Hyundai has been moving up the ladder in terms of their position as a formidable opponent in the U.S. automotive market. Little victories have been had with each new model introduction, but lately the one that is making all the noise is the 2010/2011 Hyundai Sonata. Sales figures for the Sonata have more than doubled in 2010 compared to the previous year, which puts the Alabama built vehicle in-line to overtake the Nissan Altima as the third-best-selling large four door in the States. Given that, it is no surprise that Hyundai is now moving the 2011 Hyundai Elantra production to Alabama as well.

2011 Hyundai Elantra interior (South Korean spec)

2011 Hyundai Elantra interior (South Korean spec)

According to our partners over at, the all-new for 2011 Hyundai Elantra is “headed for production in Montgomery, Alabama…” Now some may be skeptical of this, but sources in South Korea confirm the move and U.S.-built prototypes “have been spotted during testing on American roads.” Of course, this didn’t happen without a little juggling; the Hyundai Santa Fe was being made in Montgomery until an announcement earlier this summer that said the production would be moving to the Kia branded facility in West Point, Georgia. All in all, it seems like a good move for Hyundai since the move and realignment of production opens up the possibility of more production volumes of both the Sonata and the new Elantra.

If you haven’t seen the 2011 Hyundai Elantra in pictures or in person, you might not realize it follows the design and styling cues of the Sonata. In fact, it looks like a “mini” Sonata from the front three-quarter view. If the 2011 Hyundai Elantra has the same quality of build, interior design and competitive class performance it could be a real winner in the small four-door sedan market.

Stay tuned right here to for more as we move closer to the 2010 Paris Motor Show starting at the end of next week.