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HYUNDAI WILL EXTEND LINE WITH UPSCALE SEDAN

Now that memories of the Pony and Stellar models have almost completed faded and its reputation as a provider of solid, good-value everyday transportation has taken hold, Hyundai Auto Canada is going to take the next step and introduce a luxury-esque sedan.

So late this year we can expect the Hyundai XG Grandeur to arrive from Korea with a low- to mid-$30,000s pricetag and a fairly extensive complement of equipment, but maybe not that name since that is still TBD.

Scott Kelleher, Hyundai Auto Canada vice-president, says, "We're very excited to be expanding our model lineup with this outstanding vehicle. It provides the next step up for our Sonata owners who love their Hyundai but are looking for a car with more room and luxury features."

The XG (or whatever it's called) will be bigger than Hyundai's current large car, the Sonata, with a wheelbase of 2750 mm, a length of 4865 mm, a width of 1825 mm, and a height of 1420 mm. Those dimensions also make it about the same size as the Lexus ES 300 and the Infiniti I30, with which it will presumably compete in equipment if not price.

Kelleher says that standard equipment on the new Hyundai sedan will include a powerful DOHC V6 mated to a 5-speed automatic transmission, air conditioning, a 6-speaker AM/FM/CD stereo, 4-wheel anti-lock disc brakes, cruise control, keyless entry, power locks, mirrors and seats, 15-inch alloy wheels with Michelin V-rated tires, leather seating, a trip computer, and front and side airbags.