Official pics of Hyundai's VW Passat rival, the Sonata, have been leaked onto Korean car forums.

The leaked pics show the U.S and Asian market model of the car but reports suggest that the ix40, a European version of the Sonata, will not be wholly different apart from the two-tier grille seen on the Tucson replacing the bolder, chrome grille shown in the pictures.

Inside the cabin, two deep set gauges and a colour screen on the driver's display hint at high quality build materials and a thoroughly modern interior. Gear-shifters mounted behind the steering wheel show that the Sonata will be available with a semi-automatic, paddle-shift gear-box. Mated to this semi-auto changer will most likely be four-cylinder and V6 petrol units along with a 2.0-litre diesel powerplant with 185hp.

The official debut of the Sonata is expected before the end of the year, with sales expected to start in all markets during the first half of 2010.
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