2010 Hyundai Sonata -- Click above for image gallery

Hyundai isn't happy about it, but the 2010 Hyundai Sonata has been caught in the Internet's voracious maw eight days before its official launch in South Korea. Hyundai then released designer's sketches of the new car... but the pics of the actual car are better because they're the realness.

Apparently caught during an ad or photo shoot, it's immediately clear that this Sonata is – as with every recent Hyundai – a break from the current competent but safe-as-houses Sonata. That long nose and greenhouse, the hood ridges, the bevels, swoops, and that serious gash down the side of the car are not the Hyundai of old. From what we can tell, it looks quite expressive and it doesn't appear to be a bad looking car, but we'll wait for next week's launch to get definitive.

You can have a look at the pics in the gallery below, but we will leave the dissection of its design to you in the comments section. Hat tip to everybody and their mothers!

*UPDATE:
Hyundai has released an official press release (available after the jump) and a pair of renderings available in the gallery below.

Related Gallery2010 Hyundai Sonata

[Source: Bobaedream (translated) via Carscoop]


PRESS RELEASE:

Hyundai Motor Begins to Take Pre-launch Orders for YF (Sonata)

(Sept. 1, 2009) Hyundai Motor Company is ready to start taking orders tomorrow for its all-new Sonata, codenamed YF, ahead of the car's official launch Sept 10th in the Korea domestic market. In replacing the NF Sonata which was launched in Sept. 2004, Hyundai decided to retain the Sonata name as the mid-size car has been Korea's perennial best-seller.

The new Sonata is fitted with a 6-speed automatic transmission and delivers gratifying performance through its 2-liter Theta II gasoline engine. Delivering 12.8 kilometers per liter, it achieves the highest fuel economy in its segment. In addition, safety has been upgraded with Vehicle Dynamic Control now supplied as a standard feature.

*VDC : Improves the safety of a vehicle's stability by detecting and minimizing skids.

The overall comfort has been enhanced through a variety of new technologies and premium specifications such as a panoramic sunroof, gear shift paddles attached to the steering wheel, and a push-button starting system.

The rendering preview features coupe like body style and exudes a dynamic image. The front side communicates an image of strength through a wide radiator grill and sharp-edged headlamp.

The flowing coupe-like lines of the new Sonata eloquently express Hyundai's "fluidic sculpture" design language, a new design direction that will play a pivotal role in enhancing the brand. Hyundai is confident that the new Sonata, equipped with the company's latest technologies, will continue the long string of successes earned by Sonata over the years.

Since the launch of the very first generation Sonata in October 1985 in Korea, 4.45 million units of Sonata have been sold worldwide. In 2004, Sonata earned the highest ranking in J.D. Power's Initial Quality Survey in the Entry Midsize Car category.