With the rest of the automotive world approaching the 2014 Detroit Auto Show with performance in mind, Kia was not to be left behind. The reserved and practical company which – let’s face it – doesn’t get many people excited (Blake Griffin commercials notwithstanding), managed to open eyes on Monday with the GT4 Stinger concept, easily the most exciting concept car to ever wear the Kia badge.
Starting with looks, the two-door GT4 Stinger looks right at home in the muscle car stable. It is every bit as aggressive as the Challenger or Camaro, and every bit as aggressively refined looking as the Mustang.
But it doesn’t stop there. In addition to being the finest looking Kia ever, the performance is every bit as exciting. Here it becomes apparent that the GT4 Stinger isn’t a muscle car – despite its looks – but a car more primed to compete with the Nissan Z.
The engine is only a 2.0-liter four-banger but, with a little help from its turbocharger, it cranks out a more-than-enough mark of 315 hp. The engine is connected to a close-ratio 6-speed manual gearbox powering the rear wheels, which, along with 20-inch aluminum wheels (with carbon fiber inserts), and 15-inch cross-drilled Brembo GT brakes, makes the GT4 a true sports car.
Most noticeable, though, when it comes to performance, is the weight. Clearly Kia’s California design team (which is responsible for the concept car) put the thing on weight watchers, because its fighting weight is 2,874 lbs, with a 52/48 weight distribution. Translation: this thing will fly.
Low weight, high-power, a sexy exterior, and a modern interior, all for what we can only assume will be an impressively affordable price. This ain’t your mama’s Kia.
Photo Credit: Kia