MORE front leg room than a Holden Commodore, wider than arch rivals the Toyota Camry and the Mazda6, and class leading rear leg room – and that’s just the interior space in the super roomy 2015 Hyundai Sonata Premium – wait until you drive it.
Described as the mid-sized sedan category’s sleeper vehicle in our review of the Subaru Liberty 3.6R, this car really is the surprise packet of the genre so far. While the beefy 180kW of power and 350Nm of torque is slightly less than some of its rivals, the spanky but a little thirsty (9.2L/100km) 2L GDi turbo engine delivers a strong driving performance that for us, was nothing short of exciting. It had power on tap, particularly out of corners, thanks to a great torque range.
The six speed auto (front wheel drive) Sonata Premium replaces the top-end i45 in the Hyundai stable, with the number based moniker killed off by the Korean car maker as it moves back to branding its vehicles with actual names and matching the new look Sonata to the fluidic design of the Genesis – and it really is a fantastic car to drive – big on power and performance (I know we said that already but it really is out of the box).
There’s plenty of features too, aside from the usual things you would expect from the pointy end of a model range, you’ll also find the seriously cool panoramic glass sunroof, heated and ventilated front seats, rear sun blinds (which really do add to the family friendliness of this car) bi-xenon headlamps, front parking sensors, rain activated wipers, an electronic parking brake and an eight inch touchscreen with SatNav.
It does suffer from some of the blandness of the Active model (the base Sonata model), but with bigger wheels, and a sleeker look and feel, it’s easy to forget about that and move onto the interior comforts, and driver focused development the car has undergone.
The 2015 Hyundai Sonata Premium is a pricey buy at $41,990 plus on-roads, but there’s a lot to love about it, the performance, the interior room, the features. It’s definitely worth more than a passing glance and should be a must test on your shopping list if you’re in the market for a mid-sized sedan.
A heads-up for the unsuspecting punter too, Hyundai is rumoured to be planning a Series II version of the new Sonata very late this year, that will likely add some minor tweaks including shift paddles, and improved safety features such as automated braking and smart cruise control – but expect these improvements to push the price even higher.
Our test vehicle was provided by Hyundai Australia. To find out more about the 2015 Hyundai Sonata Premium, contact your Hyundai dealer.