By on January 13, 2014

gt4-stinger-02The world needs more sexy two door RWD coupes. I think we can all agree that the cheap two-door sports car market has gained some excitement the last few years, especially with the success of the BRZ/FRS (I shall call them BRS for short) twins. Kia is toying with that idea, too, and is pulling no punches while they’re here. The GT4 Stinger concept is aimed right at the heart of the BRS twins, and here’s how…

Kia-GT4-Stinger-04The GT4 rides on a custom chassis for this concept. It utilizes four wheel independent double wishbone suspension, leaning more towards Miata than BRS (Which still uses McPherson struts up front) as far as suspension quality. With a reported 103.1 inch wheelbase, the GT4 is just a hair longer than the BRS, which sits at 101.2 inches; but it’s also nearly a foot wider, and much shorter than the BRS — though these are just concept car proportions. The GT4 uses a 2.0L turbo four-cylinder with 315 hp, twisting this thrust through a close-ratio six speed manual to scoot along the scant  2,874 pounds.

Kia-GT4-Stinger-side All that aside, little of it matters to the production car — which is a long way off, Kia admits. Styling is what’s drawing the most attention, and I find it well-deserved. Kia’s take on the long hood/short deck styling is spot-on in proportion, with hulking fenders raising over its low belt-line to house staggared 20-inch wheels, with 235mm wide front and 275mm wide rear tires. The black accent along the rocker neatly hides a duct, presumably for brake cooling. And I don’t know what it is about those headlights, but they subtly remind me of the clamshell ’65 Buick Riviera headlights.

Kia-GT4-Stinger-07 The see through A-Pillars are an interesting conceptual touch, but I feel they’d be far too distracting to try and peer through in practice. The rest of the interior pushed for a minimalist approach.

With no platform to house it, and no immediate plans to build it, this is a traditional dreamy concept car. That said, Kia execs have their ears to the ground, listening for public response. I would like to see it happen, that’s all.

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27 Comments on “NAIAS 2014: Kia GT4 “Stinger” Concept...”

  • avatar

    Love that rear.
    Hate the front.
    Interior looks better than FR-S/BR-Z.

    I’ll stick with SRT.

    • 0 avatar

      Diff. category than any of the SRT models.

      OK rear and side; the front would be OK if the headlights were totally redone.

      The Hyundai Venace concept (which the new Hyundai coupe will be based on) is much more striking.

      • 0 avatar

        He’s being facetious. If you have read his past comments with any regularity you will know he is an SRT fan-boy. Note, I am not being derogatory there. There is nothing wrong with being a “fan-boy” when it comes to cars.

        In short, you can translate his statement to “not interesting enough to pull me away from my beloved SRT’s.”

  • avatar


    Couldn’t this just share the next Genesis Coupe platform?

    • 0 avatar

      Not really since the Stinger is supposed to be smaller/lighter than the coupe and powered solely by 4-bangers.

      Also, the next Genesis coupe (to be based on the Venace concept) will be going upmarket and paired with Hyundai’s new compact RWD sedan.

  • avatar

    Wow. I never thought I’d say this but…

    Bring on the Asian sports car wars.

  • avatar

    As an owner of a 2013 BRZ, all I have to say is, well played! Although a foot wider? I know the BRZ/FRS is pretty compact, but that seems a lot to me.

    Would be very interesting to see how this handles with the different suspension setup. I do like the styling but not in that color.

    • 0 avatar

      It is typical to make a concept wide. It helps the aesthetics, just like big wheels.

      My guess is that the BRS concept was quite a bit wider than the production version as well.

    • 0 avatar

      The width is ridiculous. The BRZ is relatively wide for its size, @ 69.9″. This puts it in the middle ground of C-segments. It’s wider than a Civic, for example. An extra foot in width makes the GT4 wider than an F-150.

  • avatar

    Comments from a current 350Z owner… love me some sexy 2 door hatchback so overall I’m digging this Stinger Concept –
    Side profile = awesome
    Back = really good
    Front = overdone with the LEDs and fender arches, needs more work here
    A pillar = stupid, I’d bet you get a disco light effect with the sun a certain angles
    interior = concept car unrealistic, doesn’t the Porsche GT3 have those same red fabric door pulls? Come on, saving weight by replacing a door handle… because race car?
    wheels = fugly
    rear duct = if its functional then good
    Engine & suspension = WINNER love the idea of insane turbo 4 (says the ex Mitsubishi Eclipse GS-T owner)

    • 0 avatar
      Dr. Kenneth Noisewater

      I like the front vertical lights quite a bit, but that A-pillar treatment looks lame.. Black that out..

      (I’m also a sucker for vertical headlights, and don’t like horizontal ones all that much aside from the hidden ones on a 1960s Camaro RS/SS .. The 3rd generation G35 blacked out with smoke is especially pimp IMO..)

  • avatar

    If this does come to fruition (which I doubt), it will probably hit the market around 2017, by which the time the 86 will probably have been replaced, or at least updated. And if it does produce 310hp, it will probably be a low price alternative to the BMW 4-series and its rivals.
    So I don’t think there’s much comparison.
    Any way, it looks good from the back, terrible at the front and the interior is nice enough.

  • avatar

    I like it all, and I suspect that production will improve the front by getting less unusual while losing some of back’s balance to fit some shared platform/kit.

  • avatar

    What would make this a huge success is to carry over some of the style/performance to more civil cars. This one will bring folks to showrooms but most people need something more practical. I feel Nissan does good w this. Sexy car!

  • avatar

    Hatch = win.

  • avatar
    SCE to AUX

    The numbers are awfully specific for it to be merely a concept (or maybe that’s what we’re meant to think).

    And to think that a 315-HP 2.0L can come with a 10/100 warranty.

  • avatar

    Well we got some Volvo at the back, some Saab at the side, and some Cadillac at the front. Overall it looks great, but the front needs a do-over. Maybe hire someone Scandinavian to do the front and leave the rest alone.

    And the interior will no-way-in-hell look like that in production. The a-pillar thing is a gimmick and ugly, and it’ll get a cheapo Kia interior off whatever current Forte they’re selling.

  • avatar

    Look, a Veloster and an RX8 mated!

  • avatar

    Nice, but I’d rather have 4 doors. What I want is somebody to build me a modern RWD sports sedan for ~half what BMW charges. I don’t want a big boat, I want compact, crisp styling and rearward vision that makes mandatory reverse cameras seem like a huge waste of money.

    • 0 avatar

      Reportedly, Kia has greenlit the “4-door coupe” CT concept for production and it should be about the size of the Infiniti Q50.

      For something slightly smaller, Hyundai will have a compact RWD sedan hitting the lots in a couple of years.

  • avatar

    First article about the GT4 that has the rear end as lead image, and the first article I bothered to read. Sexy! The front needs some reproportioning, but it’s overall a very promising concept.

    The Volvo SCC A pillar is a nice touch. I fully support the see-through-effort and think it is about time something like that shows up in production cars.

  • avatar

    I love the ducts on that hood. Rekindles warm feelings for the old 71-72 Road Runners.

  • avatar

    I think this is phenomenal and I can definitely see myself owning one someday. I love how the Kia grill is retained while still presenting a completely new front profile. This and the Datsun concept are really making me take note. The Asian brands will apparently own the enthusiast future. The entire aesthetic is a clear improvement on the current Genesis coupe design theme, which always struck me as a little derivative of the Nissan/Infinite look

    It kind of blows my mind to see all these fresh entries into a class of vehicle (by size and drivetrain) that dominate a lot of Europe’s most famous offerings. Early 3 series, escorts, the Alfa greats, etc… Meanwhile, the Europeans have absolutely nothing to play with here. VW never went for the Bluesport, BMW’s are pricing and sizing themselves out entirely and Alfa has a car, but it is really a Mazda under the skin.

  • avatar

    Anyone else feel like they’ve seen this one before? Check out the Saab Aero X Concept.

  • avatar

    The vertical headlights reminds me of the front-end treatment on the first-gen Buick Riviera.

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