2022 Kia Stinger delivers performance value in a comfortable package

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The most effective sensible daily-driver choices available on the market for an fanatic isn’t promoting.

Kia offered simply 13,517 Stingers within the U.S. in 2021, down 20% from the model’s peak gross sales of 16,806 in 2018 (which was its first yr available on the market). Regardless of the refresh for 2022, the rear-wheel-drive hatchback’s gross sales are down 13% year-over-year.

With a tweaked exterior with up to date lighting parts, bigger touchscreen, extra normal security gear, and extra energy, the Stinger is extra compelling than ever.

Kia despatched me a (practically) base 2022 Stinger GT-Line painted in beautiful Ascot Inexperienced to find out if the replace is a compelling proposition. Spoiler: The reply is sure.

A new 2.5-liter turbo-4 spins out 300 hp

A brand new 2.5-liter turbo-4 spins out 300 hp

Energy to the folks

The largest change for 2022 is what you may’t see. Pop the hood and the bottom Stinger now incorporates a 2.5-liter turbo-4 spinning out 300 hp and 311 lb-ft, which is a rise of 45 hp and 51 lb-ft over the outgoing 2.0-liter turbo-4.

Energy nonetheless goes to the rear wheels—all-wheel drive is an choice—by means of an 8-speed automated transmission that snaps off clear shifts. Kia mentioned the brand new turbo-4 pushes the Stinger from 0-60 mph in 5.2 seconds (down from 5.9 seconds), and my butt dyno mentioned that feels about proper.

The out there 3.3-liter twin-turbo V-6 with an uprated 368 hp and 376 hp will actually lay on the facility, however the brand new turbo-4 gives lots for day-to-day driving.

Base 2022 Kia Stingers ride on new 18-inch wheels

Base 2022 Kia Stingers trip on new 18-inch wheels

The turbo-4 feels lighter up entrance than V-6 fashions and rear-wheel drive permits for some frisky actions round corners. The steering is effectively weighted even in Consolation mode. The bigger turbo-4 options terrific throttle response, however toggle the powertrain to Sport mode and the throttle actually wakes up because the transmission kicks down a gear or two. Annoyingly, Sport mode locks out high gear and has the powertrain at about 2,300 rpm on the freeway as a substitute of a extra relaxed, and environment friendly, 1,800 rpm. Faster response value me on the pump.

The suspension is effectively sorted on the road with managed physique roll. Even on Minnesota’s damaged and pockmarked roads it’s exhausting to upset the Stinger. The longer wheelbase over its Genesis G70 cousin pays dividends in trip consolation, although the tuning of the Kia is a bit softer.

Every 2022 Kia Stinger features a 10.3-inch touchscreen infotainment system

Each 2022 Kia Stinger incorporates a 10.3-inch touchscreen infotainment system

Extra display screen

Inside, the Stinger carries over pretty analog gauges that might’ve been ripped from an Audi. My GT-Line tester’s flat-bottom steering wheel is thicker than the Alfa Romeo Giulia’s, however its good measurement gives an amazing driving place. The entrance buckets with thick bolsters are comfy and hug in all the best locations.

However it’s the brand new 10.3-inch touchscreen infotainment display screen changing the 7.0-inch display screen that grabs the eyes. Its easy-to-use interface stays, however so does its lack of wi-fi Apple CarPlay and Android Auto regardless of a wi-fi smartphone charging pad.

Long and lean, the Stinger has the right proportions in the right places

Lengthy and lean, the Stinger has the best proportions in the best locations

Long and lean, the Stinger has the right proportions in the right places

Lengthy and lean, the Stinger has the best proportions in the best locations

Long and lean, the Stinger has the right proportions in the right places

Lengthy and lean, the Stinger has the best proportions in the best locations

Recognizing the refreshed Stinger will take a eager eye. The usual LED lightning has been tweaked and the usual 18-inch wheels function a brand new design together with widened exhaust finishers. However the rear-wheel drive proportions, useful duct work, and flared physique panels all stay the identical.

2022 Kia Stinger GT-Line RWD

2022 Kia Stinger GT-Line RWD

Security and worth

The refresh additionally brings extra normal security options together with automated emergency braking, energetic lane management, automated excessive beams, and blind-spot screens, together with adaptive cruise management and rear parking sensors.

With a beginning value of $37,135 together with $1,045 vacation spot, the 2022 Stinger prices $3,000 greater than final yr’s much less highly effective model. My tester featured the $2,300 Solar and Sound bundle, which added a 720-watt Harmon Kardon 15-speaker sound system, a sunroof, and 8-way energy entrance passenger seat with 2-way lumbar assist. At $39,715 it felt like a steal in at present’s market.

The Genesis G70 could be a bit extra compact and sportier, the Mercedes-Benz C-Class could be a bit classier and glitzier, and the Alfa Giulia could be a bit sharper, however the Stinger appears like a close to good compromise in base type with its bigger turbo-4 and comfy inside.

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