The 2022 Kia Stinger is surfacing with a mild facelift and more horses under the hood. First seen in 2017 as Kia’s highest-performing production vehicle, the Stinger is facing stiff competition from German stalwarts like the Audi S4, Mercedes-AMG C43, and BMW M340i. Au contraire, it also has the Genesis G70 hot on its heels, its veritable platform-mate from parent company Hyundai.
In response, Kia is upping the ante by giving the 2022 Stinger more power, more luxury features, and a suite of new technology. “The Stinger confidently shows Kia’s ability to build a sport sedan that can compete – and beat – the best the world has to offer. It is definitive proof of our proud and evolving engineering prowess,” said Sean Yoon, President and CEO, Kia Motors North America and Kia Motors America. “The Stinger is world-class, and the refreshed 2022 model continues to evolve expectations.”
Don’t let the Gran Turismo vibe fool you; the 2022 Kia Stinger remains as bonkers as before, hard to see in what is seemingly a spacious, practical, and moderately luxurious package. The base Kia Stinger has a larger 2.5-liter turbocharged four-banger producing 300 horsepower and 311 lb-ft. of torque, 45 more horsepower than the outgoing model’s 2.0-liter turbo-four without penalizing fuel economy (22/32/25 mpg for RWD and 21/29/24 mpg for AWD).
On the other hand, the Stinger GT1 and GT2 still pack a wallop with a free-revving 3.3-liter twin-turbo V6 with 368 horsepower and 376 lb-ft. of torque. Additionally, the V6 has a new electronic variable exhaust system to emit a more visceral howl. “We continue to push Stinger to new heights as it is the catalyst behind our dynamic model lineup, from the award-winning Telluride to the highly praised K5,” Yoon added.
Rear-wheel drive is standard, but Kia’s torque-vectoring all-wheel-drive system is optional across the lineup. Both engines have a slick-shifting eight-speed automatic with paddle shifters.
New Badge, New Attitude
The 2022 Stinger is not the first Kia vehicle in North America to wear its new logo. That distinction belongs to the 2022 Kia Carnival (formerly known as the Sedona minivan), but the Stinger wears it with pride. It now has new LED headlights with a unique DRL lighting signature, while there’s an optional set of Stinger-signature LED headlights.
At the back, it has new LED taillights with an LED lightbar spanning the width of the rear hatch. Also new are bespoke 18-inch and 19-inch wheel designs and an aggressive set of quad tailpipes. Inside, the 2022 Stinger offers upgraded LED mood lighting, black and chrome garnishings, and fancy new stitching on the seats and door panels. The optional Nappa leather seats now feature an innovative “chain link” design mimicking a high-end watch’s wristband.
Standard features include a 10.25-inch touchscreen with navigation, multi-connection Bluetooth, Apple CarPlay and Android Auto connectivity, wireless charging, and a 4.2-inch digital instrument cluster display (GT2 models get a larger seven-inch LCD screen).
Abundant Safety Tech
As expected, the 2022 Kia Stinger is brimming with advanced driving aids. All trim models get a navigation-based intelligent cruise control system, forward collision avoidance, lane-keeping assist, lane following assist, lane departure warning, blind-spot collision warning, and rear cross-traffic alert. The new Stinger also gets standard front and rear parking sensors for good measure.
2022 Kia Stinger: Trim Models & Pricing
The 2022 Kia Stinger arrives at U.S. dealerships this spring in three trim models: GT-Line, GT1, and GT2. The new Kia Stinger GT-Line starts at $36,090 with the 2.5-liter turbo engine and rear-wheel drive, while the AWD model starts at $38,290. Meanwhile, the Sun and Sound Package add a power sunroof, an eight-way power passenger seat, and a stonking 720-watt Harman Kardon audio system with UVO link telematics for $2,300 more.
If you like V6 power, the Stinger GT1 starts at $43,690 (RWD) and $45,890 (AWD). The range-topping Stinger GT2 starts at $51,290 and $53,490 for RWD and AWD models, respectively.
2022 Kia Stinger Scorpion Edition
As it turns out, a Stinger Scorpion Edition is lingering in the shadows. We’re not sure if Stinger Scorpion arrives with more power under its belt, but it seems the Scorpion Edition is mostly an exterior upgrade over the standard model. Kia told us the 2022 Stinger Scorpion would come in three exclusive paint colors (Ceramic Silver, Snow White, and Aurora Black) with a darkened exterior trim.
The new Kia Stinger Scorpion also has a rather ungainly rear spoiler, new black wheels, and carbon-fiber interior embellishments. The regular Stinger arrives first in spring 2021, while the Scorpion Edition debuts soon after. Pricing for Stinger Scorpion is forthcoming.
Alvin Reyes is an Automoblog feature columnist and an expert in sports and performance cars. He studied civil aviation, aeronautics, and accountancy in his younger years and is still very much smitten to his former Lancer GSR and Galant SS. He also likes fried chicken, music, and herbal medicine.