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Automakers loaning out new vehicles to publications for long term testing is a normal occurrence and MotorTrend was handed a 2018 Kia Stinger GT around three months ago. Since then, they've been test driving it around the greater Los Angeles area. The latest Stinger GT adventure takes editor Alex Nishimoto on a weekend jaunt up the coast to Monterey, California.

With only his wife for company, the Stinger's cargo area easily accommodated their luggage and there was still space left over for all the souvenirs they picked up along the way. All fitting without the need to lower the rear seat for more room. His one complaint with the rear is just how poor visibility is through the rear window thanks to the car's high beltline and thick C-pillars.

Just something one needs to get used to and overcome, a process made easier by the rearview camera and parking sensors. The trade-off for poor visibility is the Stinger's unique shape, which seems to be a head turner at the small towns it passed through on this trip. Questions were asked at gas stations and Alex even caught a few people taking selfies with the car.

"Just let that sink in. Selfies. With a Kia. These are strange and wonderful times."
 

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There is still a lot of hype around the Stinger and I personally haven't seen many on the road. Really seems like Kia has created a product that can market itself. I never considered how visibility would be in the Stinger, as that's usually a non issue in sedans.
 

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Most don't expect to see something like the Stinger come from a brand like Kia and that's enough to catch the attention of people when you pass by. But who cares about other people so long as you like the car yourself. Still, it does give you a good feeling when people show interest in it.
 

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Part of it has to do with marketing and so far there hasn't been much of it happening so far although there has been reviews out to the point those serious about a car in this segment would know about the stinger.
 

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Yeah I think those looking to drop this kind of money on a Kia, will do the research on it themselves. But I agree that it doesn't seem like Kia is really putting much effort into advertising. With how things trend on social media these days, they seem to be relying on the Stingers buzz.
 

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The buzz was strong before the Stinger was finally released, but Kia has dropped the ball after the model has gone on sale. Which is why people doesn't even realize Kia has something other than the usual under powered utility vehicles.
 

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Kia needs to put one of those Soul hamsters into the Stinger, add that to their marketing campaign. May not attract the buyers instantly but it'll definitely draw attention. Even people who don't buy Kia vehicles know of the Soul and its hamsters.
 

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I'm not sure if its a lack of advertising that is their issue, or its the unproven platform of the Stinger. As well as it has been reviewed there are still going to be a lot of weary buyers who have concerns with dropping that kind of money on a first generation Kia. I think we'll see sales ramp up as more people take the leap of faith.
 
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