The Hyundai Sonata has been completely redesigned for 2020. The all-new Sonata continues the trend of providing drivers with quality features at an affordable price. It’s a mix that has made the Sonata one of the top selling mid-sized sedans in the world since it was first introduced in 1985. The 2020 Sonata ups the stakes with improved handling and torque, as well as a spacious and elegant interior that boasts plenty of technology. If you want a luxury car (sort of) at an affordable price, the overhauled Sonata should deliver on expectations. Here’s a look inside the latest Sonata.
The Hyundai Sonata enters its eighth generation in 2020. Designers and engineers at the South Korean automaker have used the occasion to tweak the exterior style of the car. This time, they’ve given it a more aggressive design. It’s sleeker, rounder, and more aerodynamic than anything seen in the past with this vehicle. The front grille is also new and much larger than in past iterations.
The overall look and feel is one of smooth style and luxury. Gone are the days of the boxy Sonata. In its place, Hyundai has created a stylish mid-sized sedan that is sure to attract buyers. The Sonata will do the trick when it comes to impressing your friends and neighbors. Of course, it’s more than just a showpiece. Here’s how the engine fares…
Engine and Performance
Some reviewers still take issue with some of the performance elements of the Sonata. They say it still lags rivals such as the Honda Accord and the Nissan Altima when it comes to handling and overall drive quality. Regardless, the new Sonata is quite fast out of the gate, with its turbocharged 1.6-liter engine. In road tests, the 2020 Sonata reached 60 MPH in only 7.3 seconds—an impressive result in this class.
The shifts from the eight-speed automatic transmission are smooth and well-timed. Hyundai has also won praise for continuing with a conventional automatic transmission in the Sonata, while most similar vehicles have switched to less reliable and more boring continuously variable automatic transmissions. Additionally, the 2020 Sonata is available with a trio of new powertrains — including a hybrid option that can charge its battery from energy captured by solar panels on the car’s roof.
Trimlines and Prices
The 2020 Sonata comes in a total of seven trimline, which is a lot for any vehicle. To be fair, though, some of these include the same features, just with the hybrid engine. Many car companies offer only three or four. However, when it comes to the Sonata, you have plenty of choice.
There’s the entry level SE model, which starts at $24,555. Unless you’re strapped for cash, skip that one. Aim for at least the SEL, which rises in price to $26,655, or the Blue hybrid for $27,000. The mid-range SEL Plus will set you back $28,605, while the SEL hybrid starts at $31,000. Finally, the Limited edition is $34,455 and the Limited hybrid totals about $35,000.
The fact that the price range for the Sonata spans only about $10,000 total across seven trimlines speaks to the car’s affordability. Reviewers seem to agree that the SEL Plus trim is the cheapest way to get into the Sonata’s 180 horsepower turbocharged four-cylinder engine. It’s also fairly inexpensive at less than $30,000. It’s still packed with luxury features such as 18-inch wheels, paddle shifters, suede seating, a wireless phone-charging pad, and the ability to use your smartphone to enter the vehicle.
The Sonata’s interior is where the new 2020 model shines. The spacious and well-appointed interior has earned lots of praise from critics. They say it definitely feels luxurious and worth more than the car’s sticker price would suggest. As mentioned, getting a luxury car feeling at entry level car prices it what makes the Sonata such an attractive option.
The Sonata’s back seat is comfortable and spacious, the materials look and feel upscale, and the dashboard layout is both intuitive and ergonomic. Armed with 16 cubic feet of cargo space, the Sonata provides all the storage capacity you would expect from a mid-size sedan. Hyundai claims that seven suitcases can fit in the Sonata’s trunk, with room to spare.
Technology and Safety Features
In addition to a large and comfortable interior, the new Sonata comes loaded with technology. The centerpiece is an infotainment system that has an eight-inch touchscreen. In SEL models that have the “convenience package” (as well as the SEL Plus and Limited models), there’s a 12.3-inch digital gauge cluster. As mentioned, the new digital key feature enables you to use Hyundai’s app and your smartphone to unlock the car and operate certain vehicle functions remotely.
As for safety features, the 2020 Sonata earned a five-star rating from the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) and was named a Top Safety Pick by the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety (IIHS). Safety features that come standard on the car include automated emergency braking, lane-keeping assist, and blind-spot monitoring. All-in-all, the Sonata earns its stripes when it comes to technology and being one of the safest vehicles on the road.
Hyundai has a reputation for having one of the very best warranty coverages in the business. At a time when automakers are phasing out longer warranty coverage altogether, Hyundai still provides a 10-yea, 100,000-mile powertrain warranty. The company also now offers complimentary scheduled maintenance that is better than their rivals.
Hyundai’s standard warranty package on all of its vehicles includes five year or 60,000 miles, for bumper-to-bumper coverage. Their powertrain warranty covers 10 years or 100,000 miles. Additionally, complimentary maintenance is provided for three years or 36,000 miles. It’s really excellent coverage when compared to just about any other automaker.
Fuel Economy and Battery Range
Hyundai says the hybrid Sonata earned Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) fuel-economy estimates of up to 54 miles per gallon when driven on a highway, 50 MPG when driven in the city, and 52 MPG combined. An array of solar panels embedded in the hybrid’s roof helps provide additional electric driving range.
The base 2.5-liter engine and the turbocharged 1.6-liter engine are both rated by the EPA to earn more than 30 MPG combined, which is strong. As with the warranty coverage, the Sonata’s fuel economy and battery range are about as good as it gets these days. They are both strong selling points.
- Luxurious and spacious interior and lots of great technology.
- Exceptional warranty coverage and a Top Safety Pick of the IIHS.
- Excellent fuel economy and battery range in the hybrid model.
- Handling and driving performance leave something to be desired.
- While improved, the engine is not as powerful as those found in competing cars.
- With a total of seven trimlines, the Sonata may give consumers too much choice.
The Last Word
The all-new 2020 Sonata is a mid-sized car that you will feel good about. From the price and luxury-like interior to the technology, safety features, warranty coverage and fuel economy, the Sonata is exceptional in almost every category. While the engine and overall driving experience may not be as stellar as its competitors, the Sonata is nevertheless a sedan that checks a lot of the right boxes. Few other cars on the market offer as much luxury at such a reasonable price. The 2020 Hyundai Sonata is a car that truly delivers.