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Has KDM Arrived?

Kia makes its move at the L.A. Auto Show

Dec 12, 2017

Walking into the halls of the L.A. Auto Show, we fully expected to lay eyes on Kia's brand new golden child, the Stinger sedan in their booth along with their Optima, a model that seems to be gaining ground fairly quickly. What we didn't expect however, were the handful of modified versions of both vehicles that we found floating around the Los Angeles Convention Center.

Say what you will about the brand, but earlier this year Kia made a splash at SEMA week with their Stinger drift ride-a-long exhibit, a few press releases, and web write-ups as well as a modified version or two on the show floor. Available as a 2.0L Turbo GDI base or with a 3.3L V6 twin turbo GDI and an AWD option, the Stinger seems to be dead set on serving as the entry level sports sedan that can hold its own with far more expensive competition. It's also very easy on the eyes, to boot.

We gathered up a few images of the Stinger and Optima of the 2017 L.A. Auto Show and here they are...

2017 LA auto show stinger GT federation Photo 2/16   |   2017 LA Auto Show Stinger GT Federation

The Stinger GT Federation is a concept version of the production model that features subtle enhancements, which in our opinion go a long way in giving this car a little "extra" without going overboard. Minor power upgrades include a dual K&N intake system and a slick Borla exhaust with sculpted quad-finishers that exit just above the custom rear diffuser and plays off of the mild trunk lip. Eibach springs and anti-roll bars aid in handling while 20-inch TSW wheels wrapped in Falken rubber finish it off nicely.

2017 LA auto show keendesign optima Photo 3/16   |   2017 LA Auto Show Keendesign Optima
2017 LA auto show keendesign optima Photo 4/16   |   2017 LA Auto Show Keendesign Optima

The Optima might have snuck by you ever since its inception, but more recent models being modified are starting to stack up, as are the available parts for them. Keendesign, who specialize in wheels and aero bits for the Kia and Hyundai "KDM" market featured this clean white version that sat extremely low and caught plenty of attention in The Garage at the L.A. Auto Show.

2017 LA auto show wcc widebody stinger Photo 5/16   |   2017 LA Auto Show Wcc Widebody Stinger
2017 LA auto show wcc stinger sedan Photo 6/16   |   2017 LA Auto Show Wcc Stinger Sedan

You might have already caught a glimpse of this widebody Stinger from the SEMA '17 coverage. Built by West Coast Customs (go ahead, get the "yo dawg, we heard your parents died in a fire, so we added a fireplace to your car" Xzibit jokes out of the way), it features a one-off widebody treatment, 21-inch wheels, and a carbon-fiber front lip, rear and side diffusers. The look is aggressive and, for our money, it's one of the best examples of a modified version of Kia's sporty sedan that we've come across.

2017 LA auto show ARK exhaust system Photo 7/16   |   2017 LA Auto Show ARK Exhaust System

This red Optima sports an ARK exhaust system and carbon fiber rear diffuser and trunk lip, and mirrors the mods used on the M4 it sat tail to tail with.

2017 LA auto show keendesign stinger Photo 8/16   |   2017 LA Auto Show Keendesign Stinger
2017 LA auto show keendesign stinger Photo 9/16   |   2017 LA Auto Show Keendesign Stinger
2017 LA auto show kia stinger front Photo 10/16   |   2017 LA Auto Show Kia Stinger Front

Also in the Keendesign booth was this blue Stinger that kept things fairly simple, with wheels, a drop and a lip kit - proving that this car doesn't need much to make it stand out.

By Rodrez
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