2020 Kia Stinger vs. 2020 Toyota Avalon

Detailed Review, Specifications & Comparison

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Safety

© 1999 - 2020 Advanta-STAR Automotive Research. All rights reserved. This vehicle comparison and all of the content in it are provided only by license from Advanta-STAR Automotive Research Corporation of America. If you are not a legally licensed user of this vehicle comparison, it is against federal law to access it, copy it, forward it or use it in any manner whatsoever. Any unauthorized use of this vehicle comparison is a violation of U.S. and international law and is punishable criminally and civilly. 6IUEX-0KENZ 45.55.47.189 2020/01/20

The Stinger offers all-wheel drive to maximize traction under poor conditions, especially in ice and snow. The Avalon doesn’t offer all-wheel drive.

The Stinger GT1/GT2’s driver alert monitor detects an inattentive driver then sounds a warning and suggests a break. According to the NHTSA, drivers who fall asleep cause about 100,000 crashes and 1500 deaths a year. The Avalon doesn’t offer a driver alert monitor.

Both the Stinger and the Avalon have standard driver and passenger frontal airbags, front side-impact airbags, driver knee airbags, side-impact head airbags, front seatbelt pretensioners, height adjustable front shoulder belts, plastic fuel tanks, four-wheel antilock brakes, traction control, electronic stability systems to prevent skidding, daytime running lights, blind spot warning systems, rearview cameras, rear cross-path warning, available crash mitigating brakes, lane departure warning systems and around view monitors.

Warranty

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The Stinger comes with a full 5-year/60,000-mile basic warranty, which covers the entire car and includes 24-hour roadside assistance. The Avalon’s 3-year/36,000-mile basic warranty expires 2 years and 24,000 miles sooner.

Kia’s powertrain warranty covers the Stinger 5 years and 40,000 miles longer than Toyota covers the Avalon. Any repair needed on the engine, transmission, axles, joints or driveshafts is fully covered for 10 years or 100,000 miles. Coverage on the Avalon ends after only 5 years or 60,000 miles.

Reliability

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The battery on the Stinger is in the trunk, which protects it from hot underhood temperatures that can degrade battery life. By keeping the Stinger’s battery 20 to 30 degrees cooler, its life is increased by years. The Avalon’s battery is in the hot engine compartment.

J.D. Power and Associates’ 2019 Initial Quality Study of new car owners surveyed provide the statistics that show that Kia vehicles are better in initial quality than Toyota vehicles. J.D. Power ranks Kia second in initial quality, above the industry average. With 20 more problems per 100 vehicles, Toyota is ranked 8th.

Engine

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The Stinger GT’s standard 3.3 turbo V6 produces 64 more horsepower (365 vs. 301) and 109 lbs.-ft. more torque (376 vs. 267) than the Avalon’s 3.5 DOHC V6.

As tested in Car and Driver the Stinger GT is faster than the Toyota Avalon V6:

Stinger

Avalon

Zero to 60 MPH

4.4 sec

6.1 sec

Zero to 100 MPH

10.6 sec

15.3 sec

5 to 60 MPH Rolling Start

5 sec

6.7 sec

Quarter Mile

12.9 sec

14.8 sec

Speed in 1/4 Mile

111 MPH

98 MPH

Top Speed

167 MPH

132 MPH

Fuel Economy and Range

© 1999 - 2020 Advanta-STAR Automotive Research. All rights reserved. This vehicle comparison and all of the content in it are provided only by license from Advanta-STAR Automotive Research Corporation of America. If you are not a legally licensed user of this vehicle comparison, it is against federal law to access it, copy it, forward it or use it in any manner whatsoever. Any unauthorized use of this vehicle comparison is a violation of U.S. and international law and is punishable criminally and civilly. 6IUEX-0KENZ 45.55.47.189 2020/01/20

In heavy traffic or at stoplights the Stinger’s engine automatically turns off when the vehicle is stopped, saving fuel and reducing pollution. The engine is automatically restarted when the driver gets ready to move again. (Start/Stop isn’t accounted in present EPA fuel mileage tests.) The Avalon doesn’t offer an automatic engine start/stop system.

The Stinger has 1.4 gallons more fuel capacity than the Avalon XLE’s standard fuel tank (15.9 vs. 14.5 gallons), for longer range between fill-ups.

Transmission

© 1999 - 2020 Advanta-STAR Automotive Research. All rights reserved. This vehicle comparison and all of the content in it are provided only by license from Advanta-STAR Automotive Research Corporation of America. If you are not a legally licensed user of this vehicle comparison, it is against federal law to access it, copy it, forward it or use it in any manner whatsoever. Any unauthorized use of this vehicle comparison is a violation of U.S. and international law and is punishable criminally and civilly. 6IUEX-0KENZ 45.55.47.189 2020/01/20

The Stinger GT/GT1/GT2’s launch control uses engine electronics to hold engine RPM’s at 2250 in order to provide the most stable and rapid acceleration possible, using all of the available traction. The Avalon doesn’t offer launch control.

Brakes and Stopping

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For better stopping power the Stinger’s brake rotors are larger than those on the Avalon:

Stinger GT-Line

Stinger GT

Avalon

Avalon TRD

Front Rotors

12.6 inches

13.8 inches

11.7 inches

12.9 inches

Rear Rotors

12.4 inches

13.4 inches

11 inches

11.1 inches

The Stinger GT’s standard front and rear disc brakes are vented to help dissipate heat for shorter stops with less fading. The rear discs on the Avalon are solid, not vented.

The Stinger stops much shorter than the Avalon:

Stinger

Avalon

70 to 0 MPH

156 feet

171 feet

Car and Driver

60 to 0 MPH

104 feet

122 feet

Motor Trend

Tires and Wheels

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For better traction, the Stinger has larger standard tires than the Avalon (225/45R18 vs. 215/55R17).

The Stinger GT-Line’s standard tires provide better handling because they have a lower 45 series profile (height to width ratio) that provides a stiffer sidewall than the Avalon XLE’s standard 55 series tires. The Stinger GT’s 255/35R19 rear tires have a lower 35 series profile than the Avalon XSE/TRD/Touring’s 40 series tires.

For better ride, handling and brake cooling the Stinger GT-Line has standard 18-inch wheels. Smaller 17-inch wheels are standard on the Avalon XLE.

Suspension and Handling

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The Stinger has standard front and rear gas-charged shocks for better control over choppy roads. The Avalon’s suspension doesn’t offer gas-charged shocks.

For a smoother ride and more stable handling, the Stinger’s wheelbase is 1.4 inches longer than on the Avalon (114.4 inches vs. 113 inches).

The Stinger GT2 handles at .91 G’s, while the Avalon Touring pulls only .82 G’s of cornering force in a Motor Trend skidpad test.

The Stinger GT executes Motor Trend’s “Figure Eight” maneuver 2 seconds quicker than the Avalon Touring (24.8 seconds @ .79 average G’s vs. 26.8 seconds @ .65 average G’s).

For better maneuverability, the Stinger’s turning circle is 1 foot tighter than the Avalon XLE’s (36.7 feet vs. 37.7 feet). The Stinger AWD’s turning circle is .3 feet tighter than the Avalon Limited/Touring’s (38.4 feet vs. 38.7 feet).

Chassis

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The Stinger is 5.7 inches shorter than the Avalon, making the Stinger easier to handle, maneuver and park in tight spaces.

Passenger Space

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The Stinger has .9 inches more front headroom, .5 inches more front legroom and 1.3 inches more rear hip room than the Avalon.

Cargo Capacity

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The Stinger has a much larger trunk with its rear seat up than the XF Sedan with its rear seat up (23.3 vs. 16.1 cubic feet).

A standard locking glovebox keeps your small valuables safer in the Stinger. The Avalon doesn’t offer locking storage for small valuables.

To make loading and unloading groceries and cargo easier when your hands are full, just waiting momentarily behind the back bumper can open the Stinger GT2’s power trunk, leaving your hands completely free. The Stinger’s power trunk can also be opened or closed by pressing a button. The Avalon doesn’t offer a power or hands-free opening trunk.

Servicing Ease

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The engine in the Stinger is mounted longitudinally (North-South), instead of sideways, as in the Avalon. This makes it easier to service and maintain, because there are no rear spark plugs and the accessory belts are in front.

Ergonomics

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The Stinger offers a remote vehicle starting system, so the vehicle can be started from inside the driver's house. This allows the driver to comfortably warm up the engine before going out to the vehicle. The climate system will also automatically heat or cool the interior. The Avalon doesn’t offer a remote starting system.

The Stinger’s power window, power lock, power mirror and cruise control switches are lit from behind, making them plainly visible and easier to operate at night. The Avalon’s passenger power window switches are unlit, making them difficult to find at night and operate safely.

The Stinger GT1/GT2’s standard wipers adjust their speed and turn on and off automatically according to the amount of rainfall on the windshield. The Avalon’s intermittent wipers change speed with vehicle speed, but can’t turn on and off or change speed based on changing rainfall.

The Avalon Limited/Touring’s cornering lamps activate a lamp on the front corner when the turn signal is activated. The Stinger GT2’s standard adaptive cornering lights turn the actual headlight unit up to several degrees, depending on steering wheel angle and vehicle speed. This lights a significant distance into corners at any speed.

To quickly and conveniently keep personal devices charged without cables tangling and wearing out, the Kia Stinger has a standard wireless phone charging system (Qi) in the center console. Wireless charging costs extra on the Avalon.

Recommendations

© 1999 - 2020 Advanta-STAR Automotive Research. All rights reserved. This vehicle comparison and all of the content in it are provided only by license from Advanta-STAR Automotive Research Corporation of America. If you are not a legally licensed user of this vehicle comparison, it is against federal law to access it, copy it, forward it or use it in any manner whatsoever. Any unauthorized use of this vehicle comparison is a violation of U.S. and international law and is punishable criminally and civilly. 6IUEX-0KENZ 45.55.47.189 2020/01/20

J.D. Power and Associates rated the Stinger third among compact premium cars in owner reported satisfaction. This includes how well the vehicle performs and satisfies its owner’s expectations. The Avalon isn’t in the top three in its category.

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