Things are different on top of the earth. Toilets are said to swirl the other way, it’s hot there when it’s cold here, and most will lay down their hard earned on a 2.0-litre Kia Stinger despite an available twin-turbo 3.3-litre six.
The fact juice is more expensive north of the equator has something to do with it. The four-pot Stinger drinks 2.4 less litres over 100 clicks. However, as we found out after a quick blast in the 183kW/353Nm rear-drive sedan, economy isn’t the only thing the four-pot Stinger has going for it.
The square unit pinched from the Optima range comes with an eight-speed auto and shaves 77kg from the Stinger’s nose, pegging its mass at 1693kg and reeling back the centre of balance. The brakes have shrunk with its waist size, too.
A lightness across its front-axle replaces the six cylinder’s initial push. It also settles quicker into mid-corner balance and feels a touch keener to change direction.
The S and Si variants ride nicely on their passive suspension setup. But the GT-Line’s adaptive dampers and staggered footprint on 19-inch wheels feel more composed when you’re really hooking in.
That drivetrain is the least remarkable attribute. The 2.0-litre pushes hard enough to show up the lack of an LSD, while a 6.0sec sprint to 100km/h trounces the foregone Falcon EcoBoost, but it feels and sounds thrashy at higher revs.
Kia’s structured the equipment list similarly to its 3.3-litre range, with each step up in grade adding more kit. However, with each variant priced only $3K-$4K below their V6-equivalents, there’s a genuine case for saving your pennies for twin-turbo power. Kia reckons 75 per cent of Aussies will.
Europeans might disagree. But like we said, things are different up there.
3.5 stars out of five (GT-Line)
Kia Stinger 2.0-litre Specifications:
Engine: 1998cc, DOHC, 16v, turbo
Power: 182kW @ 6200rpm
Torque: 353Nm @ 1400-4000rpm
0-100km/h: 6.0 seconds
Weight: 1693kg (tare)
Fuel Consumption: 8.8 litres per 100km (combined cycle)
Price: $45,990 (200S); $52,990 (200Si); $55,990 (GT-Line)