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Hyundai News:Hyundai Details Ioniq for South Korea


William Maley

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After launching a number of teasers and doing a slow drip of information, Hyundai has finally revealed the Ioniq to the South Korean marketplace. If you're wondering about the name, it is a mashup of "ion" and "unique".

 

The Ioniq's exterior is largely diticated on aerodynamic effiency. The shape is very familar to the likes of the Toyota Prius and Chevrolet Volt. But Hyundai says the design gives the Ioniq e a drag coefficient of just 0.24.

 

Now the big thing with the Ioniq is that is capable of having a hybrid, plug-in hybrid, and electric powertrains thanks to a new platform specifically built for this purpose. At the moment, Hyundai is dishing out the specs on the hybrid version which will come with a new 1.6-liter four-cylinder (104 horsepower and 108 pound-feet of torque) paired with an electric motor (43 horsepower). Combined power output stands at 139 horsepower and 195 pound-feet. A six-speed dual-clutch automatic routes power to the front-wheels. A lithium-ion polymer battery pack provides power to the electric motor.

 

Hyundai hasn't revealed the overall range for the Ioniq hybrid, but did reveal that it will travel on electric mode at speeds of up to 75 MPH.

 

The Ioniq will debut at the Geneva Motor Show and New York Auto Show in March. We'll likely learn more details about the hybrid, along with the introductions of the plug-in and electric models.

 

Source: Hyundai

 

Press Release is on Page 2


 

Hyundai IONIQ Hybrid Breaking Hybrid Stereotypes

  • Electric, plug-in hybrid and hybrid powertrains available in a single body type, a world first
  • IONIQ delivers entertaining drive through all-new platform and responsive powertrains
  • IONIQ Hybrid combines newly developed engine and electric motor for class-leading fuel economy
  • Unique and future-looking design influenced by efficiency and technology


January 14, 2015 – Hyundai Motor Company, South Korea’s largest automaker, has unveiled the IONIQ, its advanced, alternative-fuel compact vehicle due for launch in 2016. The car will be available with an electric, plug-in gasoline/electric hybrid (HEV), or gasoline/electric hybrid powertrain, with the IONIQ Hybrid variant the first to come to market.

 


“The launching event announced the start of new future mobility and our will for technological innovation to the world. Hyundai Motor will spearhead efforts to become the global number two in the green car market by introducing over 22 models in the eco-friendly car line-up by 2020,” said Moon-Sik Kwon, Vice Chairman at Hyundai Motor R&D Center. “IONIQ has been developed incorporating all of our technological capacities. The hybrid, pursuing the highest efficiency in its class, is economically efficient and stays true to the fundamentals of a car by delivering the fun to drive through a modern design and dynamic driving performance,” he added.

 

The IONIQ Hybrid responds to rapidly changing customer lifestyles by breaking the mold for hybrid vehicles as it not only offers class-leading fuel efficiency but also a fun, responsive drive and attractive design, a unique mix not yet achieved by a hybrid vehicle.

 

The IONIQ Hybrid is equipped with a newly developed, dedicated 1.6 GDI four-cylinder Kappa engine and a 32kW (43.5PS) electric motor, which is fed by an advanced Lithium-Ion polymer battery. The two powertrains have combined maximum output of 103.6kW (141PS) and 27kg.m (265Nm) of torque. A newly developed six-speed dual-clutch transmission (6DCT) provides responsive performance and a slick gear shift, resulting in an entertaining drive, and good fuel economy.

 

The IONIQ’s coupe-like silhouette is streamlined to manage airflow, this characteristic combines with active and passive aero features to help it achieve an outstanding Cd-value of just 0.24, making it one of the most aerodynamic cars on the market.

 

To suit customers’ varied lifestyles, the IONIQ also offers a host of advanced comfort, convenience, safety connectivity features, including Apple CarPlay and Android Auto, catering for the vast majority of smartphone users. A 7-inch TFT information cluster brings a high-tech appearance to the cockpit, displaying a range of digital gauges in high resolution, including a number of hybrid-specific displays.

 

Based on an exclusive new platform, the driving performance of the IONIQ is similar to that of a regular compact car, thanks to its responsive hybrid powertrain. Ride and handling as well as noise, vibration and harshness levels are specially tuned to contribute to a superior ride quality as well as being quiet and comfortable on long journeys.

 

To complement the IONIQ’s long list of high-tech features, a host of innovative future-ready active and passive safety features protect the driver and passenger. Electronic systems like Autonomous Emergency Brake, Lane Keeping Assist System / Lane Departure Warning System, and a Blind Spot Detection with Rear Cross Traffic Alert provide guidance to avoid any accident. Seven airbags including a knee-airbag for the driver, as well as structural body enhancements, enabled by adapting 53% of the body with Advanced High Strength Steel, gives the IONIQ’s chassis superior rigidity for responsive handling and enhanced safety.

 

The new car’s name references elements of its creation. An ion is an electrically-charged atom, linking to the car’s clever combination of electrified powertrains. The second part of the name references the unique offering it brings to the Hyundai range, demonstrating the brand’s environmental commitment and willingness to maximize choice for its customers. Finally, the Q is depicted in the car’s logo as a visual breakthrough, acknowledging the fresh new approach of this advanced, low-emission model.

 

Contents

 

01: Styling
Eco-friendly meets high-tech

 

02: Powertrains
Efficient and ultra-low emission

 

03: Advanced engineering and technology
Setting IONIQ apart

 

04: Driving Performance
Efficient mobility without compromise

 

05: Comfort and convenience
Top-class comfort, trend-setting convenience

 

06: Safety
Innovative active and passive safety features

 

01 Styling: Eco-friendly meets high-tech
The IONIQ calls upon two key influences – efficiency and technology – in its design, which combine to create a unique and future-looking appearance. Throughout the IONIQ’s development, engineers and designers worked hand-in-hand to ensure that form and function evolved simultaneously.

 

These eco-friendly and high-tech aims are met consistently throughout the IONIQ, while the joined-up development process influences the attractive styling of the car more than any other rival as form and function combine seamlessly. The IONIQ’s distinguished exterior design sets the model apart from other hybrid electric vehicles as the styling builds the car’s high-tech features into its design, emphasizing the model’s eco-friendly image.

 

Exterior Design
In crafting the exterior appearance of the IONIQ, Hyundai Motor’s designers concentrated on the car’s future-orientated character, which is at the heart of its appeal.

 

A fluid exterior shape and natural air flow channels emphasize the aerodynamic body lines and volumes that communicate the IONIQ’s eco-friendly credentials while also conveying its performance abilities. A sporty, hatchback-like profile sets the IONIQ apart from other hybrid models with the car’s distinguished exterior design contributing to its attractive styling.

 

The IONIQ’s sleek exterior shape is inspired by aerodynamic efficiency complementing the soft lines and surfaces that trace the car’s outline. Its exterior panels are designed to flex to boost aerodynamics further, which, when combined with various other smart efficiency solutions, produces class-leading Cd-value of just 0.24.

 

In addition to the IONIQ’s supple body shape, further design details contribute towards Hyundai Motor’s aim of achieving an eco design matching high levels of technology. At the front of the car, the refined shape of the headlights and Hyundai Motor’s signature hexagonal grille visually depict the purity of IONIQ as an eco-friendly car. Contrasting colors at the base of the bumper add a special flair, while nine exterior colors are available and can be paired with a choice of three interior options. A unique radiator grille, with HID headlights set above C-shaped LED light distinguishes the front of the car, while specially-designed 15/17-inch wheels differentiate the hybrid vehicle from its electric and plug-in hybrid siblings.

 

Interior Design
Just as with the car’s exterior design, the interior of the IONIQ captures the model’s futuristic perspective and draws on the car’s eco-friendly and hybrid credentials. A ‘Purified High-Tech’ concept was established, which then evolved into the refined interior of the IONIQ.

 

A recurring smooth, elegant and clutter-free theme meets a warm feeling inside the IONIQ as efficient use of interior space complements a logical, structured approach applied to the layout of controls. Eco-friendly materials are used to create a simple and clean look throughout the car, giving the interior a spacious, sleek, light and purified feel.

 

02 Powertrains: Efficient and ultra-low emission
Developed to strive for the world’s highest hybrid fuel efficiency without compromising the driving performance, the IONIQ Hybrid is equipped with a newly developed, dedicated 1.6 GDI four-cylinder Kappa engine. The 1.6 GDI powerplant delivers 77kW (105PS) at 5,700rpm while providing maximum torque of 15.0kg.m (147Nm) at 4,000rpm. It is combined with a newly developed, very efficient six-speed dual-clutch transmission (6DCT) and, in collaboration with the 32kW (43.5PS) electric motor, offers a maximum output of 103.6kW (141PS) at 5700rpm and 27.0kg.m (265Nm) of torque in first gear 24.0kgf.m / 235Nm in second to sixth.

 

The IONIQ Hybrid outperforms all other hybrid electric competitors in this segment while still providing a fun, responsive drive, an attractive design and comprehensive state of the art convenience features.

 

Six-speed dual-clutch transmission
The IONIQ Hybrid and Plug-in hybrid both feature a six-speed dual-clutch transmission (6DCT), which boasts best-in-class transfer efficiency through the use of low-friction bearings and low-viscosity transmission oil.

 

Capitalizing on the latest generation of transmission technology, the IONIQ achieves its unique mix of driving performance and excellent fuel efficiency through intelligently set gear ratios combined with a sophisticated shift strategy, which transfers power smoothly from gear to gear.

 

Differentiating itself from other hybrid cars, which are often criticized for ‘rubber band-like’ acceleration, the sporty and fun to drive IONIQ uses its 6DCT to engage the driver and harness the electric and combustion technologies to best effect.

 

Enhancing further the car’s fuel efficiency and dynamic driving characteristics, the driver can also select SPORT or ECO modes. The SPORT function holds lower gears longer and combines power from the engine and electric motor to reward the driver with maximized performance. In ECO mode, the 6DCT optimizes the gear selection for fuel economy, shifting up earlier to higher gears to achieve class-leading fuel economy.

 

Compact and powerful electric motor
The 1.6 GDI engine is accompanied by a 32kW (43.5PS) electric motor, which also adds another 17.3kg.m (170Nm) to the system at maximum output. It enables the IONIQ Hybrid to operate in pure electric mode at speeds up to 120kph, maximizing efficiency and minimizing CO2 emissions.

 

The electric power is generated by a permanent magnet synchronous motor and was specifically developed for world-class efficiency. To achieve this, parts of the motor were optimized by reducing the thickness of core components (electrical steel sheet) by up to 10% and adopting rectangular-section copper wire to decrease core and copper loss.

 

Lithium-Ion polymer battery
Hyundai Motor engineers decided to use a Lithium-Ion polymer battery pack for the IONIQ Hybrid - instead of conventional nickel-metal-hydride batteries. This provides lower memory sensitivity, excellent charge / discharge efficiency and an outstanding maximum output. Efficient packaging was also taken into consideration as the battery system is located underneath the rear seats so that the usability of the passenger cabin and cargo area is entirely uncompromised.

 

The complete set of hybrid powertrain components was designed to be very compact and highly efficient. The combined extra weight of the hybrid technology therefore only adds minimal additional weight to the IONIQ but, significantly increases its efficiency.

 

03 Advanced engineering and technology: Setting IONIQ apart
IONIQ’s engineers did not only focus on making the powertrain as efficient as possible, they set out to create a car that excelled in design, comfort and convenience of infotainment. Applying the latest technologies and engineering techniques to these areas enhances the IONIQ’s appeal and elevates its status against competitors.

 

Aerodynamic
IONIQ’s sleek, coupe-like silhouette and its simple, carefully wrought contours assist the efficient management of airflow around the exterior. Additional applications like front wheel air curtains, an external active air flap, a rear spoiler and diffuser, side sill moldings, floor undercover and a closed wheel design all contribute to the car’s efficiency in its goal to offer the world’s best hybrid fuel efficiency.

 

Comfort and convenience
To provide a pleasant, comfortable and refreshing climate in the car without using unnecessary amounts of energy, IONIQ’s climate control can be switched to an efficient operation mode. Due to a maximum utilization of the inside air when air-conditioning or heating, ventilation losses can be minimized and the overall efficiency of the system increases. Also, the dual-zone climate control can be set to ‘driver only’ mode, reducing the load of the air-conditioning and heating to work more efficiently.

 

Another Hyundai-first and a key characteristic of the IONIQ is its innovative use of recycled materials or eco-friendly materials. For example, the interior door covers are made from recycled plastic combined with powdered wood and volcanic stone. While providing the same quality appearance and noise damping performance, the weight is reduced by 20% compared to conventional cladding material.

 

The softer, more natural feel is achieved alongside less reliance on oil-based products. The eco-consciousness extends to other areas of the car too. Raw materials extracted from sugar cane are partly applied on the headlining and carpet helping to improve quality of air inside the car and the recyclability of vehicle parts at end of life. Eco-friendly paint with ingredients extracted from soybean oil are used to achieve lustrous metallic colors on some of the components.

 

ECO-DAS
The ECO-DAS (Eco-Driving Assistant System) set-up makes best use of several unique technologies in order to make the IONIQ as efficient as possible. ECO-DAS assesses the driving route set in the satellite navigation system and current traffic levels. The system enables the most efficient battery charging or extra motor assistance as required by the predicted road conditions.

 

The advanced system encourages efficient coasting by informing the driver of changes in speed limit or road conditions, allowing the car to travel the same distance, in the same time, without the need for harsh acceleration or braking. This utilization of key technologies and smart driving processes ultimately improves fuel efficiency while also optimizing battery capacity and lengthening the electric range deliverable from a single charge.

 

Infotainment
To suit customers’ varied lifestyles, the IONIQ features state-of-the-art infotainment and connectivity features. The IONIQ is equipped with a new generation high-resolution 7-inch TFT-information cluster. With a resolution of 1280x720 pixels, it displays all types of gauges (speedometer, ECO, state of charge, fuel etc.) including hybrid-specific displays like the current system operation or status. Depending on the selected drive mode, background color and gauges are adapted to always provide the most important and useful information as well as In fa relaxed or sporty atmosphere through the colors used.

 

The IONIQ will cater for drivers looking to integrate their smart phone with the vehicle’s infotainment system by providing both Apply CarPlay and Android Auto. Both systems enable users to connect their devices to deliver and control music, telephone or navigation functions on screen. The seamless connectivity allows drivers and passengers to stay connected while remaining focused on the road. To ensure occupants’ phones are always charged, IONIQ also offers a wireless inductive charging pad (Qi standard) for mobile phones, set among the other cutting-edge features inside the car.

 

Weight reduction
One of the main questions throughout every single development step of the IONIQ was, where weight could be cut without compromising the goal to also create a fun-to—drive and comfortable car. The IONIQ uses aluminum in the hood and tailgate, which reduces weight by 12.4kg compared to the conventional steel option without any disadvantages in noise or vibration. The weight loss strategy also extended to less obvious areas like the cargo-screen cover. Due to a higher usage of light-weight components and a more compact optimized build, the cargo-screen cover of the IONIQ is around 25% lighter than the version used in other Hyundai models.

 

04 Driving Performance: Efficient mobility without compromise
Driving performance of the IONIQ is better than any hybrid car in its class thanks to its hybrid powertrain, which is specially adapted for the IONIQ to deliver efficient mobility without compromise. Ride and handling, as well as noise, vibration and harshness levels, are specially tuned to contribute towards superior ride quality, while insulation in the dash minimizes engine noise. Damping in the floor panels as well as enhanced A- and B-pillar fillings, thicker window glass and noise cancelling film on the windshield further improve the quiet and comfortable ride.

 

A sporty gear shift is achieved with the six-speed dual-clutch transmission, which adds to the ‘fun to drive’ element and overall pleasure of driving the IONIQ. The 6DCT helps maintain the model’s exciting driving sensation and can be switched from the pre-set ECO mode into SPORT mode, rewarding the driver with later gear shifts and using more engine power to maximize performance.

 

The application of a multi-link rear suspension system with dual lower arm enhances ride comfort while a proportionately large use of aluminum for front and rear suspension components saves around 10kg of weight compared to conventional means. A reduction of 2.3kg per front lower arm unit saves 4.6kg at the front of the car, while 7.14kg is saved at the IONIQ’s rear with each unit shedding 3.57kg.

 

Responsiveness and feedback from the steering system is clear and precise, with an increased steering gear ratio that helps to compound the IONIQ’s sporty and responsive feel while reinforcing the car’s ‘fun to drive’ character.

 

Braking force is optimized to get the most out of the hybrid system’s regenerative braking system, in turn helping the IONIQ maintain a healthy state of charge (SOC). The regenerative braking system also operates to reduce noise, using the third generation of the brand’s energy recuperating stopping system. An Integrated Brake Assist Unit (iBAU) and Pressure Source Unit (PSU) also contribute to quieter operation than competitors. This also helps ensure ultra-low friction for maximum energy recuperation and efficiency.

 

A collaboration with tire manufacturer Michelin gives IONIQ enhanced levels of efficiency as the car is fitted with low rolling resistance tires for better fuel economy, plus the car’s larger 17-inch wheels are fitted with silica tires for better performance. The multi-link suspension system has been adapted in order to work most efficiently with low rolling resistance tires.

 

05 Comfort and convenience: Top-class comfort, trend-setting convenience
The IONIQ delivers great driver and passenger convenience, bringing to the segment a range of considerations that other dedicated hybrid vehicles may have compromised on in the past.

 

All hybrid components of IONIQ are cleverly packaged to not compromise space, flexibility or usability of the interior. In fact, IONIQ offers best-in-class cargo space by positioning the hybrid’s battery underneath the rear seats. Moreover, the rear seats can fold flat providing a cargo space of up to 750 liters, allowing large pieces of luggage to be stowed with ease, plus flexible daily usability.

 

It also offers great front and rear headroom, plus comprehensive shoulder and leg room in the front and back, while a memory function driver’s seat and heated front and rear seats invite occupants for a relaxing ride.

 

06 Safety: Innovative active and passive safety features
The IONIQ boasts a light yet rigid body as a result of advanced design, construction methods and materials. Featuring 53% Advanced High Strength Steel, the IONIQ’s chassis benefits from superior rigidity for responsive handling and is extremely safe, with high impact energy absorption and minimized distortion to protect passengers in the event of a collision.

 

To complement the IONIQ’s long list of advanced convenience technologies, a host of innovative future-ready active and passive safety features protect the driver and passengers. These electronic assistive systems are class-leading as IONIQ continues to break the mold for hybrid vehicles.

 

The long list of active safety features includes Blind Spot Detection, which works directly alongside Lane Change Assist and Blind Spot Detection with Rear Cross Traffic Alert to warn the driver of any surrounding vehicles, passengers or other objects that may lead to a collision if unnoticed while the car is in motion.

 

A Lane Departure Warning System (LDWS) and Lane Keeping Assist System (LKAS) are of use when driving on the highway. The systems alert the driver if unsafe movements are made while the car is driving by sensing the car’s position in relation to highway lanes. The LDWS sounds an alarm before the car moves over white lines on the road, while the LKAS warns the driver acoustically and visually before inducing corrective steering to guide the driver back to a safe position.

 

The car is also fitted with an Autonomous Emergency Braking (AEB) system, an advanced active safety feature that alerts drivers to emergency situations, braking autonomously if required. Using front radar and camera sensors, AEB operates in three stages. Initially warning the driver visually and acoustically, it controls the brake according to the collision danger stage, and applies maximum braking force right before the moment of collision. When a vehicle or pedestrian is sensed in front of the IONIQ, the system is activated, operating at speeds of 10km/h or above and minimizes damage when a collision is unavoidable.

 

Using front radar sensors, Smart Cruise Control allows a constant speed and distance to be maintained from the vehicle ahead without depressing the accelerator or brake pedals, it is automatically cancelled when the speed of the car drops to 10kph or below. Additionally, a Tire Pressure Monitoring System ensures the IONIQ’s tires are always suitably inflated.

 

Around the interior of the IONIQ, a total of seven airbags are available. Including a knee airbag for the driver, they are placed to protect the vehicle’s occupants in the event of a collision. Body structure improvements to the car mean it is strong and durable in the event of a crash - complemented by a high-strength fiber-reinforced rear bumper.


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I will say it looks tons better than a Prius, but not as nice as the Volt. I can see this as a winner for them. Be interesting to hear the rest of the details. Especially the EV model and how it will stack up to the Bolt.

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      Walking around the Venue, you become surprised at how small this crossover is. It comes in at 13 feet long and just under 6 feet wide, making it slightly smaller than the Accent sedan. The design is very chunky and boxy, which helps with maximizing interior space. The front has some interesting design traits such as a similar grille seen on larger Hyundai crossovers and a split headlight arrangement. With a large glass area and tall roof, the Venue feels very open and spacious. Finding a comfortable position upfront is no problem and the seats provide a good balance of comfort and support. The rear legroom is a bit tight for any over six-feet. Cargo space is on the small end with 18.7 cubic feet with the rear seats up and 31.9 with them folded. The Nissan Kicks as a comparison offers 25.3 and 53.1 cubic feet of space respectively. The interior design is quite pleasant with contrasting plastics used on the dash and door panels. I also like how all models get an eight-inch touchscreen with Apple CarPlay and Android Auto as standard. Power for the Venue is a 1.6-liter four-cylinder with 121 horsepower and 113 pounds-feet of torque. The base SE has a six-speed manual as standard*, while a CVT is optional. My SEL tester only comes with the CVT. Power goes to the front wheels only. If most of your driving takes place in an urban area, then the Venue is a perfect partner. It responds quickly off the line and can keep with the flow of traffic. The small size and quick steering make it a breeze to nip around and fit into tight parking spots. The highway is a different story as it takes the engine a bit of time to get up to speed. I should note that isn’t exclusive to the Venue as all cars on the subcompact class experience this issue. Fuel economy is rated at 30 City/34 Highway/32 Combined. My average landed around 30.2 mpg in a 60/40 mix of rural and city driving. Having a short wheelbase usually means a pretty choppy ride. But the Venue’s suspension does a surprising job of minimizing the impacts. For the money, the Venue is surprisingly well equipped. All models come with automatic headlights, automatic emergency braking, lane departure warning, and an eight-inch touchscreen. The SEL is the sweet spot adding 15-inch alloys, automatic climate control, and a six-speaker audio system. It also allows you to order the Convenience package that adds blind-spot monitoring, rear cross-traffic alert, and a sunroof. The Venue is perfect for someone who is looking for a new car and lives in an urban environment. The small size, nimble nature, and list of equipment make it a strong contender in the growing subcompact crossover class. But if you need more cargo space or planning on driving on the highway more than the city, save up a little bit more money and move up to a Kona. (*Author’s Note: Hyundai dropped the six-speed manual for the 2021 model year.)

      Palisade Limited
      The Palisade is certainly a looker. Take the front end. There is a unique grille shape with a massive chrome surround, flanked by a split headlight arrangement. The Limited adds more a bit more chrome along with the windows and a set of 20-inch multi-spoke wheels. I think the abundance of chrome is a bit much. The interior could make some people at sister brand Genesis a bit envious. My Limited tester featured a suede headliner with openings for the dual glass roof panels; quilted door panels, and aluminum trim used throughout. Technology is another strong point to the Palisade. Similar to the Hyundai Sonata I drove earlier, the Palisade Limited comes with a reconfigurable 12.3-inch gauge display and a 10.2-inch infotainment system. Both are vibrant and easy to read even in direct sunlight. Hyundai's infotainment system still leads the way in being easy to use. Space is plentiful for front and second-row passengers. Third-row passengers get short-changed on legroom and seat padding. Limited and SEL come with seating for seven, while the base SE seats up to eight. Cargo space is in the mid-pack with 18 cubic feet with all seats up, 45.8 with the third-row folded, and 84 with all seats folded. The Palisade comes with a 3.8L V6 producing 291 horsepower and 269 pound-feet of torque. An eight-speed is teamed with either front-wheel or all-wheel drive. My tester had the latter. I never felt that I was looking for more power from the V6. Whether I leaving from a stop or needing to make a pass, the V6 and eight-speed automatic delivered a smooth and steady stream of power. Fuel economy is average for three-row crossovers. EPA says the Palisade AWD will return 19 City/24 Highway/21 Combined. I saw 22 in my week-long test. Ride quality could rival some luxury sedans as various road imperfections seem to be ironed out. Road and wind noise is almost non-existent. To be clear, the Palisade isn't trying to be any sort of sporty crossover. But I was surprised at how well it minimizes body roll when on a winding road. Considering Hyundai's past attempts at a large three-row crossover, the Palisade is a clear winner. The interior is class-leading, it offers a pleasant ride, performance is smooth, and the trademark value proposition is here. The Limited seen here comes in at just under $48,000 with destination. What may set some away is the Palisade's styling, which I'll admit I did like for the most part. Disclaimer: Hyundai Provided the Venue and Palisade; Insurance, and One Tank of Gas
      Year: 2020
      Make: Hyundai
      Model: Venue
      Trim: SEL
      Engine: 1.6L DPI Four-Cylinder
      Driveline: Front-Wheel Drive, CVT
      Horsepower @ RPM: 121 @ 6,300
      Torque @ RPM:  113 @ 4,500
      Fuel Economy: City/Highway/Combined - 30/34/32
      Curb Weight: 2,732 lbs
      Location of Manufacture: Ulsan, South Korea
      Base Price: $19,250
      As Tested Price: $23,405 (Includes $1,120.00 Destination Charge)
      Options:
      Premium Package - $1,750.00
      Convenience Package - $1,150.00
      Carpeted Floor Mats - $135.00
      Year: 2020
      Make: Hyundai
      Model: Palisade
      Trim: Limited AWD
      Engine: 3.8L GDI D-CVVT 24-Valve V6
      Driveline: Eight-Speed Automatic, All-Wheel Drive
      Horsepower @ RPM: 291 @ 6,000
      Torque @ RPM: 262 @ 5,200
      Fuel Economy: City/Highway/Combined - 19/24/21
      Curb Weight: 4,387 lbs
      Location of Manufacture: Ulsan, South Korea
      Base Price: $46,625
      As Tested Price: $47,905 (Includes $1,120.00 Destination Charge)
      Options:
      Carpeted Floor Mats - $160.00
    • By William Maley
      It is surprising to think it has been over six years since Hyundai first showed the Santa Cruz pickup concept at the Detroit Auto Show. But today, Hyundai has unveiled the production version. The automaker isn't calling this a truck, instead using the term "Sport Adventure Vehicle". To us, it's a truck.
      We need to start with a bit of a reality check. The Santa Cruz is not a direct competitor to the likes of Chevrolet Colorado, Honda Ridgeline, or Toyota Tacoma in terms of measurements. Compared to those models, the Santa Cruz is around 10 to 17 inches shorter in length. Overall height is around 3 to 4 inches shorter. The bed measures 4.3 feet, which is about foot shorter than the Ranger. There is also an in-bed trunk like the Ridgeline.
      The model is based on the recently redesigned Tucson crossover, which explains why it shares the front end styling - complete with headlights in the massive grille. That also means it shares the same engines as the Tucson. Here's the lineup,
      2.5L four-cylinder:  estimated 190+ horsepower and 180+ lb.-ft. of torque Turbocharged 2.5L four-cylinder: estimated 275+ horsepower and 310+ lb.-ft. of torque The N/A 2.5 comes with an eight-speed automatic, while the turbo makes do with an eight-speed dual-clutch. Front-wheel drive is standard, while HTRAC all-wheel drive is optional.
      The interior looks very modern and comes with an eight-inch touchscreen in the center stack. Optional features include a 10-inch touchscreen and TFT instrument display. 
      Hyundai is keeping mum on pricing until the Santa Cruz launches sometime this summer.
      BTW: If you're wondering why the Santa Cruz took so long to reach production, I recommend this piece from Autoblog which delves into this.
      Source: Hyundai
      Hyundai Unveils Segment-Shattering Santa Cruz Sport Adventure Vehicle
      Highly-anticipated Santa Cruz Sport Adventure Vehicle Shatters Both SUV and Truck Segments, Creating an Entirely New Vehicle Category Multi-utility, Secure Open Bed Provides Diverse Gear-Carrying Flexibility Powerful and Efficient 2.5L Turbo Powertrain with HTRAC® AWD Capability Available Cutting-edge Connectivity, Convenience and Active Safety Features Compact Footprint Provides Superior Maneuverability in an Open-bed Configuration Proudly Built at Hyundai Motor Manufacturing Alabama (HMMA) in Montgomery FOUNTAIN VALLEY, Calif., Apr. 15, 2021 – Hyundai today unveiled its highly anticipated Santa Cruz Sport Adventure Vehicle. The 2022 Santa Cruz breaks new ground within the SUV, Truck and Crossover segments by offering a true Sport Adventure Vehicle unlike anything else in the U.S. market. Santa Cruz boasts bold yet sophisticated design, powerful and efficient powertrain options, a flexible open bed for gear, cutting-edge connectivity and a highly maneuverable all-wheel drive platform that is equally at home in urban and adventure-focused environments. The Santa Cruz Sport Adventure Vehicle begins production in Montgomery, Alabama in June and will be available for sale in summer. The addition of Santa Cruz to HMMA production will add an estimated 1,200 jobs to the U.S. economy. Hyundai is also creating an early reservation system for the U.S.-market Santa Cruz in late April at https://www.hyundaiusa.com/.
      “Santa Cruz, with its bold styling, breaks open all new segment territory, both for Hyundai and the industry as a whole. Open-bed flexibility coupled with closed-cabin security meets the changing everyday needs of its adventure-oriented buyers, while powerful and efficient engines and superb maneuverability ensure it is a pleasure to drive in urban or off-road environments. Our customers will wonder just how they managed before owning one,” said Jose Munoz, president and CEO, Hyundai Motor North America.
      Why Santa Cruz?
      Santa Cruz was developed to be the ultimate Sport Adventure Vehicle, a moniker confirmed in Hyundai’s early consumer research. The research found consumers, often living in urban environments, whose lifestyles include the need to escape to weekend adventures of all kinds. Many of these customers carry various gear and equipment that is better suited to an open bed rather than a typical SUV bodystyle. These buyers want versatile transportation that is equally flexible for urban, adventure, occupational or even home improvement gear. Santa Cruz features a secure, open bed area which includes a lockable tonneau cover, hidden bed storage and versatile bed extension accessories. At the same time, these customers still value the secure utility of a compact SUV, with its comfort, passenger space, fuel efficiency and parking ease. Santa Cruz, with its unique, bold design, created an entirely new segment that meets these specific buyer needs like no vehicle before it.
      Everything about Santa Cruz reflects a duality of purpose in its design execution. This all-new category-bending vehicle holds a variety of imagery in balanced juxtaposition:
      Urban life connectivity with escape to outdoor adventure Work and play flexibility Tough yet alluring demeanor Roominess with maneuverability Open cargo area and secured, lockable storage Towing capability and fuel efficiency The forward view of Santa Cruz deploys a hidden lighting signature that becomes visible within the grille only when illuminated. The daytime running lamps (DRLs) present a parametric jewel design with high-tech precision detailing. A bold, cascading grille anchors the front view, supported by a skid plate element in the lower front fascia. Voluminous hood and fenders further communicate an imposing first impression.
      In profile, Santa Cruz signals a sporty yet capable spirit. The A- and C-pillars present faster forward and rearward rakes than typical open-bed utility vehicles. Large 20-inch alloy wheels with a multi-faceted, triangular design are surrounded by armor-like wheel arches, conveying both wheel-articulation potential and off-road capability. Powerful body side volumes contrast with precise triangular sheer-edged surfaces and tight radius character lines.
      From the rear, a horizontal “T” lighting signature adds visual width and distinguishes Santa Cruz from anything on the road. The functional rear open bed area features secure, lockable in-bed storage, integrated corner bumper steps and a lockable tonneau cover, seamlessly integrated with the overall design. The rear tail lamps are embossed with: “Designed in California” as a testament to the passion of Hyundai’s California-based design team. Small, discrete design details such as this can be found throughout the exterior and interior.
      Interior Design
      The interior of the Santa Cruz expresses a sophisticated and refined appearance. The contrasting rugged yet refined motif matches the boldness of the exterior, boasting a technical ambience that appeals to those who appreciate cutting-edge technologies in their daily lives. It features an enveloping dual-cockpit design that encapsulates each passenger. Design teams focused on ease of ingress and egress and ergonomic comfort on long drives. The premium center stack display features an edgeless infotainment screen appearance, with an impressive 10 inches of visibility. The optional center digital cluster display also measures 10 inches. Under the rear seats is convenient, in-cabin storage. Completing the premium ambience is an available Bose® audio system.
      Powerful and Efficient Powertrains
      Santa Cruz offers two powerful, flexible and efficient powertrains. The standard powertrain is a 2.5L direct-injected in-line four-cylinder engine with an estimated 190+ horsepower and 180+ lb.-ft. of torque. This engine couples to an eight-speed hydraulic automatic transmission for quick acceleration and superb efficiency. Santa Cruz also offers a 2.5L direct-injected turbocharged engine with an estimated 275+ horsepower and 310+ lb.-ft. of torque linked to an eight-speed dual-clutch automatic transmission (DCT). This DCT includes steering-wheel-mounted paddle shifters for manual shifting control by the driver.
      Eight-Speed Automatic Transmission
      The eight-speed transmission for the standard 2.5-liter engine provides quick and crisp shifts for an engaging and efficient driving experience. This automatic transmission adds ratio range at both the top and bottom of output speeds allowing for extra thrust off-the-line and a quieter, more fuel-efficient trip on the interstate. A multi-disc and individually controlled hydraulic channel torque converter improves responsiveness by expanding the direct connection band, while a downsized oil pump and double ball bearings minimize frictional losses.
      Advanced HTRAC® AWD and Towing Capability
      Both 2.5L four-cylinder and 2.5L four-cylinder turbo models offer HTRAC® all-wheel drive capability for complete confidence when pursuing adventures of all kinds or for that extra peace of mind when driving in an unexpected snowfall. The HTRAC AWD system was developed as a multi-mode system, providing an electronic, variable-torque-split clutch with active torque control between the front and rear axles. The Sport setting gives a more agile feel by sending more torque to the rear wheels, for a sporty, dynamic experience. This system has a wide range of torque distribution variability, tuned for conditions such as straight-line acceleration, medium- and high-speed cornering, and hill starts. For those customers who like to tow their weekend gear with them, the 2.5L 4-cylinder is rated at 3,500 lbs. for towing and the 2.5L Turbo AWD model boasts a generous 5,000 lbs. of towing capability.
      Compact Dimensions Yield Superb Maneuverability
      Santa Cruz makes efficient use of its compact dimensions by offering high utility with excellent maneuverability. Its shorter wheelbase and smaller overall footprint make it a joy to maneuver and park in challenging urban parking, with an exceptional curb-to-curb turning radius of only 20.0 feet.
      Specification (in.)
      Santa Cruz
      Tacoma
      Ridgeline
      Frontier
      Length
      195.7
      212.2
      210.0
      205.5
      Width
      75.0
      75.2
      78.5
      72.8
      Height
      66.7
      70.7
      70.3
      70.1
      Wheelbase
      118.3
      127.4
      125.2
      126.0
      Bed Length
      Upper 48.4
      Lower 52.1
      60.4
      63.6
      59.4
      Footprint Area
      (sq. ft.)
      101.9
      109.7
      114.6
      103.9
                         
      Responsive and Refined Chassis Tuning
      Santa Cruz was developed with a focus on enhanced driving dynamics and responsive performance for a wide variety of urban and off-road, multi-surface driving conditions. The shorter wheelbase, short overhangs and wide track create a planted stance that results in exceptional agility in urban environments. These specifications also provide confident agility when traversing off-road terrain. Available 20-inch alloy wheels with wide, all-season, all-terrain tires give surefooted, agile handling character on a variety of road surfaces. Available 18-inch wheels with more voluminous tire sidewalls for off-road adventures are also available.

      View full article
    • By William Maley
      It is surprising to think it has been over six years since Hyundai first showed the Santa Cruz pickup concept at the Detroit Auto Show. But today, Hyundai has unveiled the production version. The automaker isn't calling this a truck, instead using the term "Sport Adventure Vehicle". To us, it's a truck.
      We need to start with a bit of a reality check. The Santa Cruz is not a direct competitor to the likes of Chevrolet Colorado, Honda Ridgeline, or Toyota Tacoma in terms of measurements. Compared to those models, the Santa Cruz is around 10 to 17 inches shorter in length. Overall height is around 3 to 4 inches shorter. The bed measures 4.3 feet, which is about foot shorter than the Ranger. There is also an in-bed trunk like the Ridgeline.
      The model is based on the recently redesigned Tucson crossover, which explains why it shares the front end styling - complete with headlights in the massive grille. That also means it shares the same engines as the Tucson. Here's the lineup,
      2.5L four-cylinder:  estimated 190+ horsepower and 180+ lb.-ft. of torque Turbocharged 2.5L four-cylinder: estimated 275+ horsepower and 310+ lb.-ft. of torque The N/A 2.5 comes with an eight-speed automatic, while the turbo makes do with an eight-speed dual-clutch. Front-wheel drive is standard, while HTRAC all-wheel drive is optional.
      The interior looks very modern and comes with an eight-inch touchscreen in the center stack. Optional features include a 10-inch touchscreen and TFT instrument display. 
      Hyundai is keeping mum on pricing until the Santa Cruz launches sometime this summer.
      BTW: If you're wondering why the Santa Cruz took so long to reach production, I recommend this piece from Autoblog which delves into this.
      Source: Hyundai
      Hyundai Unveils Segment-Shattering Santa Cruz Sport Adventure Vehicle
      Highly-anticipated Santa Cruz Sport Adventure Vehicle Shatters Both SUV and Truck Segments, Creating an Entirely New Vehicle Category Multi-utility, Secure Open Bed Provides Diverse Gear-Carrying Flexibility Powerful and Efficient 2.5L Turbo Powertrain with HTRAC® AWD Capability Available Cutting-edge Connectivity, Convenience and Active Safety Features Compact Footprint Provides Superior Maneuverability in an Open-bed Configuration Proudly Built at Hyundai Motor Manufacturing Alabama (HMMA) in Montgomery FOUNTAIN VALLEY, Calif., Apr. 15, 2021 – Hyundai today unveiled its highly anticipated Santa Cruz Sport Adventure Vehicle. The 2022 Santa Cruz breaks new ground within the SUV, Truck and Crossover segments by offering a true Sport Adventure Vehicle unlike anything else in the U.S. market. Santa Cruz boasts bold yet sophisticated design, powerful and efficient powertrain options, a flexible open bed for gear, cutting-edge connectivity and a highly maneuverable all-wheel drive platform that is equally at home in urban and adventure-focused environments. The Santa Cruz Sport Adventure Vehicle begins production in Montgomery, Alabama in June and will be available for sale in summer. The addition of Santa Cruz to HMMA production will add an estimated 1,200 jobs to the U.S. economy. Hyundai is also creating an early reservation system for the U.S.-market Santa Cruz in late April at https://www.hyundaiusa.com/.
      “Santa Cruz, with its bold styling, breaks open all new segment territory, both for Hyundai and the industry as a whole. Open-bed flexibility coupled with closed-cabin security meets the changing everyday needs of its adventure-oriented buyers, while powerful and efficient engines and superb maneuverability ensure it is a pleasure to drive in urban or off-road environments. Our customers will wonder just how they managed before owning one,” said Jose Munoz, president and CEO, Hyundai Motor North America.
      Why Santa Cruz?
      Santa Cruz was developed to be the ultimate Sport Adventure Vehicle, a moniker confirmed in Hyundai’s early consumer research. The research found consumers, often living in urban environments, whose lifestyles include the need to escape to weekend adventures of all kinds. Many of these customers carry various gear and equipment that is better suited to an open bed rather than a typical SUV bodystyle. These buyers want versatile transportation that is equally flexible for urban, adventure, occupational or even home improvement gear. Santa Cruz features a secure, open bed area which includes a lockable tonneau cover, hidden bed storage and versatile bed extension accessories. At the same time, these customers still value the secure utility of a compact SUV, with its comfort, passenger space, fuel efficiency and parking ease. Santa Cruz, with its unique, bold design, created an entirely new segment that meets these specific buyer needs like no vehicle before it.
      Everything about Santa Cruz reflects a duality of purpose in its design execution. This all-new category-bending vehicle holds a variety of imagery in balanced juxtaposition:
      Urban life connectivity with escape to outdoor adventure Work and play flexibility Tough yet alluring demeanor Roominess with maneuverability Open cargo area and secured, lockable storage Towing capability and fuel efficiency The forward view of Santa Cruz deploys a hidden lighting signature that becomes visible within the grille only when illuminated. The daytime running lamps (DRLs) present a parametric jewel design with high-tech precision detailing. A bold, cascading grille anchors the front view, supported by a skid plate element in the lower front fascia. Voluminous hood and fenders further communicate an imposing first impression.
      In profile, Santa Cruz signals a sporty yet capable spirit. The A- and C-pillars present faster forward and rearward rakes than typical open-bed utility vehicles. Large 20-inch alloy wheels with a multi-faceted, triangular design are surrounded by armor-like wheel arches, conveying both wheel-articulation potential and off-road capability. Powerful body side volumes contrast with precise triangular sheer-edged surfaces and tight radius character lines.
      From the rear, a horizontal “T” lighting signature adds visual width and distinguishes Santa Cruz from anything on the road. The functional rear open bed area features secure, lockable in-bed storage, integrated corner bumper steps and a lockable tonneau cover, seamlessly integrated with the overall design. The rear tail lamps are embossed with: “Designed in California” as a testament to the passion of Hyundai’s California-based design team. Small, discrete design details such as this can be found throughout the exterior and interior.
      Interior Design
      The interior of the Santa Cruz expresses a sophisticated and refined appearance. The contrasting rugged yet refined motif matches the boldness of the exterior, boasting a technical ambience that appeals to those who appreciate cutting-edge technologies in their daily lives. It features an enveloping dual-cockpit design that encapsulates each passenger. Design teams focused on ease of ingress and egress and ergonomic comfort on long drives. The premium center stack display features an edgeless infotainment screen appearance, with an impressive 10 inches of visibility. The optional center digital cluster display also measures 10 inches. Under the rear seats is convenient, in-cabin storage. Completing the premium ambience is an available Bose® audio system.
      Powerful and Efficient Powertrains
      Santa Cruz offers two powerful, flexible and efficient powertrains. The standard powertrain is a 2.5L direct-injected in-line four-cylinder engine with an estimated 190+ horsepower and 180+ lb.-ft. of torque. This engine couples to an eight-speed hydraulic automatic transmission for quick acceleration and superb efficiency. Santa Cruz also offers a 2.5L direct-injected turbocharged engine with an estimated 275+ horsepower and 310+ lb.-ft. of torque linked to an eight-speed dual-clutch automatic transmission (DCT). This DCT includes steering-wheel-mounted paddle shifters for manual shifting control by the driver.
      Eight-Speed Automatic Transmission
      The eight-speed transmission for the standard 2.5-liter engine provides quick and crisp shifts for an engaging and efficient driving experience. This automatic transmission adds ratio range at both the top and bottom of output speeds allowing for extra thrust off-the-line and a quieter, more fuel-efficient trip on the interstate. A multi-disc and individually controlled hydraulic channel torque converter improves responsiveness by expanding the direct connection band, while a downsized oil pump and double ball bearings minimize frictional losses.
      Advanced HTRAC® AWD and Towing Capability
      Both 2.5L four-cylinder and 2.5L four-cylinder turbo models offer HTRAC® all-wheel drive capability for complete confidence when pursuing adventures of all kinds or for that extra peace of mind when driving in an unexpected snowfall. The HTRAC AWD system was developed as a multi-mode system, providing an electronic, variable-torque-split clutch with active torque control between the front and rear axles. The Sport setting gives a more agile feel by sending more torque to the rear wheels, for a sporty, dynamic experience. This system has a wide range of torque distribution variability, tuned for conditions such as straight-line acceleration, medium- and high-speed cornering, and hill starts. For those customers who like to tow their weekend gear with them, the 2.5L 4-cylinder is rated at 3,500 lbs. for towing and the 2.5L Turbo AWD model boasts a generous 5,000 lbs. of towing capability.
      Compact Dimensions Yield Superb Maneuverability
      Santa Cruz makes efficient use of its compact dimensions by offering high utility with excellent maneuverability. Its shorter wheelbase and smaller overall footprint make it a joy to maneuver and park in challenging urban parking, with an exceptional curb-to-curb turning radius of only 20.0 feet.
      Specification (in.)
      Santa Cruz
      Tacoma
      Ridgeline
      Frontier
      Length
      195.7
      212.2
      210.0
      205.5
      Width
      75.0
      75.2
      78.5
      72.8
      Height
      66.7
      70.7
      70.3
      70.1
      Wheelbase
      118.3
      127.4
      125.2
      126.0
      Bed Length
      Upper 48.4
      Lower 52.1
      60.4
      63.6
      59.4
      Footprint Area
      (sq. ft.)
      101.9
      109.7
      114.6
      103.9
                         
      Responsive and Refined Chassis Tuning
      Santa Cruz was developed with a focus on enhanced driving dynamics and responsive performance for a wide variety of urban and off-road, multi-surface driving conditions. The shorter wheelbase, short overhangs and wide track create a planted stance that results in exceptional agility in urban environments. These specifications also provide confident agility when traversing off-road terrain. Available 20-inch alloy wheels with wide, all-season, all-terrain tires give surefooted, agile handling character on a variety of road surfaces. Available 18-inch wheels with more voluminous tire sidewalls for off-road adventures are also available.
    • By William Maley
      I rarely get the opportunity to drive two different flavors of the same vehicle within a short timeframe. But that's what happened in the fall when I had the chance to drive the new Hyundai Sonata in its standard and hybrid forms. The Sonata has always been a favorite of mine as it offered a lot for a midsize sedan, with a surprising price tag. It has also come very close to being at the top of the class, but falling somewhat short due to one thing or another. This new version has the chance of changing that.
      Very Polarizing Design

      The consensus from several readers on Cheers & Gears and various social media sites on the Sonata's design was of dislike. Many found the design to be a bit much and overdone. I found myself in the minority as I was impressed by the lengths Hyundai went. The flowing lines and raked roofline reminded me of the 2012 Sonata which gave notice to other automakers to step up their game. Little details such as the bars the run along the outer edge of the hood to the headlights to a distinct rear-end treatment make the Sonata stand out.
      If there is an issue I have with the Sonata's design, it is the grille. I find it to be slightly cartoonish due to the large size and shape.
      Simple, Yet Elegant Interior
      If you're worried that the polarizing ideas from the exterior make their way inside, don't. The interior is surprisingly sedate with clean lines and a simple design. Hyundai should be commended for using a lot of soft-touch plastics and leather on various surfaces. It makes the Sonata look and feel more premium than its price tag may suggest.

      Despite the coupe-inspired roofline, the Sonata's interior space is quite spacious. Most no one will have any complaints sitting in the back as there is ample head and legroom. Taller passengers should be aware that the optional panoramic sunroof for the Sonata will take away some headroom. The Sonata Hybrid doesn't worry about that as it doesn't offer the sunroof.
      Tech Galore!
      Both of the Sonatas on test came in the Limited trim which means a bountiful selection of technology. It begins with a 10.2-inch TFT display for the instrument cluster which provides all of the key information needed at a glance. A clever trick is when you engage the turn signal, the respective 'dial' brings up a camera mounted underneath the side view mirrors to provide a blind-spot view. I found this system to be helpful as it gave me an extra set of eyes whenever I needed to change lanes.

      Next up is another 10.25-inch screen housing Hyundai's latest infotainment system. I like the three-window layout on the home screen that you can customize to your needs. Navigating around the system is a breeze with a response touchscreen and capacitive touch buttons sitting on either side. Apple CarPlay and Android Auto are standard.
      The next two tech features are exclusive to the standard Sonata. First is what Hyundai calls a digital key. Using the BlueLink application on a compatible smartphone, you can use this instead of the key to start the car and drive away. At the time of this writing, this is only available on Android phones. Hyundai did provide a loner Samsung Note smartphone for the week to try this out. I did not have the best experience with this feature at first because I found you need to be pretty close to the vehicle to make a connection. Trying to connect from my room upstairs, just above where the vehicle was parked, the application would throw up a connection error. I found that if I moved to the living room or just outside the front door, the phone was able to make the connection. This sours some of the appeal of this feature. 
      At least using the phone as the vehicle's key does work a bit better. It only takes a few seconds for the phone to make the connection to the vehicle and you can start it up. Although, I found myself wondering wouldn't it be easier and faster to have the key. The only feature that makes any sense to me is the ability to share the key with other people, but lock down certain aspects.
      Second is Smart Park (or smart parkh as made famous by the Super Bowl commercial from last year). Using the key, you can have the Sonata move forward or back out of the parking spot to allow for easier access to get into the vehicle. It's simple to operate, just hold down one of two buttons for a few seconds; the Sonata starts up and goes into the correct gear to move in the desired direction. I can see the appeal in urban areas where space is limited. But in the current pandemic times all of us find ourselves in, this seems to be more of a gimmick.
      Power Selection
      Hyundai offers two engines for the regular Sonata; a naturally aspirated 2.5L four-cylinder or a turbocharged 1.6L four. A more potent turbocharged 2.5L four-cylinder is available on the upcoming Sonata N Line. My tester featured the turbo 1.6 which produces 180 horsepower and 195 pound-feet of torque. That puts it in line with some of the base engines found in the Honda Accord and Toyota Camry.
      I wouldn't call this engine quick, but it handles most driving situations with aplomb. This comes down to most of the torque being situated at the lower end of the rpm band. The only area where you might be wishing for more power is merging onto a freeway or keeping up traffic. The eight-speed automatic does an excellent job of maximizing the engine's output.
      Under the Sonata Hybrid's hood is a system comprised of a 2.0L four-cylinder and electric motor to provide a total output of 192 horsepower and 151 pound-feet of torque. The Sonata Hybrid feels just as fast as the standard Sonata around town and on country roads. It does struggle slightly on the highway due to the smaller torque figure. The six-speed automatic doesn't stumble when the change over from electric-only to hybrid mode like I have experienced on other Hyundai/Kia hybrid models.

      Opting for Limited on the Sonata Hybrid brings a solar panel for the roof which acts as a trickle charger for both the 12-volt car battery and 1.6-kWh lithium-ion pack for the hybrid system. Hyundai says that the panel can add an extra two miles of range with adequate sunlight. I can't attest to this claim, but will say the solar panel did add an extra bit of charge to the battery, even on an overcast day.
      Fuel economy for both models are as followed,
      Sonata 1.6T: 27 City/36 Highway/31 Combined Sonata Hybrid: 45 City/51 Highway/47 Combined My week saw an average of 29 mpg in the Sonata and 39 mpg for the Sonata Hybrid.
      Calm and Collected
      Hyundai has done some work on the Sonata's chassis and suspension to make it more rewarding to drive. It shows on a winding road as both versions show little body roll and feel more agile than the outgoing model. Steering feels direct and has a decent amount of weight. I will say the Mazda6 is still the one to beat if driving pleasure is your key goal.
      But the Sonata has an ace up its sleeve. It is also one of the most comfortable cars in the class. Driving over some of the roughest roads in Metro Detroit, the Sonata's suspension soaks up most bumps and imperfections to provide a serene ride. The minimal amount of road and wind noise that comes inside also helps.
      Rising To The Top

      The previous generations of the Sonata were always so close to being at the top of the class. But there always something that held it back whether it was the design, handling, or powertrains. But this new model shows how much Hyundai has put in. There is a nice balance between ride and handling; powertrains are very competent, and the interior is best in the class. Plus, the Sonata still retains Hyundai's trademark of offering a lot for not much money.
      Where most people will stumble on the Sonata is the exterior. It is very much a love or hate it affair. Plus, some of the tech features feel more like a party trick to show to friends than something you'll use. 
      Nevertheless, I think Sonata moves up to the top of the midsize sedan pecking order. 
      But there is one more question to answer. Between the regular and hybrid versions, which one I would drive away with. The answer which surprised me is the hybrid. I found it to be a little bit more well-rounded and deliver some excellent fuel economy figures during my time.
      Alternative:
      Kia K5: Like the idea of the Hyundai Sonata, but not to sure on the design? Then the Kia K5 may be the answer. Based on the same bones as the Sonata, the K5 takes a more evolutionary approach to the design. The basic shape may remind you of the previous-generation Optima, but its the little details such as a new grille and revised rear deck lid that help it stand out. From reviews, the K5 proves to be a bit sportier. We hope to get our hands on this challenger in the near future. Disclaimer: Hyundai Provided the Sonatas, Insurance, and One Tank of Gas
      Year: 2020
      Make: Hyundai
      Model: Sonata
      Trim: Limited 1.6T
      Engine: Turbocharged 1.6L GDI DOHC 16-Valve Inline-Four
      Driveline: Eight-Speed Automatic, Front-Wheel Drive
      Horsepower @ RPM: 180 @ 5,500
      Torque @ RPM: 195 @ 1,500-4,500
      Fuel Economy: City/Highway/Combined - 27/36/31
      Curb Weight: 3,336 lbs
      Location of Manufacture: Montgomery, AL
      Base Price: $33,300
      As Tested Price: $34,365 (Includes $930.00 Destination Charge)
      Options:
      Carpeted Floor Mats - $135.00
      Year: 2020
      Make: Hyundai
      Model: Sonata Hybrid
      Trim: Limited
      Engine: 2.0L GDI DOHC 16-Valve Inline-Four, Permanent Magnet Synchronous Motor
      Driveline: Six-Speed Automatic, Front-Wheel Drive
      Horsepower @ RPM: 150 @ 6,000 (gas); 51 @ 1,800 - 2,300 (electric motor); 192 (total output)
      Torque @ RPM: 139 @ 5,000 (gas); 151 @ 0 - 1,800 (electric motor)
      Fuel Economy: City/Highway/Combined - 45/51/47
      Curb Weight: 3,530 lbs
      Location of Manufacture: Asan, South Korea
      Base Price: $35,300
      As Tested Price: $36,430 (Includes $975.00 Destination Charge)
      Options: 
      Carpeted Floor Mats - $135.00

      View full article
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