Back in 2017, Kia surprised the motoring world when it launched the Stinger. Essentially the brand’s take on a sleek and sexy sports sedan, Kia was able to show to the world that they can take on the likes of the Lexus, Audi, Acura, and -in particular- BMW.

Then in 2019, Kia Philippines officially launched it in the country and was only offered the 3.3-liter twin-turbo V6 engine. Towards 2020, Kia revealed a facelifted version of the sports sedan wherein it received new wheels, restyled LED headlights and taillights, a more high-tech interior, and a (slightly) more powerful twin-turbo V6 under the hood.

But with Kia now focusing on electrification and lessening carbon emissions, it seems the time of the Stinger has come to an abrupt end. But instead of going quietly into the night, Kia has revealed a limited edition of the Stinger before the sports sedan is consigned to the history books.

Simply called the Stinger Tribute Edition, this particular model is limited to only 1,000 units worldwide and is based on the GT variant that’s powered by a 3.3-liter twin-turbo V6. But what makes this special apart from the fact that it’s essentially the send-off for the Stinger?

Kia is canceling the Stinger so they made a Tribute Edition image

For starters, it gets an aesthetic upgrade courtesy of a new Moonscape Matte Gray paint finish that is paired with blacked-out side mirror caps, Brembo brake calipers, and 19-inch gloss black alloy wheels. Customers can also choose to have their Stinger Tribute Edition painted in the existing Ascot Green hue which equally makes the sports sedan stand out.

Open the doors and the Stinger Tribute Edition greets occupants with a curated collection of design and material upgrades. The seats, steering wheel, door side trim, and door handles are upholstered in a unique Terracotta Brown leather finish which enhances the Stinger’s sporty appeal. Meanwhile, a carbon-effect finish was applied to the console's upper cover and the door panels that neatly complement the leather.

Eagle-eyed customers may also notice that the Tribute Edition carries a new wasp-shaped emblem that’s embedded into the headrest of the seats. According to Kia, this subtle emblem signifies the car’s name and the sharp acceleration of the 3.3-liter twin-turbo V6 that churns out 373 PS and 510 Nm of torque.

Last but not least, a numbered door sill plate on the driver’s side provides authentication of the Stinger Tribute Edition’s exclusivity of just 1,000 units globally.

Kia is canceling the Stinger so they made a Tribute Edition image

“The Stinger Tribute Edition denotes an important chapter in the story of Kia’s high-performance ethos. Featuring an exclusive color and interior trim never before seen on the sedan, it also serves as a fitting celebration of the Stinger’s contribution to the Kia brand,” said Chang Sung Ryu, senior vice president and Head of Purchase CX Design Sub-division at Kia.

The Kia Stinger may have only lasted several years, but one cannot deny the impact it made in the sports sedan market and in the entire automotive industry as a whole. And with only 1,000 examples of the Stinger Tribute Edition to be made, seeing one in the metal will surely be a rare occasion indeed.

If you’re still putting off buying a Kia Stinger, better visit your nearest dealership and ask if they still have units before the automaker officially axes the sports sedan from their lineup.