Auto blogMon, 09 Jun 2014 08:45:00 EST
Eager to get your hands on a new Hyundai Sonata? We could hardly blame you. With more mature styling and better equipment for less than the model that preceded it, the new Sonata makes a compelling case, even in a market segment this competitive that includes such rivals as the Nissan Altima, Toyota Camry, Honda Accord, Mazda6, Ford Fusion, Chevy Malibu, Chrysler 200, Volkswagen Passat and Kia Optima.
The first units are just arriving at dealers now, but if your local showroom doesn't have one for you to check out just yet, we've got good news for you as Hyundai has just launched the car's online configurator. The system lets you choose from four trim levels, nine exterior colors, a couple of equipment packages and an assortment of accessories to make your Sonata yours.
Pictured here is the top-of-the-line Sonata Sport 2.0T that starts at $29,385 (inclusive of delivery), but the base Sonata starts under $22k. Spec yours (or any new Hyundai, for that matter) in the online configurator linked here.
It's been several months since Hyundai first revealed the Veloster Re:Flex at the Chicago Auto Show. The special-edition of the quirky Korean hatchback features an array of chrome accents and exclusive available Ice Pearl paint along with LED lighting, red or black leather interior, and of course special badging all around, available exclusively with the 1.6-liter naturally aspirated four-cylinder engine and six-speed dual-clutch gearbox.
Limited to just 3,000 units, Hyundai has now released pricing for the Veloster Re:Flex edition at $21,650, plus the standard $810 destination charge, for a delivered total of $22,460. That makes it $3,850 more expensive than the base Veloster (at $17,800 list or $18,610 delivered), but add to that the $1,250 for the DCT and you're already looking at $19,860 delivered. Add on the $1,800 Style Package (all of whose equipment is included in the Re:Flex save the panoramic roof) and you're looking at a delivered price of $21,660, so in the end the actual premium Hyundai's getting for the Re:Flex edition is $800 (plus whatever the missing sunroof is worth to you, because you can't option that separate of the aforementioned Style Package anyway). Details in the press release below.
A 14-year-old joyrider was able to outrun police in Utah but couldn't make it around a protective parent in a pickup truck. According to KSTU Fox 13 News in Utah, the thieving youngster's grandfather reported the white Hyundai Veloster missing, and police were already searching for it. As it turns out, his grandson had taken it and was driving like a crazy person. He even sped through a park where children were playing and into a neighborhood (video below).
Eventually, one of the parents at the park had enough. When the Hyundai appeared to be coming back to the park, he hopped into his pickup to stop the out of control teen and put himself in harm's way. After the violent way he was stopped by an oncoming truck, the kid might think twice about stealing any more cars. Bystanders got most of the incident on cell phone videos, including the crash, and you can scroll down to watch them and the news report for a little more backstory.
There are many things we love here at Autoblog, but one of the quirkiest is the mid-engined hot hatch, whether it's the Renaultsport Clio V6 or the Volkswagen GTI W12-650 concept. Unfortunately, we can never seem to get our hands on one - the former never having made the transatlantic journey and the latter remained strictly a concept. And now we've got one more to salivate over.
It's called, simply enough, the Veloster Midship concept, and Hyundai is unveiling it this week at the Busan Motor Show in South Korea. As you might have guessed, it's essentially a Veloster with the engine - a 2.0-liter Theta turbo four producing 296 horsepower - mounted behind the two seats. It's also got a lightweight aluminum suspension, a reinforced chassis and extreme aero to help that mid-mounted turbo engine do its thing.
The project was undertaken by the same team that developed the initial i20 WRC rally car, but unfortunately as Hyundai itself says in the press release below (released with the solitary image above), "The Midship is a concept only to explore possibilities for the Veloster chassis and is currently not related to any future production model." Which is a bit of a shame, but hardly a surprise.
Hyundai's rear-wheel-drive Genesis Coupe has been soldiering along for several years with the choice of either a turbocharged 2.0-liter four-cylinder or a 3.8-liter V6, but that's about to change. Hyundai Motor America spokesperson Jim Trainor has confirmed to Autoblog: "The 2.0L Turbo engine will be discontinued starting with the 2015 model year, allowing us to reposition Genesis Coupe with its more premium performance buyer."
Rumors of the change first emerged over at The Korean Car Blog, which cited the company's ordering system as proof of the change, and it claims that there are some other changes in store for the 2015 Coupe as well. According to KCB, the base Genesis will use the 3.6 and will continue to be offered with either a six-speed manual or eight-speed automatic. Upgrading to the R-Spec model will add LED running lights, but other exterior appearance changes are unclear. Finally, the Grand Touring version will be dropped entirely, and the Ultimate trim will gain optional brown leather.
Never heard of the Hyundai Grandeur? That's alright, because that's just the name the model uses domestically. Over here it's known as the Azera, but it's back in Korea where Hyundai has revealed a revised version of what is currently the company's largest front-drive sedan.
Compared with the previous Grandeur and even the recently redone Azera we know, the new model is marginally longer and benefits from a redesigned bumpers front and rear, a new grille, new LED fog lamps and upgraded equipment. Inside there's a reshaped center stack with upgraded HVAC controls and an eight-inch nav screen, and keeping it all on the straight and narrow are all the latest electronic aids you'd expect of a high-end model from a global automaker.
Whereas the Azera is offered here with a 3.3-liter V6 packing 293 horsepower and 255 pound-feet of torque, back home Grandeur buyers get a choice of the 2.4-liter Theta II four-cylinder with 187 hp and 178 lb-ft or a 2.2-liter diesel with 199 hp and 325 lb-ft.
Based on the compiled evidence, driving in Russia is a perilous, potentially deadly venture that requires complete and total suspension of one's self-preservation instincts. Considering this, you can imagine what it's like riding a motorcycle on the notoriously wild Russian roads.
The unfortunate biker that is the subject of today's video found out the hard way. It looks like he attempted to split the lanes, and another driver took offense, sandwiching the biker (is that a Goldwing?) in the process. As you can guess by our handy headline, things deteriorate rapidly from there.
Take a look below for the full scene.
Fri, 16 May 2014 10:16:00 EST
Prices for the 2015 Sonata range from $21,150 for the 2.4-liter SE to $33,525 for the 2.0-liter, turbocharged Sport 2.0T.
The arrival of a new generation of a successful car is usually accompanied by a small surge in its price, ranging from a few hundred to a couple thousand dollars. Hyundai, though, is eschewing that practice, delivering its heavily redesigned Sonata for less than its predecessor. It's only a $300 difference over last year's base model, the Sonata GLS, but we don't think the savings will be lost on consumers. The move is part of a larger reshuffling of the Sonata line. The outgoing GLS trim has been replaced by the SE as the base car, while the 2.4-liter engine can now be ordered with the Sport trim. Meanwhile the 2.0T Sport is both the sole turbocharged offering, and tops off the Sonata pricing hierarchy.
A Montana jury has levied a $248 million ruling against Hyundai in the case of a crash that killed two occupants in July 2011. The automaker plans to appeal the ruling.
Cousins Trevor and Tanner Olson were driving a 2005 Hyundai Tiburon when they hit another vehicle head-on. According to lawyers representing their family, the steering knuckle on the car cracked and this allegedly caused it to lose control. Hyundai claimed that fireworks had been let off inside the vehicle, which caused the driver to swerve. The company alleges that evidence that could have proved its innocence was barred from the case.
The jury found in favor of the family and awarded them about $8 million in damages after a two-week trial. It claimed that Hyundai had shown "actual malice," according to Reuters. The jurors also slammed Hyundai with a further $240 million in punitive damages.
Love it or hate it, you have to admit that Hyundai went against the cookie-cutter norm when it unveiled the Veloster in 2011. And to many eyes, its oddball shape is still refreshingly original. But in the three and a half years since, Hyundai has moved its design language onwards, so it's about time the Korean automaker bring the quirky three-door (or novel four-door, depending on the angle from which you look at it) into the fold. And that's just what it appears to be doing in these latest spy shots.
Though it's hard to tell much from underneath the heavy camouflage, it's clear from these spy shots that this is indeed the Veloster, and given the center-exit dual exhaust tips, it seems to be the Turbo model and not the base naturally aspirated version. It seems to be wearing a bigger grille like the one Hyundai put on the latest Genesis, among others, and new bumpers front and back as well. The half-door on the right side does appear to be carrying over, it's wearing new wheels, and we're told there seems to be something afoot inside the cabin as well - likely revolving around an updated infotainment system.
Whether there are any consequential mechanical changes as well, we don't know. That said, development seems to be in a fairly advanced stage, so we wouldn't be surprised to see a refreshed Veloster on the show stand sometime later this year or early next at the latest.