Heels On Wheels - 2015 Hyundai Azera Review
HEELS ON WHEELS
By Katrina Ramser
San Francisco Bureau
The Auto Channel
INTRO TO THE AZERA VEHICLE
Hyundai gives the already impressive Hyundai Azera sedan an increase in notable standard features for the 2015 model year, including more safety technology, a power trunk, and an eight-inch navigation display. The stylish design has been revamped in all the right ways as well.
I drove a 2015 Hyundai Azera with the standard 293-horsepower Lamba II 3.3-liter Gasoline Direct Injection V6 engine paired to a six-speed automatic transmission system with SHIFTRONIC. Available in a base or Limited trim, my Azera Limited test drive came with the following standard highlights: leather upholstery; sunroof; push-button start; heated front and rear seats; dual climate control; a twelve-way power driver’s and eight-way power passenger’s seat; steering wheel mounted controls; interior ambient lighting; Bluetooth; an eight-inch navigation screen with backup camera; power rear sunshade; HID Xenon headlights; and Hyundai’s Blue Link telematics for streamlining everyday connectivity needs like voice text messages, web search downloads, and turn-by-turn directions. As described, starting price for the Azera begins at $38,200.
Elegant and accommodating, main competitors include other full-size sedans also carving a home on the outskirts of more luxurious nameplates like the Chrysler 300, Chevrolet Impala and Toyota Avalon into this category.
HEELS ON WHEELS REVIEW CRITERIA
Stylish But Comfortable Results: The Azera runs rampant with luxurious appointments usually reserved for pricier sedans, from soft-touch interior materials to best-in-class legroom and cargo space. With each passing year, Hyundai manages to tweak the design in subtle but sharp ways – for 2015, I notice the new LED foglights for the Limited and redesigned eighteen-inch wheels. Yet when I stack the Base next to the Limited, only a few features really seem to differentiate them – the Limited seems to benefit from just better lighting, a sunroof, and the power rear sunshade.
Reliability & Safety Factor: The 2015 Hyundai Azera has ratings of “Good” in all crash-test areas with The Insurance Institute for Highway Safety (IIHS). It is not yet rated by The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA). Standard safety features include an impact-reducing seat system and nine airbags, Vehicle Stability Management, Electronic Stability Control, Motor-Driven electric Power Steering and a state-of-the-art braking package. For 2015, Blind Spot Detection with Rear Cross Traffic alert and Lane Change Assist is now standard.
Cost Issues: The base Hyundai Azera starts at $34,000 with my Limited tapping out at $38,200 – meaning the vehicle is very well equipped with no need for pricey packages. In fact, there aren’t any: last model’s $4k Technology Package goodies have been redistributed within the trims. This makes it easier for the buyer to uncover the value, as most competitors put a price tag on the options.
Activity & Performance Ability: Aside from the fact this is one of the more sophisticated sedans on the market and a tremendous value, the Azera has been equip with a powerful engine paired to a smooth shifting transmission and tailored suspension. Hyundai’s decision to add Blind Spot Detection with Rear Cross Traffic alert and Lane Change Assist as standard features makes the stress-free – this feature will detect any vehicles in blind spots during highway driving and when backing out of busy parking lots.
The Green Concern: Such fast-acting acceleration delivers fuel economy results at 19 miles-per-gallon city and 28 highway for a combined 22 – about average for the powertrain size, but disappointing if you want four-cylinder efficiency.
FINAL PARTING WORDS
Unbeatable style that just won’t stop improving itself seems to be the working formula for the 2015 Hyundai Azera, a full-size sedan with undeniable value and performance.
©2015 Katrina Ramser
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