Hyundai has been on an impressive run with the sporty and sexy Genesis Coupe, luxurious Genesis sedan, and European-inspired Elantra Touring wagon. If those three cars were a warm-up, consider the all-new 2011 Sonata the main act as Hyundai is gunning straight for the most competitive market in North America-the mid-size sedan. Viewed in picture, the Sonata is substantially more aggressively styled than Camry, Accord or Altima.
The Sonata will be available in three trim levels: GLS, SE, and Limited. All three are powered by a 2.4L inline four rated at 198hp (200hp in the SE) that deliver a solid 35mpg on the highway. Buyers can choose between a six-speed manual or automatic in the GLS; all other cars have the automatic only. With a base price of $19,195USD, Hyundai continues its practice of being generous with standard equipment. For that price you get Electronic Stability Control, Traction Control, XM Radio, Bluetooth, remote entry/alarm, power windows, locks, heated mirrors and a trip computer. Hyundai also points out that Navigation is available on all trim levels. Click below for details on the SE and Limited.
Sonata SE: $22,595 The sporty Sonata boasts 200hp thanks to a dual exhaust. Sadly, no manual transmission is offered here, but in addition to the GLS’ equipment, you get a six-speed automatic with paddle shifters, 18″ alloy wheels, sport-tuned suspension and steering, cloth/leather sport seats and fog lights.
Sonata Limited: $25,295 The emphasis here is on luxury, so the dual exhausts 18″ alloys and sport-tuned suspension are not carried over to the Limited. Standard features here include leather, front and rear heated seats, 17″ alloys, dual-zone auto climate control, CD changer, HD Radio, and sunroof.
Surely, the Sonata isn’t as interesting as say, the Genesis coupe, but chasing the almighty Accord and Camry is big-time business. And in this market, if you bring a knife to a gun fight, you had better just stay home. My money is on Hyundai packing heat.