Kia GT4 Stinger Versus 2005 VW EcoRacer Concept

Kia seems to like Volkswagen – a LOT. It would appear in a number of ways that Kia sees itself as a natural competitor to Volkswagen and that in and of itself, makes sense. However back in 2006, Peter Schreyer (then with VW design) went to Kia and took with him a fair number of other VW and Audi designers and engineers. This type of thing happens in this industry all the time. However it seems that Kia has been doing few things that mimic Volkswagen a bit rather than forging their own path.

Over the last few years Kia has been asking auto show organizers at various shows to put their booth near or next to VW if possible. Not only do they want to be positioned (literally) right next to VW, their booth designs largely ape the VW booth design with a primarily white structure, rounded-off trapezoid shapes with video screens and similar lighting – looking awfully similar to the VW booth right next door.

Kia introduced their GT4 Stinger Concept at the 2014 North American International Auto Show and it bears a bit of resemblance to an old concept car Volkswagen introduced in 2006. Peter Schreyer (current head of Kia and Hyundai design) was at VW design when a concept car was introduced in 2005 called EcoRacer. Take a look…

EcoRacer Concept from 2005:

VW EcoRacer

versus the Kia GT4 Concept:


EcoRacer Concept from 2005:


versus the Kia GT4 Concept:


Granted I never liked the EcoRacer design as I always thought it was very un-VW like in its design language, looking more like a kit car than something that would fit in the VW lineup. It had some cool aspects to it but didn’t seem to hang together particular well. Kia has done a better job with the GT4 Stinger (hat tip to modern design and concept production perhaps) but doesn’t score many points for originality.

What do you think?