Future Cars: Kia’s 2018 GT RWD Sports Sedan Could Bring The Fight To BMW’s 3- And 4-Series

We have great news for rear-wheel-drive sedan enthusiasts; Kia’s stunning 2011 Frankfurt-debuting GT Concept is being readied for launch. Code-named ‘CK’, the low-slung sedan was spotted in prototype guise recently, flaunting its production-ready body under camouflage.

So how is this newest offering from Kia shaping up? Well, let’s take an illustrated preview based on the spy shots we’ve seen so far.

Optima-like Design:

The above heading gives a good indication on how the final design has evolved. Fans of the third-generation TF Optima may be pleased, however the GT’s silhouette does echo that car a little too closely. Frontal styling exudes restrained aggressiveness, complimented by a long hood and short overhangs. Gone are the concept’s retro front quarter windows, replaced with more traditional-looking window frames, as well as the suicide-style rear doors. Chrome fender vents extend along the base of the doors to emphasize luxury, while the rear is dominated by a tall trunk and quad exhausts.

Genesis Powertrains:

As with the new Genesis G80, the GT is expected to offer the Hyundai group’s new 3.3-litre, twin-turbo V6, pumping out more than 365 hp. It’s unknown if a manual transmission will be offered, however easy bets are that an eight-speed automatic transmission will be the default option. An entry-level variant is tipped to offer a direct-injected, 2.0-litre four-cylinder unit, but with turbocharging, so it should be no slouch. Some markets may also get a diesel unit as well.

Chassis Entertainment:

Out of the two Korean siblings, Kia has branded itself as the sportier one, as opposed to Hyundai and its Genesis brand’s more upscale ethos. This should bode well for the GT’s handling too; a nimble footprint with RWD running gear could make for an appealing driver’s car. The platform is tipped to be a modified version that underpins the larger Genesis G80 luxury sedan and the future 3-Series rivalling G70, which in turn could pave the way for an all-wheel-drive variant.

A Fresh Face Among A Dying Breed:

It’s almost unusual to see a brand new, mainstream rear-wheel-drive sedan entering the market these days. Sure, we have the Chrysler 300C and Dodge Charger siblings, but they’re no longer fresh contenders. Chevrolet’s current SS will die off once its donor car, the VF2 Holden Commodore ceases production next year and arch-rival Ford is culling its Aussie-built FG-X Falcon this October.

This leaves Kia in a unique position to undercut more premium RWD rivals. Now there’s a question of how big the GT will be and how much it will cost, which in turn will determine its competition. Given the Korean group’s previous history, the GT might end up being closer in size to the BMW 6-Series Gran Coupe, but priced lower than the smaller BMW’s 4 Series GranCoupe, allowing Kia to place it as an alternative to a wide number of regular compact luxury sedans too, like the Mercedes-Benz C-Class, Jaguar XE, Lexus IS, Infinity Q50 and Cadillac ATS. If priced in the mid-$30,000 plus bracket, Kia could find a plethora of new fans.

Expect it to launch in 2017 as a MY2018 vehicle, although it’s unconfirmed if it will carry the Stinger or GT name.

Finally, what are your thoughts on Kia’s RWD offering and would you have one in your driveway? Share your views in the comments below.

By Josh Byrnes

Photo Renderings Copyright Carscoops / Josh Byrnes

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  • BlackPegasus

    The rendering looks horrendous. If the actual model can incorporate some of the concept’s design themes then we may have a winner.

    • BqWsRe

      Wont happen.

    • bd

      Agree that it is horrible rendering.

      Here’s one done by an actual supplier.


      Since this shares a platform with the Genesis, will be more of a 5 Series GT competitor in terms of size segment.

      • john1168

        Ya beat me to it! I was also going to post the Brenthon rendering:) I LOVE the front of this rendering! Better than the Carscoops rendering but I have a feeling the Carscoops one may be more accurate. Of course, since the Brenthon one is from a supplier, I’m hoping IT is the more accurate one.

    • Finkployd

      This looks even longer than the volvo v90 👀

    • Ken Lyns

      The concept looks pretty ugly as well, Honda Accord Crosstour ugly.

  • BqWsRe

    No its not. That thing is a cluster F- of mix-matched design elements stolen from the competition and poorly executed.

    There is a reason the Hyundais/ KIAs of the world are always chasing the leaders. They are followers…

    • bd

      Funny how Mercedes’ current design language is reminiscent of Hyundai’s old “fluidic sculpture” language.

      And there are a good # of styling cues that Hyundai started or popularized.

    • Breda

      Yes they are young brands in the world , they are followers… AND THEY ARE GOOD SELLERS , GOOD PRICES, GOOD CARS…..

      • BqWsRe

        Wow, are you a Hyundai/ KIA cheerleader or what…You even us ALL CAPS TO MAKE YOUR POINT!

        Sell Hyundais for a living?

        Sorry, but rented many cars for business and many were Hyundai/ KIAs…At best they were okay, but they are priced low (hence rental cars) for a reason…not a dream car…hard plastics everywhere…unrefined compared to many brands and never liked the mismatched switchgear and controls that werent always well thought out. They just seem like brands always copying the bigger boys in a plastic, low-price, pack as many features in sort of way. They sell lots because of a LOW Korean Won (currency) and beneficial trade agreements, not because they are geniuses or have the best vehicle out there.

        I guess it depends how many brands you have driven for any amount of time to understand what is out there. Or should I TO UNDERSTAND WHAT IS OUT THERE?

        • bd

          Ford and Chevy make up even a bigger share of rental fleets, as does the Camry, Corolla and Yaris (much less Nissan).

          As for cheap interiors filled with hard plastics – look no further than Toyota interiors.

          No contest that the interiors of the Sorento, Sportage, Optima, Sedona are a step up from the Toyota equivalents and the SX-L trims aren’t that far from Acura level.

  • MarkoS

    I like it. This is just a render and it already looks better than a 3 series.

  • Galaxium

    the GT is supposed to be a mini Panamera/A7 fighter.

  • Tumbi Mtika

    If they didn’t use this design for the fucking optima already, which looks trash now honestly, then I might like it.

  • Six Thousand Times

    You’ve made it a little too hunchbacked, I think.

  • Kash

    Needs a small window behind the rear doors to break up that clump of body panel. Otherwise I think it’ll be close to the real thing.

  • ediotsavant

    What better way to design it by mimicking the Optima, one of the best looking car in the market. Unfortunately the huge demands of cuvs would destined this car to a failure. Kia should have designed it as a cuv.

  • dumblikeyou2

    Nice Tesla headlights

  • john1168

    I am REALLY looking forward to this car! I do feel it looks a little too much like the Optima but I do think it looks great for the most part. l always liked that C pillar. Reminds me of the Porsche 944. I just wish KIA got rid of that chrome strip that protrudes off the top of the greenhouse and on to the back the car. There should still be a chrome strip around the greenhouse, just don’t extend it to the back. Too late now I guess… Anyway, this car is going to exploit a niche that all others (except for the expensive car companies) have abandoned. The niche is one that car enthusiasts have been screaming for for years. An affordable, decent looking, RWD performance car with high feature content that has a hatch. An affordable A7/Panamera. The Stinger may also come with HTRAC too. I can’t wait for pics of the interior too. I’m HOPING that this car, fully loaded will go for about $48k and with AWD (if available) for $50k.

  • Subi-Rubicon1

    This rendering is awful! The concept design is alright. It does look like its trying too hard to be something, but unsure of what that something is? I don’t think it looks like a sports or performance sedan. It doesn’t even strike me as a luxury cruiser either, it simply looks like a Kia with a lot of after market add ons.

  • Rick Alexander

    The rendering sort of reminds me of a first generation Porsche Panamera. I’m not sure if that’s a good thing or not. The GT Concept, had a much more sleek aesthetic. The styling of the rendering makes the car appear bloated. Let’s hope Kia can bring the GT to market by retaining all the things that made the concept so appealing. The wheels being pushed out to the corners is a must. The tapered roofline is a welcome design treatment, as long as they can prevent it from infringing on rear headroom too much. Kia better not drop the ball on this one.

  • john1168

    UM…. This thing is going to have big brakes (maybe 4 piston front calipers and 2 piston rears) with SLOTTED ROTORS!

  • F. Blondeau

    At least something that gives us more choice for this category… Kinda tired of seing overpriced europeans as the only options.

  • Elliott Marshall

    Ever since we leased my wife’s KIA Cadenza, a car with uncanny luxury ride, no NVH, and the best finisher in the JD Power award for reliability, we both became fans of the marque. Peter Schreyer, who heads up the design departments of KIA, Hyundai and the about-to-be-released Genesis line, has magic up his sleeve when it comes to the brands’ sculpted looks. I also see the multiple branded automobiles getting into a bit of performance also. Their twin turbos and GTs are enticing enough for me to promote the brand by leasing one of its sleeker offerings for my next vehicle. I say, let the haters hate, but my family swears by the KIA we have leased, and look forward to the next iteration of the Cadenza. Play it again, Sam!