The announcement regarding cosmetic changes for the 2021 Kia Stinger came a few weeks back from the Korean automaker. This week, we learn that modifications will be made under the hood as well, as a new engine will be introduced.
Kia is adding to the product offering a new 2.5L turbocharged 4-cylinder engine that is more powerful than the 2.0L 4-cylinder engine currently serving the model on the American market (which, you might recall, is no longer part of the offering in Canada).
The 2.5L unit is touted as exclusive to the North American market, but that doesn’t necessarily guarantee it will be offered in Canada. Kia hasn't explicitly confirmed that it's abandoning the smaller 4-cylinder engine south of the border, but it's fairly likely the less-powerful engine will disappear once the editions with the 2.5L unit debut.
The new engine will offer 300 hp and 311 lb-ft of torque, which is a significant gain over the 255 hp and 260 lb-ft of torque of the smaller 2.0L unit. The new engine produces its maximum torque between 1,650 and 4,000 RPM. Kia doesn't report acceleration data, but it's clear that gains will be recorded in that area as well.
As for the Stinger GT, its 3.3L twin-turbo V6 powerplant will benefit from a new electronic exhaust valve system that will ensure, the company promises, a more pulse-raising sound. The gain in performance from this change is modest at 3 hp, bringing the total to 368 (torque remains unchanged at 367 lb-ft).
Remaining unchanged is the 8-speed automatic transmission. Rear-wheel drive and all-wheel drive will also be available.
In addition to powertrain news, Kia has provided information on new driver assistance systems. The company has added its Highway Driver Assistance System to the model. As well, the blind spot monitor system that debuted in the Telluride will be made available for 2021. It displays a video feed of the blind spot directly to the dashboard when the turn signal is activated from either side. Other new systems include lane keeping assist, rear seat alert and vehicle emergency exit alert. Several other systems are also being updated with enhanced functionality.
The other big question is when the 2021 Stinger will arrive in North America. While we know a lot about Kia's 2021 lineup overall, there's still a bit of a mystery about the Stinger. Sales of the next Stinger are expected to begin in the third quarter of 2020 in South Korea. According to the company, introduction in other markets will follow shortly thereafter and before the end of this year. That puts the 2021 Stinger in Canadian dealerships late in 2020.
It also remains to be seen whether there will be differences reserved for Canadian variants of the model, as is currently the case. We will update you as soon as we know more, of course.