The D-segment or midsize sedans have never been very popular in Pakistan due to two main factors. Number one is that their prices have always been beyond what a vast majority of car buyers would consider affordable, and number two is the fact that, for most people, the D-segment cars are a novelty product rather than a need-based product.
However, Hyundai Nishat is seemingly unbothered by such market traits and has decided to introduce a midsize executive sedan in Pakistan. To those wondering, Hyundai Sonata is a D-segment sedan that, upon arrival, will take on the likes of Toyota Camry, Honda Accord, Mercedes Benz C-Class, BMW 3-Series, Audi A4, etc.
As per recent reports, the vehicle will be coming to the Pakistani market in two variants. Although the names of the variants have not yet been revealed, the report does add that the base variant will have a 2.0-liter naturally aspirated 4-cylinder petrol engine, while the top-trim variant will feature a 2.5-liter naturally aspirated 4-cylinder petrol engine.
The former produces 152 horsepower and 192 newton-meters (Nm) of torque, while the latter produces 191 horsepower and 245 Nm of torque. The former is mated to a 6-speed automatic, while the latter is mated to an 8-speed automatic gearbox.
The Sonata, being an executive sedan, boasts some premium features. Here is a list of features and accessories that the vehicle is expected to have in Pakistan:
- Dual Airbags
- Dual Zone Auto Climate Control
- Modern 8-inch Infotainment Unit
- Wireless Charger
- Push Start Button
- Nappa-Leather Seats
- Panoramic Sunroof
- Front + Rear Parking Sensors
- Rear Camera
- Dynamic Guidelines
- Adaptive Cruise Control
- Advanced Lane Keep Assist/Departure Warning System
- Blindspot Monitoring
- Anti-lock Braking System (ABS) with Electronic Brakeforce Distribution (EBD) and Brake Assist (BA) technology
- Hill-start assist and descent control
- LED Daytime Running Lights (DRLs)
- Dual LED Projection Headlights
- Retractable Rear Seat Shade (Premium Trim Only)
- Heads Up Display (Premium Trim Only)
- 6 Airbags (Premium Trim Only)
This is where Hyundai Nishat is likely to score big sales and revenue numbers, as the vehicle is reportedly going to be assembled locally in Pakistan, which implies that it is going to be much cheaper as compared to its competition.
Bear in mind that the Honda Accord and the Toyota Camry, both of whom are direct competitors to the Sonata, are being sold in Pakistan as completely built-up (CBU) units, meaning that the company has to price them twice as high as the original price tag to make up for the duties and taxes on the import of CBUs.
The Honda Accord costs around Rs. 12 million whereas the Toyota Camry costs Rs. 18.6 million in Pakistan. These price tags seem unreasonably huge, even for car buyers hailing from a higher socio-economic class.
The Sonata, however, has the potential to become a popular choice among midsize sedans in Pakistan, as it is being reported that it is likely to cost between Rs. 7 million and Rs. 9 million.
Although these prices can, under no circumstances, be considered cheap, they are much more “within reason” as compared to those of the Honda Accord and the Toyota Camry, which is likely to allow the Sonata a huge leg-up over its competition.