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Best Kia Cars – Kia has scored important victories with the Kia Stinger, a high-performance sedan from a brand better known as four doors and an affordable SUV.
Stinger is toast from the auto-exhibition circuit in 2017. I first tasted the all-wheel-drive GT2 version of the car in California in early 2018. This $ 52,000 engine, with a 3.3-liter twin-turbo V6 makes delicious 365 horsepower and 376 pound-feet of torque is delicious, really luring me as I drive around the Bay Area.
Then, I enjoyed the same car in the New York / New Jersey area and was equally impressed. So did my colleague, Ben Zhang, who took his first crack at Stinger.
We haven’t tested a four-cylinder trim base, priced at $ 32,000. But I just finished enjoying the rear-wheel-drive GT2, which records around $ 50,000. The full review will come later, but it is enough to say that as much as I am on the AWD Stinger, the first impression is not everything; The more classically configured RWD GTD is THE ONE. I just wanted to drive it, and drive it, and then drive it again, and then dream about driving it.
I’m usually not very careful with this car, but Stinger combines style, value, performance, and versatility is a brilliant way so all bets are not active. Specifically when you consider that you can get an incredible V6 in a basic GT package for $ 38,350 which is amazing.
As a result, I have done various comparisons in my head. For my money, while Stinger openly takes up all segments of the luxury performance sedan – Audi, Lexus, Mercedes, and BMW – the goal is right at BMW. Bimmers provides driving dynamics references that Stinger wants to imitate.
When that happens, I have encouraged a group of Bimmers. This is how Stinger piles up as much as I can think of.
First, let me refresh your impression of Stinger, in trim GT2 AWD.
“It’s a relentless car that’s fun, a literal excitement to drive,” I wrote in my review.
“This lights up with a pleasant growl (OK, augmented, but still) and growls cheerfully when pushed. It’s quickly gone. The 0-60 time should be 4.7 seconds, but I think it’s faster than that. And you have to watch yourself with cruising speed, because Stinger knocks the legal speed limit in a hurry, but does so calmly and relatively calmly so that people can easily ignore the speedometer. ”
Rear-wheel-drive cars are cheaper and more fun. Stepping in the throttle and feeling that the back end of the dig is the happiness of riding. Of course, RWD settings mean you will have an easier time testing the limits in the grip on the rear tire, if that is your thing.
What about the BMW M3?
The BMW M3 also has six banger under the hood, plus a pair of turbos. But this motorbike generates 425 horsepower to Stinger’s 365 hp.
M3 is also a more aggressive car.
But the M3 also started at almost $ 68,000.
And what about the M4 conversion?
I checked the convertible version, which offers two doors instead of the four M3 but the same power pack under the hood: 425 horses.
Again, the Stinger loses with zeal – but then there’s the price difference: M4 is a $ 70,000 car.
In addition, M4 drives like German muscle cars. Stinger is more sporty.
And what do you think about M2?
The mighty little Bimmer coupé is close to Stinger on specifications, boasting a 365-horsepower engine, 3.0 liter, twin-turbo inline six-cylinder.
It gave two doors, but that was at Stinger’s baseball stadium, about $ 55,000.
What you get here is one of BMW’s most fun to drive. But the package is smaller than Stinger’s. If not, serious competition.
What about convertible M-car – M240i tweener?
I’ve actually tasted the coupé and convertible versions. What we have here is a 335-horsepower turbo and a price tag of about $ 36,000.
For my money, this is the best BMW in the market, if you like to drive. However, Stinger is more flexible, and Kia’s V6 is stronger.
Switching from M-cars, how does the Stinger stack up against Series-5?
When we tested the 530i, we were really fine with a four-cylinder turbo engine with 248 horsepower. Series 5 is packed with technology and luxury and costs more than $ 70,000, or $ 20,000 more than base cars.
The Stinger and 5-Series are not really in the same segment, though I think the Stinger type sits between the Series-3 and the 5-Series thanks to the nice big rods under the fastback hold and a considerable back count of legroom.
Obviously, you get more motors for your money with Stinger, even if you upgrade a BMW to 335-horsepower 540i. Relatively, you get less luxury. But the driving dynamics of Stinger GT2 are far more interesting.
And finally, how does all the Stinger gas work when matched with a 3-Series hybrid plug-in?
2017 BMW 330e Bryan Logan / Business Insider
We are generally quite satisfied with the BMW 330e; I drove on the East Coast and BI Bryan Logan took a sample to the west.
This is more than a BMW for an environmentally conscious buyer, however. It’s nice to drive, but it’s not fun like Stinger, which obviously can’t be installed.
Minus of the explosion-to-drive aspect, the main difference between Stinger and BMW competition is that Kia is much easier to handle as far as instruments and entertainment go. BMW has a vibration like this busy cockpit; and infotainment systems, iDrive, while many improvements over the years remain quite complicated.
Instead, Kia has the most intuitive control of any vehicle on the market, plus touch screen entertainment systems that are among the best in the industry.
So what is the verdict?
Stinger vs M3: Stinger wins on price, loses power.
Stinger vs M4: See above.
Stinger vs M2: Competitive! M2 is an amazing Bimmer. But Stinger has four doors.
Stinger vs M240i: Stinger wins on power, but the M240i is a very good value in BMW. I will take Stinger.
Stinger vs 5-Series: The 5-Series is a legend, but Stinger is more fun to drive.
Stinger vs. hybrid plug-in 3-Series: Not a very good head-to-head because the Stinger is much more fun to drive. Stinger and infotainment instruments are also designed better.
Because Stinger has entered into automotive awareness, it is increasingly perceived as occupying a unique niche: rising against the BMW 3-Series, but with a more agile attitude and better price.
The closest thing to this idea is actually no longer with us: Pontiac, the General Motors brand that was killed after the financial crisis. In fact, at the end of Pontiac’s life, the brand sold Holden Australia back in the US, the G8 GT, which has a 361-horsepower V8 under the hood and fits well against Stinger.
This is the problem. If you want exciting performance at an attractive price, with premium and not luxurious interiors, excellent versatility, the Stinger segment is an excellent BMW alternative.
Do I think BMW will lose sales to Kia? Maybe a little on the margin. Bimmer doesn’t need to worry much. But there is no doubt that smart money will look closely at Stinger.