The annual Specialty Equipment Market Association (SEMA) show is where gearheads from all over the world convene to check out the newest and hottest trends in the high-performance car segment. We wouldn’t have been able to fathom seeing a Kia on the SEMA show floor 15 years ago but the new Kia Stinger introduced earlier this year completely changes the game.
One of the stars of Kia’s booth at SEMA is a tuned 2018 Stinger with a rear-end wide enough to put German touring cars to shame. The model was designed and built with input from West Coast Customs, one of the best-known tuners in America, and nearly every single part of it has been modified to some extent.
The changes start with a gloss black grille that adds a sinister touch to the overall appearance. The Stinger also receives a carbon fiber body kit which includes a front splitter and side skirts, while the rear end receives a custom-built rear bumper with four exhaust tips integrated into a carbon fiber air diffuser. A suspension system lowered by about an inch and 21-inch alloy wheels tucked under fender flares wide enough to take up an entire lane wrap up the look, making this a Kia like we’ve never seen before.
A statement published by Kia suggests the list of modifications also includes “a number of exceptional finishes to the Stinger’s cockpit,” though Kia hasn’t published photos of the interior yet. We already like what we see. We’ll like it even better if Kia has managed to squeeze even more power out of the standard car’s twin-turbocharged, 365-horsepower V6. Technical specifications haven’t been published, either.
Speaking of the regular Stinger, Kia will demonstrate its rear-wheel drive chops outside of the convention center in Las Vegas by hosting the first-ever Stinger Drift Experience. The brand will put Formula Drift drivers behind the wheel of modified cars for hourly drift demonstrations.
What the future holds for Kia’s SEMA concept is anyone’s guess at this point. Seeing the concept in showrooms sounds unlikely at best, but Jaguar’s XE Project 8 proved anything is possible. It could also inspire aftermarket tuners to create parts for Kia’s latest model. The Stinger is poised to shake up the pecking order in the sports sedan segment, and there is no reason why its reach should not extend into the tuning sector.
Update: Added official pictures, information.