Until now South Korean car makers have quietly gone about their business producing practical and sensible cars. Except for the occasional stab at excitement with cars such as the quirky (but not terribly fast) Hyundai Veloster, there’s been nothing to quicken the pulse of performance enthusiasts. But now Kia has arrived on the heartbeat-raising scene with the new Stinger GT sports sedan, all 272kW and R859,995 of it. The four-door gran turismo (GT), the first high-performance car from the Korean stable, competes in power and price against German big guns such as the 260kW Audi S5 quattro, which sells for R936,000, and BMW’s 440i gran coupe which musters 240kW and costs R898,801. The Stinger is ushered along by a 3.3l twin-turbocharged V6 petrol engine with 510Nm of torque, making it the most powerful Kia yet — and by some margin, with power fired to the rear wheels via an eight-speed automatic transmission. Electronically adjustable suspension hardens and softens to match driving co...

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