It's only been on the market since 2010, but such is the hectic pace of the family sedan world that the Hyundai Sonata finds itself as the elder statesmen of the midsize segment. The current, sixth-generation sedan put the Korean automaker in the hunt with its audacious Fluidic Sculpture styling and bold powertrain choices (it was the first to eschew a six-cylinder option), but time has brought with it tough new competitors from the likes of Ford, Honda, Mazda and others, so it's time for a new model.
Previewed here in this official teaser rendering is an all-new, seventh-generation model, and at first blush, it looks markedly more conservative and refined than its predecessor, with more restrained surfacing and a more traditional six-sided grille. Scheduled for a world premiere in Korea later this month, the Sonata is expected to make its first show circuit appearance at the New York Auto Show in April.
Built atop a platform with significantly more advanced high-strength steel (51 percent vs. 21 percent) and increased use of structural adhesives, the Sonata's bones promise to be both more rigid (by 40 percent) and lighter. Cloaked in Fluidic Sculpture 2.0 bodywork, so far Hyundai isn't saying much about powertrain updates, but it is trumpeting a redesigned interior with a new infotainment interface and redesigned seats.
Hyundai Motor Previews Soon-To-Be Launched All-New Sonata
- The all-new Sonata becomes more competitive through innovation in fundamentals, Human-Machine Interface (HMI), design and improved safety
- Exterior rendering image hints at refined, premium design of all-new Sonata
March 4, 2014 – Hyundai Motor Company, South Korea's largest automaker, today revealed some details of the all-new Sonata, along with its first official exterior rendering, ahead of the model's world-premiere scheduled in Korea later this month. The all-new Sonata will debut in major markets later this year.
"Since the first Sonata was introduced in 1985, Hyundai Motor's symbolic midsize sedan has contributed hugely to the company's rapid growth and brand enhancement," said Jeong Gil Park, head of the Hyundai Motor Group's Engineering Design Division. "The all-new Sonata has evolved again, based on Hyundai Motor's world-class technologies, and it will play an important role in further facilitating our shift from quantitative growth to qualitative growth."
With accumulated global sales of almost 7 million units, the all-new Sonata is expected to set a new standard in its segment, just as its predecessor did with its revolutionary design. The project began with the aim of developing a world-class premium midsize sedan through innovation in fundamentals, while maintaining its heritage.
Hyundai Motor paid attention to achieving harmony by better integrating systems, providing value beyond customers' expectations and offering a sense of premium quality in every detail.
The all-new Sonata aims to deliver the best experiences and satisfaction within all aspects of the car. In particular, Hyundai Motor focused on improving the fundamentals of the car, namely, features related to performance and safety.
As one of the key drivers of Hyundai's global sales, Hyundai Motor tested the all-new Sonata in various locations worldwide, including the famed Nürburgring in Germany and California's Mojave Proving Ground in order to maximize product competitiveness and satisfy diverse needs in terms of quality and performance from each market.
The all-new Sonata is the second model to adopt 'Fluidic Sculpture 2.0,' completing a more refined, premium look. The all-new Genesis, which made its world debut last November, was the first model based on the evolved design philosophy.
Fluidic Sculpture 2.0 retains its original spirit while being further defined by core characteristics such as simple and harmonious design with refined fluidic design elements, a modern Hyundai look with a singular hexagonal grille, easy-to-understand and pleasant design, and rich visuotactile color, material and finishing of the car.
The design keyword of the all-new Sonata is 'Inner Force.' Inner Force points to the top notch perfection of the all-new Sonata, reborn with an evolved aesthetic force that stems from purpose and sophistication.
A single-frame, premium hexagonal grille, refined sidelines and high-tech, futuristic rear design work to create an image of a dynamic, sophisticated premium midsize sedan. And the dynamic line from the hood to trunk bestows a sporty, confident image to the car while the longer wheelbase maximizes its cabin space.
Its interior design aligns with the premium exterior, adopting consistent design details that fully reflect careful consideration of ergonomics and intuitive operation. The horizontally designed cabin gives off a stable feeling, and tailored design specifications for all materials and master craftsmanship-level finish strengthen the Sonata's premium image.
The all-new Sonata was also designed to enhance Human Machine Interface (HMI) qualities, which lets drivers intuitively recognize the vehicle's controls, allowing for more convenient and effective use of those functions.
Switches are grouped by their function, facilitating easier control. In order to minimize distraction, the display screen has been moved up, while indicators on the dashboard have been standardized for intuitive recognition. Also, icons on the display screen and dashboard are now consistent.
The feel and grip for every component that the driver touches has also been improved as well. Seat comfort has been maximized with a more ergonomic cushion design.
The all-new Sonata reinforces its safety in crash tests with an improved body structure and rigidity, while other advanced features also contribute to enhancing the vehicle's overall safety.
By expanding on the application of Advanced-High Strength Steel (AHSS), which is twice as rigid yet 10 percent lighter than regular steel, the all-new Sonata achieves upgraded safety and driving performance.
The all-new Sonata's platform is now 51 percent AHSS, while the previous model had only 21 percent. In particular, most AHSS uses are for components designed to protect passengers, which works to achieve top-class safety in all aspects.
Furthermore, connection within the car frame has been strengthened by increasing the use of structure adhesive by more than 10 times than previous models and the addition of dual member structures in main parts of the body. Moreover, hot-stamping components are used three times more than for the previous model, and the hot-stamped double-section structure on the B-pillar hugely improves safety in crash tests.
Through these changes, the all-new Sonata's torsional and bending stiffness has been increased more than 40 percent compared to its predecessor. Internal tests suggest that the all-new Sonata will score "Good" at IIHS's small overlap test.
As a premium midsize sedan, the all-new Sonata secures top-class safety by adopting a variety of advanced technologies including a 7-airbag system and new seatbelt technologies.
About Hyundai Motor
Established in 1967, Hyundai Motor Company is committed to becoming a lifetime partner in automobiles and beyond. The company, which leads the Hyundai Motor Group, an innovative business structure capable of circulating resources from molten iron to finished cars, offers top-quality best-sellers such as Elantra, Sonata and Genesis. Hyundai Motor has seven manufacturing bases and seven design & technical centers outside of South Korea and in 2013, sold 4.73 million vehicles globally. With almost 100,000 employees worldwide, Hyundai Motor continues to enhance its product line-up with localized models and strives to strengthen its leadership in clean technology, starting with the world's first mass-produced hydrogen-powered vehicle, ix35 Fuel Cell.
More information about Hyundai Motor and its products can be found at:
http://worldwide.hyundai.com or http://www.hyundaiglobalnews.com