The well received Kia Stinger is only the beginning of Kia’s plans to introduce sportier models. But instead of introducing a sporty sub-brand like Hyundai’s growing N lineup, Kia will focus on introducing a lineup of sporty GT models.
“For Kia, it is not the decision to enter with high-performance cars,” Hyundai-Kia high-performance development boss Albert Biermann stated to Autocar. “We did it with Hyundai N but there’s a clear decision not to with Kia, and GT needs to be a reasonable package. With the Ceed GT now, the minute you go high-performance, you need to work at a race track, and then the costs go up and the business case gets very challenging. Doing that next step is not an easy step.”
So for now at least Kia isn’t going to high-performance sub-brand. What we can expect in the near future is an Optima GT, which will focus more on performance. “For the next Optima GT, you cane expect an interesting powertrain and suspension at the next level. It’ll be the next level of Kia driving performance.”
Kia is also working on a Forte GT, which will likely get the same 201-hp 1.6L turbocharged four-cylinder as the Hyundai Elantra Sport. The next-generation Soul will also get an extra injection of sport. Beyond that it’s not known which other vehicles will get a GT version, since not every model will get a sportier GT version. For example, Kia has no plans for a Niro GT.