing took place across Europe, the Middle East, Asia and North and South America. Stinger was subjected to extreme cold and heat and high altitude, and faced the unique demands of the desert, permafrost regions, congested city centres and mountain passes.

Stinger was plunged into Arctic winters to ensure predictable, stable, gran turismo handling in all conditions with the engaging, fun-to-drive character of a rear-wheel drive car. From the development facility in Arjeplog in Swedish Lapland, Kia honed Stinger in a range of low-grip environments, including a skid-pan, handling circuit and slalom test on the surface of the frozen Uddjaure lake. Kia’s winter test regime saw the car being driven in temperatures as low as -35°C (-31°F).

Stinger‘s on-road refinement was equally important, but customers also want to enjoy the sound of the engine at work. Stinger is the first Kia with an Active Sound system to enhance the engine note via the car’s audio rather than through an actuator which channels noise into the cabin. The Active Sound system was engineered in Europe and is consistent with the type of engine, authentically enhancing the distinctive V6 engine note. Sound engineers have paired the system with Stinger’s Drive Mode Selector, enabling drivers to change the level of engine noise in the cabin. The sound becomes slightly louder and more aggressive in tone as drivers switch modes.   

Albert Biermann, Kia’s Head of Vehicle Test and High Performance Development, says: “Testing the car in extreme conditions allowed us to focus on its stability and predictability in every configuration and in all driving conditions. Crucially, these tests allowed us to engineer a car which retains the driving appeal that buyers look for in a gran turismo. We want enthusiastic drivers to be able to enjoy the thrill of driving their Stinger in all conditions without compromising on safety.”

A gran turismo must provide exceptional comfort for occupants on the long distances it is designed to cover, but it must also reward enthusiastic drivers with pliant but controlled suspension, alert steering which does not make the car nervous and powerful brakes. Thanks to the extensive testing regime on all kinds of roads, in all weathers and across several continents, Stinger meets those demands. Right-hand-drive cars have undergone additional testing in the UK to meet the unique challenges of the country's roads.      

 

ENGINES
Everything about Stinger has been engineered to ensure it is an authentic modern gran turismo. From its torquey turbocharged engine to its eight-speed automatic transmission, fully independent suspension – with switchable modes – powerful brakes and variable steering, it is a car built for covering long distances swiftly, comfortably and safely while delivering maximum driving pleasure.

The body is composed of 55 per cent high-strength steels to keep weight to a minimum so that Stinger is as lithe and agile as it looks while ensuring robustness in the event of an accident, and there is a battery of advanced driver assistance systems to make that accident less likely. And extensive work on sound-deadening ensures it is as refined as it is comfortable, but occupants can still enjoy the refined sporting tones of the Stinger's turbocharged engine thanks to an Active Sound system – the first in a Kia.

Engine power, performance and fuel economy figures

Model

Power bhp

Torque Nm

0–60 sec

Max speed mph

Combined mpg
(WLTP)

CO2
(WLTP)

‘GT S’ 3.3 T-GDi 8-speed automatic ISG

361

510

4.7

168

27.7

233

 

Grand tourers should not only be beautiful, comfortable and luxurious, they must also be fast. The turbocharged engine chosen for Stinger are ideally suited to its role as a long-distance gran turismo.

To ensure occupants can enjoy the refined sporting tones of the Stinger's turbocharged engine, 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 customised through the Drive Mode Selector according to which of the five programmable settings the driver has chosen. 

The 3.3-litre, 3,342cc twin-turbo V6 T-GDi is a member of the Lambda II range and produces 361bhp at 6,000rpm and a huge 510Nm of torque starting at 1,300rpm and continuing uninterrupted until 4,500rpm.

It features an aluminium block and heads and was developed during a rigorous testing regime focused on responsiveness and efficiency with durability and reliability. There are twin single-scroll turbochargers, an air-cooled intercooler and an integral turbo and exhaust manifold to reduce weight. An electronic wastegate and thermostat help to improve responsiveness. Continuously variable valve timing (CVVT) enhances intake operation range and operation speed while reducing pumping loss. There are sodium-filled exhaust valves to boost performance and efficiency while offering structural reinforcement for improved durability.

The twin-turbo V6 makes Stinger the fastest-accelerating Kia ever. From standstill to 60mph takes just 4.7 seconds, and the top speed is 168mph where permitted. Yet the extensive testing regime to ensure durability and responsiveness has also helped efficiency: combined fuel consumption is 27.7mpg, while CO2 emissions are 233g/km.

Eight-speed automatic gearbox
The Stinger transmits drive to the rear wheels through an electronic eight-speed automatic gearbox. It was designed in-house and rewards drivers with immediate shifts and optimum fuel efficiency. Stinger’s transmission marks Kia’s first use of a Centrifugal Pendulum Absorber (CPA) torque converter more typically found in aviation and racing applications. CPA reduces torsional vibrations through the drivetrain.

The transmission offers up to five different shift and throttle programmes, accessed through the car’s electronic Drive Mode Selector. Drivers can leave the car to shift for itself, or change gears with steering wheel-mounted paddles. A Limited Slip Differential is fitted, so that torque is transferred to the rear wheel with most grip.

ISG, Kia's engine stop/start system to ensure no fuel is wasted and no emissions are released when the car is stationary, is standard. The engine cuts out as soon as the driver brakes to a standstill and restarts when the brake pedal is released.

 

TECHNOLOGY
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, from the location of Kia dealerships to nearby restaurants. This is supplemented by Android Auto™ and Apple CarPlay™ connectivity which, via pre-downloaded apps on a suitable smartphone, links the car to maps, music, podcasts and texts through voice commands.

Kia Connected Services with TomTom™ are accessed through the 8.0-inch touchscreen navigation system. The information available to drivers includes live traffic updates, weather reports, speed camera locations and local point-of-interest searches, from the location of Kia dealerships to nearby restaurants and hotels.

The system is compatible with Android Auto™ and Apple CarPlay™, both of which are standard fitments. Android Auto is available when the system is paired with Android smartphones running 5.0 (Lollipop) or higher, while Apple CarPlay is compatible with iPhone 5 and newer versions of the Apple handset. Both allow occupants to connect to various apps and functions, including voice-guided, hands-free calls and texts and voice recognition. Android Auto gives access to Google maps navigation and Google Play music, while Apple CarPlay links to pre-loaded maps, music, podcasts, texts and messages and audiobooks, all through Siri voice control.

A reversing camera is standard, and there’s Bluetooth with music streaming.  

 

SAFETY
Stinger may evoke memories of the golden age of gran turismos, but it is not a retro car. Its advanced driver aids take into account that roads are busier and there are more distractions than ever before.

Stinger's safety provisions begin with its sturdy body, 55 per cent of which is composed of high-strength steels so that rigidity and crash protection do not come at the expense of excessive weight. Structural adhesives are used extensively and the attachment points for the powertrain and chassis, where loads are most concentrated in the vehicle’s frame, are extremely rigid. By strengthening the longitudinal and transverse structures and using an engine room strut bar, the frame exceeds competitive car standards.

In terms of crashworthiness, the Stinger exceeds all competitors. The side member is formed from 80 K-class steel. The rear lower member is formed from 150 K-class steel, and as much available crash space as possible has been included. To protect passengers in a rear collision, the lightweight high-stiffness body in white (BIW) is so strong that it surpasses European car standards.

To achieve this, the lower part of the body, a critical area in a collision, is made of hot stamped, ultra-high-strength steel with a large steel plate. Carefully defined load paths channel impact forces away from the passenger cell, and there are seven airbags – including one for the driver's knees – to protect occupants.

However, Stinger has been engineered to ensure that, as much as possible, such features will not be needed through a comprehensive network of advanced driver assistance systems. Standard equipment includes Forward Collision Avoidance Assist, which automatically intervenes to stop the car if the driver fails to respond to a potential accident, and there is Lane Keep Assist to prevent a driver straying into an adjoining lane accidentally, and High Beam Assist to adjust the headlights according to other traffic and local lighting. Driver Attention Warning alerts a tired driver that it is time to take a break, and there is a Speed Limit Information system. There is also Blind Spot Detection with Rear Cross Traffic Alert: together, these act as an extra pair of eyes for the driver, warning of vehicles approaching out of his or her eye-line when changing lanes or exiting parallel parking spaces. An Active Bonnet is standard, to reduce damage to pedestrians' heads in a collision. 

Forward Collision Avoidance Assist is included, which automatically intervenes to stop the car if the driver fails to respond to a potential accident, and there is Lane Keep Assist to prevent a driver straying into an adjoining lane accidentally, and High Beam Assist to adjust the headlights according to other traffic and local lighting. Driver Attention Warning alerts a tired driver that it is time to take a break, and there is a Speed Limit Information System.  

Stinger has Electronic Stability Control linked to Vehicle Stability Management (VSM) to correct potential skids without any intervention from the driver. VSM incorporates a new dynamic torque vectoring system which monitors driver inputs and road conditions and automatically applies powerand braking g-force to the inner rear wheel to minimise understeer and enhance tractability and steering feel.

 

SPECIFICATION HIGHLIGHTS
There is just one, high-specification version of the Stinger in the UK, powered by the sensational 3.3-litre V6 T-GDi twin-turbocharged direct-injection petrol engine. Drive is sent to the rear wheels through an eight-speed automatic gearbox.

As halo models in the Kia line-up, it is luxuriously equipped, and features an extensive range of advanced driver assistance systems and connectivity services as standard. Leather upholstery and trim, a power-adjustable memory driver's seat, heated seats and steering wheel, a smart key entry system with an engine start/stop button and an 8.0-inch touchscreen navigation and infotainment system are just a few of the highlights.  

Stinger's luxurious interior is a blend of cocooning intimacy and space for five people and their luggage. Occupants slip down into their low-slung Nappa leather seats. There is a horizontal sweep to the high-mounted, wing-shaped dashboard – also covered in leather – which is broken only by the 8.0-inch touchscreen. Leather also adorns the door armrests, the D-shaped steering wheel and the gearshifter, which has chrome sections.

The seats are snug and enveloping, and the two in front have eight-way power adjustment – with a memory function on the driver's side – and a two-way power cushion extender plus four-way power lumbar adjustment. The front seats and steering wheel are heated and the chairs are also ventilated, while the outer rear seats are also heated.    

To enhance comfort, dual automatic air conditioning is fitted to every model, while to aid the driver there is a 7.0-inch LCD Thin Film Transistor (TFT) supervision cluster and a customisable head-up display which allows key information – speed, navigation instructions and audio, cruise control and blind spot detection information –  to be projected onto the windscreen. In addition, there is a 360-degree around-view monitor. 

DAB radio with MP3 compatibility and Bluetooth and music streaming is standard, along with Apple CarPlay™ and Android Auto™ offer voice control. A concert hall quality 15-speaker harman/kardon premium system with subwoofer, external amplifier and front centre speaker is also standard. 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.

There are 19-inch alloy wheels, as well as an electric one-touch sunroof and LED headlamps, LED daytime running lights and tail lamps. There are quad exhaust pipes and the brakes have been co-developed with Brembo.

To emphasise the quality designed and engineered into Stinger, the luxurious ambience is enhanced by an aluminium-finish centre console, a chrome strip running all the way around the cabin, suede-feel headlining, satin chrome interior door handles, aluminium pedals, stainless steel door scuff plates and five aeronautically inspired spoked circular air vents.

 

WARRANTY AND AFTER-CARE
Kia set a new benchmark in 2007 when it launched the cee'd with an industry-best seven-year/100,000-mile warranty. That demonstration of faith in the quality and reliability of Kia products was subsequently extended to every model.

A major benefit is that it is transferable to subsequent owners at no charge, as long as the seven-year time limit has not been reached and the mileage is below 100,000.

The mechanical warranty is supported by a 12-year anti-perforation warranty and a five-year paint warranty.

Servicing is required every 10,000 miles or once a year, whichever comes soonest. The Stinger is available with Kia’s ‘Kia Care’ service plans, which have been developed to provide customers with a wide range of service plan options for any Kia model within the first seven years of the vehicle’s life – matching its industry-leading seven-year warranty.

The service plans include a comprehensive range of options including the original, traditional, first, third and fifth services and those in between, but in addition a customer can now purchase services up to and including the seventh service which matches the full length of the warranty. The plans are available for all Kia owners and can be purchased at any point of ownership for cars up to five years old.

The Kia Promise was introduced to give customers the best ownership experience by giving them access to seven key benefits. The Kia Promise is activated after purchase and is done by simply registering on the online portal, MyKia. Along with the industry leading seven-year/100,000 mile warranty, other benefits of the Kia Promise include complimentary seven day insurance and £250 Insurance Excess Return for one year; easy to use Click & Collect on Genuine Kia accessories; convenient online service booking; Family-Like Care and Accident AfterCare. Every new Kia also comes with complimentary Roadside Assistance for 12 months. When a customer registers on MyKia, Kia Roadside Assistance Plus, the highest level of cover provided by the RAC, can be unlocked, which includes onward travel and European cover.

 

FIVE MINUTES WITH PAUL PHILPOTT
Burning questions that you would love to ask our President and CEO

How important is the Stinger in the UK?
The Stinger is the jewel in our crown, acting as a halo model for the rest of the Kia line-up. Just look at it – doesn’t it look stunning. Our European Design Director, Gregory Guillaume sums it up perfectly: “Stinger is not about outright power, hard-edged dynamics and brutal styling at the expense of luxury, comfort and grace. 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."

What sales targets have you set for the Stinger for the UK market?
We never release sales or production targets for individual models; however, we expect the Stinger to appeal to buyers that want a stunning looking, well-equipped vehicle that offers bags of equipment at an affordable price. We predict that around 60 per cent of the Stingers registered will be retail sales.

What does 2020 hold for the Kia brand in the UK?
Until there is some certainty around what the split from Europe means for the UK, it’s likely to continue to be turbulent in the new car market. Last year was once again another record year for Kia in the UK, with 97,323 cars delivered to customers during 2019. That represents an increase of 1.6 per cent, in a market that was down by 2.4 per cent and saw the lowest number of new vehicles registered since 2013. Last year, Kia moved up one place to number eight in the overall UK sales charts, which is a significant achievement in a sales environment that has been exceptionally tough.

The first year of the new decade is going to present a number of challenges – none more so than the switch from NEDC to WLTP CO2 emissions figures in April 2020. At a time when consumers expect to see ever-improving data, the change in regime means that all cars will see an increase to their emissions, meaning most owners will be paying more for their motoring each year. That’s a bitter pill to swallow for many and will take a lot of explaining in the showrooms. It will mean, however, that the fuel economy and CO2 emissions are more realistic in real-world driving and gives Kia the opportunity to fully leverage their range of highly efficient eco cars.

Mandatory CO2 standards for passenger cars were first introduced in 2009 by the European Union, and in 2020 a new, more stringent set of standards means that an average of 95g/km across the product range must be achieved. Failing to do so will result in significant fines, and therefore the primary focus of Kia Motors is to achieve the fleet CO2 average of 95g/km across the line-up.

Which vehicles are hitting a chord with UK buyers currently?
There is a continued trend for customers to migrate away from traditional sectors towards SUVs, and we’re in a perfect position to deliver on the changing demand, with six key products in the Kia portfolio – Stonic, Niro, XCeed, Soul EV, Sportage and Sorento.

2019 was very much the year of the Ceed, with replacements for the hatchback and Sportswagon and new entrants into the market thanks to the all-new XCeed and ProCeed. Every Ceed derivative posted an increase on the year before, and it was a similar story for many models in the Kia range, which saw a rise compared to 2018. Highlights include the Niro, with a 44 per cent increase, a rise of more than 6 per cent for the Picanto and 44 per cent growth in Stinger sales. Sorento registrations rose, too, while the most popular model in the Kia range, the Sportage remained broadly static but still the highest selling and most popular model.

Alternative fuel vehicles are continually hitting the headlines, and here at Kia we are very well placed to provide customers with a wide range of different solutions to suit individual needs. In 2020, we are aiming for three in every ten cars we sell to be electrified in some way. With both the pure electric e-Niro and Soul EV, we are ahead of the curve in offering customers a choice of electric solutions to solve their mobility issues. For those that prefer a plug-in hybrid vehicle, we now have three, thanks to the recently refreshed Niro and the newly introduced Ceed Sportswagon and all-new XCeed. The top selling Sportage is fitted with mild hybrid technology on all of the diesel variants and this technology will soon be available on the Ceed, Ceed Sportswagon and XCeed, too.

Now that you have stuck a toe in the water with Stinger, will there be more cars outside your mainstream line-up of saloons, hatchbacks, SUVs and estates?
Two factors always govern our planning decisions: is there a business case, and can we produce different kinds of car without disrupting the output of our existing models? If the answer to both questions is 'yes' then we will go ahead. Kia management, designers and engineers are just as much car people as those with any other company, and they are eager to stretch their imaginations and talents.    


FREQUENTLY ASKED QUESTIONS
We've anticipated what you're likely to ask us

Why did it take so long to turn the GT Concept into a production car?
There are three reasons. The first is that we wanted to enhance our brand's positioning so that a model like Stinger would be sustainable within our line-up. The Kia of 2019 is very different to the Kia of 2011, when the GT Concept was revealed. Kia is now a design-led challenger brand, not one known purely for mass-market transport rooted in value. Then we had to find somewhere to build it. That became             possible when we introduced the K9/K900 luxury saloon (not sold in the UK), which is also rear-wheel drive. Stinger goes down the same production line. And finally, we were determined to undertake arguably the most rigorous testing regime for any car in our history to ensure that Stinger would be an authentic gran turismo.         

Was there ever a time when you thought it would never make it into production?
Our previous President of Design and Chief Design Officer Peter Schreyer and European Head of Design Gregory Guillaume jokingly say that they had a bet – for a case of champagne – over whether a car based on the GT Concept would ever be produced, but the truth is that there was always great enthusiasm from all within Kia for a car like Stinger. Peter Schreyer says the faces of senior management would light up whenever the subject of a gran turismo was raised at planning meetings. The important thing was for us to get the timing right, from both a marketing and a practical standpoint.  

The 2011 concept car was called GT, and you had a second concept car named Stinger. Why switch the names?
Everyone within Kia felt that 'GT' was too bland a name for a car as stunning as Stinger, and it is also a name used by several other manufacturers. We think 'Stinger' perfectly describes the style, character and intent of our new gran turismo.

Was there ever a time when you considered making it front-wheel drive?
No. From the outset it was decreed that if we were going to produce a classic-style gran turismo, it had to be rear-wheel drive.

Was a V8 engine ever under consideration for the GT S?
No. We could fit one under the bonnet, but Kia's policy is to downsize engines to improve fuel economy and emissions, and to use turbocharging and direct injection to ensure they deliver the performance we seek. We think a 4.7-second 0-60mph time for the ’GT S’ with a twin-turbo V6 is a pretty impressive acceleration figure.

Will you be offering a four-wheel-drive version of the Stinger in the future?
While four-wheel-drive editions are available in Europe, there are no plans to bring them to the UK.

Ends

For further information on Kia please visit www.kiapressoffice.com or contact:

Stephen Kitson
Director of Corporate Communications

 E: skitson@kia.co.uk   
T: 01932 832075 M: 07795 011 936

Daniel Sayles 
Head of Press and PR

E: dsayles@kia.co.uk  
T: 01932 832073 M: 07747 149 149

Sara Robinson     
Senior Press Officer

E: srobinson@kia.co.uk
T: 01932 832072 M: 07919 482 332

Moyosola Fujamade
Press Officer (events)

E: mfujamade@kia.co.uk  
T: 01932 832069 M: 07471 216 343

Lauren Martin
Press Officer (press fleet)

E: lmartin@kia.co.uk
T: 01932 832071  M: 07557 268 252

Melissa Lodge
Press Office Assistant

E: mlodge@kia.co.uk
T: 01932 832079 M: 07795 011 475

 

Follow Kia on Twitter @KiaUKPR

Follow Kia at www.facebook.com/kiamotorsuk

Watch Kia at www.youtube.com/kiamotorsuk

Throughout this press pack, mpg and CO2 figures are shown using the WLTP testing method

GENERAL

Kia Stinger Press Pack - Updated March 2020

THE STINGER ON (JUST OVER) A PAGE                                                      

A quick resume of the Stinger for those with an urgent deadline

General

  • Five-door, five-seater fastback-style grand tourer
  • Takes Kia into a new market sector
  • Kia's first rear-wheel-drive car in the UK
  • Captures style and character of cars from golden age of grand tourers
  • Evolved from the Kia GT Concept unveiled at 2011 Frankfurt Motor Show
  • Designed in Europe with input from main design centre at Namyang in Korea
  • Many prototypes have completed 1.1 million kilometres of testing - 27 times around the world
  • Many development cars have done 10,000 kilometres – 480 laps – around Nürburgring
  • Built at Sohari in South Korea

Body

  • Stinger is a halo performance car and a template for Kia's bold and exciting future
  • Classic gran turismo proportions with a long bonnet, short front overhang, long wheelbase and long rear overhang with broad shoulders
  • 'Coke-bottle' nip in waist
  • Typical Kia identifiers include 'tiger-nose' grille between complex headlights, castellated windscreen and simple, unadorned flanks
  • Special aerodynamic features include front air curtains, wheel-arch gills, a smooth underbody tray and an integrated rear diffuser

Interior

  • Cocooning intimacy with space for five and their luggage
  • 406-litre boot with rear seats in use and 1,114 litres with them folded
  • Winged dashboard with high horizontal sweep interrupted only by central touchscreen
  • Nappa leather upholstery
  • Leather also trims D-shaped steering wheel, gearshifter, dashboard and door armrests
  • Five aeronautically inspired air vents
  • Aluminium finish centre console, satin chrome interior door handles, aluminium pedals, suede headlining and stainless-steel door scuff plates emphasise gran turismo luxury and quality

Powertrains and running gear

  • 361bhp 3.3-litre twin-turbocharged V6 engine
  • Stinger ’GT S’ is fastest-accelerating Kia ever (0-60mph in 4.7 seconds)
  • Eight-speed automatic transmission is standard
  • Power is sent to the rear wheels
  • MacPherson strut front suspension with multi-link rear suspension
  • Electronically controlled Dynamic Stability Damping Control
  • Suspension of right-hand-drive cars benefits from additional testing on UK roads
  • Rack-mounted Motor Driven Power Steering (R-MDPS) with two modes standard, with variable gear ratio
  • Ventilated disc brakes front and rear, developed with Brembo
  • Limited Slip Differential is standard equipment
  • 19-inch alloy wheels with 225/40 R19 (front) and 225/35 R19 (rear) tyres
  • Body constructed from 55 per cent high-strength steels for strength with lightness

Technology and safety

  • Standard equipment includes Forward Collision Avoidance Assist, Blind Spot Detection, Lane Keep Assist, High Beam Assist, Rear Cross Traffic Alert, Speed Limit Information warning, Driver Attention Warning and an Active Bonnet to protect pedestrians in a collision
  • Vehicle Stability Management system incorporates dynamic torque vectoring
  • 8.0-inch touchscreen navigation system, Kia Connected Services with TomTom and Android AutoTM and Apple CarPlayTM with voice control standard
  • Bluetooth with music streaming, a DAB radio with MP3 compatibility, a customisable head-up display and a 7.0-inch full-colour Thin Film Transistor supervision cluster
  • 15-speaker harman/kardon premium sound system with subwoofer, external amp and front centre speaker
  • 360-degree Around View Monitor and a wireless mobile phone charger are standard 

 

INTRODUCTION

  • Kia's first grand tourer and first rear-wheel-drive car in the UK
  • Fastback-style 5-door gran turismo based on Kia GT Concept
  • Evokes memories of the golden age of beautiful grand tourers
  • Twin-turbocharged V6 engine, with an eight-speed automatic gearbox 
  • Capable of 0-60mph in 4.7 seconds – faster than any previous Kia
  • Adjustable, all-independent suspension
  • Equipped with state-of-the-art driver aids and connectivity systems

Kia is bringing back the golden age of beautiful and elegant high-performance gran turismo cars with the stunning Stinger, the most adventurous model in the company's history.

Stinger is the first classic grand tourer from Kia and the first rear-wheel-drive model the company has introduced to Europe. It is also the fastest-accelerating Kia ever, with a 0-60mph time of 4.7 seconds.    

Six years in the making, it has evolved from the Kia GT Concept revealed at the 2011 Frankfurt Motor Show. In the intervening years many people questioned whether Kia would be bold enough to step outside its comfort zone and sanction a production model, but the company was simply waiting until the time was right to do so. That time is now. 

Stinger was designed in Europe at the Frankfurt studios under the watch of President of Design and Chief Design Officer Peter Schreyer and European Head of Design Gregory Guillaume. Prototypes have covered the equivalent of 27 trips around the Equator, taking in extreme climate testing in Europe, Asia, the Middle East and North and South America, to perfect the car, and many development cars have done at least 480 laps (10,000 kilometres) of the tortuous Nürburgring Nordschleife. The testing regime was headed by Albert Biermann, Head of Research and Development Division for Hyundai Motor Group.

A single high-specification car is available in the UK, with a twin-turbocharged V6 direct-injection engine mated to an eight-speed automatic gearbox and featuring state-of-the-art electronic driver aids and connectivity systems. The ‘GT S’ is sold exclusively with a 3.3-litre 361bhp twin-turbo V6. The fastest and most powerful model in the Kia range has electronic suspension damping and Brembo brakes.      

A gran turismo, not a sports car
Stinger is not a hard-edged sports car created to be brutally fast at the expense of comfort. Rather, it is about the joy of the journey, where getting to the final destination can be an anti-climax.

"The Stinger has nothing to do with being the first to arrive," says Gregory Guillaume. "This car is all about the journey. It's about passion. To embody that passion we believe that proportion is everything. From the wheelbase to the greenhouse, the width and the height – even the shape of individual body panels – getting the perfect balance is critical." Stinger is 4,830mm long, 1,870mm wide and just 1,400mm tall, and has a 2,905mm wheelbase.

It was inspired by the elegant grand tourers Guillaume saw as a child growing up in 1970s France, wafting their occupants effortlessly from Paris to St Tropez and other glamour spots on the Riviera. Even as a young boy Guillaume was drawing his own ideas for elegant grand tourers, hoping that one day they might become reality. They were his inspiration for the 2011 GT Concept and, subsequently, Stinger.     

Stinger exhibits classic gran turismo proportions – long bonnet, short front overhang, long wheelbase, cabin positioned towards the rear of the car, lengthy rear overhang beneath broad shoulders and a 'Coke-bottle' nip in the waist. It sets a template for Kia's bold and exciting future and is the final step in the company's transition from a manufacturer of purely rational, durable, value-centric cars to one able to compete with the world's best for desirability, design and technology.   

This may be a new kind of Kia, but the design cues which have stood the company in good stead since Schreyer joined in 2006 are all in evidence. What Guillaume calls the "sleek and sharky" front end has a new interpretation of Kia's 'tiger-nose grille mounted between complex headlamp units. There is a castellated upper edge to the windscreen. And the flanks are simple and unadorned. Visual engagement also comes from the large lower grille and air intake, dark chrome highlights and bold rear diffuser with quad tailpipes, and 19-inch wheels.

What exterior decoration does appear is there to aid aerodynamics and ensure the car remains stable at the high speeds it is capable of. There are air curtains at the front and finned gills behind the rear wheel arches to reduce wake as turbulent air passes around the large wheels and tyres. The final shape of Stinger called for intense collaboration between designers and aerodynamicists to make airflow around the car as clean as possible without diluting its stunning styling. As a result, the bodywork has been tapered slightly towards the rear and there is a partially flat underfloor tray, while the rear spoiler has taken on a slight ducktail shape to reduce lift. Even the roof was lowered slightly to give Stinger more of an aerofoil profile.

An interior fit for cross-continent travel
Stinger's luxurious interior is a blend of cocooning intimacy and space for five people and their luggage. Occupants slip down into their Nappa leather low-slung seats.   

There is a horizontal sweep to the high-mounted, wing-shaped dashboard – also covered in leather – which is broken only by the 8.0-inch touchscreen for the navigation and infotainment system. Leather also adorns the door armrests, the D-shaped steering wheel and the gearshifter, which also has chrome sections.

The seats are snug and enveloping, and the two in front have eight-way power adjustment – with a memory function on the driver's side – and a two-way power cushion extender plus four-way power lumbar adjustment. The front seats and steering wheel are heated, and the chairs are also ventilated, while the outer rear seats are also heated.    

The luxurious ambience is enhanced by an aluminium-finish centre console, a chrome strip running all the way around the cabin, suede-feel headlining, satin chrome interior door handles, aluminium 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 model, while to aid the driver there is a 7.0-inch LCD Thin Film Transistor (TFT) supervision cluster and a customisable head-up display which allows key information – speed, navigation instructions and audio, cruise control and blind spot detection information –  to be projected onto the windscreen. There is also a 360-degree around-view monitor. 

DAB radio with MP3 compatibility and Bluetooth and music streaming is standard, along with Apple CarPlay™ and Android Auto™ offer voice control. A concert hall quality 15-speaker harman/kardon premium system with subwoofer, external amplifier and front centre speaker is also standard. 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.

 

DESIGN AND PACKAGING
In 2011 Kia unveiled its GT Concept on the eve of the Frankfurt Motor Show. It was created at the company's European design studios next door to the show site, and a pointer to the fact that Kia did not intend to remain rooted in its then range of workaday hatchbacks, saloons, estates and SUVs forever. Since that day, the most frequently asked question at Kia events has been "when are you going to put the GT into production".   

Gregory Guillaume, the Head of the European design studio, says: “All of our concept cars have a reason, a purpose. They are not designers' indulgences. They illustrate what we are thinking. Ultimately, what matters is what comes on to the street, not what stays in the design studio – and we knew the GT Concept would, one day, go into production.”

So, when a rear-wheel-drive gran turismo based on the GT Concept was signed off for production, where better to turn than Guillaume and the Frankfurt studio, with the whole project being overseen by Peter Schreyer, Kia President of Design and Chief Design Officer.

Turning a concept into a production car is no small feat, however. "On a concept car everything is exaggerated. It's an abstract," says Guillaume. "Actually, we think the production car came out nicer than the project car – there were some areas we were never really satisfied with, like the C-pillar. So we started to change that area and it affected the whole car."

Exterior
The idea behind the concept car was simple. It would echo the spirit of iconic 1970s gran turismo cars, the elegant and powerful vehicles capable of powering passengers from Paris to the Côte d'Azur for the weekend in impeccable style and at high speed. "As a child growing up in France in the 1970s, I was unconstrained by the limits of engineering and I drew cars that were to my eyes, beautiful, dynamic, original and, of course, very fast. I believed those dreams could be a reality.

"Those dreams were the inspiration for the GT concept in 2011. It embodied that grace, flair and dynamism, without being aggressive or gauche. But it was more than just a design exercise. Once Stinger was given the green light for production, the idea was to channel the spirit of those iconic gran turismos to create something emotional and elegant."

The GT Concept embodied grace, flair and dynamism, without being aggressive. “We were convinced from day one that we would take this concept car from motor show plinth to the road, knowing that we have the freedom within Kia to stretch the brand in many directions," says Guillaume. “Stinger is not about outright power, hard-edged dynamics and brutal styling at the expense of luxury, comfort and grace. 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."

Guillaume believes that to embody that passion, proportion is everything. From the wheelbase to the greenhouse, width and height – and even the shape of individual body panels – getting the perfect balance is critical.

Key to its road presence are its rear-wheel-drive proportions – a long bonnet and short 830mm front overhang, an extended wheelbase (2,905mm) to deliver a spacious cabin, and a long rear overhang (1,095mm) with strong, broad shoulders. Stinger’s stance, proportion and visual balance are designed to lend the car an air of elegance and athleticism, rather than aggression and brutality. Stinger measures 4,830mm in length and 1,870mm in width, and is 1,400 tall. The ‘Coke-bottle’ shape of the car’s flanks highlight the shoulder line, as well as the fastback silhouette.

This may be a new kind of Kia, but the design cues which have stood the company in good stead since Schreyer joined in 2006 are all in evidence. What Guillaume calls the "sleek and sharky" front end has a new interpretation of Kia's 'tiger-nose grille mounted between complex headlamp units. There is a castellated upper edge to the windscreen. And the flanks are simple and unadorned. Visual engagement also comes from the large lower grille and air intake, dark chrome highlights and bold rear diffuser.

What exterior decoration does appear is there to aid aerodynamics and ensure the car remains stable at the high speeds it is capable of. There are air curtains at the front and finned gills behind the rear wheel arches to reduce wake as turbulent air passes around the large wheels and tyres. The final shape of Stinger called for intense collaboration between designers and aerodynamicists to make airflow around the car as clean as possible without diluting its stunning styling. As a result, the bodywork has been tapered slightly towards the rear and there is a partially flat underfloor tray, while the rear spoiler has taken on a slight ducktail shape to reduce lift. Even the roof was lowered slightly to give Stinger more of an aerofoil profile.

Schreyer says: “You cannot believe how excited I am about this car. Stinger is going to fundamentally change the global image of Kia. It will revolutionise the way people think about us. It’s going to propel us upwards into a different era.”

Interior
External gran turismo visual cues are complemented by the layout and atmosphere of the low-slung cabin, with a steeply-raked windscreen and high dashboard running along a horizontal plane. The dashboard’s centre console is split into two specific areas: the infotainment controls sit neatly below a large colour touchscreen, while the climate and ventilation controls are lower down. In front of the driver is a thick, leather-wrapped steering wheel and a single instrument binnacle with a combination of analogue and digital instrumentation. The large gauges are ringed in metal and accentuated with sweeping red needles.

Stinger's luxurious interior is a blend of cocooning intimacy and space for five people and their luggage. Occupants slip down into their Nappa leather low-slung seats. There is 974mm of headroom in the front and only slightly less – 939mm – in the rear. The respective figures for legroom are 1,083mm and 925mm, and for shoulder room they are 1,433mm and 1,391mm. The boot capacity with the 60:40 split rear seats upright is 406 litres, which extends to 1,114 litres when they are lowered.     

The wing-shaped dashboard – also covered in leather – is broken only by the 8.0-inch touchscreen for the navigation and infotainment system. Leather also adorns the door armrests, the D-shaped steering wheel and the gearshifter, which also has chrome sections.

The seats are snug and enveloping, and the two in front have eight-way power adjustment – with a memory function on the driver's side – and a two-way power cushion extender plus four-way power lumbar adjustment. The front seats and steering wheel are heated, and the chairs are also ventilated, while the outer rear seats are heated. The chunky transmission tunnel that separates the driver and passenger compartments reinforces the car’s rear-drive layout.

The luxurious ambience is emphasised by an aluminium-finish centre console, a chrome strip running all the way around the cabin, suede-feel headlining, satin chrome interior door handles, aluminium pedals, stainless steel door scuff plates and five aeronautically inspired spoked circular air vents.

To enhance comfort, dual automatic air conditioning is fitted, while to aid the driver there is a 7.0-inch LCD Thin Film Transistor (TFT) supervision cluster and a customisable head-up display which allows key information – speed, navigation instructions and audio, cruise control and blind spot detection information –  to be projected onto the windscreen. There is also a 360-degree around-view monitor. 

DAB radio with MP3 compatibility and Bluetooth and music streaming is standard, along with Apple CarPlay™ and Android Auto™ offer voice control. A concert hall quality 15-speaker harman/kardon premium system with subwoofer, external amplifier and front centre speaker is also standard. 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.

 “Working on this car was a dream. I still get a buzz, a thrill when I think about it, and I have been thinking about it for a very long time. It fills me with pride, and now I just cannot wait to see it on the road,” says Guillaume.

 

DYNAMICS 
The Nürburgring Nordschleife (North Loop) became known as 'The Green Hell' for very good reason. It runs for more than 13 miles through the Eifel mountains in Germany, and contains 73 corners, a 300-metre difference in height between its highest and lowest points and has gradients of up to 17 per cent.

Driving round it demands constant hard acceleration and braking and heavy cornering. There are changing surfaces and cambers offering an unrivalled test of a car's dynamic prowess. As a test facility it is merciless, which is why Kia has established a base there. Every new model – including Stinger – is tested there to hone its suspension, steering and brakes. The testing regime was so punishing that brake pads had to be changed halfway through each day.

During the development of Stinger, prototypes were put through at least 10,000km, or 480 laps, of high-stress driving around the Nordschleife – not to set a lap time which would be irrelevant to customers, but to ensure the finished product would be a genuine gran turismo.

The automatic transmission was a key focus for powertrain testing. Nordschleife testing identified a need to manage heat in the transmission more efficiently: initially, the temperature of the gearbox oil was rising higher than what was deemed acceptable by the engineers. To counteract this, an oil cooler with a larger surface area was adopted.

Suspension and steering
Stinger’s dynamics presented the engineers with a new challenge. Because this was going to be a totally new kind of car for Kia, the chassis engineers were given a blank canvas for the suspension and steering characteristics. Their brief was to create a true gran turismo which would drive the way it looks. The shape of the car inspired efforts to imbue Stinger with agile handling and high levels of body control for enthusiastic driver, but with a compliant ride that would ensure high-speed cruising comfort over long distances.

The Stinger has MacPherson struts at the front and fully independent multi-link suspension at the rear. Dynamic Stability Damping Control (DSDC) adapts the stroke length of the dampers on the move, and is controlled by acceleration, braking and steering sensors. Drivers can change the characteristics of the shock absorbers via the Drive Mode Selector, which offers five modes - Eco, Normal, Sport, Sport+ and Smart settings. In Normal mode, low levels of damping force ensure maximum cruising comfort. The suspension continues to firm up slightly under heavy cornering, but the effect is less pronounced than in Sport mode.

Stinger’s rack-mounted motor-driven power steering system (R-MDPS) provided the chassis engineers with greater flexibility for tuning. R-MDPS lets drivers choose between two steering modes via the Drive Mode Selector: Normal and Sport. These modes change the level of steering effort required, and also the variable steering ratio.

In Sport mode, Stinger requires increased on-centre steering effort, and has shorter gearing, reducing the need for larger steering inputs. Normal mode reduces the steering effort from the on-centre position for more measured steering responses at a cruise. Normal mode also requires more effort as the steering wheel turns, with a linear build-up of resistance to give driver’s greater confidence. The result is a steering system providing the same duality as the suspension – one that’s as relaxing and confidence-inspiring to use in a straight line as it is immediate and engaging on more enjoyable roads.

Right-hand-drive versions of the Stinger were put through a further level of dynamic testing in the UK to hone the steering and suspension for the country's uniquely challenging roads.

There are 19-inch alloy wheels with 225/40 R19 tyres at the front and even wider 255/35 R19 tyres at the rear.

Brakes
The 361bhp 3.3-litre twin-turbo V6 in the Stinger ’GT S’ enables the car to accelerate from 0 to 60mph in just 4.7 seconds, making it the fastest-accelerating production Kia ever. Its high-performance brakes therefore needed to be equal to the task.

To ensure this would be the case, a rigorous range of braking challenges was devised, taking in the famous Grossglockner High Alpine Road in the Austrian Alps for constant downhill brake testing. Private test facilities in Northern Germany and Eastern Spain, as well as the Nürburgring, were also used.

Stinger’s brakes not only had to offer strong and consistent braking power. A reassuring and responsive feel to the pedal was also demanded by the engineers, even after repeated heavy braking, for maximum driver confidence. More development work has been carried out on the Stinger’s brakes than on any previous Kia.

The ’GT S’ features a new braking system developed with Brembo. The 350mm front and 340mm Brembo discs are holed and grooved, providing high heat capacity and reduced fade levels under repeated heavy use. They are paired with the most powerful calipers ever found on a Kia.

Early in Stinger’s development, engineers considered carbon ceramic brakes to maximise the braking power. However, as a Kia, Stinger needed to remain affordable to buy and maintain. Brembo’s brakes proved more than up to what was required of them.

Kia’s internal tests are designed to validate brakes at temperatures of up to 700°C (1,292°F). Engineers went even further for the Brembo brake system, with temperatures rising to more than 800°C (1,472°F). Even at these temperatures, Stinger’s brakes continue to offer consistent braking power and pedal feel.

All roads and all weathers
Kia did not confine Stinger testing to the Nürburgring. Prototypes have been driven for more than 1.1 million kilometres – the equivalent of 27 times around the Equator – to test Stinger's durability. Extreme climate testing took place across Europe, the Middle East, Asia and North and South America. Stinger was subjected to extreme cold and heat and high altitude, and faced the unique demands of the desert, permafrost regions, congested city centres and mountain passes.

Stinger was plunged into Arctic winters to ensure predictable, stable, gran turismo handling in all conditions with the engaging, fun-to-drive character of a rear-wheel drive car. From the development facility in Arjeplog in Swedish Lapland, Kia honed Stinger in a range of low-grip environments, including a skid-pan, handling circuit and slalom test on the surface of the frozen Uddjaure lake. Kia’s winter test regime saw the car being driven in temperatures as low as -35°C (-31°F).

Stinger‘s on-road refinement was equally important, but customers also want to enjoy the sound of the engine at work. Stinger is the first Kia with an Active Sound system to enhance the engine note via the car’s audio rather than through an actuator which channels noise into the cabin. The Active Sound system was engineered in Europe and is consistent with the type of engine, authentically enhancing the distinctive V6 engine note. Sound engineers have paired the system with Stinger’s Drive Mode Selector, enabling drivers to change the level of engine noise in the cabin. The sound becomes slightly louder and more aggressive in tone as drivers switch modes.   

Albert Biermann, Kia’s Head of Vehicle Test and High Performance Development, says: “Testing the car in extreme conditions allowed us to focus on its stability and predictability in every configuration and in all driving conditions. Crucially, these tests allowed us to engineer a car which retains the driving appeal that buyers look for in a gran turismo. We want enthusiastic drivers to be able to enjoy the thrill of driving their Stinger in all conditions without compromising on safety.”

A gran turismo must provide exceptional comfort for occupants on the long distances it is designed to cover, but it must also reward enthusiastic drivers with pliant but controlled suspension, alert steering which does not make the car nervous and powerful brakes. Thanks to the extensive testing regime on all kinds of roads, in all weathers and across several continents, Stinger meets those demands. Right-hand-drive cars have undergone additional testing in the UK to meet the unique challenges of the country's roads.      

 

ENGINES
Everything about Stinger has been engineered to ensure it is an authentic modern gran turismo. From its torquey turbocharged engine to its eight-speed automatic transmission, fully independent suspension – with switchable modes – powerful brakes and variable steering, it is a car built for covering long distances swiftly, comfortably and safely while delivering maximum driving pleasure.

The body is composed of 55 per cent high-strength steels to keep weight to a minimum so that Stinger is as lithe and agile as it looks while ensuring robustness in the event of an accident, and there is a battery of advanced driver assistance systems to make that accident less likely. And extensive work on sound-deadening ensures it is as refined as it is comfortable, but occupants can still enjoy the refined sporting tones of the Stinger's turbocharged engine thanks to an Active Sound system – the first in a Kia.

Engine power, performance and fuel economy figures

Model

Power bhp

Torque Nm

0–60 sec

Max speed mph

Combined mpg
(WLTP)

CO2
(WLTP)

‘GT S’ 3.3 T-GDi 8-speed automatic ISG

361

510

4.7

168

27.7

233

 

Grand tourers should not only be beautiful, comfortable and luxurious, they must also be fast. The turbocharged engine chosen for Stinger are ideally suited to its role as a long-distance gran turismo.

To ensure occupants can enjoy the refined sporting tones of the Stinger's turbocharged engine, 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 customised through the Drive Mode Selector according to which of the five programmable settings the driver has chosen. 

The 3.3-litre, 3,342cc twin-turbo V6 T-GDi is a member of the Lambda II range and produces 361bhp at 6,000rpm and a huge 510Nm of torque starting at 1,300rpm and continuing uninterrupted until 4,500rpm.

It features an aluminium block and heads and was developed during a rigorous testing regime focused on responsiveness and efficiency with durability and reliability. There are twin single-scroll turbochargers, an air-cooled intercooler and an integral turbo and exhaust manifold to reduce weight. An electronic wastegate and thermostat help to improve responsiveness. Continuously variable valve timing (CVVT) enhances intake operation range and operation speed while reducing pumping loss. There are sodium-filled exhaust valves to boost performance and efficiency while offering structural reinforcement for improved durability.

The twin-turbo V6 makes Stinger the fastest-accelerating Kia ever. From standstill to 60mph takes just 4.7 seconds, and the top speed is 168mph where permitted. Yet the extensive testing regime to ensure durability and responsiveness has also helped efficiency: combined fuel consumption is 27.7mpg, while CO2 emissions are 233g/km.

Eight-speed automatic gearbox
The Stinger transmits drive to the rear wheels through an electronic eight-speed automatic gearbox. It was designed in-house and rewards drivers with immediate shifts and optimum fuel efficiency. Stinger’s transmission marks Kia’s first use of a Centrifugal Pendulum Absorber (CPA) torque converter more typically found in aviation and racing applications. CPA reduces torsional vibrations through the drivetrain.

The transmission offers up to five different shift and throttle programmes, accessed through the car’s electronic Drive Mode Selector. Drivers can leave the car to shift for itself, or change gears with steering wheel-mounted paddles. A Limited Slip Differential is fitted, so that torque is transferred to the rear wheel with most grip.

ISG, Kia's engine stop/start system to ensure no fuel is wasted and no emissions are released when the car is stationary, is standard. The engine cuts out as soon as the driver brakes to a standstill and restarts when the brake pedal is released.

 

TECHNOLOGY
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, from the location of Kia dealerships to nearby restaurants. This is supplemented by Android Auto™ and Apple CarPlay™ connectivity which, via pre-downloaded apps on a suitable smartphone, links the car to maps, music, podcasts and texts through voice commands.

Kia Connected Services with TomTom™ are accessed through the 8.0-inch touchscreen navigation system. The information available to drivers includes live traffic updates, weather reports, speed camera locations and local point-of-interest searches, from the location of Kia dealerships to nearby restaurants and hotels.

The system is compatible with Android Auto™ and Apple CarPlay™, both of which are standard fitments. Android Auto is available when the system is paired with Android smartphones running 5.0 (Lollipop) or higher, while Apple CarPlay is compatible with iPhone 5 and newer versions of the Apple handset. Both allow occupants to connect to various apps and functions, including voice-guided, hands-free calls and texts and voice recognition. Android Auto gives access to Google maps navigation and Google Play music, while Apple CarPlay links to pre-loaded maps, music, podcasts, texts and messages and audiobooks, all through Siri voice control.

A reversing camera is standard, and there’s Bluetooth with music streaming.  

 

SAFETY
Stinger may evoke memories of the golden age of gran turismos, but it is not a retro car. Its advanced driver aids take into account that roads are busier and there are more distractions than ever before.

Stinger's safety provisions begin with its sturdy body, 55 per cent of which is composed of high-strength steels so that rigidity and crash protection do not come at the expense of excessive weight. Structural adhesives are used extensively and the attachment points for the powertrain and chassis, where loads are most concentrated in the vehicle’s frame, are extremely rigid. By strengthening the longitudinal and transverse structures and using an engine room strut bar, the frame exceeds competitive car standards.

In terms of crashworthiness, the Stinger exceeds all competitors. The side member is formed from 80 K-class steel. The rear lower member is formed from 150 K-class steel, and as much available crash space as possible has been included. To protect passengers in a rear collision, the lightweight high-stiffness body in white (BIW) is so strong that it surpasses European car standards.

To achieve this, the lower part of the body, a critical area in a collision, is made of hot stamped, ultra-high-strength steel with a large steel plate. Carefully defined load paths channel impact forces away from the passenger cell, and there are seven airbags – including one for the driver's knees – to protect occupants.

However, Stinger has been engineered to ensure that, as much as possible, such features will not be needed through a comprehensive network of advanced driver assistance systems. Standard equipment includes Forward Collision Avoidance Assist, which automatically intervenes to stop the car if the driver fails to respond to a potential accident, and there is Lane Keep Assist to prevent a driver straying into an adjoining lane accidentally, and High Beam Assist to adjust the headlights according to other traffic and local lighting. Driver Attention Warning alerts a tired driver that it is time to take a break, and there is a Speed Limit Information system. There is also Blind Spot Detection with Rear Cross Traffic Alert: together, these act as an extra pair of eyes for the driver, warning of vehicles approaching out of his or her eye-line when changing lanes or exiting parallel parking spaces. An Active Bonnet is standard, to reduce damage to pedestrians' heads in a collision. 

Forward Collision Avoidance Assist is included, which automatically intervenes to stop the car if the driver fails to respond to a potential accident, and there is Lane Keep Assist to prevent a driver straying into an adjoining lane accidentally, and High Beam Assist to adjust the headlights according to other traffic and local lighting. Driver Attention Warning alerts a tired driver that it is time to take a break, and there is a Speed Limit Information System.  

Stinger has Electronic Stability Control linked to Vehicle Stability Management (VSM) to correct potential skids without any intervention from the driver. VSM incorporates a new dynamic torque vectoring system which monitors driver inputs and road conditions and automatically applies powerand braking g-force to the inner rear wheel to minimise understeer and enhance tractability and steering feel.

 

SPECIFICATION HIGHLIGHTS
There is just one, high-specification version of the Stinger in the UK, powered by the sensational 3.3-litre V6 T-GDi twin-turbocharged direct-injection petrol engine. Drive is sent to the rear wheels through an eight-speed automatic gearbox.

As halo models in the Kia line-up, it is luxuriously equipped, and features an extensive range of advanced driver assistance systems and connectivity services as standard. Leather upholstery and trim, a power-adjustable memory driver's seat, heated seats and steering wheel, a smart key entry system with an engine start/stop button and an 8.0-inch touchscreen navigation and infotainment system are just a few of the highlights.  

Stinger's luxurious interior is a blend of cocooning intimacy and space for five people and their luggage. Occupants slip down into their low-slung Nappa leather seats. There is a horizontal sweep to the high-mounted, wing-shaped dashboard – also covered in leather – which is broken only by the 8.0-inch touchscreen. Leather also adorns the door armrests, the D-shaped steering wheel and the gearshifter, which has chrome sections.

The seats are snug and enveloping, and the two in front have eight-way power adjustment – with a memory function on the driver's side – and a two-way power cushion extender plus four-way power lumbar adjustment. The front seats and steering wheel are heated and the chairs are also ventilated, while the outer rear seats are also heated.    

To enhance comfort, dual automatic air conditioning is fitted to every model, while to aid the driver there is a 7.0-inch LCD Thin Film Transistor (TFT) supervision cluster and a customisable head-up display which allows key information – speed, navigation instructions and audio, cruise control and blind spot detection information –  to be projected onto the windscreen. In addition, there is a 360-degree around-view monitor. 

DAB radio with MP3 compatibility and Bluetooth and music streaming is standard, along with Apple CarPlay™ and Android Auto™ offer voice control. A concert hall quality 15-speaker harman/kardon premium system with subwoofer, external amplifier and front centre speaker is also standard. 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.

There are 19-inch alloy wheels, as well as an electric one-touch sunroof and LED headlamps, LED daytime running lights and tail lamps. There are quad exhaust pipes and the brakes have been co-developed with Brembo.

To emphasise the quality designed and engineered into Stinger, the luxurious ambience is enhanced by an aluminium-finish centre console, a chrome strip running all the way around the cabin, suede-feel headlining, satin chrome interior door handles, aluminium pedals, stainless steel door scuff plates and five aeronautically inspired spoked circular air vents.

 

WARRANTY AND AFTER-CARE
Kia set a new benchmark in 2007 when it launched the cee'd with an industry-best seven-year/100,000-mile warranty. That demonstration of faith in the quality and reliability of Kia products was subsequently extended to every model.

A major benefit is that it is transferable to subsequent owners at no charge, as long as the seven-year time limit has not been reached and the mileage is below 100,000.

The mechanical warranty is supported by a 12-year anti-perforation warranty and a five-year paint warranty.

Servicing is required every 10,000 miles or once a year, whichever comes soonest. The Stinger is available with Kia’s ‘Kia Care’ service plans, which have been developed to provide customers with a wide range of service plan options for any Kia model within the first seven years of the vehicle’s life – matching its industry-leading seven-year warranty.

The service plans include a comprehensive range of options including the original, traditional, first, third and fifth services and those in between, but in addition a customer can now purchase services up to and including the seventh service which matches the full length of the warranty. The plans are available for all Kia owners and can be purchased at any point of ownership for cars up to five years old.

The Kia Promise was introduced to give customers the best ownership experience by giving them access to seven key benefits. The Kia Promise is activated after purchase and is done by simply registering on the online portal, MyKia. Along with the industry leading seven-year/100,000 mile warranty, other benefits of the Kia Promise include complimentary seven day insurance and £250 Insurance Excess Return for one year; easy to use Click & Collect on Genuine Kia accessories; convenient online service booking; Family-Like Care and Accident AfterCare. Every new Kia also comes with complimentary Roadside Assistance for 12 months. When a customer registers on MyKia, Kia Roadside Assistance Plus, the highest level of cover provided by the RAC, can be unlocked, which includes onward travel and European cover.

 

FIVE MINUTES WITH PAUL PHILPOTT
Burning questions that you would love to ask our President and CEO

How important is the Stinger in the UK?
The Stinger is the jewel in our crown, acting as a halo model for the rest of the Kia line-up. Just look at it – doesn’t it look stunning. Our European Design Director, Gregory Guillaume sums it up perfectly: “Stinger is not about outright power, hard-edged dynamics and brutal styling at the expense of luxury, comfort and grace. 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."

What sales targets have you set for the Stinger for the UK market?
We never release sales or production targets for individual models; however, we expect the Stinger to appeal to buyers that want a stunning looking, well-equipped vehicle that offers bags of equipment at an affordable price. We predict that around 60 per cent of the Stingers registered will be retail sales.

What does 2020 hold for the Kia brand in the UK?
Until there is some certainty around what the split from Europe means for the UK, it’s likely to continue to be turbulent in the new car market. Last year was once again another record year for Kia in the UK, with 97,323 cars delivered to customers during 2019. That represents an increase of 1.6 per cent, in a market that was down by 2.4 per cent and saw the lowest number of new vehicles registered since 2013. Last year, Kia moved up one place to number eight in the overall UK sales charts, which is a significant achievement in a sales environment that has been exceptionally tough.

The first year of the new decade is going to present a number of challenges – none more so than the switch from NEDC to WLTP CO2 emissions figures in April 2020. At a time when consumers expect to see ever-improving data, the change in regime means that all cars will see an increase to their emissions, meaning most owners will be paying more for their motoring each year. That’s a bitter pill to swallow for many and will take a lot of explaining in the showrooms. It will mean, however, that the fuel economy and CO2 emissions are more realistic in real-world driving and gives Kia the opportunity to fully leverage their range of highly efficient eco cars.

Mandatory CO2 standards for passenger cars were first introduced in 2009 by the European Union, and in 2020 a new, more stringent set of standards means that an average of 95g/km across the product range must be achieved. Failing to do so will result in significant fines, and therefore the primary focus of Kia Motors is to achieve the fleet CO2 average of 95g/km across the line-up.

Which vehicles are hitting a chord with UK buyers currently?
There is a continued trend for customers to migrate away from traditional sectors towards SUVs, and we’re in a perfect position to deliver on the changing demand, with six key products in the Kia portfolio – Stonic, Niro, XCeed, Soul EV, Sportage and Sorento.

2019 was very much the year of the Ceed, with replacements for the hatchback and Sportswagon and new entrants into the market thanks to the all-new XCeed and ProCeed. Every Ceed derivative posted an increase on the year before, and it was a similar story for many models in the Kia range, which saw a rise compared to 2018. Highlights include the Niro, with a 44 per cent increase, a rise of more than 6 per cent for the Picanto and 44 per cent growth in Stinger sales. Sorento registrations rose, too, while the most popular model in the Kia range, the Sportage remained broadly static but still the highest selling and most popular model.

Alternative fuel vehicles are continually hitting the headlines, and here at Kia we are very well placed to provide customers with a wide range of different solutions to suit individual needs. In 2020, we are aiming for three in every ten cars we sell to be electrified in some way. With both the pure electric e-Niro and Soul EV, we are ahead of the curve in offering customers a choice of electric solutions to solve their mobility issues. For those that prefer a plug-in hybrid vehicle, we now have three, thanks to the recently refreshed Niro and the newly introduced Ceed Sportswagon and all-new XCeed. The top selling Sportage is fitted with mild hybrid technology on all of the diesel variants and this technology will soon be available on the Ceed, Ceed Sportswagon and XCeed, too.

Now that you have stuck a toe in the water with Stinger, will there be more cars outside your mainstream line-up of saloons, hatchbacks, SUVs and estates?
Two factors always govern our planning decisions: is there a business case, and can we produce different kinds of car without disrupting the output of our existing models? If the answer to both questions is 'yes' then we will go ahead. Kia management, designers and engineers are just as much car people as those with any other company, and they are eager to stretch their imaginations and talents.    


FREQUENTLY ASKED QUESTIONS
We've anticipated what you're likely to ask us

Why did it take so long to turn the GT Concept into a production car?
There are three reasons. The first is that we wanted to enhance our brand's positioning so that a model like Stinger would be sustainable within our line-up. The Kia of 2019 is very different to the Kia of 2011, when the GT Concept was revealed. Kia is now a design-led challenger brand, not one known purely for mass-market transport rooted in value. Then we had to find somewhere to build it. That became             possible when we introduced the K9/K900 luxury saloon (not sold in the UK), which is also rear-wheel drive. Stinger goes down the same production line. And finally, we were determined to undertake arguably the most rigorous testing regime for any car in our history to ensure that Stinger would be an authentic gran turismo.         

Was there ever a time when you thought it would never make it into production?
Our previous President of Design and Chief Design Officer Peter Schreyer and European Head of Design Gregory Guillaume jokingly say that they had a bet – for a case of champagne – over whether a car based on the GT Concept would ever be produced, but the truth is that there was always great enthusiasm from all within Kia for a car like Stinger. Peter Schreyer says the faces of senior management would light up whenever the subject of a gran turismo was raised at planning meetings. The important thing was for us to get the timing right, from both a marketing and a practical standpoint.  

The 2011 concept car was called GT, and you had a second concept car named Stinger. Why switch the names?
Everyone within Kia felt that 'GT' was too bland a name for a car as stunning as Stinger, and it is also a name used by several other manufacturers. We think 'Stinger' perfectly describes the style, character and intent of our new gran turismo.

Was there ever a time when you considered making it front-wheel drive?
No. From the outset it was decreed that if we were going to produce a classic-style gran turismo, it had to be rear-wheel drive.

Was a V8 engine ever under consideration for the GT S?
No. We could fit one under the bonnet, but Kia's policy is to downsize engines to improve fuel economy and emissions, and to use turbocharging and direct injection to ensure they deliver the performance we seek. We think a 4.7-second 0-60mph time for the ’GT S’ with a twin-turbo V6 is a pretty impressive acceleration figure.

Will you be offering a four-wheel-drive version of the Stinger in the future?
While four-wheel-drive editions are available in Europe, there are no plans to bring them to the UK.

Ends

For further information on Kia please visit www.kiapressoffice.com or contact:

Stephen Kitson
Director of Corporate Communications

 E: skitson@kia.co.uk   
T: 01932 832075 M: 07795 011 936

Daniel Sayles 
Head of Press and PR

E: dsayles@kia.co.uk  
T: 01932 832073 M: 07747 149 149

Sara Robinson     
Senior Press Officer

E: srobinson@kia.co.uk
T: 01932 832072 M: 07919 482 332

Moyosola Fujamade
Press Officer (events)

E: mfujamade@kia.co.uk  
T: 01932 832069 M: 07471 216 343

Lauren Martin
Press Officer (press fleet)

E: lmartin@kia.co.uk
T: 01932 832071  M: 07557 268 252

Melissa Lodge
Press Office Assistant

E: mlodge@kia.co.uk
T: 01932 832079 M: 07795 011 475

 

Follow Kia on Twitter @KiaUKPR

Follow Kia at www.facebook.com/kiamotorsuk

Watch Kia at www.youtube.com/kiamotorsuk

Throughout this press pack, mpg and CO2 figures are shown using the WLTP testing method



Stinger News

AUTUMN UPDATE FOR KIA LINE-UP

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Oct 1, 2019
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Jul 12, 2018
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Jun 15, 2018
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May 16, 2018
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Feb 9, 2018
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KIA PICANTO AND STINGER WIN AT WHAT CAR? AWARDS 2018

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Jan 23, 2018
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Nov 14, 2017
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Nov 13, 2017
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Jan 18, 2017
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Jan 6, 2017
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THE FASTEST-ACCELERATING KIA

0-to-100 kph. A benchmark for any car operating on a higher level of performance, and the number that enthusiasts look for first.

Dec 12, 2016
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TWISTS AND TURNS

The curve ahead is all about potential. The potential to clip every apex, and consume every straight.

Dec 1, 2016
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4
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