Toyota fights Hyundai’s new Sonata with refreshed Camry image

While Camry keeps its title of the best selling car in the US, the competition – like Hyundai’s new Sonata – keeps gaining ground. So, the Japanese automaker fights back with a mid-life refresh.

Both models will debut during tomorrow’s press day of the 2014 New York International Auto Show – trying to please the public before they join the mid size market battle. Toyota, which is currently the world’s leading automaker aims to secure 2014 and extend the 12-year run as the best selling US car, while Hyundai is bringing a redesigned Sonata that is much more conventional now – a departure from the radical 2010 Sonata.

“If you think of it in terms of traditional leader and traditional challenger actions, their positions are switched,” says Eric Noble, president of industry consultant CarLab. “What we’ve had the last two years is Toyota being put in the challenger position, trying to regain ground, in no small part because of Hyundai.”

The 2014 New York Auto Show also casts the spotlight to other mainstream family sedan contenders – like the Chevrolet Cruze, Ford Focus and Volkswagen Jetta.

And, to further entice buyers of the Camry, which is usually associated value and durability, not great looks, the company promised the redesign “will challenge conventional expectations of a mid-cycle model change.”

While in January and February Camry lagged behind Nissan’s Altima, the model took first place again in March – aided by leases and financing offers.

Via Bloomberg