Ever since its debut back in 2009 no one, including me, ever thought that it would be what Hyundai had predicted; a smart, sleek and sophisticated piece of must have luxury item. During a recent motor show here in Kenya, I saw those very words come to life.
The Sonata is one of the models that propelled Hyundai to greater heights thanks to its amazing “Fluidic Sculpture” design. The design language consists of natural inspired curves that run from the front to the side right to the back.
|Fluidic design at its best|
They not only make it outstanding to the eyes but give the car an overall distinct design.
It all begins at the front that consists of the stylish chrome grill and amazingly styled front headlights. Below the design chemistry are twin fog lights right next to the huge splitter at the front.
|Magnificent radiator grill|
The trim runs from the headlamps to below giving a sense of continuity from the front to the side. Sweeping lines that connect that run from the rear lights connect the rear styling with the side view. Under the trim and the sweeping line are multi-spoke wheels that are available in sizes of 16, 17 or 18 inch. At the rear are stylish light that further enhance the general look of the car. At the middle is the chrome boot lid that sits above the famous Hyundai logo.
|Huge panoramic roof|
Under the bonnet is a 2.4 litre four cylinder engine with Gasoline Direct-Injection (GDI) fuel delivery system. The GDI system ensures less fuel is used ensuring a lower consumption of fuel. The engine gives out 198 horsepower. The engine has a fuel consumption of 8.1 liters per 100 kilometers covered. However Hyundai also offer a slightly powerful engine if one orders the Sonata with the SE trim.
|Hyundai Sonata in recent motor show|
With the SE trim the 2.4 litreGDI engine is thrown out and replaced with a similar one which has Continuously Variable Valve Timing (CVVT) on both camshafts and a Variable Induction System (VIS) for better engine breathing. It has a total output of 200 horsepower. For speed freaks like me, there is another 2.0-liter Theta II turbocharged GDI four-cylinder engine
Married to the engines is a six speed automatic transmission system. The driver can also operate the system manually thanks to a feature called shiftronic. Here the driver slides the gear into a separate gate. The driver then has to simply push the gear up or down to change gears. In the SE trim version there are paddle shifters located behind the steering wheel.The gear used is also displayed in the LCD readout on the dashboard.
|Its amazing headlights|
The power is planted to the road by MacPherson strut front and multi-link rear suspension systems. They give the Sonata as smooth ride. All four wheels are controlled by coil springs, fade-resistant gas-charged dampers and stabilizer bars.
The suspension is optimized to ensure the car remains stable during cornering. The suspension also ensures the car has amazing handling capabilities. In the SE model has a sportier ride and handling capabilities. This is thanks to sport-tuned suspension that features stiffer springs and larger stabilizer bars. The result is a better handling car even at intense cornering. The SE model also comes with 18 inch wheels as standard.
The sophisticated exterior look continues to be exhibited inside the car. There is enough room for five occupants who enjoy the amazing sweeping interior lines that seems to run all round the interior. The center console consists of the Y shaped design with its center housing controls both for the radio and the front climate control system.
Behind the steering wheel are dials that glow with excitement ever time the Sonata comes to life. The multifunction steering wheel has controls for nearly every important function in the car. At the back there is enough room a person of any height.
The entertainment is taken care of by an AM/FM/CD/MP3 Infinity Audio system. It has a 400 watt external amplifier, a subwoofer, eight channels (tweeters) and nine Infinity speakers. The sound system is connected to Hyundai’s Dimension System that comes with various equalizers.
|Panoramic roof in action|
These ensure that occupants enjoy the best from the Infinity audio system as they are blown away by the view from the panoramic roof. It also comes with Bluetooth audio streaming capabilities thanks to an 8 GB flash memory that accesses digital music from a digital device such as a phone. One can also connect an iPod, flash disc or MP3 player thanks to iPod/USB/auxiliary inputs.
The smart, sleek and sophisticated piece of must have luxury item is available for a price of around Kshs. 5 million from Hyundai Kenya.