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2018 kia Stinger

The new Kia Stinger is a full-size, rear-wheel-drive sport sedan that has been introduced at least in part to buoy Kia's performance credentials.

In a way, the Stinger fills the void that was left behind when Hyundai's Genesis departed to become the new, more-upscale G80. It is the new affordable alternative to more luxurious sedans and takes the fight to some of America's V8-powered alternatives.

Overview
The Kia Stinger is a rear-wheel drive, five-seat sport sedan that tops of Kia's four-door range. At 190 inches long, it is roughly the same size as Kia's front-wheel drive Optima, however its 114-inch wheelbase along with its longitudinal powertrain layout make for a completely different package.

That extra wheelbase allows the Stinger's engines to be centered farther back from the front axle, leading to a more balanced weight distribution (which is good for performance).

Up front, the Stinger boasts a MacPherson Strut suspension; the rear end is a multi-link setup. Buyers of the more powerful GT model are treated to Brembo brakes with larger rotors both front and rear.

Further chassis specifications, including curb weight, should be finalized closer to the Stinger's release.

Engine Choices
The Stinger comes in two flavors—the base model and the GT.

The base model is powered by a two-liter, 255-horsepower four-cylinder which makes 260lb-ft of torque.

The GT comes with a 365-horsepower, 3.3-liter twin-turbocharged V6 which produces a grunty 376lb-ft of torque.

Both engines are mated to an eight-speed automatic transmission and all power goes exclusively to the rear axle.

Trim Level Breakdown
Features and options should be outlined closer to the Stinger's final on-sale date.

Occupant Safety
We expect the Stinger to offer safety features typical of a brand-new vehicle, including four-wheel disc brakes with ABS and stability control; a rear-view camera; downhill brake control; LATCH anchors; height-adjustable seatbelts; and front; front-side and side-curtain airbags.

Blind spot detection, rear cross traffic alert, automatic emergency braking, lane departure warning and front and rear parking assist will likely be included as well, however information has not yet been finalized.

Key Competitors
There are many large, rear-wheel drive sedans on the market but most of them are more expensive or more luxury-oriented than the Stinger. Price-wise, the sedan's main rivals are the 470-horsepower Dodge Charger SRT8. and the 415-horsepower Chevrolet SS. Both are V8-powered.

The Ford Taurus SHO packs a similar concept in an all-wheel drive package. The Genesis G80 is more of a luxury cruiser, but also offers a potent 5.0-liter V8 that is rated at 429 horsepower and 376 lb-ft. of twist.