Menu
Lifestyle

Updated Hyundai Sonata makes a fresher pitch for 2018

The 2018 Hyundai Sonata Premium.
The 2018 Hyundai Sonata Premium. Mark Bramley

THE mid-size sedan market is melting down at a similar pace to the Arctic ice sheets. Few buyers see the merit in a low-slung sedan when they can buy a high-riding SUV for similar money.

Logic suggests car brands devote their attention elsewhere yet the segment is a battlefield for bragging rights. Much as the prestige marques see their big limousines as flagships for the brand, so do mainstream makers fixate on the mid-size class to highlight their wares.

In the case of the Hyundai Sonata, a midlife update changes every panel but the roof as the model is tricked up to play with newer entrants.

 

The 2018 Hyundai Sonata Premium.
The 2018 Hyundai Sonata Premium. Mark Bramley

Beyond streamlining the car, the company has also trimmed the range by dropping the mid-spec Elite. That leaves a mammoth $14,500 gulf between the base Active and the Premium.

Hyundai explains by the price jump by noting private buyers gravitate to the top-spec version while the base car is a fleet favourite. The differences are largely in refinement.

The entry 2.4-litre engine and six-speed automatic give way to the Premium's 2.0-litre turbo and - its major claim - eight-speed auto. Likewise the foot-operated park brake is upgraded to an electronic job, the Premium comes standard with a panoramic glass roof and has cooled/heated front seats and active safety gear including adaptive cruise control, blind-spot and lane-departure alerts.

The boot is cavernous at 461L, no mean feat considering there's a full-size spare tucked under the carpet. Both versions are rated to tow up to 1300kg.

 

The 2018 Hyundai Sonata Premium.
The 2018 Hyundai Sonata Premium. Mark Bramley

ON THE ROAD

A chirp from the front wheels on hard takeoffs is about as anti-social as the Sonata's engineering permits. The steering is feather-light at city speeds, as is the accelerator pedal. Engaging sports mode adds more resistance to the front end without altering the level of feedback through the wheel, which is one of the Sonata's few deficiencies.

The suspension is tailored for family duties and meets that mark with travel to spare. It irons out most bumps without the impact intruding into the cabin and achieves that without wallowing through the turns or when accelerating or braking.

It is effortless rather than engaging and that will suit the majority of owners who rate space, safety and features above on-the-limit dynamics.

 

The massive boot of the 2018 Hyundai Sonata Premium.
The massive boot of the 2018 Hyundai Sonata Premium. Mark Bramley

VERDICT

The Sonata looks significantly different and that will be enough - for now - to keep it in contention. As newer competitors arrive, it will need to up the ante.

Topics:  craig duff hyundai australia hyundai sonata hyundai sonata 2018 review road test



6 items coming up at Council

PENNY DROPS: Cr Karen Tom explains how the SRV will be calculated to South Grafton builder Col Brown.

SRV tops the list of items up for discussion

New police unit to target drug supply

NSW Police Assistant Commissioner Gary Worboys launched drug region enforcement squad.

Region Enforcement Squad established in Coffs-Clarence command

Want to be a fire fighter? This might be the job for you

NSW Fire and Rescue Grafton captain Garry Reardon is calling for new recruits for both Grafton and South Grafton stations.

Do you have what it takes to be a fire fighter?

Local Partners

$1600 makeup destroyed by young child's glittery rampage

Over a thousand dollars’ worth of expensive make-up destroyed at the hands of a small child.

Noosa trainer's 'car exercises' to fight our lazy lifestyle

Noosa personal trainer Dmitri Simons demonstrates the "Seatbelt Flys".

No gym membership? No worries - all you need is a vehicle.

Hardworking truckie retires after million-dollar Lotto win

$1.364m win earns man an early retirement

Mum’s outrage over toddler hair removal tip

American blogger Sturdy Mum called out Parents magazine for their hair removal toddler tips.Source:Instagram

What is this teaching our young children about appearances?

premium_icon Billionaire’s yacht sails into Tasmania

A mega yacht which sailed into the River Derwent and anchored at Sandy Bay on Sunday. Photo: PATRICK GEE

Largest all carbon fibre composite-hulled yacht in the world

Man’s love-bait relationship with saltie

The saltwater croc named Nike at Bawaka homeland in East Arnhem Land is being treated as a pet.

“Crocodiles are extremely unpredictable...''

premium_icon Frances Abbott engaged after two-week romance

Sam Loch and Frances Abbott have been dating for only two weeks but love seems to have struck. Picture: Instagram

Frances Abbott has hinted that she is ready to settle down