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Refreshing or Revolting: 2018 Hyundai Sonata

Motor Trend logo Motor Trend 5/5/2017 Motor Trend Staff
2018-Hyundai-Sonata-front-view-02.jpg Refreshing or Revolting: 2018 Hyundai Sonata

At the 2017 New York auto show, the refreshed 2018 Hyundai Sonata debuted with a new look that features the brand's cascading grille design that first appeared on the 2018 Elantra GT. Unlike most refreshes, the Sonata received a comprehensive one that changes the car's looks, giving it a more aggressive appearance compared to the conservative pre-refresh model. Take a look at the face-lifted 2018 Sonata and see how it compares to the car it replaces.

Immediately, the front fascia of the 2018 Sonata catches your eye with that new cascading grille design and reshaped headlight cluster now housing full LED units in higher trim levels. The lower front fascia has also changed with LED daytime light strips instead of circular fog lights near the air inlets, adding to that more aggressive look. For an even more sporting look, the Sport and 2.0T have a mesh pattern on their cascading grille instead of the bright horizontal strips. In comparison to the pre-refresh Sonata, the face-lifted model is more in-your-face. From the side, there are only a few design hints that differentiate the 2018 Sonata from the pre-face-lift model including the rounded headlight design.

Out back is where both cars can be distinguished since the 2018 Sonata has wider taillights with a new LED light pattern and the rear bumper has been changed as it now houses the license plate (it was moved from its original position in the center of the trunk lid). The 2.0T model has also lost the quad exhaust tips that originally came with the car when it debuted for the 2015 model year.

2018 Hyundai Sonata front three quarter 02 1© Motor Trend Staff 2018 Hyundai Sonata front three quarter 02 1

Inside, the biggest change is that all models now have a new three-spoke multi-function steering wheel, with certain trims receiving a flat-bottom unit. The center stack stays mostly similar to the outgoingSonata save for silver buttons on the center stack instead of black. The center touchscreen now has silver trim surrounding it to match the silver infotainment buttons.

With this refresh, the 2018 Sonata is now more eye-catching, but is it enough to grab people's attention the way the ground-breaking sixth-generation model did? Tell us in the comments below.

Last week's Refreshing or Revolting featured the 2017 Honda Civic Si, and the reactions were mostly negative.

"From that angle it's nice looking. The back end is kinda ugly," saidAdam Sytsma.

"Fugly! Does not catch my attention at all," said Augie Romero.

"Bland, boring and generic. Hell even if it were ugly at least it would be memorable but its not even that!" said John Hodgson Art.

"This appears to be the result of something designed by committee. Each piece appears to have been (overly) styled and subsequently cobbled together. The previous generation was lambasted for being too bland and demure. Honda did a turnaround and let loose on this thing. Please put the ugly stick down! There must be some out of work designer available to make something cohesive, let alone attractive," saidmilesm6.

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