New models - Hyundai - Sonata
Hyundai details its all-new Sonata
Next-generation Sonata priced attractively without skimping on features
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30 Jan 2015
By TUNG NGUYEN
THE mid-size Hyundai Sonata is making a return to the Australian market with a starting price of $29,990, before on-road costs, when it launches in early February.
With an opening price less than rival front-wheel drive mid-size sedans including the Mazda6 ($33,460), the Kia Optima ($31,490) the market-leading Toyota Camry ($30,490), and the Ford Mondeo ($31,490), Hyundai is pricing the new Sonata aggressively on the Australian market.
The Sonata is Hyundai's second mid-size sedan on the market, following the i40 which is offered with both petrol and diesel powertrains as well as wagon body-style, and kicks off from $31,990 in base Active petrol sedan guise.
Having dropped the Sonata nameplate in 2010 in favour of the i45 sedan, the all-new Sonata will make a return after the tepid reception of its alpha-numeric cousin.
Available with a choice of two engines and three equipment levels, the 138kW/241Nm 2.4-litre naturally aspirated engine propels the base Sonata Active, while the more potent 180kW/350Nm 2.0-litre turbocharged petrol engine powers the mid-tier Sonata Elite and top-spec Sonata Premium.
Both engines will be mated to a six-speed automatic gearbox with a sequential manual shifting mode.
Borrowing design elements from its Genesis sedan sibling, the 2015 Sonata receives a similarly styled front end with an aggressive grille, bumper design and LED accented air intakes.
According to Hyundai, the restyled front-end contributes to the all-new Sonata's low 0.27 drag coefficient, the same as the Mazda6.
The seventh-generation Sonata will also benefit from local suspension and steering tuning done in-house, tweaked specifically for Australian roads and conditions.
According to Hyundai, “new front and heavily revised multi-link rear suspension – both augmented by locally re-specified damper, spring and sway bar combinations – integrate with a dual mode 32-bit motor drive power steering to deliver impressive stability and driveability.”
All Sonata variants will benefit from a host of standard safety features, including six airbags, reversing camera, rear park assist, automatic headlights, daytime running lights and a comprehensive electronic stability control system.
The entry level Sonata Active, priced at $29,990, also includes 17-inch alloy wheels, keyless entry, a 4.3-inch touchscreen, Bluetooth and cruise control as standard.
Moving up, the mid-spec Sonata Elite adds electric folding mirrors, an eight-inch touchscreen with satellite navigation, dual-zone climate control, and carbon-fibre effect dashboard from $36,990.
The flagship Sonata Premium will cost $41,990, but gains 18-inch alloy wheels, front parking assist, bi-Xenon headlights, heated and ventilated front seats, automatic wipers and panoramic glass sunroof in addition to the equipment found in Active and Elite variants.
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