Sunday, February 13, 2011

Hyundai Preparing New Elantra Coupe, Azera and Genesis R-Spec with 429HP V8

After registering record sales in 2010, Hyundai seems committed to an all-out offensive with the company reportedly planning to launch a coupe version of the 2011 Elantra and the new Azera sedan in the U.S. within the next year or so. According to an Autoweek report, the news was broken at the National Automobile Dealers Association (NADA) convention in San Francisco, where the Korean automaker also showed its dealers a photo of the upcoming coupe.

“They showed us a photo of it and it's gorgeous,” said Doug Fox, a Hyundai dealer from Ann Arbor, Michigan. “We weren't expecting that.”

It is said that the two-door model will go on sale this spring, however Hyundai spokesman Jim Trainor neither confirmed nor denied the existence of the car, simply stating that the alleged launch date is inaccurate.

Hyundai previewed the redesigned Azera as well, which will get a new 3.3-liter direct-injected V6 gasoline engine, estimated to deliver about 260HP and better fuel economy compared to the current model.

“It'll give us that step-up car from the Sonata for when Sonata owners come back and want something a little bit larger”, Fox said.

Dave Zuchowski, Hyundai's U.S. sales boss, told reporters that the new Azera is due in January 2012, with projected U.S. sales of 18,000-20,000 units per year.

The last item on the manufacturer’s list was the announcement of a new trim level for the imminent 2012MY Genesis, dubbed R-Spec. Hyundai Motor America CEO John Krafcik said that the new model, featuring a new 429HP 5.0-liter V8 engine and in-house-developed 8-speed automatic gearbox, would make its debut at this week’s Chicago Auto Show. Base price is expected to be between $45,000-$50,000.

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