Kia Stinger vs Audi S5


2018-01-06 10:00

Two style-focused V6 four-doors do battle, as the new Kia Stinger takes on the premium Audi S5


Ten years ago few people would have guessed that Kia, the South Korean manufacturer best known for its reasonably priced hatchbacks, SUVs and superminis, would bring out a car that directly rivals one of Audis most accomplished fast family models. Yet that is exactly what has happened with this, the Kia Stinger GT S, which has set its sights firmly on the Audi S5 Sportback.
Its a big leap for a company such as Kia to take on a brand like Audi but the Stingers 3.3-litre twin-turbo V6 ensures it has the performance to rival the S5, even if the 40,495 price means itll have to impress buyers used to premium models.
The Kia does undercut the Audi on price, but can it really manage a win over the establishment?
Head-to-head



Model:
Kia Stinger GT S
Audi S5 Sportback


Price:
40,495
48,175


Engine:
3.3-litre twin-turbo V6 petrol
3.0-litre turbocharged V6 petrol


Power/torque:
365bhp/510Nm
349bhp/500Nm


Transmission:
Eight-speed automatic, rear-wheel drive
Eight-speed automatic, four-wheel drive


0-60mph
4.9 seconds
4.7 seconds


Top speed:
168mph
155mph


Test economy:
28.6mpg
26.2mpg


CO2/tax:
225g/km/450
174g/km/450


Options:
Metallic paint 645
Metallic paint 645, privacy glass 375, Light and Vision Pack 750, multifunction steering wheel 100, Comfort and Sound Pack 1,295



Kia Stinger GT S

Image 3 of 33
Image 3 of 33

For: Surprisingly fun to drive, lots of equipment, comfortable ride.
Against: Engine could be more exciting, finish lacking in some areas, pricier on finance.
A high-end sports saloon with 365bhp from Kia will be a surprise to many, but its time to get used to the idea because the car is here, and its well worth a look.
The eye-catching design means the new Stinger looks the part. However, whats really impressive about the brands first attempt at a sports saloon for the European market is that it delivers competitive performance and a genuinely enjoyable drive.
While the Stinger was slightly slower than the Audi from 0-60mph in our tests, taking 4.9 seconds to the S5s 4.7 seconds, the Kia was actually faster once it was rolling. The Audis four-wheel-drive system means it launches ferociously, but the Kia was a tenth quicker from 30-70mph through the gears, posting a time of 3.9 seconds.

Image 4 of 33
Image 4 of 33

The newcomer was also significantly quicker in-gear, as the Kia covered 30-50mph in just 2.2 seconds. This is where it gains another tenth of a second over the Audi, which took 2.3 seconds.
Once youre up to speed the difference is even greater, because from 50-70mph the Stinger was faster in every gear. In fifth it took just 3.7 seconds to the S5s 4.0 seconds, and in sixth it set a time of 4.6 seconds. The Audi did it in 5.1 seconds.
Best performance cars on sale
While the numbers show that the Stinger has the measure of the Audi, in the real world both cars feel very quick and the performance is so close that you wouldnt really notice a difference on the road.

Image 5 of 33
Image 5 of 33

In fact, both are so fast that you wont be able to explore the limit of performance very often; and thats where the Stinger steals victory in terms of driver enjoyment. Its more fun more of the time.
The steering could do with more feel, but its no worse than the S5s lifeless set-up. The Audis extra driven wheels mean its more planted as you come out of a corner, but the Kias rear-wheel-drive layout and limited-slip differential mean theres more of a sense of movement in the Stinger as you balance the throttle, brakes and steering.

Its heavy, at 1,855kg, but still has an agile-feeling chassis, and it also manages to blend ride comfort and sportiness even here on UK roads. Adaptive dampers mean you can set the suspension to comfort mode and enjoy a reasonably smooth ride, but there are also Sport and Sport+ modes that stiffen things up and reduce body roll. The S5s adaptive dampers arent standard, and its 900 to upgrade from the normal S Sport suspension.
So the Kia is a winner for drivers, and its also very well equipped as standard. However, the Stingers cabin isnt quite as nicely designed or built as the S5s.
Testers notes

Steering wheel: The steering wheel is a key touch point in a cars interior, which is why its so strange that Kia has fitted a cheap-looking plastic centre section.
Fit and finish: Metal detailing is a nice touch, but the Stinger cant match the Audis top-quality materials.
Seats: The Kias seats and driving position are excellent, so long trips arent a problem.

Audi S5 Sportback

Image 6 of 33
Image 6 of 33

For: Excellent performance, high-quality interior, sharp styling.
Against: Not that much fun to drive, firm ride, not enough standard kit.
The Audi S5 Sportbacks strong points are its sharp styling, high-quality interior and huge performance. While it falls behind the Kia for engagement, the S5s impressive traction adds another dimension to its character on the road.
Its faster off the line than its rival here, beating the Kias 0-60mph time by two tenths of a second, but where you really notice the benefit of the all-wheel-drive set-up is in corners. Get on the power aggressively and the Audi will stick to its line for longer, although its not as exciting as the Stinger as a result. In wet weather, though, the S5 feels almost as composed as it does in the dry and thats where the quattro system comes into its own.
While the Audi is down on power and torque compared with the Stinger 349bhp and 500Nm versus the Kias 365bhp and 510Nm it is 195kg lighter than its Korean rival. At 1,660kg, the S5 Sportback undercuts the GT Ss 1,855kg kerbweight, which helped it deliver competitive performance.

Image 7 of 33
Image 7 of 33

While the Audi was a little slower from 30-70mph, taking four seconds compared with the Stingers 3.9 seconds, both cars offer fantastic acceleration, with the pair covering 30-50mph in fourth gear in three seconds flat.
The Audis engine isnt particularly characterful, but in this test its still the more enjoyable unit. Theres a sportier exhaust note, and it revs rapidly; but neither cars V6 is as sweet as the straight-six in a BMW 440i Gran Coupe.
The Sportback was also a little less refined than the Stinger in our noise tests, partly due to its firmer suspension. Yet both models recorded similar readings in the noise tests, while the S5 offers plenty of high-speed cruising refinement.

Image 8 of 33
Image 8 of 33

Both of these saloons are superb long-distance cruisers; quiet and comfortable on the motorway and responsive and sharper when you adjust the driving modes. However, the S5 cant match the Stingers driving position and smoother ride.
Still, the Audis larger boot means youd be able to fit more luggage inside. Its also brighter in the rear of the cabin, which helps add a feeling of space, even if the Kia has more headroom than the Sportback.
The S5s interior is a clear winner, though, because the materials used are superb and the design is one of the best in any car. Its finished beautifully, and Audis Virtual Cockpit system lets you use the sat-nav and other functions on a large 12.3-inch digital display instead of traditional dials. Its an excellent set-up and at 250 is a worthwhile extra to add a hi-tech feel that complements the models well built and high-quality interior.
Testers notes

Virtual Cockpit: System replaces dials behind the steering wheel and allows you to display sat-nav info directly in the drivers line of sight. Its a great set-up.
Materials: Top-quality metal and leather finishes feature all around, and provide an upmarket ambience.
Seats: Driving position is higher up than that of the Kia, but it still feels suitably sporty.

Verdict
First place: Kia Stinger GT S

Image 11 of 33
Image 11 of 33

Kias first go at a sports saloon has turned out to be a top choice. It loses out on interior design and quality, but the Stinger has loads of standard equipment to make up for that; and with its engaging driving dynamics, it narrowly manages a win over the Audi. Its just a shame the car isnt cheaper on finance.
Second place: Audi S5 Sportback

Image 23 of 33
Image 23 of 33

The S5 Sportbacks sharp looks and great interior mean it has plenty of appeal but its not as fun to drive as the Stinger GT S. Both have their merits, and the security of four-wheel drive might appeal to some, but the Audis higher price and costly options mean it isnt as good value as the Stinger.

Associated Advanced Gallery

Kia Stinger vs Audi S5 - pictures

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Kia Stinger vs Audi S5
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Reviews (1):
Kia Stinger vs Audi S5
3 years ago

http://www.autoexpress.co.uk/kia/stinger/102218/kia-stinger-vs-audi-s5
2018-01-06 10:00

Two style-focused V6 four-doors do battle, as the new Kia Stinger takes on the premium Audi S5


Ten years ago few people would have guessed that Kia, the South Korean manufacturer best known for its reasonably priced hatchbacks, SUVs and superminis, would bring out a car that directly rivals one of Audis most accomplished fast family models. Yet that is exactly what has happened with this, the Kia Stinger GT S, which has set its sights firmly on the Audi S5 Sportback.
Its a big leap for a company such as Kia to take on a brand like Audi but the Stingers 3.3-litre twin-turbo V6 ensures it has the performance to rival the S5, even if the 40,495 price means itll have to impress buyers used to premium models.
The Kia does undercut the Audi on price, but can it really manage a win over the establishment?
Head-to-head



Model:
Kia Stinger GT S
Audi S5 Sportback


Price:
40,495
48,175


Engine:
3.3-litre twin-turbo V6 petrol
3.0-litre turbocharged V6 petrol


Power/torque:
365bhp/510Nm
349bhp/500Nm


Transmission:
Eight-speed automatic, rear-wheel drive
Eight-speed automatic, four-wheel drive


0-60mph
4.9 seconds
4.7 seconds


Top speed:
168mph
155mph


Test economy:
28.6mpg
26.2mpg


CO2/tax:
225g/km/450
174g/km/450


Options:
Metallic paint 645
Metallic paint 645, privacy glass 375, Light and Vision Pack 750, multifunction steering wheel 100, Comfort and Sound Pack 1,295



Kia Stinger GT S

Image 3 of 33
Image 3 of 33

For: Surprisingly fun to drive, lots of equipment, comfortable ride.
Against: Engine could be more exciting, finish lacking in some areas, pricier on finance.
A high-end sports saloon with 365bhp from Kia will be a surprise to many, but its time to get used to the idea because the car is here, and its well worth a look.
The eye-catching design means the new Stinger looks the part. However, whats really impressive about the brands first attempt at a sports saloon for the European market is that it delivers competitive performance and a genuinely enjoyable drive.
While the Stinger was slightly slower than the Audi from 0-60mph in our tests, taking 4.9 seconds to the S5s 4.7 seconds, the Kia was actually faster once it was rolling. The Audis four-wheel-drive system means it launches ferociously, but the Kia was a tenth quicker from 30-70mph through the gears, posting a time of 3.9 seconds.

Image 4 of 33
Image 4 of 33

The newcomer was also significantly quicker in-gear, as the Kia covered 30-50mph in just 2.2 seconds. This is where it gains another tenth of a second over the Audi, which took 2.3 seconds.
Once youre up to speed the difference is even greater, because from 50-70mph the Stinger was faster in every gear. In fifth it took just 3.7 seconds to the S5s 4.0 seconds, and in sixth it set a time of 4.6 seconds. The Audi did it in 5.1 seconds.
Best performance cars on sale
While the numbers show that the Stinger has the measure of the Audi, in the real world both cars feel very quick and the performance is so close that you wouldnt really notice a difference on the road.

Image 5 of 33
Image 5 of 33

In fact, both are so fast that you wont be able to explore the limit of performance very often; and thats where the Stinger steals victory in terms of driver enjoyment. Its more fun more of the time.
The steering could do with more feel, but its no worse than the S5s lifeless set-up. The Audis extra driven wheels mean its more planted as you come out of a corner, but the Kias rear-wheel-drive layout and limited-slip differential mean theres more of a sense of movement in the Stinger as you balance the throttle, brakes and steering.

Its heavy, at 1,855kg, but still has an agile-feeling chassis, and it also manages to blend ride comfort and sportiness even here on UK roads. Adaptive dampers mean you can set the suspension to comfort mode and enjoy a reasonably smooth ride, but there are also Sport and Sport+ modes that stiffen things up and reduce body roll. The S5s adaptive dampers arent standard, and its 900 to upgrade from the normal S Sport suspension.
So the Kia is a winner for drivers, and its also very well equipped as standard. However, the Stingers cabin isnt quite as nicely designed or built as the S5s.
Testers notes

Steering wheel: The steering wheel is a key touch point in a cars interior, which is why its so strange that Kia has fitted a cheap-looking plastic centre section.
Fit and finish: Metal detailing is a nice touch, but the Stinger cant match the Audis top-quality materials.
Seats: The Kias seats and driving position are excellent, so long trips arent a problem.

Audi S5 Sportback

Image 6 of 33
Image 6 of 33

For: Excellent performance, high-quality interior, sharp styling.
Against: Not that much fun to drive, firm ride, not enough standard kit.
The Audi S5 Sportbacks strong points are its sharp styling, high-quality interior and huge performance. While it falls behind the Kia for engagement, the S5s impressive traction adds another dimension to its character on the road.
Its faster off the line than its rival here, beating the Kias 0-60mph time by two tenths of a second, but where you really notice the benefit of the all-wheel-drive set-up is in corners. Get on the power aggressively and the Audi will stick to its line for longer, although its not as exciting as the Stinger as a result. In wet weather, though, the S5 feels almost as composed as it does in the dry and thats where the quattro system comes into its own.
While the Audi is down on power and torque compared with the Stinger 349bhp and 500Nm versus the Kias 365bhp and 510Nm it is 195kg lighter than its Korean rival. At 1,660kg, the S5 Sportback undercuts the GT Ss 1,855kg kerbweight, which helped it deliver competitive performance.

Image 7 of 33
Image 7 of 33

While the Audi was a little slower from 30-70mph, taking four seconds compared with the Stingers 3.9 seconds, both cars offer fantastic acceleration, with the pair covering 30-50mph in fourth gear in three seconds flat.
The Audis engine isnt particularly characterful, but in this test its still the more enjoyable unit. Theres a sportier exhaust note, and it revs rapidly; but neither cars V6 is as sweet as the straight-six in a BMW 440i Gran Coupe.
The Sportback was also a little less refined than the Stinger in our noise tests, partly due to its firmer suspension. Yet both models recorded similar readings in the noise tests, while the S5 offers plenty of high-speed cruising refinement.

Image 8 of 33
Image 8 of 33

Both of these saloons are superb long-distance cruisers; quiet and comfortable on the motorway and responsive and sharper when you adjust the driving modes. However, the S5 cant match the Stingers driving position and smoother ride.
Still, the Audis larger boot means youd be able to fit more luggage inside. Its also brighter in the rear of the cabin, which helps add a feeling of space, even if the Kia has more headroom than the Sportback.
The S5s interior is a clear winner, though, because the materials used are superb and the design is one of the best in any car. Its finished beautifully, and Audis Virtual Cockpit system lets you use the sat-nav and other functions on a large 12.3-inch digital display instead of traditional dials. Its an excellent set-up and at 250 is a worthwhile extra to add a hi-tech feel that complements the models well built and high-quality interior.
Testers notes

Virtual Cockpit: System replaces dials behind the steering wheel and allows you to display sat-nav info directly in the drivers line of sight. Its a great set-up.
Materials: Top-quality metal and leather finishes feature all around, and provide an upmarket ambience.
Seats: Driving position is higher up than that of the Kia, but it still feels suitably sporty.

Verdict
First place: Kia Stinger GT S

Image 11 of 33
Image 11 of 33

Kias first go at a sports saloon has turned out to be a top choice. It loses out on interior design and quality, but the Stinger has loads of standard equipment to make up for that; and with its engaging driving dynamics, it narrowly manages a win over the Audi. Its just a shame the car isnt cheaper on finance.
Second place: Audi S5 Sportback

Image 23 of 33
Image 23 of 33

The S5 Sportbacks sharp looks and great interior mean it has plenty of appeal but its not as fun to drive as the Stinger GT S. Both have their merits, and the security of four-wheel drive might appeal to some, but the Audis higher price and costly options mean it isnt as good value as the Stinger.

Associated Advanced Gallery

Kia Stinger vs Audi S5 - pictures

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