By on August 3, 2018

Image: Kia

We told you recently about an odd issue Kia’s having with a select group of rear-drive Stinger sports sedans. It seems those painted in eye-catching Sunset Yellow have a tendency to flake and peel — like a Canadian at the beach. In short, the paint won’t stay on, and Kia traced the source back to some oil residue that made its way into the vibrant coating sprayed on a small number of Stingers.

In the U.S., just 400 special edition Sunset Yellow Stingers found buyers, making the issue quite limited in scope, but nonetheless troubling. Buyers won’t be happy once the sedan starts shedding its skin. Luckily, Kia has a plan.

According to Motor Authority, owners won’t have to put up with chipping and cracking on their hood, doors, A-pillars, and trunklid.

Kia worked out a solution that involves arranging a repainting job through the dealer, with the respray (of likely-to-be-affected areas) in keeping with Kia’s guidelines. Going this route nets you a temporary loaner from Kia, plus a $5,000 “financial goodwill gesture” to turn frowns upside down. Note: you can’t select a new color.

But maybe the experience soured you. Can’t trust yellow paint anymore? Too sunny? Kia’s got other options waiting. Should an owner prefer to forego a respray, the automaker will purchase the car back, or flip the owner into an equivalent Stinger model. You’ll still have a Stinger, just one that won’t make like Big Bird after the bombs fall.

The only stipulation here is that it’s time sensitive. Kia began mailing out notices to affected Stinger owners in July, with those drivers given 30 days to respond if they’re thinking of going the car replacement route. The automaker’s goodwill on that front dries up December 1st of this year.

[Image: Kia]

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18 Comments on “Kia Sorts Out Stinger Paint Issue, Offers Other Stingers for Owners Who Can’t Be Bothered...”

  • avatar
    SD 328I

    That’s good of them, because last thing I want in a new car is a repaint. Regardless of the “procedure” they use, it’s still being done by whatever body shop that dealer has or is using, quality will vary greatly.

    I rather have a car that was painted from the factory. But then again, quite a few new cars are damaged and repaired before sale that the original owners are never disclosed, so who knows really.

    • 0 avatar

      I don’t know if this is still the case, but back when I worked at a Lincoln-Mercury dealer in the early 2000s, Ford would buy back any car damaged in transport, no matter how minor the damage. We got a “used” current-year Focus at the auction with 34 miles on it, still had the plastics on it. What was the problem? The windshield was cracked during transport. Ford bought it back, repaired it, and sent it to the auction as a used car. They would not allow a previously damaged car to be sold as “new”, no matter how minor the damage was.

      • 0 avatar

        I remember working for Honda, when in 1984 the transport driver neglected to unhitch all of the hold down chains, and bent the trunk lid and quarter panels noticeably on an Accord. After he called the port in Portland, OR he was instructed to leave the car on the truck, return it to the port, and he told us another Accord of the same model and color would be delivered the next day to us(our dealership was about two hours away from the port by car transport.). And one day later, the replacement car was delivered.

    • 0 avatar
      Middle-Aged (Ex-Miata) Man

      A local body shop repaired some minor damage to the rear quarter panel of my ’15 Cadenza. They matched the Snow White Pearl color very well, and unlike the factory paint the repaired areas showed zero orange peel. YMMV.

      I do wonder about how noticeable these repaints will be, since apparently not all exterior panels will be reshot? Like bright red, yellow is a visually overpowering color that helps mask flaws and mismatches… but only to a point.

  • avatar

    A yellow Stinger might draw unwanted attention from the fuzz, man.

  • avatar

    So what is Kia going to do about all the other colors having the same issue……red, blue, black, gray, etc???

  • avatar

    I am used to the American manufacturer solution:
    1) Blame the owner
    2) Say `they all do that` and claim it is normal
    3) Deny, deny, deny
    4) Wait 7 years to lose the class-action lawsuit

    • 0 avatar

      Sounds like business as usual at Hyundai-Kia.

      Here’s a long warranty! God help you if you have to use it.

      Sure, we know these engines are the same in several different models, but we’ll only recall ONE model, and only after a whistleblower outed us as having admitted internally that the engine has a design flaw that causes catastrophic damage, regardless of maintenance or use. Oh, you own one of those other models? Phhht, good luck with that. We’ll recall them when we’re forced to, and deny any claims in the meantime. Y’all come back now, ya hea?!

      • 0 avatar
        CKNSLS Sierra SLT


        Ford doesn’t have a good track record on fixing their (under warranty) diesel motors either. Standard Line-It’s a contaminated fuel issue……

      • 0 avatar

        That’s funny since Hyundai and Kia (esp. Kia) have consistently ranked HIGHER than Ford when it comes to JD Power’s CSI rankings which evaluates customer satisfaction when it comes to repair and warranty work.

        And sure, while every automaker has had their issues, do we really need to drag out Ford’s “illustrious” record?

        The # of class action lawsuits that Ford has faced is simply appalling.

        Or what about Ford trying to “game” the IIHS off-set crash test by only fortifying the driver’s side, forcing IIHS to begin testing the passenger side as well.

        And one would think by now (after the Pinto fiasco), Ford would know NOT to put the fuel tank BEHIND the rear axle unless they have made the necessary safety precautions by strengthening the rear frame and making the tank less prone to rupture.

  • avatar

    “Doh!” says the guy who walked out of the Kia store a few days ago trying to negotiate a better deal on a yellow Stinger.

    I wonder if Kia plans to repaint the buyback cars, or just shove them off to auction as is and let the future owners worry about it.

    • 0 avatar
      Kyree S. Williams

      As a brand that still fights an image of being poorly-assembled, I bet they’ll repaint them. They don’t need those cars getting out and causing PR issues down the road.

  • avatar
    SCE to AUX

    This is how you keep customers.

  • avatar

    There is just something about the original factory paint that is very difficult to duplicate. I purchased a 2 year old car that apparently had minor paintwork. I didn’t catch the paintwork initially. I fancy myself as having a fairly good eye as I was a car buyer for years. After 6-7 years I started seeing the tell-tale signs of the paintwork due to minor discoloration. I would think that yellow might be a color that will reveal paintwork later on.

  • avatar
    johnny ro

    age matters. repaint new vs repaint old, easier to match with simply using a color code. Probably not perfect match. Far better than coded paint on a fresh raw panel after accident on 20 year old vehicle.

  • avatar

    Mercedes-Benz is repainting cars in Mars Red as well, though they aren’t going public about it. No sign they will exchange your E-series coupe or convertible for a new one though. Kudos to Kia for going the extra mile on this.

  • avatar

    Ditching shades of gray for a “real color” is so refreshing. Gosh I’m tired of all cars being black, silver or white.

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