“It’s an authentic 2+2 sports car that can turn heads as a daily driver while also being right at home on the track. It’s about purity, simplicity and timelessness. The GT4 Stinger is a throwback to days when driving a car was a visceral experience that wasn’t muted by electronic gimmickry,” explained Tom Kearns, chief designer at Kia Design Center America.
Kia approached the GT4 Stinger project with an eye toward weight reduction, functionality and driving enjoyment. “If anyone were to ask if Kia has the credibility to build a car like the GT4 Stinger, I would simply point out that Kia races – and wins – against some of the world’s most legendary performance brands,” Kearns stressed.
Kia Racing and partner Kinetic Motorsports captured the Grand-Am Continental Tire Sports Car Challenge Drivers and Team Championships in 2012 with the Forte Koup and are currently preparing the turbocharged Optimas for their third season of duty in the Pirelli World Challenge in 2014 following a second-place finish in the Manufacturer’s Championship in 2013.
Under the Stinger’s hood is a tuned version of Kia’s 2.0 turbocharged direct injection four-pot with 315 hp, the same engine that pushes out over 400 hp in the race Optima. The T-GDI is mated to a close-ratio six-speed manual gearbox driving the rear wheels, which are wrapped in 275/35 Pirelli P-Zero tyres.
Custom 20-inch aluminium centre-lock wheels feature carbon fibre inserts for strength and weight reduction. Tucked inside the massive wheels are Brembo Gran Turismo two-piece 15-inch cross-drilled rotors and four-piston calipers.
With a shorter wheelbase and overall length than a Cerato, width greater than a Cadenza, and a swooping roofline nearly nine inches lower than a Rio’s, the “Ignition Yellow” coupe’s proportions are spot on. Maybe it’s time for Kia to come up with a proper sports car, with this as inspiration.