Hatchback, Hybrid/Electric, Kia, Reviews, Sedan

2018 Kia Stinger GT AWD Review – Icing On The Cake

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2018 Kia Stinger GT1 AWD

three.three-liter twin-turbocharged V6 (365 hp @ 6,000 rpm, 376 lb/ft @ 1,300 rpm)

Eight-velocity automated transmission, all-wheel drive

19 metropolis / 25 freeway / 21 mixed (EPA Score, MPG)

12.7 metropolis / 9.6 freeway / eleven.three mixed (NRCan Score, L/100km)

20.eight (noticed mileage, MPG)

Base Worth: $forty six,350 US / $fifty one,919 CAD

As Examined: $forty eight,350 US / $fifty two,119 CAD

Costs embrace $900 vacation spot cost in america and $1924 for freight, PDI, and A/C tax in Canada and, due to cross-border gear variations, can’t be instantly in contrast.

Kia has achieved a exceptional job at constructing a model right here within the U.S., and has accomplished so with out treading the nicely-worn path of interesting to lovers. No, the Kia model is constructed on strong small automobiles and utilities, with price and a terrific warranty being prime of thoughts. Not squealing tires.

You knew that needed to change. There’s loads of cash in Kia’s company warchest to maneuver away from the meat-and-potatoes commuter home equipment to a pleasant, thrilling cake or pie. Thus, the 2018 Kia Stinger GT — a tasty deal with for the eyes and the butt dyno. However does it fulfill?

2018 Kia Stinger GT profile

I’ve been begging Kia to drive the Stinger because the automaker unveiled it in a dank Detroit warehouse almost two years in the past. Exhibits what sort of pull I’ve with the automakers — the one which arrived had over 14,000 miles on the odometer.

Recall the adage that a rental car is the quickest car on the earth, as you don’t care what occurs to the car when you drop it off on the airport? Think about getting paid to drive that car. That’s the type of abuse a press fleet car sees. I’d like to see some type of algorithm that plots press-versus-paying buyer put on, however I’d wager that a 14k-previous fleet car is worn at the least as a lot as a 50k mile car that also has a mortgage stability.

2018 Kia Stinger GT interior

I point out this since my preliminary driving impression of the Stinger was uncommon. I hopped in, adjusted seat and mirrors, related my telephone, and drove to a drive-through for lunch. I hadn’t adjusted the radio stations (appears that each press car I get is tuned to classical), so I instantly switched off the sound. A light-weight creaking sound turned immediately noticeable, even at crawling velocity between the menu board and the window.

I initially thought a light-weight rain was falling.

2018 Kia Stinger GT front seat

Nope. There’s a noise emitted from the sunroof mechanism because the car flexes barely over the tiniest bumps. It feels like totally different supplies — I’m guessing fiberboard from the headliner, foam from insulation, and metals within the roof itself — rubbing collectively, conspiring to harass me.

2018 Kia Stinger GT rear seat

A bit noise shouldn’t be an enormous deal. Flip up the stereo, proper? Plus, it’s a driver’s car first. However individuals who spend $forty eight,000 on a 4-door aren’t all the time hitting the monitor or the twisties. Sometimes, these drivers may have to drive the boss, a shopper, or a future father-in-regulation, and little issues like squeaks could make a damaging impression.

2018 Kia Stinger GT gauges

The three.three-liter twin-turbo V6 isn’t probably the most refined-sounding engine, both, although I dig the growl beneath throttle. That rumble is ever-current even at idle, which alarmed my spouse a bit when encountering the beginning-cease system. You see, she has a historical past of exploding engines in numerous beaters, and when the Kia shut down at a stoplight, she observed, instantly assuming one thing was flawed when all went briefly quiet.

2018 Kia Stinger GT infotainment

The driving really feel does its best to make up for the little noises, nevertheless. The steering does a pleasant job of speaking what the tires are doing, and the suspension is all the time prepared to hustle round corners.

2018 Kia Stinger GT center stack

Managing Editor Tim Healey complained that there’s an uncommon diploma of physique roll in what’s marketed as a sports activities sedan. I agree — the roll is uncommon. Nevertheless, the roll is accompanied by loads of grip when driving aggressively. I can particularly think of one other car that has each a great deal of physique roll and nice dealing with: the Miata. That’s good firm to be in.

2018 Kia Stinger GT dashboard

365 hp is lots to get the large sedan/hatch out of corners briskly and as much as unprintable speeds surprisingly shortly. I really like the midrange punch — twitching my toe to vary lanes and overtake a sluggish-shifting hybrid (sure, stated hybrid was lounging within the left lane at twenty underneath the restrict), I shortly discovered myself approaching triple digits.

Fortunately, the Brembo brakes labored as one would anticipate. On one, ahem, spirited drive on a favourite again street, I encountered a Grumman LLV postal vehicle coming at me, inexplicably left-of-middle. Aside from the standard sound and really feel of ABS partaking, there was no drama from the car. Drama between myself and the probably-stoned letter service just isn’t within the scope of this review.

2018 Kia Stinger GT front

I’m not as thrilled with the eight-velocity automated transmission, nevertheless. It shifts imperceptibly when commuting, nevertheless it’s not tuned for driving enjoyable. Even when the lever is canted left into the game sector, shifts are lazy. Worse but, even when making an attempt to “manually” shift (by way of lever or column-mounted paddle), the Stinger will upshift for you earlier than redline. A correct sporty slushbox ought to maintain the gear on the limiter.

One other concern: the proximity sensors entrance and rear are hyperactive. Maybe the sensors used are the identical for different automobiles within the Kia lineup, calibrated for automobiles that journey larger than the considerably low-slung Stinger, however they stored randomly alerting me to such critical risks as velocity bumps and leaves blowing throughout my path. PETA can be pleased, nevertheless, as these delicate bumper nubbins probably saved the lifetime of a neighborhood squirrel as I backed out of the drive one foggy morn.

2018 Kia Stinger GT rear

Maybe the rodent was in awe of the Stinger. It’s an unusually engaging sedan — nicely, actually, it’s a 5-door hatchback, however it doesn’t actually scream hatch if you take a look at it. It’s lengthy, extensive, and low, making the Stinger menacingly elegant. The nostril is festooned with vents and scoops and swoopy headlamps, and a pair of hood vents add to the sporty look. However past the entrance wheels, it’s reserved, with a pleasant darkish polished vent behind every entrance wheel arch exhausting scorching air.

Inside, the non-compulsory purple Nappa leather-based seats are a terrific distinction to the rental-car white exterior — I’ve all the time been a sucker for purple leather-based. The seats are a lot snug, although the decrease cushion on the driving force’s seat is a bit brief for me, resulting in a little bit of cramping on an extended drive. Rear seat consolation is sort of good, although headroom is a bit pinched for me because of the sloping roof of the hatch.

That hatch, nevertheless, is an excellent feature, giving a sports activities sedan purchaser who wants a bit extra utility an excellent choice slightly than yet one more crossover. Kia quotes 23.three cubic ft of area behind these rear seats. Whereas it’s not that rather more than best sedans, the choice to haul taller stuff makes these cubes fairly helpful.

The 2018 Kia Stinger GT is a superb try at breaking into the sports activities sedan market. It’s extremely enjoyable to drive, but civilized sufficient to not punish whereas commuting. Nonetheless, some particulars want a little bit of ending. This pie stays underbaked.

2018 Kia Stinger GT grille

[Images: © 2018 Chris Tonn/TTAC]

– 2018 Kia Stinger GT AWD Review – Icing On The Cake –

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