Its not often the words Hyundai and Sports are used in the same sentence, but this is a rare and special moment for Hyundai. This my friends, is the Hyundai Sonata Sports. Or as Hyundai like to refer to it, the Hyundai Sonata SXi.
Now the reason you don’t hear the words Hyundai and Sports together very often is mainly because Hyundai started life as a “cheap and cheerful” brand and in the last few years it has worked so hard to shed the cheap Korean image and become a more widely accepted brand, trying to give its drivers a sense of dignity as oppose to humiliation for driving a Hyundai.
Okay, I’ll be honest, I don’t really like Hyundais, but thats not to say I am biased towards them, I have worked out that my hatred of Hyundai comes from the Hyundai Excel, the car that I did a great deal of my “learn to drive” classes in. However things have changed for Hyundai (can’t say the same about Kia though), only recently Car Advice got to drive the 2006 Hyundai Santa Fe and we loved it!
Anyway, back to the Sonata SXi, the SXi is based on the top of the range Sonata Elite V6, which comes with a 173 kW V6 engine, five-speed automatic transmission and double wishbone suspension. Hyundai suggests that the SXi might even come with a a 2.0-litre, common-rail, direct-injection turbo-diesel engine with variable-vane technology.
So if Hyundai is no longer the cheap and cheerful brand it once was, what do you actually get with this SXi? The SXi rides on cold-rolled variable-rate sports springs from F1 and World Rally supplier Eibach (Germany), but better yet, I think the SXi takes the cake for being the first Hyundai sedan to come with 19” polished alloy wheels, which seem to be mated to DBA slotted brake discs with some extra bling points for the red calipers.