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Discussion Starter #1
My father was raving about the new Sonata from videos, so I took a quick test drive of the Hyundai Sonata today. Was a quick round' the block, so this more initial impressions than a full review.

Ride and handling seem pretty comparable. The Sonata's steering is lighter, but it's more of a preference I guess. It also rides a bit softer, but I think part of that is because of Mazda6's 19" wheels. I think current Mazda6's suspension is a good balance; it gives good road feedback while also being comfortable. However, you can only get so far with 19" wheels, and harder bumps are definitely more noticeable in the Mazda6.

Powertrain wise, the 1.6L Turbo was smooth and has good power, but the 8-speed felt excruciatingly slow to down shift. I really don't hype around higher speed transmissions. Mazda's 6-speed is very quick and doesn't feel like it lacks gears at all, even after I just drove the new Sonata.

The new Sonata's full digital gauge cluster and infotainment definitely have a big wow factor but while the interior design is much improved, the interior materials were noticeably worse than my Mazda6. It's especially pronounced in the knee area, where I've gotten used to my Mazda6's plush center console. In general, there were noticeably more hard touch points.

The passenger seat can't be raised/lowered. It is only 4-way. No heated rear seats. No power folding mirrors, which you can now get on the Mazda6. No rain-sensing wipers, either.

Part of me thinks this because the Hyundai Azera(Grandeur) still exists in other markets. If you want those extra features found in the Mazda, Hyundai would probably direct you to an Azera or Genesis.

What I don't is why Hyundai gets all the credit for having value. A Mazda 6 in Grand Touring Reserve or Signature trim makes much better value proposition, especially they come standard with the potent 2.5L Turbo. The Sonata Limited, at $34,000, only gets a 1.6L Turbo and Hyundai is going to make you go for an N-Line to get the larger engine.

Anyway, thanks for reading. Overall, it's definitely a huge step over the old model. Would need to spend more time with it for a more detailed review, such as how the seats hold up after an hour of driving, for example.
 

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It's a gorgeous car, they knocked it out of the park with the exterior design. Looks like an Audi with a little Jaguar influence mixed in. I like Hyundais and think they're a good value for what they are (I also work for a dealership group that includes Hyundai). I wouldn't be interested in purchasing one for myself since it doesn't have a third pedal, but it's a fine commuter car with a great warranty.
 

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238595

Probably the best looking Hyundai ever made...
 
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It look a bit weird from some angles though. My experience with Hyundai - chassis and steering falls a tad behind the competition as well as drivetrain, and the ride is impeccably smooth on perfect roads but quickly turns to complete garbage over bad stretches of pavement.
 

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I had the original Genesis sedan (2009 V6 fully loaded) and it was the best car I've ever owned. Never did anything to it beyond gas, tires and oil changes and she gave me 8 years and 235k miles of trouble free cruising. Hyundai has come a long way even from that amazing car.

That said, what they are doing with this Sonata is a bit weird. The design is mostly good but with some jarring aspects thrown in at random (not a fan of the chrome mustache or the tail light stretching across the trunk lid). They threw in the gorgeous display and gauge cluster but then drop features like heated rear seats and power passenger seat. Only offering the 1.6T is also a head scratcher to me. Nonetheless, very interesting product...
 

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Discussion Starter #6
I had the original Genesis sedan (2009 V6 fully loaded) and it was the best car I've ever owned. Never did anything to it beyond gas, tires and oil changes and she gave me 8 years and 235k miles of trouble free cruising. Hyundai has come a long way even from that amazing car.

That said, what they are doing with this Sonata is a bit weird. The design is mostly good but with some jarring aspects thrown in at random (not a fan of the chrome mustache or the tail light stretching across the trunk lid). They threw in the gorgeous display and gauge cluster but then drop features like heated rear seats and power passenger seat. Only offering the 1.6T is also a head scratcher to me. Nonetheless, very interesting product...
In person, the chrome 'stash on the SE is worse than it looks, even the salesman went out of his way to mention the fact he he didn't like it. The fascia on the SEL/Plus and Limited is much better. I'd pay the extra for the SEL just to get the better fascia.

As I've said previously on this forum, building cars to a price point is give and take. Each manufacturer knows their audience or the audience they are trying to attract, and put money where it's needed to attract said audience. Clearly, the buyer Hyundai is going for values the more fancy tech. Mazda is going for the luxury angle, and puts the extra money in the interior over having the most cutting edge technology in terms screens, phone integration, etc.

Overall, I'd say I would buy the new Sonata over the Camry and Accord. For me, I'd definitely wait to see to what the completely next gen Mazda6 has in store. With that said, modern cars have gotten so good that I think anyone here would be more than satisfied with most options in this segment. It's great to have choice.
 
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