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William Maley

Hyundai News:Hyundai To Redesign Current Sonata Due To Poor Sales Start

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Hyundai seems to be going backwards with the current Sonata. Unlike the previous model which was stealing sales from competitors, the newest model doesn't have the same effect. The reason? Looks.

“I told the story to our parent company (of driving the old Sonata) home, (and) people were rolling down their window at stop signs, following me, (asking), ‘What is that? Where can I get it?", said Dave Zuchowski, Hyundai Motor America CEO to Wards Auto.

“And I don’t get that” with the new one. “That was free advertising, right? People would seek us out because we look different. And we don’t get that now.”

When the current Sonata was shown at the New York Auto Show, Zuchowski said that the Sonata didn't have to shout with impressive design as the company has felt firmly established itself as a midsize sedan that had become top-of-mind for buyers. However, they realized that the Sonata hasn't reached that point.

“If we’re priced comparably, and we appear comparable, it’s always difficult to win that battle with those more well-established, well-entrenched (models),” said Zuchowski.

Hyundai is planning to redesign the current Sonata during its mid-cycle refresh, which according to Wards is expected to be around 2017 or 2018.

“It’s hard to get anything (done sooner) than midcycle with the tooling involved,” said Zuchowski, adding Hyundai knows “exactly what we want to do, and we’re busy working on it right now.”

Source: Wards Auto


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Even though this car is better in most ways to the previous car, especially in NVH, interior looks and materials, ride and handling and mileage on certain models, customers are perceiving this car as a step back with blander styling, less power on it's base 2.4 and 2 liter turbo and a more traditional and more comfortable interior. The sad part is that this car is better than the new Camry in most every way but Toyota can get away with making bland subpar sedans because that percieved reliability is still there and the media loves them. 

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That was fast.  

 

The new Camry got rather ugly, so I'm surprised the people who prefer conservative appearance didn't move over to the Sonata. 

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my reader review on the 2015, i found the redo to be quite honestly, lackluster.  what ponchoman said applies.  the styling is dumbed down, the interior is chunky, what was Hyundai thinking?

 

Strangely, i have seen a few of these on the road recently, and depending on color and angle, its like a stretched Cruze from some profiles, done badly (where the Cruze is done well).

 

Since we are talking the Hyundai motor group here, I checked out a new Kia Sedona a couple weeks ago, and let me tell you, they whiffed on that one too.  The exterior is sort of nice looking but they really made a turd of an interior.

 

I think Hyundai and Kia had an infusion of style for a few years, but now they seem to be reverting back to their old bland self.  Bad deal.

 

I think also we had our first surge of large group of converted Hyundai owners in the market and now that they cycle gives them a chance again they are not necessarily a repeat buyer brand.

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They should pull it in as soon as possible as coworkers who had older versions are not thrilled with the new version. They will loose sales and market share.

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I would not have purchased the previous Sonata, but I would purchase the current one.  My tastes are very conservative.

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The new Sonata is bland, but bland normally plays in the family sedan segment. I prefer it to the old car, but I still think the aging Kia Optima is the more attractive car.  This shows that Hyundai isn't quite there with Toyota, Honda, or Nissan in public perception.

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The new Sonata is bland, but bland normally plays in the family sedan segment. I prefer it to the old car, but I still think the aging Kia Optima is the more attractive car.  This shows that Hyundai isn't quite there with Toyota, Honda, or Nissan in public perception.

  It's a shame.  Out of the choice of all of those you mentioned, I'd still go with the Mazda 6... but Mazda can't seem to get much sales traction there in spite of being easily the best looker in the group.

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I don't think it looks to bad to be fair but the engines are somewhat underpowered. I don't think I would buy a camry over one just because there are some many of them.

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Has anyone heard any other news regarding this?  I almost half expected to see the refresh early, for the 2016 year, but since it's going to be 17-18, perhaps we'll see something soon for the 2017 MY.

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We should get an idea in the next month or two when it will be shown.

Thanks.  As much as I've hated the Sonata in the past, I almost want to like it now.  I don't, but I want to.

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Guest brighton

I love my current 2013 Sonata Limited it has an aggressive high end good looking design the interior is sporty and elegant and the power is a little bit above average. My lease is coming up in October and I would not even consider switching to the new Sonata. it is simply a car that lacks any personality or style. Moreover the interior looks for people who are 60 or older. I came to love the brand since this is my second Sonata previous one was a 2011 with the same exact design. At the moment in this price range I can only imagine switching to a Volkswagen CC or maybe a Chrysler 200. To bad for Hyundai the lost one customer do too I think its lack of vision.

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We should get an idea in the next month or two when it will be shown.

Any idea when we'll see it?  It's been over 3 months since you posted that.

I love my current 2013 Sonata Limited it has an aggressive high end good looking design the interior is sporty and elegant and the power is a little bit above average. My lease is coming up in October and I would not even consider switching to the new Sonata. it is simply a car that lacks any personality or style. Moreover the interior looks for people who are 60 or older. I came to love the brand since this is my second Sonata previous one was a 2011 with the same exact design. At the moment in this price range I can only imagine switching to a Volkswagen CC or maybe a Chrysler 200. To bad for Hyundai the lost one customer do too I think its lack of vision.

The 200 and CC are both beautiful cars.  I LOVE the idea of a Pentastar 200.

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After driving one as a rental car a while ago, I can say that it was bland and inoffensive. I didn't quite like the engine groan, but the tech interface was good, gauges good, and the ride/handling was good.

 

And the seats were okay. I mean it got the job done. 

 

It just felt like a Toyota by any other name.

 

And that's a trap. Any other automaker doing that will be caught imitating Toyota. Even Honda doesn't imitate Toyota.

 

The closest rival to the Hyundai Sonata is to me the Nissan Altima.

 

And having driven multiple past Nissans - from 1995 model year to 2006 to then 2013. The company has lost everything that made it great against its Japanese foes

 

And going up against companies with weak product but strong brands, with weak product and a weaker brand is a recipe for failure.

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      Bigger dimensions, more comfort: compact SUV with outstanding everyday utility New operating concept: digital displays and MMI touch display Connected like the full-size segment: smart infotainment and clever assist systems INGOLSTADT, Germany, July 25, 2018 – The new Audi Q3 is a family SUV with great all-round talents. In the second generation it appears not only visually more self-confident, but also roomier and more versatile. Just like the Audi top-of-the-line models, it features a fully digital operating and display concept, extensive infotainment solutions and innovative assist systems. They enhance comfort, as does the further developed suspension. The new Audi Q3 will begin arriving at European dealerships in November 2018.
      Strength and presence: the exterior design
      The new Audi Q3 looks much sportier than its predecessor. Thanks to the striking Singleframe in octagon design, which is divided up by vertical bars, along with the large air inlets. They characterize the masculine front-end with its intensive play of light and shadow. The narrow headlights run inwards with their wedge shape. Audi supplies them in three versions through to Matrix LED technology whose adaptive high beam intelligently illuminates the road. The side view epitomizes the balance of the exterior design with the symmetrical lighting graphics of the headlights and rear lights. The shoulder line connects them from a styling perspective and provides an athletic overall impression with strong muscles over the wheel arches. The contours draw their inspiration from Audi’s quattro DNA and make the SUV seem even wider; the color-contrasting wheel arch trims emphasize the offroad look. Supported by a long roof edge spoiler, which also flanks the rear window at the side, the steeply raked D pillars of the body line also create an appearance of forward thrust.
      Driver-oriented and sporty: the interior
      Taut lines, three-dimensionally styled elements – the interior continues the design of the exterior and echoes in many ways the brand’s full-size models. The architecture harmonizes perfectly with the new operating concept. Its central element is the MMI touch display with its high-gloss black glass-look surround.
      Together with the air conditioning controls underneath, it is tilted ten degrees toward the driver. All displays, buttons and controls are located ergonomically. The comfortable seats provide a sporty position; the steering wheel is steeply angled accordingly.
      Generous and variable: the space concept
      Compared with its predecessor, the new Audi Q3 has grown in virtually all dimensions. It is 4,485 millimeters (14.7 ft) long, 1,856 millimeters (6.1 ft) wide and 1,585 millimeters (5.2 ft) high. Its wheelbase, which has been stretched by 77 millimeters (3.0 in), is spacious yet, at the same time, extremely versatile: The rear seats can be moved fore/aft by 150 millimeters 
      (5.9 in). Their three-way split backrests in the ratio 40:20:40 can be tilted in seven stages. Depending on the position of the rear seats and backrests, the luggage compartment capacity is between 530 and 1,525 liters (18.7-53.9 cu ft). The loading floor can be adjusted in three levels and the parcel shelf can be stowed underneath the floor if not needed. An electric tailgate, which can also be opened and closed with a kicking motion, is also available as an option.
      Digital world: controls and displays
      The operating and display concept of the SUV has been overhauled from the ground up – Audi has done away with the analog instruments. Even the standard specification includes a digital instrument cluster with a 10.25 inch screen diagonal, which the driver operates using the multifunction steering wheel. With the top-of-the-line equipment MMI navigation plus, the displays appear in the Audi virtual cockpit, which offers many additional functions. There is also a 10.1-inch touch display. As an option, the driver can choose the larger Audi virtual cockpit plus with three different views, including a new, particularly sporty display. The intuitive operating concept with its flat menu structure is supplemented by natural-language voice control. It also understands freely structured wording. The ingenious dialog manager asks questions if necessary, allows corrections, offers choices and defers to the speaker when interrupted.
      Intelligently connected: infotainment and Audi connect
      The top-of-the-line infotainment system in the Audi Q3 offers the same technical functions as in the higher segments. Its data transfer module supports the LTE Advanced standard with integrated Wi-Fi hotspot for the passengers’ mobile devices. The navigation system recognizes the driver’s preferences based on previous journeys, allowing it to generate suitable route suggestions. The Audi connect portfolio ideally supplements navigation guidance with traffic information online, the point-of-interest search and information on parking spaces and filling stations appearing directly in the navigation map. The Audi Q3 utilizes the Audi fleet’s swarm intelligence to forecast the availability of roadside parking space, to provide information on hazardous spots and current speed limits. Other options include Google Earth and the hybrid radio, which automatically switches between FM, DAB and the online stream to ensure optimum reception at all times. The voice control function accesses information stored in the vehicle as well as the detailed knowledge in the cloud to respond. The Audi Q3 is even more tightly integrated with the myAudi app. It seamlessly connects a smartphone to the car. The customer can, for instance, transfer navigation routes and the smartphone calendar to the MMI and locate where the Q3 is parked.
      A range of hardware modules supplement the infotainment portfolio, including the Audi phone box. It links the owner’s smartphone to the vehicle’s antenna and charges the phone inductively. The Audi smartphone interface links customers’ iOS and Android cell phones and places their Apple Car Play or Android Auto environment on the MMI display. The Bang & Olufsen Premium Sound System with virtual sound provides three-dimensional audio and drives a total of 15 loudspeakers.
      Convenience and safety: driver assistance systems
      The adaptive cruise assist is a highlight of the assist systems. It incorporates the functions of adaptive speed assist, traffic jam assist and active lane assist. In this way it assists the driver with longitudinal and lateral control – substantially enhancing comfort on long journeys in particular. The Audi Q3 makes maneuvering easier thanks to the four 360 degree cameras.
      They show on the large infotainment screen the SUV’s immediate surroundings. Here the driver can also follow the maneuvers completed by the park assist. The park assist steers the car automatically into and out of parking spaces. The driver only has to accelerate, brake and shift gears. If the driver wants to reverse out of a parallel parking space or a tight entrance, cross traffic assist is activated. The radar sensors, which the system uses to monitor the area behind the vehicle, also provide information to the standard-fit lane change warning. If the system detects a vehicle located in the blind spot or approaching quickly from the rear, a warning LED is lit in the relevant exterior mirror.
      Agility on- and offroad: engines and suspension
      As part of the sales launch, Audi is delivering the new Q3 with four engine versions, three gasoline and one diesel unit in combination with front-wheel or quattro drive. Their power outputs range from 110 kW (150 hp) to 169 kW (230 hp). All engines are four-cylinder direct injection units with turbocharging. They are powerful, refined and efficient. A six-speed manual transmission or a fast-shifting seven-speed S tronic is used to transmit the power. Offroad the permanent all-wheel drive delivers excellent driving pleasure with optimum traction and unshakable stability. Activated at the push of a button, the optional hill descent control maintains the preset speed on a steep downhill gradient. The driver can vary the characteristics of the Audi Q3 depending on the driving situation, road conditions or personal needs using the Audi drive select dynamic handling system with six profiles – from markedly comfortable, highly efficient through to out-and-out sporty. The system also influences the optional suspension with damper control where sensors measure the movements of all four wheels as well as the vehicle’s lateral and longitudinal acceleration and adjust the dampers as required. This results in enhanced driving dynamics with even more comfort. Alternatively, there is the sport suspension – standard with the S line exterior package – with tauter spring/damper tuning and progressive steering. Its ratio becomes increasingly direct with increasing steering angle, adding substantially to the light-footed handling of the new Audi Q3.
      The equipment, data and prices specified in this release refer to the model range offered in Germany. Subject to change without notice; errors and omissions excepted. U.S. model specifications to follow closer to launch in 2019.
    • By William Maley
      Hyundai had set itself a high bar when it launched the sixth-generation Sonata for the 2010 model year. It stood out from a crowded field of midsize sedans with an exterior shape that resembled a Mercedes-Benz CLS-Class. The Sonata also boasted a comfortable interior, loads of technology features, a good selection of engines, and a nice balance between comfort and sport. Replacing this model would be a tough task and one Hyundai wasn’t able to meet. When the seventh-generation model rolled out at 2014 New York Auto Show, you could hear the cry of a sad trombone. The new Sonata had gone conservative in its design. Compared to Chevrolet, Honda, and Toyota that rolled out bold styling on their sedans, the Sonata went backwards with a conservative look.
      Hyundai realized they need to make some drastic changes to Sonata to give it a fighting chance not only against other sedans, but from the growing demand for crossovers of all sizes. This brings us to the 2018 Sonata Limited. It was time to find out if Hyundai had found that magic once again.
      This being a refresh, Hyundai couldn’t go completely crazy in terms of the design language, however the updates really help the Sonata have more presence. Up front is bolder with a new hexagonal grille surround, chrome grille slats, new sculpting on the hood, and deep cuts in the bumper for LED fog lights. The side profile retains the chrome trim that runs through the headlights and around the windows. Hyundai made some drastic changes for the rear by smoothing out the trunk lid and moving the placement of the license plate to the bumper. 
      The Sonata’s interior retains the basic shape of the outgoing model, but changes have been made to freshen it up. The center stack boasts a revised control layout and all trims get a three-spoke steering wheel. Previously, only the Sport trim got this wheel design. It would have been nice if Hyundai was a little bit more adventurous with the design, but I’m willing to forgive some of this feeling as the controls fall easily into hand. Interior materials are about average for the class with a mix of hard and soft plastics.
      The front seats were designed with long-distance comfort in mind with a fair amount of seat padding and just the right amount of firmness. Power adjustments for both driver and passenger are standard on the Limited and offer a generous range of adjustments. Space in the back is quite roomy and there are some nice touches such as manual window shades. The Sonata has one of the largest trunks in the class with 16.3 cubic feet of space on offer.
      All Sonata’s come with a 7-inch touchscreen featuring Hyundai’s BlueLink infotainment system. Our test Sonata Limited had the optional 8-inch screen with navigation. The current BlueLink system has been with us for a few years and its interface is beginning to look somewhat dated, but the system is still one of the best when it comes to overall usability with large touchscreen buttons, bright screen, and a simple interface. Apple CarPlay and Android Auto are standard on all Sonatas except the base SE.
      Sonata offers one of the widest range of powertrains in the segment with three gas engines, a hybrid, and plug-in hybrid. Our Sonata Limited came with the base 2.4L inline-four producing 185 horsepower and 178 pound-feet of torque. This is paired with a six-speed automatic routing power to the front wheels. The engine provides adequate power for around town and rural driving. You will need to step on it when making a pass or merging onto a freeway as torque resides higher in the rev band. The six-speed automatic goes about its business smoothly and always knows what gear it needs to be in. Hyundai does offer an eight-speed automatic, but only if you opt for the turbocharged 2.0L.
      EPA fuel economy figures for the 2018 Sonata Limited are 25 City/35 Highway/28 Combined (SE models see a one mpg increase in highway and combined figures). My average for the week landed around 28.5 mpg.
      Hyundai did make some tweaks to the 2018 Sonata’s suspension including a revised rear suspension setup with thicker trailing arms and revised steering system. The end result is a Sonata that handles much better than the previous car. Body motion has noticeably decreased and the steering provides decent weight when turning. Thankfully, the tweaks made to the suspension haven’t affected the Sonata’s ride quality. Bumps and other road imperfections are soaked up before reaching passengers. Some of the credit has to go to Hyundai not going crazy on offering large wheels - the Limited seen here rides on 17-inch wheels. Road and wind noise are kept to near silent levels.
      My first impression seeing the 2018 Sonata was that Hyundai had improved it, but was still a bit short when compared to the work done by other automakers. Spending a week with the Sonata caused me to change my train of thought; It surprised me how much work Hyundai put into this mid-cycle refresh and brings the Sonata up to the point where I would say it is fighting for best-in-class honors. 
      While the 2018 Sonata may lack most of the pizzazz found in the sixth-generation model, it does show that Hyundai has learned from its mistake and worked to reclaim some of the magic.
      Disclaimer: Hyundai Provided the Sonata, Insurance, and One Tank of Gas
      Year: 2018
      Make: Hyundai
      Model: Sonata
      Trim: Limited
      Engine: 2.4L GDI DOHC D-CVVT Four-Cylinder
      Driveline: Six-Speed Automatic. Front-Wheel Drive
      Horsepower @ RPM: 185 @ 6,000
      Torque @ RPM: 178 @ 4,000 
      Fuel Economy: City/Highway/Combined - 25/35/28
      Curb Weight: N/A
      Location of Manufacture: Montgomery, AL
      Base Price: $27,400
      As Tested Price: $31,310 (Includes $885.00 Destination Charge)
      Options:
      Ultimate Package - $2,900.00
      Carpeted Floor Mats - $125.00

      View full article
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