About Hyundai Sonata
The Hyundai Sonata has been in production since 1985. The first-generation Hyundai Sonata, launched in 1985, was a Hyundai Stellar model with an upgraded engine and was withdrawn from the market after two years due to customer dissatisfaction. The first Hyundai Sonata was marketed as a competitor to the Daewoo Royale and was a more luxurious version of the Stellar. It was equipped with cruise control, power seats, adjustable headlights, power brakes, power mirrors, and chrome bumpers. In Korea, the Sonata was offered in two different configurations. The Hyundai Sonata was only sold in the domestic South Korean market. It was introduced in South Korea on November 4, 1985, and was used on the Stellar from 1987 and on the Grandeur from 1986 as an MPI version with an almost unchanged body compared to the Stellar.
The last version of the Stellar was called the Stellar 88 and was launched at the 1988 Summer Olympics, after which Hyundai replaced the Stellar with the new Hyundai Sonata. The Sonata Y2 was part of Hyundai's North American brand expansion following the success of Excel. It went on sale in South Korea on June 1, 1988. It was introduced in Canada in September 1988 as a 1989 model. And domestic production began in 1989. Some Canadian models of the Sonata were exported to Taiwan to circumvent South Korean automobile import quotas. Hyundai developed the Hyundai Sonata using Mitsubishi equipment, including the Galant S chassis and its 2.4-liter engine. The Mitsubishi-derived engines were made in Korea under license and were given the Hyundai logo. In other respects, however, they were virtually identical to Mitsubishi's 110 hp Sirius four-cylinder engine used in models for the U.S. market.
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The Y3 was launched in 1993 and is powered in most markets by a 2.0-liter inline Sirius engine. The third-generation Y3 was also produced under the Marcia name from 1995 to 1998 and was sold exclusively in South Korea alongside the Sonata. The Marcia differed from the Sonata with revised front and rear bumpers. The new EF was launched in 1998 and was based on the Hyundai-Kia Y4 platform. Compared to its predecessor, the Y3, the EF is slightly larger. The EF is in line with the first-generation Trajet and the Santa Fe, the company's first compact crossover SUV. The first-generation Kia Optima is also based on the EF and shares doors and roof panels. As part of the redesign, Hyundai strengthened the bodywork and bulkheads, widened the rear wheel track, added "wings" to the front seats, and installed thicker front brake discs.
In August 2009, the company launched a facelift of the Sonata. The 2.0-liter gasoline version is only sold in Korea. It is most popular for its fuel economy and tax and insurance advantages. Diesel versions are available in Europe, New Zealand, and Singapore, where they are a popular replacement for the Toyota Comfort Taxi. The engines, front end, chrome grille, and three-light taillights have been redesigned. An optional USB cable allows iPod connectivity, and chrome door handles are standard on the limited edition.