Hyundai’s 2011 Sonata – a car that has only been on sale in the US for two weeks – has received its first recall after complaints started pouring in regarding a malfunction on the front door lock mechanisms.
It’s not really the kind of start Hyundai is expecting with their biggest volume vehicle but after the company began receiving complaints from passengers that the hinge on the front doors of the 2011 Sonata can get stuck in an open position, which would then make them impossible to close. While the likelihood of this happening is extremely rare – one would have to pull the door latch while holding the ‘lock button’, which would then be counterintuitive to common sense – it was serious enough for Hyundai to do some damage control.
According to Hyundai spokesman Miles Johnson, "Anything to do with door latches warrants a recall. New parts are arriving in dealerships now, and the fix should not take more than an hour.”
All in all, over 47,300 Sonatas have been recalled with most of them occurring in the brand’s home country of South Korea. In the US, all the 1,300 Sonatas that have been sold since they came out two weeks ago are also being recalled.
It certainly doesn’t help Hyundai to be receiving this problem soon after the Sonata went on sale, but at least the South Korean brand is moving fast in rectifying the situation.
After the Hyundai Genesis bagged awards left and right for Hyundai, it’s fair to say that the expectations for the burgeoning Korean brand is now at an all-time high. Both the Genesis Coupe and the Genesis Sedan were so far ahead of the game that it became apparent that the onus was now on Hyundai to release a car that could meet – or even exceed – the expectations set by the Genesis.
Now, Hyundai has that car in the form of the 2011 Sonata.
Thanks in large part to the economic crisis and the continued rise in oil prices, car brands have become more inclined in producing fuel efficient vehicles and veering away from the conventional market segment and tapping into the younger and more out-going market. If there were skeptics that initially doubted Hyundai’s new direction, the Genesis certainly did its part to quell all those doubts. And now that the2011 Sonata, which is one of seven new models Hyundai is planning to launch within the next two years, is on the horizon, Hyundai is hell-bent on keeping its momentum going.
Hyundai has launched a massive advertising campaign for the new 2011 Sonata, in fact it is the biggest so far, with a budget of $160 Million ensuring that we see Sonatas everywhere we look on TV. Lately they made out like bandits during the 2010 Superbowl, airing no less than 8 different commercials. However the Korean automaker has one more spot up their sleeves, but are unsure if they should air it or not, judge for yourself.
When somebody mentions drag racing, chances are you picture two high-powered sports cars duking it out for those ever-so-important high-speed bragging rights. Those types of races are a treat to watch, especially when they’re relatively evenly matched, which would then provide us with a clear idea as to what sports car trumps another in a flat-out straight race from start to finish.
On the other hand, mid-sized sedans aren’t exactly the kinds of cars that you’d find getting involved in a full-throttle drag race, which then makes this drag race video of a 2010 Hyundai Sonata and a 2010 Toyota Camry both perplexing and amusing to watch.
Sure, they belong in the same segment and the tale of the tape would say that this one isn’t some novelty mismatch. But watching this race feels like you’re watching two well-off executives running a 100-meter sprint in their full-on business regalia. It should be entertaining, no doubt, but it doesn’t have the same energy and flashiness as, say, a Nissan GT-R taking on a Corvette ZR1.
Nevertheless, for your amusement, we invite you to watch the video to see which of these mid-sized ‘racers’ ends up reigning supreme.
If there’s one thing we know now about Hyundai heading into Sunday’s Super Bowl, it’s that the car brand is determined to leave a lasting impression to all those watching the sports spectacle just for the commercials.
We’ve already previewed their Brett Favre commercial a few days ago but now we have all of Hyundai’s advertisements, all of which are expected to air at some point during the game.
And by all, we mean all eight of them.
In an attempt at taking full advantage of the enormous viewership generated by the Super Bowl, Hyundai is spending a pretty lump sum of money for the right to air these commercials. Each 30-second spot during the game is expected to cost somewhere in the neighbourhood of $2 million so if all of Hyundai’s eight commercials air at least once during the event, then the South Korean car brand should expect to pay around $16 million for that privilege.
And the best part is, Hyundai doesn’t seem to mind forking over that kind of money. "The Super Bowl is not only a showcase for great football, but also for the most significant advertising, reaching an estimated 95 million viewers in the U.S.," said Joel Ewanick, vice president of marketing, Hyundai Motor America.
"Following in the footsteps of our 2008 and 2009 Super Bowl focus on the new Genesis and Genesis Coupe, we are focusing this year’s Super Bowl campaign on the all-new 2011 Sonata, the most significant new model introduction in our history."
Check out all of Hyundai’s commercials after the jump.
The Korean automaker Hyundai has just officially unveiled the all new 2010 Sonata in its home market of South Korea, after which the next generation Sonata will follow up with a U.S. market debut at either the upcoming L.A. Auto Show in December, or at the North American International Auto Show in Detroit early next January.
The sixth generation Hyundai Sonata makes use of the automaker’s more fluid design language that has shaped the Hyundai Genesis luxury sedan. The exterior of the new Sonata is made up of a host of complex curves and bold body lines that create character through their refined and harmonized sculpture. The interior of the new Sonata has a very dynamic look that compliments the exterior while refusing to compromise comfort or convenience for the passengers traveling inside. The 2010 Hyundai Sonata is available in nine different exterior colors ranging from Remington Red to Blue Black and even Espresso; a move made in order to appeal to a more diverse younger customer base.
The new Sonata will be powered by a 2.0 Liter Theta II MPi gasoline burning engine cranking out 165 HP and an alternatively fueled LPG variant that generates a maximum output of 144 HP, in either instance the power plants are mated to a new six speed automatic gearbox. When it finally does arrive stateside, Hyundai’s updates to the 2010 Sonata should payoff big time.
UPDATE 08/11/2010: Check out out review of the 2010 Hyundai Sonata by clicking here!
Far from the bright lights of Frankfurt – in South Korea, actually – came news that the 2011 Hyundai Sonata YF was finally unveiled in its native land.
While most of us were too busy getting mesmerized by the jaw-dropping vehicles at the IAA, Hyundai quietly unveiled their new flagship mid-sized sedan and from the looks of things, they may have found a car that can give the Camry a run for its money.
The car is slated for production sometime in the early part of 2010 in America with Hyundai bringing to the States a 2.4-liter direct-injection four-cylinder unit. The unveiling was well-attended by the local media although the international delegation seems to have been thinned out considerably since most of them were most likely on the other side of the world.
In any case, we have a video promotion of the car right here for your enjoyment.
For every person in the world that hits the lottery, there’s one on the other side of the spectrum that just can’t buy any luck.
Unfortunately, for this poor South Korean man, he’s probably wishing by now that he wasn’t at the wrong place at the wrong time. While driving along the highways of South Korea in his Hyundai Sonata, the man came across a flatbed truck with a 2009 Lamborghini Murcielago LP-670 safely stowed in the back. Rather than keep his distance from the ultra-expensive supercar, he instead crashed his Sonata into it.
To be fair, he probably didn’t mean to do it. Maybe he was mesmerized by the car – who wouldn’t - and forgot that he was about to hit it. In any case, the poor fellow is being ordered to pay for the car, which in South Korea costs at about $750,000. The guy does get some sort of relief because his insurance would pick up $100,000 of the tab. As for the remaining $650,000, that’s coming out of his own pocket.
The Hyundai Sonata used to have an easy job for three generations it was the top-of-the-line car for Hyundai. All it had to do was be a little bigger and better than the model under it to fit in the line up. But that changed mid-way through the thierd generation with the introduction of the XG in 2001. Suddenly the Sonata not only had to be the next level up from the Elantra, but it had to be a transition car for the XG. Now in its fourth generation (debuted in 2006), the Sonata is the exact middle sedan for Hyundai. It is the transition car that takes people from the budget-minded Accent and Elantra, and get them ready for the more luxury-minded Azura and Genesis.
Hyundais are getting more respect in our fleet. They are not performance cars or luxury cars, but they are beginning to show that they are decent cars for the money. The Sonata-based Santa Fe SUV we had in our fleet was a solid performer that made its most friends when it came down to the price point. The exact same feelings came back in our Sonata.
Hyundai announced today at the Chicago Auto Show the pricing for the all new 2009 Sonata. With an all-new interior, enhanced suspensions and revised powertrains boasting even more horsepower and improved fuel economy, the new Sonata is now on sale at Hyundai dealerships. Pricing start at $18,795 for the Sonata GLS and go up to $26,345 for the Sonata Limited.
For 2009, Sonata raises the bar for value and standard safety technology in the mid-size segment. Hyundai’s sales leader boasts new features ranging from standard USB/iPod auxiliary inputs to available navigation and sport-tuned suspension. Combined with Sonata’s continued leadership in safety – it remains the only mid-size sedan under $20,000 with standard Electronic Stability Control (ESC) – the 2009 American-made Sonata is the smartest choice in the competitive mid-size sedan segment.
The new, second-generation Theta II 2.4-liter DOHC inline four-cylinder engine delivers more horsepower and quicker acceleration. Fuel economy numbers are 22 mpg city/32 mpg highway with the standard five-speed manual transmission or the newly available five-speed automatic transmission with SHIFTRONIC®. The Theta II is rated at 175 horsepower and 168 lb.-ft. of torque. This high-tech, all-aluminum, 16-valve engine now features Continuously Variable Valve Timing (CVVT) on both camshafts and a Variable Induction System (VIS) for better engine breathing.
Sonata’s 3.3-liter V6 engine now pumps out 15 more horsepower and three more pound-feet of torque (249 horsepower @ 6,000 rpm and 229 lb.-ft. of torque at 4,500 rpm). This newly refined powerplant features all-aluminum construction, dual overhead camshafts, four valves per cylinder, CVVT on both camshafts and stiffer hydraulic engine mounts for optimum power, efficiency and refinement. A variable intake system is added for 2009, which further broadens its power curve, improving off-the-line acceleration and passing performance. New mileage figures for V6-powered Sonatas are 19 mpg city/29 mpg highway.