When Kia unveiled the Stinger for the European market in early 2017, the attractive grand tourer was presented with a choice of three engines. The base model had a four-cylinder 2.0-liter gasoline mill producing 251 horsepower and 353 Newton-meters (260 pound-feet) of torque. There’s was also a thrifty 2.2-liter turbodiesel rated at 197 hp and 440 Nm (325 lb-ft), an engine which at that time Kia projected it would become the most popular of the trio.
As it turns out, Kia was wrong about the diesel. Why? Because the South Korean automaker says the V6 was chosen by the majority of Stinger owners. The twin-turbo 3.3-liter was so successful that Kia has decided to drop the smaller engines with the facelifted model debuting today in Europe. The beefier powertrain continues to push out 365 hp and 510 Nm (376 lb-ft). That’s slightly lower than the international variant where the V6 is linked to a new electronic variable exhaust valve system unlocking an extra three horsepower while keeping the same torque.
The V6 continues to work with an eight-speed automatic transmission and is offered with a choice of rear- and all-wheel drive. The UK model comes exclusively with AWD and needs only 4.9 seconds to hit 62 mph (100 km/h), thus making it the fastest-accelerating car Kia has ever sold in Europe. The US-spec Stinger has gained a 2.5-liter engine with 300 hp and 311 lb-ft (422 Nm), but it won’t be available on the Old Continent.
Beyond the oily bits, the 2021 Stinger in Euro flavor gets the same array of styling tweaks as the global model. Kia is introducing a fresh set of 19-inch wheels, a new Ascot Green paint, and is bumping the size of the touchscreen to 10.25 inches complemented by a 7-inch digital display in the instrument cluster. To make the GT more appealing, the rearview mirror is now frameless and there’s contrast stitching on the door cards and dashboard, along with aluminum trim for the center console.
The Euro-spec Stinger has an upgraded array of what Kia refers to as Advanced Driver Assistance Systems (ADAS). There’s now a blind spot system that shows up in the digital instrument cluster as seen on other recent Kia models sold globally. Additional systems introduced with the revised model include Safe Exit Warning, Lane Following Assist, Rear Occupant Alert, and Highway Driving Assist.
Kia will have the revised Stinger on sale in Europe by late 2020 / early 2021, backed by a seven-year / 100,000-mile warranty. About 10,000 units have been sold so far on the continent. As to whether there will be a next generation, possibly as an EV-only model, it remains to be seen.