1 Sep 2001
A neat – if shamelessly Mercedes C-class-like – facelift did much to address the 1998 EF Sonata’s inexplicably heavy-handed styling.
Of more importance were the steps in safety, comfort and on-road dynamics.
The reintroduction of the 104kW/202Nm 2.0-litre four-cylinder version broadened its value appeal, while a bigger capacity V6 (now a 132kW/245Nm 2.7) provided more punch.
Both were allied to a Tiptronic-style four-speed auto or five-speed manual gearbox.
Equipment levels were reasonable with a driver's airbag, air-conditioning and cruise control standard on all models.
A small update from March 2004 added a passenger airbag and anti-lock brakes.
The Road to Recovery podcast series
23rd of January 2002
Hyundai 2001 Sonata GL V6 sedan
Hyundai's EF-B Sonata was a considerable improvement in all areas over the old car
When it was new