2019 Kia Stinger GT2 RWD

High-end cabin, comfort, and tech
By Durhl Caussey
Durhl Caussey
Durhl Caussey
November 16, 2019 Updated: November 16, 2019

The top-of-line GT2 trim of the Stinger family offers more tech plus advanced performance and assistance. The GT models sprints faster than the base 2.0L and Premium models thanks to the 3.3L Twin Turbo GDI gasoline V6, which is good for 365 horsepower and 376 lb.-ft. of torque.

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Twin Turbo GDI V6. (Courtesy of Kia)

Coupled to an eight-speed automatic transmission with paddle shifters, the rear-drive powertrain achieves a fuel economy of 17 mpg city and 25 mpg highway for a 20-mpg combined average. Better mileage without giving up power is the number one goal of Kia engineers with the Stinger. I averaged 30 mpg during my weekly test period.

Stinger offers Drive Mode Select System with Eco, Smart, Comfort, Sport, and Custom modes. This allows you to choose the way you want to travel. After doing just a little experimenting with the different selections, I chose Eco as my principal travel mode.

Electronically Controlled Suspension, Brembo Brakes, electronic parking brake, and limited slip differential are great performance and safety components.

Technology, convenience, and comfort all work together to keep the passengers firmly seated in the cabin.

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Inside the Stinger. (Courtesy of Kia)

The 8-inch UVO infotainment screen with navigation supports both Apple CarPlay and Android Auto. SiriusXM Satellite Radio provides an endless amount of entertainment. Sound emanates from the Harman Kardon Premium Auto Surround Sound System with 15 speakers.

The 7-inch TFT color display flanked by sport gauges keeps you inform with a wealth of data. However, some readouts were a little hard to read.

Even though the Stinger is loaded with conveniences, it is the way it drives that you notice. The driving stability and cornering are remarkable. In fact, Kia’s literature says the Stinger boasts a 0-60 time of 4.7 seconds.

Once inside, Nappa leather seats are deeply contoured for added security and support. For me, they were a little too tightly fitted. Heating keeps front and rear outboard passengers warm on cold days, while the front occupants also enjoy ventilated cooling. For additional thoughtfulness, the power tilt and telescopic steering wheel ensures optimal driving comfort and keeps a clear sight to the dashboard. Multi-color LED accent lighting subtly illuminates the passenger side dash and front door pockets, and the color can be customized to fit the mood.

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Quality leather surfaces. (Courtesy of Kia)

It’s easy and convenient to stow away little things with Under Floor Storage – a small tray hidden under the cargo floor. This tray has partitions for organizing smaller loose items, along with a spare tire.

The 60/40 split-folding rear seats provides added flexibility to accommodate a range of storage needs.

Smart Key can stay hidden in your pocket or purse, and lets the sensors work their magic. The Smart Power Trunk opens the lid when you stand near, opening in three seconds. It closes with a push of the button.

There is an old saying. “Safety never takes a day off.” Kia certainly subscribes to that philosophy, giving the Stinger an advanced sensor system, strategically placed air bags, and a stronger body construction from a break-through in materials and design. Those are just a few of the ways Kia works to keep passengers safe. And yes, I must repeat, Brembo High Performance Brakes add to driver control and passenger safety.

I felt the front bumper sensors were a little sensitive. Even when the objects were several feet away, they still admitted a loud alarm. Sometimes stationary objects a couple feet off the roadway would set off an alarm. If you were stopped at a red light and the car rolled forward just a little, or the driver in front backed up a little, the alarm went off. Then you had to sit there until the light changed listening to the alarm.

The MSRP for Kia Stinger starts at $32,990 for the base 2.0L model, and goes up to $50,500 for the GT2 trim.

Kia Stinger has an impressive spirit. When driving, the Stinger never held back. It sits alertly on 19-inch wheels with summer tires. Stinger is fast and solid, reminding me of the classic GT that I drove in the 1970s.

Kia boasts an industry-leading warranty program:
5-year/60,000-mile limited basic warranty
10-year/100,000-mile limited powertrain warranty
5-year/100,000-mile limited anti-perforation warranty
5-year/60,000-mile 24-hour roadside assistance

Durhl Caussey writes a car column read around the world. He may be reached at this paper or dcaussey@sbcglobal.net.


Durhl Caussey
Durhl Caussey