January 19, 2019

Kia’s new K9 to carry Stinger badge

PUBLISHED : February 13, 2018 - 16:10

UPDATED : March 02, 2018 - 17:41

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[ET NEWS] Kia Motors has decided to use the Stinger badge, instead of the Kia logo, for its new large-size luxury sedan succeeding the current K9, according to industry sources on Feb. 13.

Stinger, the carmaker’s first rear-wheel drive sports sedan, debuted last year with its own logo in order to differentiate the brand new performance car among other K series models. 

Sources say the new car is likely to come with the same E-shaped logo but with a new name inscribed below. For the Stinger, Kia used the logo only for the Korean market considering Kia’s brand awareness in overseas markets. The two-track strategy is expected to be maintained for the K9 successor.

The new car, developed under the project name “RJ,” is succeeding Kia’s flagship K9. With the car’s official launch planned for April, names like “Opirus” or “Quantum” are being cited as the new name.

Kia reportedly considered launching its own premium brand last year like its bigger sibling Hyundai Motor’s Genesis, but decided to extend the high-end lineup first to gauge their marketability.

Back in 2015, the carmaker filed the trademarks for “Esencis,” “Esentus,” and “Esensus.” During the Stinger unveiling, Kia said the logo had nothing to do with a specific word but was largely inspired by the shape of engine arrangements.

“We have always reviewed diverse possibilities to adopt a premium brand. But nothing has been decided yet,” a Kia official said on condition of anonymity.

By Jung Chi-yeon (
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