Hyundai has revealed that it will be launching two new models in the Middle East. One of them will be the 2020 Palisade crossover SUV, which will replace the outdated Grand Santa Fe. Meanwhile, buyers looking for their next car in the busy D-segment should keep their eyes open for the 2020 Sonata sedan. The latter constitutes the eighth generation of Hyundai’s longest-running and ultra-popular mid-size sedan, which first went on sale back in 1985. In comparison, the Palisade is an all-new model and slots above the Santa Fe, becoming the new flagship in the carmaker’s arsenal.
Upon launch, the 2020 Palisade will replace the ageing Grand Santa Fe and will compete against the likes of the Ford Explorer, Kia Sorento, and Mazda CX-9. Under the skin, this new Hyundai crossover shares much of its underpinnings with the newly-launched Kia Telluride. On the other hand, the next-gen Sonata will rival the Toyota Camry, Honda Accord, and Nissan Altima. Both new models boast attractive designs and come loaded with some of the latest technologies and features in their respective segments. The new Hyundai Sonata ‘s exterior styling is a definite upgrade from the outgoing model. It’s now irrefutably more handsome and sophisticated and bears a dynamic yet elegant stance. It seems like Hyundai has borrowed some styling cues from the Genesis design book. And as far as I’m concerned, it has most definitely worked.
As for the all-new Palisade, its contemporary styling goes hand-in-hand with a luxurious and spacious interior. The seven-seater crossover will also feature some of the latest in safety equipment, including Forward Collision-Avoidance Assist with Pedestrian Detection, Blind Spot Collision-Avoidance Assist, Lane Following Assist, Rear Cross-Traffic Collision Avoidance Assist, Safe Exit Assist, High Beam Assist, Driver Attention Warning and Smart Cruise Control with Stop and Go functionality. As per the carmaker, even the less expensive Sonata will benefit from the new ‘Hyundai SmartSense’ advanced driver assistance package, which will include some of the safety tech that’s available on the Palisade flagship.
Hyundai has also worked extensively to revamp the interior of the Sonata. It not only looks posher than before, but it now showcases a better build quality, richer-feeling materials, top-notch fit & finish, and a thoroughly updated infotainment system. In fact, both of these new Hyundai models sport classy and modern interiors. Not just that, the Korean marque has also integrated better measures to keep road and wind noise at bay. The new Palisade and Sonata also make use of higher strength steel in their construction, while the latter is the first-ever Hyundai car to ride on the latest third-generation vehicle platform. This new platform, claims Hyundai, is a big contributor into making the 2020 Sonata a better car to drive, especially when compared to the outgoing iteration.
Under the bonnet, the stylish Sonata comes with a 2.5-litre four-popper that develops 191 hp and 245 Nm of torque. It comes paired to an 8-speed automatic slush box that spins the front wheels. The GDi mill is capable of pushing the Sonata to a top speed of over 200 km/h, with the dash from nought to 100 km/h purportedly taking around 8.5 seconds to complete. The mid-size sedan does even better on the fuel efficiency side of things – returning a respectable 7.1 L/100 km. Meanwhile, the flagship Palisade comes packing a 3.8-litre V6 from the Lambda series of engines and is good for 295 hp and 355 Nm of shove. Just like the Sonata, the Palisade too uses an 8-speed gearbox that has been developed in-house and is equipped with Hyundai’s HTRAC all-wheel-drive system for improved traction.
As of now, Hyundai hasn’t released the actual launch dates for the new Palisade and Sonata. However, the company did mention that the cars are surely headed for our shores, with the expected arrival being sometime this summer.