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First Sonata goes to Hyundai stalwarts

27 May 2005
Immediate release

First Sonata goes to Hyundai stalwarts

The first delivery of the world-challenging new Hyundai Sonata model has been made to longtime Hyundai owners Selby and Lorraine Smith of Christchurch.

In a glamour function at the Christchurch Art Gallery, Dougal Cockram - Dealer Principal of Gary Cockram Hyundai - handed over the keys to the silver Sonata Elite 3.3 V6.

This is the ninth Hyundai for Mr and Mrs Smith, a retired couple.

The General Manager of Hyundai Automotive New Zealand, Philip Eustace, was on hand to make a special presentation to the Smiths: the first Hyundai personalised number plate, HYU001.

The plate will adorn the Smiths' Sonata, the sleek mid-size sedan which is already attracting attention throughout New Zealand.

Officially on sale next Wednesday 1st June, this fifth generation of the South Korean model is attracting rave reviews from journalists and others who have driven demonstration models.

A complete redesign from the ground up, the Sonata has also been lauded by the world's motoring press as it reached shows and showrooms across the globe.

Selby and Lorraine Smith took delivery of their first Hyundai in February 1999 and have been fans of the brand every since.

"It's a great car and Hyundai has come a long way in that time," commented Selby Smith.

Lorraine Smith is currently driving a Hyundai Lavita.

"What I like is that it's easy to get in and out of," explains Mrs Smith. "I don't have the problems with my hips and legs that some of my friends do, but I still appreciate how accessible it is.

"And it's so good to drive around town."

For Selby Smith, the arrival of the Sonata means trading in his Tucson SUV.

"I've only had the Tucson for a few months and I'm very happy with it, explains Mr Smith.

"But Dougal showed me this new Sonata and we went for a drive and ... well, here we are.

"By jove it's an impressive car, it's got some real power and it's a joy to drive.

"And there's so much room for my golf clubs."

As a golfer Mr Smith chose well; there is room for an almost unbelievable four golf bags in the huge boot of this new Sonata.

For Cockram Hyundai the event was a double celebration, coming 10 years since the dealership began selling Hyundai.

"This latest Sonata superbly demonstrates what a world force Hyundai has become in that time," commented Dougal Cockram.

"It's a truly world-class car, state-of-the-art in every feature."

Longer, wider, taller and roomier than competitors, the all-new Sonata is also quicker, stronger and safer. The result of huge R&D investment by Hyundai, Sonata is available in four variants using newly developed 2.4-litre four-cylinder and 3.3-litre V6 engines.

Hyundai, which recently became just the second carmaker to export 10 million vehicles, is now recognised worldwide as a mass-market leader in safety initiatives, focused on reliability and quality as well as value.


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