While Toyota's recall crisis rages, Hyundai is best positioned to exploit its weakness, according to independent researchers. They add that consumer awareness and acceptance of Hyundai is growing but not only because of the trouble that Toyota is in.
James Bell, market analyst for Kelley Blue Book, said that Hyundai is benefiting from a perfect storm the result of its launching of the Sonata and Tucson in the market where Honda's CR-V and Accord are considered a bit stale and Toyota is facing a consumer perception crisis."
When it comes to customer loyalty, Hyundai has overtaken Toyota and Honda to take the top slot.
KBB made special mention of the Sonata, a midsized sedan that Hyundai recently redesigned. The Sonata went on sale in February but already, it has entered the top 10 list of most-researched vehicles for the first time.
Meanwhile, Edmunds last month cited the redesigned Tucson for being the most-considered vehicle of all 454 models.
When the new version debuted last December, the model surged from No. 83 to the very top. Edmunds says that a vehicle has been considered when a web site guest checks out its reviews, videos, photos, and goes as far as to take a look at the trim lines.
It's actually the first time a Hyundai model has been on top, and records show that no other vehicle has risen as quickly as the Tucson. Last January, the Sonata had been at No. 33 but in February, it was ranked as No. 4.