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by Tim Beissmann

The Hyundai i40 sedan is now on sale in Australia, joining its European-designed wagon sibling and the similarly sized i45 sedan in Hyundai Australia’s comprehensive medium car line-up.

Priced from $29,990, the new i40 sedan is positioned between the Korean brand’s existing mid-sizers, starting $3000 above the base model i45 and $2500 below the entry-level i40 Tourer.

The introduction of the i40 sedan makes Australia the first market in the world to offer all three of Hyundai’s mid-size models.

The Hyundai i40 line-up mirrors that of the i40 Tourer. The entry-level i40 Active is available with either a 2.0-litre petrol engine or 1.7-litre diesel and with the choice of six-speed manual or six-speed automatic transmissions. Both engines are also available in the mid-range Elite and top-spec Premium variants, which both come standard with the auto gearbox.

The automatic transmission is a $2000 option in the Active variants, while the diesel engine commands a $2600 price premium over the petrol across the range.

At 4740mm long, 1815mm wide, 1470mm tall and riding on a 2770mm wheelbase, the i40 sedan is 80mm shorter and 20mm narrower than the i45, and has a 25mm-shorter wheelbase. The i40 sedan’s boot has a 505-litre capacity, 18 litres less than the i45 but surprisingly just one litre less than the i40 Tourer.

While the i45 (known as Sonata in some overseas countries) was designed to appeal to the North American market, the i40 was styled in Germany as a “modern premium mid-size sedan” for the European market.

The new sedan benefits from a classy interpretation of Hyundai’s ‘fluidic sculpture’ design language, with LED daytime running lights incorporated into the flowing headlights, a prominent hexagonal grille, a sleek tapered roofline and elegant LED tail-lights.

The 2.0-litre direct injection petrol engine produces 131kW of power at 6500rpm and 214Nm of torque at 4700rpm. Teamed with the manual transmission, it burns through 6.8 litres of fuel per 100km, and it uses 7.5-7.7L/100km with the auto (depending on the trim level).

The 1.7-litre diesel engine generates 100kW between 2000-2500rpm and 320Nm of torque between the same rev range (330Nm with the manual). The diesel manual is rated at 4.7L/100km combined while the auto ranges from 5.6-6.0L/100km.

The i40 sedan’s suspension has been tuned specifically for Australia, with thousands of kilometres of testing and calibration work conducted on local roads to optimise the ride for our unique conditions.

Standard features in the i40 Active include 16-inch alloy wheels with full-size spare wheel, automatic headlights with daytime running lights, front and rear parking sensors, hill-start assist, electric park brake, cruise control with speed limiter, and an audio system with AUX/USB ports and Bluetooth phone connectivity with audio streaming.

The standard safety package across the i40 sedan range includes nine airbags (dual front, front-side, rear-side, curtains, and driver’s knee) and electronic stability control, earning the maximum five-star safety rating from ANCAP.

For $5000, the i40 Elite adds 17-inch alloy wheels and larger brakes, fog lights, rain-sensing wipers, automatic windscreen defog function, smart key with push-button start, dual-zone climate control, leather/leatherette upholstery, power driver’s seat, electrochromatic rear-view mirror, alloy pedals, and a premium audio system with amplifier and subwoofer.

The Elite also scores a seven-inch touchscreen that incorporates rear-view camera display and satellite navigation with SUNA live traffic updates.

Adding another $5000 and topping the range is the i40 Premium, which scores 18-inch alloys, HID headlights with adaptive front lighting system, panoramic glass roof, electric folding mirrors, ventilated front sports seats and heated rear seats, rear cargo net, stainless steel scuff plates and satin-finish beltline moulding.

The i40 Tourer is now in run-out ahead of a 2013 model year update around August/September, which is expected to align both body styles with identical equipment levels, including the availability of sat-nav in the wagon.

Hyundai currently has an 8.7 per cent share of the medium segment in Australia with the i40 Tourer and i45, and expects the addition of the i40 sedan to take its share beyond 10 per cent of the market.

2012 Hyundai i40 sedan manufacturer’s list prices:

  • Active petrol manual – $29,990
  • Active petrol automatic – $31,990
  • Active diesel manual – $32,590
  • Active diesel automatic – $34,590
  • Elite petrol automatic – $36,990
  • Elite diesel automatic – $39,590
  • Premium petrol automatic – $41,990
  • Premium diesel automatic – $44,590



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