Kia Stinger GT S

Its four-door coupé styling has that sensuous appeal that only a few car makers can convey. Poise combines with passion in the way the lines of the amply proportioned sports hatch flow to give that head-turning look.

even if it’s more out of curiosity than it is engendering a craving to explore the open road in continental grand touring style. The low-set cabin is deftly crafted to reveal a build quality that rivals the top executive sports saloons, and it’s packed with bristling technology to include a top notch infotainment system, head-up display and heated steering wheel. It sounds as if we’re talking mega money, especially when all four seats are heated, or cooled, those at the rear sculpted for long distance journeys.

The Stinger near Warcop

You’ve guessed by now we’re in the seriously desirable league of motorcars, when in an instance the feisty get-up-and- go expression changes to a sultry countenance that’s more catch-me-if-you- can. We could easily be arguing the virtues of a sleek BMW or a lustrous Audi, and taking the under-bonnet 3.3-litre twin- turbo petrol V6 into account, something more purposeful.

But we’re not, and just to add to the mystery, this snorting machine isn’t German, and for that matter isn’t even European, though it was designed to give such prestige machines a run for their money. If the badges were removed from the grille and tail, and the insignia banished from the steering wheel, the enigma would deepen when sinking into the leather upholstered cockpit, sensing the sports car confinement and bracing yourself for that performance immediacy merely by being in contact with the controls.

The vibrant red complements the car’s striking shape which attracts attention,


Firing up the persuasive V6 could be an anti-climax since there’s no sound of a rasping exhaust. Instead, the

twin-turbo busily chatters in readiness for the rapid take-off, if that’s your kind of driving. There’s no getting away from the fact that the drive train with its eight-speed automatic transmission is a pretty genteel affair and the epitome of docility, though the refinement becomes decidedly peppy on engaging sport mode and adopting a heavy right foot. The steering, as light as it is, doesn’t divorce the driver from

feeling the road, and while the suspension is a touch on the firm side, it’s so well engineered that even the worst surfaces are not invasive, all of which affords exemplary handling.

The low centre of gravity plus the electronic suspension damping fitted to the top range test car adds to the driving experience. The car’s balance is admirable with its traditional front-engine and rear- wheel drive, and there’s security from the Brembo brakes. A true sporting GT with ample boot space and a top speed of 168mph, the 28-30mpg fuel consumption over some 400 miles is quite respectable and matches the car maker’s official figures.

The Stinger near Warcop

If the 3.3-litre V6 sounds a tad too powerful, there’s a 4-cylinder 2.0-litre to tempt you.

The car? Haven’t I said?

It’s the new Stinger GT S, Kia’s best and fastest yet.

Malcolm Bobbitt

Stinger Interior

Kia Stinger range starts at £31,995OTR GT S test car £40,495OTR. Test car supplied by Kia UK Limited

ISSUE 426 | 23 JUNE 2018 | 23

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