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Updated Hyundai Sonata gets ‘dramatic’ facelift

Evolution: The facelifted Hyundai Sonata will be revealed in South Korea next month, and its expected to have a sportier, more aggressive design.

Cascading grille to feature on facelifted Hyundai Sonata, revealed next month


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28 Feb 2017

HYUNDAI has revealed sketches of its facelifted Sonata mid-sizer ahead of its reveal in South Korea next month, showing more aggressive styling and the ‘cascading grille’ that will be rolled out on a number of Hyundai products, including the latest i30 hatch.

The new sedan is expected to land on Australian shores in the middle of this year, about two-and-a-half years after the seventh-generation model went on sale Down Under.

Hyundai says the refreshed Sonata will undergo a “dramatic design change” as previewed by the sketches.

The sketches show an updated front fascia for two versions, including the standard Sonata that appears to retain the horizontal striped grille of the outgoing model and the sportier Turbo variant that features a mesh grille.

Hyundai says the new cascading grille shape is supposed to evoke images of the “flow of molten steel” and will become a signature element of Hyundai vehicles as it is progressively rolled out across the range.

The headlights have also been updated and now feature a squarer look that mirrors the headlight design of the new i30.

The front-on sketch reveals similarities between the design of the Sonata and the new-gen Audi A5 which was uncovered late last year, sharing the squared-off lights, large grille and bonnet lines of the German coupe.

Larger, more aggressive lower air intakes around the front fenders give the new model a sportier look, and have separate designs for the regular and Turbo versions.

The sporty look is complemented by a subtle front splitter, and the lower, wider stance, while the rear features a new tail-light cluster that is reminiscent of the circa-$800,000 Lamborghini Aventador S.

Hyundai designers have moved the number plates from the boot to the rear bumper, with ‘Sonata’ spelled out in block letters on the boot.

The new rear also features a more aggressive rear diffuser and symmetrical twin-exhaust pipes, while the turbo model steps up the sportiness with a more aggressive diffuser and a quad-tip exhaust setup.

Powertrain options are unlikely to change when the updated Sonata arrives, meaning the 138kW/241Nm 2.4-litre naturally aspirated four-cylinder petrol unit from the entry-level Active, and the 180kW/350Nm 2.0-litre turbo-petrol four-pot from the Elite and Premium variants are likely to carry over.

Both engines are teamed with a six-speed automatic transmission.

More details on the updated Sonata will be uncovered closer to its reveal in South Korea next month.

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