2011 Hyundai Sonata Wins AutoPacific President's Award

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We knew the 2011 Hyundai Sonata is a good new car, but we did not know how good. Luckily, the 2011 Sonata was launched early in 2010 during the time period AutoPacific‘s 2010 New Vehicle Satisfaction Survey was in the field. We were able to add the new Sonata to the 2010 survey to see how this newcomer would compare with 2010 model year competition. Nine-hundred seventy-five owners of the new Sonata responded to AutoPacific’s survey on our VehicleVoice survey site.
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The results were astonishing. The Sonata scored the highest ratings ever in the 14 year history of AutoPacific’s vehicle satisfaction research. As a 2011 model year car, the Sonata was not eligible for AutoPacific’s 2010 Vehicle Satisfaction Award, but we felt it was only right to recognize the Sonata in some way. Hence, AutoPacific is awarding the 2011 Hyundai Sonata with its first-ever President’s Award.

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Vehicle Satisfaction Award Methodology Using the same methodology as used for AutoPacific’s annual Vehicle Satisfaction Awards, owners of the new 2011 Sonata rated the importance and satisfaction with their car on 48 different attributes. These attributes ranged from styling to warranty to image to acceleration. It is a very comprehensive list.
The factors most important to owners of the 2011 Sonata are: overall quality, warranty, value for the money, reliability/dependability, fuel economy, ride, feeling safe while driving, safety features, exterior and interior styling, driver’s seat comfort and handling.
Styling Tour de Force Among Mid-Size Cars The importance of exterior and interior styling to Sonata owners is substantially stronger than for a typical Premium Mid-Size Car owner. In fact, when asking how satisfied they are with the exterior styling of the Sonata, owners rated its styling almost perfect. This is very rare in survey research. Hyundai took a major risk with the 4-door coupe-like styling of the Sonata. At least with its earliest buyers, this risk has paid off in spades.
Other than styling, what are the owners most satisfied with? Here are the leaders: overall satisfaction, exterior size, warranty, interior styling, exterior color, braking, fun to drive, reliability, fuel economy, feeling safe while driving, safety features, overall quality, value, cruising range, seating capacity, and image. In all of these areas, Hyundai owners rated the 2011 Sonata higher than or equal to the 2010 model year leader in the class.
NOTE: Suzuki Kizashi Overall Winner of 2010 Vehicle Satisfaction Award As we reported in May, the Suzuki Kizashi is the overall winner of AutoPacific’s 2010 Vehicle Satisfaction Award. The Kizashi outpointed all 2010 cars and light trucks included in AutoPacific’s satisfaction research. Kizashi’s performance is outstanding, but it was still ten points below the 2011 Hyundai Sonata. Congratulations to Kizashi – King of the Hill among 2010 model year vehicles.

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