2012 Hyundai Sonata gets a minor facelift but more potent engine

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The new 2012 Hyundai Sonata gets a bit of a facelift for the South Korean market version. As we know from experience, U.S. and other parts of the world will soon have this new model as well, and it is likely the U.S. will get the first taste by early next year.

At a glance, it is hard tell any differences from the 2011 Hyundai Sonata mid-size sedan. But after a few surgical looks, we noticed that it has a few cosmetic changes that include a revised front grille, more inner chrome headlights, new LED taillights, slimmer side mirror housing, and a new set of 18-inch alloy wheels.

As for the interior, the new 2012 Hyundai Sonata receives a few minor changes with higher grade features such as a three-piece panoramic sunroof as standard, new seven-inch touch-screen navigation with HD radio, rear backup camera available on the SE trim. But the best new feature is the Blue Link as standard on all 2012 Sonata.

The Blue Link from Hyundai keeps track of almost everything with up-to-the-minute traffic and weather information and is a lifeline to emergency services and roadside assistance. In addition, it can link to a smartphone to display search information.

The powertrain of the 2012 Hyundai Sonata has been replaced with a more potent and fuel efficient engine. It is now powered by a 2.0-liter turbocharged four-cylinder engine producing 271 horsepower; it has an estimated fuel economy of 22 mpg city and 34 mpg hwy. In addition to the new turbocharged engine, it also be offered with a hybrid powertrain that is rated at 40 mpg.