The Stinger changed the way enthusiasts looked at the Kia brand, setting the stage for well-liked follow-ups including the Telluride—MotorTrend's 2020 SUV of the Year—and the Seltos.
Unlike the mechanically related Genesis G70 sedan, the Stinger is a hatchback, making it a viable vehicle to pitch to your significant other as a family-friendly vehicle. A longer wheelbase also distinguishes the Stinger from the G70.
For 2021, the two-tone red and black interior color is now available with the Panthera Gray exterior color on the GT models. A refreshed 2022 Stinger with a larger 10.3-inch infotainment touchscreen is expected to arrive next year, possibly with a new engine option.
The Stinger is the perfect companion if you need space and sportiness. The Stinger offers composed, engaging handling when the road starts twisting. Quick, communicative steering enhances the experience. And even when pushed hard, the Kia is game—provided you're in the RWD model. AWD variants understeer more during enthusiastic driving, whereas RWD models are happy to rotate into a corner. Although a turbo-four is also available, Kia's 3.3-liter twin-turbo V-6 is the engine to get because it effortlessly propels the car to "arrest me" speeds.
Not all is perfect, though because the eight-speed automatic isn't as responsive as you'd expect in a sporty car; the transmission upshifts early and downshifts too late. Also, the Stinger's interior suffers from excessive road noise on poorly maintained surfaces. Additionally, the fit and finish, while good, feels more mainstream than premium for a vehicle pitched as an alternative to similarly sized swoopy sedans from Europe.
Thanks to the Stinger's blend of sportiness and practicality, it's easy to live with. Try the Stinger GT in RWD guise to get the most out of the car. However, don't expect the car to offer the same levels of polish as a luxury-badged sport sedan like its smaller G70 sibling.
Both engine options on the 2021 Kia Stinger are paired to an eight-speed automatic transmission.
Model: Stinger GT-Line
Engine and Transmission: 2.0-liter turbo I-4 - eight-speed automatic
Power: 255 hp/260 lb-ft of torque
EPA-Rated Fuel Economy: 22/29 mpg (RWD); 21/29 mpg (AWD)
Model: Stinger GT, Stinger GT1, Stinger GT2
Engine and Transmission: 3.3-liter twin-turbo V-6 - eight-speed automatic
Power: 365 hp/376 lb-ft
EPA-Rated Fuel Economy: 17/25 mpg
NHTSA: 5 stars (out of a possible five stars)
IIHS: 2020 Top Safety Pick
The Stinger received a Good score in all crashworthiness tests except headlights, where the halogen units on the base model and optional adaptive LEDs on the GT2 got Poor and Acceptable ratings, respectively. In the IIHS' front crash prevention evaluations, the Stinger got a Superior rating in the vehicle-to-vehicle test and Advanced on the vehicle-to-pedestrian category (Superior is the highest rating). However, you must move up to at least the GT1 grade to get collision prevention active safety features.
Blind-spot monitoring and rear cross-traffic alert are standard on all Stinger variants. Adaptive cruise control is available only on the GT model and up. Moving up to the GT1 adds forward collision warning, pedestrian detection, front automatic emergency braking, automatic high-beams, driver attention alert, and lane keeping assist.
The GT-Line features a 7.0-inch touchscreen, a 3.5-inch instrument cluster display, a six-speaker audio system, Apple CarPlay and Android Auto compatibility, and wireless charging. GT models add a nine-speaker audio system. Moving up to GT1 and GT2 variants gets you a larger 8.0-inch touchscreen, built-in navigation, a 7.0-inch instrument cluster display, and a 15-speaker Harman Kardon surround sound system.
|$0||0% Financing available for varying term lengths : 36, 48, 60, 66 Months - Kia announces special APR Financing on select models.||02-01-2021|
|$0||0.9% Financing for a maximum term of 72 Months - Kia announces special APR Financing on select models.||02-01-2021|
|$0||1.9% Financing available for varying term lengths : 75, 84 Months - Kia announces special APR Financing on select models.||02-01-2021|
|$400||Kia announces a Bonus Cash on select models for eligible military personnel.||02-01-2021|
|$2500||Kia announces Customer Cash on select models. [Regional Incentive. See dealer for availability.]||02-01-2021|