The Sonata's midcycle updates have made a good, pleasant car even better. The interior in particular is noticeably classier (note the metallic-looking gauges and the well-wrought storage bins in the center stack, for instance), and our test car's build quality puts it near the top of the class. The cloth seats had a strange fabric covering and were a bit too firm for my liking, however, and the door panels also wore a similarly odd fabric.
Given today's fuel crisis, it's nice that Hyundai offers the loaded Sonata with the base four-cylinder powerplant, which isn't as slow as I feared. But for me, the biggest problem with the Sonata is that it doesn't excite me one bit. It completely suppresses my interest in cornering with verve. When I get out of the car, I don't even think about turning around to admire it or showing it to my neighbors. I just can't imagine that any enthusiast would be very proud to own this car ... a Honda Accord or a Chevy Malibu, sure; a Ford Fusion or a Nissan Altima, maybe; a Sonata or a Chrysler Sebring or a Toyota Camry, not so much.
Rusty Blackwell, Copy Editor