2011 HYUNDAI SONATA HYBRID
At the 2010 New York Auto Show, Hyundai will take the wraps off its 2011 Sonata Hybrid. Right now, if you want a midsize sedan that’s also a hybrid, you have exactly two choices: the 2010 Toyota Camry Hybrid, or the new 2010 Ford Fusion Hybrid.
The fuel-sipping four-door is the latest proof of the Korean maker’s intent to go head-to-head with the struggling Toyota. It will use lithium-polymer cells in its battery pack, entirely skipping the nickel-metal-hydride cells that Toyota, Honda, Ford and other hybrid makers currently use.
The powertrain in the 2011 Sonata Hybrid will be similar to the one in the Nuvis concept crossover from the 2009 New York Auto Show: a 2.4-liter four, six-speed automatic transmission, and a 30-kilowatt electric motor powered by a 1.4 kilowatt-hour battery pack.
2011 HYUNDAI EQUUS
Hyundai’s latest and most upscale foray into the luxury segment was revealed. The Equus is the most expensive Korean vehicle to hit the U.S. market, and whether or not it will be accepted by U.S. consumers will be a critical test for Hyundai. Hyundai is taking aim at a wide range of competitors with the Equus, including the Mercedes S550, the Lexus LS 460 and the Audi A8.
Power is drawn from Hyundai’s Tau 4.6-liter V8 making 385 hp and 333 lb-ft of torque. Consumers used to purchasing Hyundai vehicles as basic transportation will be surprised at the high level of amenities offered in the Equus. They include an optional massaging driver seat, an optional camera located in the front grille to help detect objects when parking, and a premium audio system with 17 speakers.
The interior is laden with leather and technology, including navigation, satellite radio and Bluetooth. The suspension has continuous damping control, and 19-inch chrome alloy wheels are standard.