Jalopnik Reviews: 2006 Hyundai Sonata, Part 1

Hello, my name is Robert and I m a sports car snob. [Hello, Robert — ed.] It s been a week since I last drove a Porsche. I ve had a rough time since then, but like the last guy said, it s all about taking life one nondescript set of wheels at a time. In fact, I was really proud of myself when I watched the lady who brings me the test cars drive off in the C4, leaving me with a Hyundai Sonata. I swear I didn t cry or yell or act out or anything. Sure, I was a little depressed. And I guess I shouldn t be making those engine sounds when I m out jogging. But at least I ve managed to cope with driving a completely invisible car.

Don t get me wrong: the Sonata s a thoroughly decent form of transportation. If you use that breathing technique we learned in group and imagine the badge shooting off into space, there s nothing wrong with it. The Sonata s attractive enough not to be ugly. It s fast enough not to be slow. The engine isn t what I d call quiet, but it s not rough sounding either. The gearbox changes gears. And it handles OK. If you push it, the Korean car understeers all day, every day, until the end of days. But that s good, right?

Let s face it: the Sonata is one of those cars people drive because it doesn t cost a lot of money and the warranty s great and the trunk s big and there s plenty of rear legroom and they get lots of free stuff like central locking and airbags and they feel really, really comfortable driving a sedan that s got about as much soul as a rental car — except that it s much better built than any of those crap cars GM, Ford and Chrysler regularly dump into rental car fleets cause no one except a short-sighted eighty-year-old on a fixed income would even consider buying such a deeply, deeply bland car.

We all know the sort: people who ve never felt the thrill of pulling up to a restaurant s valet parking stand in an exotic sports car, listening to the white hot mechanicals pinging behind them, knowing that they ll return to take the beast back out into the urban jungle, to show all those automotive retards what a REAL car can do. People who can t even pronounce Porsche, never mind understand the difference between a 911 C4 and a Turbo.

Sorry. Where was I? Oh yes: the Sonata. Well, I ve got to say something about the car, as all of you expect me to. But I can t think of anything important right this second Oh, it s got a five star crash rating. And the LX has 17 euroflange alloy wheels. Flange is a funny word. Flange. That cracks me up. I have no idea what it means, you know, in this instance. But the Sonata s ride is nice Actually, it s a bit cheap-feeling over serious bumps, but that s probably just me I really miss driving the Porsche. Thanks. [by Robert Farago]

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Jalopnik Reviews: 2006 Hyundai Sonata, Part 2, Part 3 [internal]