Hyundai's once-popular Sonata sedan to be discontinued in NZ
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Over the last year or so, we have seen numerous brands pull sedans that were once big sellers in the New Zealand market. Two of the biggest being the Honda Accord, and Subaru's Legacy.
It seems that another once-popular sedan has fallen victim to the rise of the SUV in the form of Hyundai's Sonata sedan, which was once a common sight across New Zealand roads.
When inquiring about the next-generation Sonata that was recently unveiled by the Korean brand, it was confirmed that Hyundai doesn't "have plans to bring the Sonata or Sonata N-Line into New Zealand."
Starting life here in NZ back in the '80s, the Sonata was first known as the Stellar, and it was a bit of a 'bitsa'. While it used a Hyundai body, it was powered by a Mitsubishi '4G' engine.
When the '90s rolled around, the Sonata got its name, and it stuck until the sixth-generation, when the curvy sedan became the i45. When the seventh-generation car hit our shores, Hyundai decided to reinstate the Sonata nameplate.
With the Sonata gone, we wouldn't be surprised to see the Kia Optima soon meet a similar demise here in NZ, with Hyundai's sister brand also shifting focus towards the SUV market.
Considering that SUVs and utes now account for over half of all vehicles sold in New Zealand, we can't see the humble sedan making a comeback anytime soon.