Hyundai Sonata 2011 overseas debut

Hyundai Sonata 2011 overseas debut

2011 Hyundai Sonata
The redesigned 2011 Hyundai Sonata has finally had its first reveal outside Korea, at the 2009 Los Angeles Auto Show. After years of producing boring clones of existing Japanese models, the new Sonata is so far “out there” that it makes even premium brands look cheap in comparison, even if it ultimately looks bulkier than its intended “four-door coupe” styling target.

Hyundai has chosen to outfit the 2011 Sonata with a single 2.4-litre 4-cylinder for the U.S. market, saying that the V6 accounted for only 10% of sales previously. More interestingly, the new motor is simply class-leading in this segment, offering 198 hp and 249 Nm of torque. Choose the dual-exhaust SE model with the sports suspension, and power goes up to 200 hp. On top of that, Hyundai estimates fuel consumption at 8.1 litres/100 km, claiming to be more efficient than every other comparable midsize sedan in the segment. The front-wheel-drive sedan can be mated to a 6-speed manual or automatic.

Externally, the 2011 Sonata is slightly shorter and lower than the awful outgoing model, but also 60 kg lighter and with a longer wheelbase. By U.S. standards, it becomes the only other midsize sedan to be classified as “large” based on interior volume, after the humongous new Honda Accord, but ironically the Sonata has 17% more boot volume.

On the feature front, everything expected from this segment is available, including six standard airbags, CD stereo with USB port, 8GB flash drive, navigation, Bluetooth, stability control, 16-inch to 18-inch alloys, and the usual power accessories.

It looks like the 2011 Hyundai Sonata, at least on paper, is the best midsize family sedan ever built. Of course, fewer options will be available on the GCC-spec version when it reaches the UAE, but at least Hyundai has shown that they are capable of great things now. Keep track of updates in the Hyundai Sonata buyer guide.

What do you think?



  1. Its nt tht attractive, even the interior is copied by Infiniti… bogus

  2. 198 hp????? is tat a gross rating ??

  3. hyundais more like say..copycats

  4. now that is some sophisticated, unique design. And it also looks a little like the genesis coupé from the back and sides. the wheels should have been bigger though (but this way, I guess they can squeeze in a full sized spare wheel!)
    Inside, the dash is unfortunately almost a perfect replica of Infiniti’s. And the AC controls of Volvo’s but the other stuff looks really nice.
    The ThetaII engine is just amazing! I can hardly believe the numbers! and there’s an obvious advantage with designing the 6-speed tranny in-house as they know exactly how it should work with their existing engines.
    However, a majority of people are really not sure about such sophisticated designs and go for the conservative designs.

  5. Yeah, im disappointed with the copied interior bits they have from infiniti and volvo…
    But to be honest, it looks nice… Id have it over the stupid looking mondeo and camry.. Hyundai is moving ahead but please stop copying other cars…

  6. hmmm…truly nice 🙂 at least kudos to Hyundai for being innovative unlike the bored and dyslexic designers at Toyota

  7. Im sure theyll start launching the entry model here in the near future… Looks nice and sporty.. Id love to get the 6speed manual of this car which works well with its sporty character….

  8. The Kia Forte in US (Cerato is UAE) has the same 2.4L thetaII engine as seen here although this one in sonata has been tuned more. Thing is, people are having a lot of problems driving a manual with this unit. The drive-by-wire accelerator is very sensitive and revs at the slightest touch. Hence when depressing the accelerator as you leave the clutch, the engine stalls. This can happen when you get a new car but here its a real prob with every reviewer pointing that out.
    Hope they have fixed it in sonata’s unit and delayed the throttle opening a bit.

  9. exterior is slightly copied from mercedes cls

  10. delaying throttle response? that sounds like a bad thing! I guess reviewers don’t have the car long enough, therefore they stall it. But i am sure once you get used to it, the better throttle response will be appreciated.

  11. no. its a real problem. even after a month or two, manual tranny owners on a Kia forum still complain about the sensitive throttle. now thats a really long time period and people should have completely mastered it in that time. long term reviewers also mention it. I’m sure the reviewers and owners know what they are saying since they have driven manual ‘boxes before.
    of course the ones with an auto tranny are enjoying the quick response!
    on another note, for the first time, I spotted a Genesis Sedan on the road!!!

  12. Additional info on the new sonata: next year there will be a turbocharged version of this 2.4L engine which will produce over 250 hp. I doubt it will come here because we never get turbos and those that do, are de-tuned. probably the low-quality fuel!
    And then there will be a Sonata Petrol-Electric Hybrid. The hybrid system is completely in-house developed. This one’s possibly only for US. that’s where all hybrids are anyway…
    o and the fuel consumption of the regular 198 hp 2.4L is 35 MPG (US). I think that is 3 MPG better than the previous (and more power at the same time!)

  13. Thumbs up for hyundai, im impressed..

  14. what the hell with hyundai copiying mercedes genesys and sonata :S

  15. prices?….

    any one has a take on that?

  16. They have taken the front of the Mercedes ClS and put their logo on it!

    At least they are copying from Mercedes this time…….

    Not bad at all; as long as they sell it between 60,000 to 70,000 Dhs

  17. ^ It looks better than any main stream midsize saloon with the same price…
    And no big deal if they copied a bit or 2 from different cars at the least this car has its own character and presence..
    As a matter of fact even the best carmakers are shamlessly copying each other and most of today’s main stream and budget cars lack character, style, presence…

  18. Having owned the 2006 NF model for 4.5 yrs and after 101000kms, no problems at all. Will be first in line to buy the new Sonata again.Was planning the type 13 Azera but if the new sonata has similar options then definitely will go for Sonata

  19. At the Dubai Auto show i enquired about the Sonatas expected price ……. and right now they suspect that the base model will be offered from 68000 AED ….. and frankly i am not impressed!!
    Granted the car looks drop dead gorgeous on da outside …. da inside totally lets u down!! da finishing and materials are horrendous!! and da panoramic roof although a novel addition is covered up wid a piece ov cloth!!
    And from a practical point of view too the back leg room is too little ….. plus size ppl will struggle!!
    Altima 2010 in my opinion is a better option and in a similar price range!! minus da panoramic roof albeit!!

  20. umm, and what were you expecting a panoramic glass roof to be covered with? :/

  21. hey BJD …. well what i was trying to indicate was that the panoramic glass roof could have been covered up with an automated panel or if they chose the cloth it could have been a bit more classier!! It looks like the cloth was just takin off the loom and hung over it …. strands sticking out of the sides ….. !!
    Anywayx the latest update is that the Hyundai sonata together with the Tucson will be available in Dubai from Feb. most likely from the 1st itself!!

  22. this cars interior and the back of it , is more like the lexus LS430 .

    i think its worthet for the people who love to experience the feeling of a lexus 430 in this car !! 🙂

  23. I love this car so what if its a copy cat to a Lexus LS430, a car is car no matter what name make it is, im getting mines and i don’t care if its a lexus i can’t afford it, since i saw this car i fell in love with it…

  24. A very well designed car indeed. It style cues might match that of a lexus or a mercedes but its unique in its own right. After all for $19,195 you wouldnt expect to be able to purchase a mercedes or a lexus. But you can definitely be the proud owner of this sleek and beautiful sonata which comes loaded with several gadgets even in the base model. The engine is both economical and more and adequately powerful.As for those who are criticizing the Sonata. It will be quite hard if not impossible to find a similar sedan in the same price range.

  25. I have been saying what a killer-design this car is since the first spy shot, sneak peeks appeared. Apparently, this car is much more of a sensation than I originally thought it would be.

    It’s not that I didn’t expect the car to be good, its more than that, this car supplants all other cars that sits in this category and moves the bar not just up but challenges the notion that a premium brand has to be out of reach of the average middle class car buyer.

    Based on the frenzied, and mostly positive reaction to the upcoming 2011 Sonata all across the automotive and non-automotive web communities that I have been cruising through, I can say without even the slightest equivocation, that Hyundai has not only got their “A” game on, but their game face as well. It should be obvious to everyone that they are bringing it head on to the likes of Honda and Toyota.

    They are challenging the convention that upscale, premium, designed cars, have to be highly overpriced in order to achieve the prized quality quotient. And remember, Hyundai is moving their brand up without having to spend the billions to launch a costly, risky luxury brand.

    In no small measure, Hyundai has been progressively shifting their brand perception upwards and with the recent success of the Genesis, multiple quality and automotive awards, this has embolden Hyundai to continue pushing their brand further upwards.

    I think this strategy which is proving to be a successful formula will apply downward pressure on current entry level luxury models from brands such as Cadillac, Lincoln, Lexus, Infiniti and Acura.

    Among the brands just cited above both Lincoln and Acura are the most vulnerable to this downward pressure and market share erosion. Also some non-lux brands like Ford’s Fusion, GM’s Malibu and Nissan Altima’s will lose conquest sales to the upcoming 2011 Sonata.

    Though Honda and Toyota remain popular, largely due to their known reputations, both are now in my opinion, vulnerable to the “malaise effect”. The malaise effect occurs when an objective is achieved and there is no direction beyond.
    It is a phenomenon that happens to any highly successful individual or company.

    Thankfully, Hyundai doesn’t fit that profile. Going forward Hyundais are going to be known for their “killer” designs!

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