The 2021 Hyundai Sonata makes a stronger case for itself after final yr’s full redesign. Now not merely a price play — though it’s nonetheless keenly priced and nicely geared up — Hyundai’s midsize sedan has a rejuvenated sense of favor and in addition boasts impressively up-to-the-minute tech. The mannequin line has been fleshed out with a fuel-sipping Hybrid and the Sonata’s first efficiency model ever, the extremely credible Hyundai Sonata N Line.
Although purchaser curiosity on this phase is shrinking, the automobiles have by no means been higher, and the 2021 Sonata is a high-quality instance of that reality. Is it our top-recommended household sedan? No, can be the Honda Accord. Ought to the ’21 Sonata be on the brief listing together with the Accord? Completely.
What’s new for 2021?
Following up on the Sonata’s main redesign final yr, the 2021 mannequin yr sees the arrival of the primary Sonata N Line, a sporty variant with an unique 2.5-liter turbocharged engine making 290 horsepower and 311 pound-feet of torque. You may learn extra about it in our Sonata N Line overview. Elsewhere within the lineup, the brand new Protected Exit Help characteristic alerts passengers who try to open a door when a automobile is approaching from the rear. Lastly, the Restricted trim provides a six-way energy passenger’s seat, and the SEL Plus beneficial properties 19-inch wheels.
What is the Sonata’s inside and in-car know-how like?
The 2021 Hyundai Sonata boasts a modern, futuristic cabin with minimal litter and high-quality supplies. Like most new automobiles, its infotainment management display is featured prominently atop the sprint. Base fashions get an 8-inch display, whereas a 10.25-inch touchscreen is non-compulsory from the SEL mannequin on up. No different midsize sedan (other than the mechanically associated Kia K5) affords such a big display, and as we describe in our Sonata infotainment overview and video beneath, we predict it is terrific. Behind the wheel sits a customizable 12.3-inch digital cluster show (non-compulsory on SEL, commonplace on SEL Plus and Restricted), and the top-of-the-line Restricted additionally affords a full-color head-up show.
There are some good touches for tech junkies, too, together with Hyundai’s “Digital Key,” which permits the proprietor to unlock the Sonata by waving a certified smartphone over the outside door handles. Hyundai additionally affords Android Auto and Apple CarPlay integration as commonplace gear. There are three USB ports and wi-fi charging is refreshingly not unique to the very best trim degree.
Hybrid consumers are in for a particular deal with, as those that go for the range-topping SEL Plus additionally get a photo voltaic roof. In sunny circumstances, these panels can replenish as much as 2 miles of further vary per day, or roughly 700 miles per yr. Extra virtually, they’ll energy equipment whereas the engine itself is off, just like the air-con on a sunny day.
How large is the Sonata?
The Sonata does not have as a lot backseat legroom because the palatial Honda Accord. The hole is not as large because the spec sheet suggests (we predict there are variations in the best way Hyundai measures interiors) and other people taller than 6 toes can nonetheless sit one behind the opposite. You also needs to have the ability to match a rear-facing little one seat within the again with out shifting a entrance seat ahead. Headroom is plentiful regardless of that modern roofline, much more than the Accord and Camry, each on the spec sheet and in particular person.
The trunk affords 16.Three cubic-feet, which makes it larger than each midsize sedan besides the Accord. As we found in our Sonata baggage check, that determine interprets into equally spectacular stuff-carrying capability. Certainly, solely the Accord trunk has been in a position to maintain extra stuff in our midsize sedan baggage checks.
What are the Sonata’s gasoline economic system and efficiency specs?
The 2021 Sonata is accessible with 4 totally different powertrains. The bottom engine within the SE and SEL is a 2.5-liter, naturally aspirated four-cylinder making 191 horsepower and 181 pound-feet of torque. These figures are typical for entry-level engines within the midsize phase. This engine is rated at 28 mpg metropolis, 38 mpg freeway and 32 mpg mixed within the SE mannequin and 27/37/31 within the SEL.
Stepping as much as the SEL Plus and Restricted fashions means switching to the 1.6-liter turbocharged four-cylinder. This engine produces much less energy (180 horses) than the bottom 2.5, however extra torque (195 lb-ft). It likewise affords comparable numbers to different lower-end turbocharged engines supplied by the competitors, such because the Honda Accord’s 1.5-liter. It even affords extra energy from a smaller bundle than the two.0-liter turbo supplied within the Volkswagen Passat. This engine is rated at 27 mpg metropolis, 37 freeway and 30 mixed.
Probably the most potent engine providing is the two.5-liter turbocharged four-cylinder beneath the hood of the Sonata N Line. It spins out 290 hp and 311 lb-ft of torque. (The engine is shared with the Kia K5 GT). In contrast to the opposite Sonatas, the N Line makes use of a dual-wet-clutch automated guide that additionally supplies rev-matching and launch management. The N Line’s turbo-four can’t fairly match the horsepower of the Toyota Camry’s V6, although it does supply extra torque. EPA estimates for the N Line are 23 mpg metropolis, 33 freeway and 27 mixed.
The fuel-economy champ is a 2021 Hyundai Sonata Hybrid (pictured above). It makes use of a 150-horsepower, 2.0-liter naturally aspirated inline-four and a 39-kW electrical motor. Mixed, they produce a complete of 192 hp. Hyundai says this combo is nice for as much as 50 mpg metropolis, 54 freeway and 52 mixed within the Blue mannequin, which is lighter (by a bit greater than 100 kilos) and sports activities smaller (16-inch) wheels with efficiency-focused tires. Hybrid SEL and Restricted fashions prime out at 45 mpg metropolis, 51 freeway and 47 mixed. These figures are about on par with the 2021 Toyota Camry Hybrid and exceed these of the Honda Accord Hybrid. By way of precise fuel used, the distinction between the 47-mpg trims and the 52-mpg Blue is definitely fairly negligible.
Sadly, no Sonata affords all-wheel drive, a characteristic accessible on an rising variety of household sedans, together with the Sonata’s mechanically associated cousin, the Kia K5.
What is the Sonata wish to drive?
We have pushed each model of the Sonata aside from one with the bottom 2.5-liter, and we have discovered every to be surprisingly participating to drive in comparison with Sonatas of that previous. That even applies to the hybrid, which prior to now, have been synonymous with uninteresting. Though each the Honda Accord and Mazda6 are the superior athletes on this class, the Sonata isn’t far behind, hanging a reliable stability between consolation and dealing with prowess for a day by day driver. You most likely will not have enjoyable in it, but it surely’s vice free and it will not bore you to loss of life with utterly anesthetized controls. Take the steering, which has linear, constant effort and is sufficiently conscious of your inputs. We’re additionally followers of Hyundai’s new, properly contoured four-spoke steering wheel.
Because of its conventional transmission, the Sonata Hybrid drives extra like a daily gas-only automotive than its rivals, the Accord Hybrid (which feels extra like an electrical automotive) or the Toyota Camry (which drones on like one with a CVT). If you happen to’re delay by the everyday weirdness of a hybrid, that is the one to get. On the identical time, you may positively discover the electrical increase given to the engine when accelerating.
The 1.6-liter options Hyundai’s new CVVD engine know-how, however you wouldn’t know something particular is going on had you not been warned. It’s a torquey little four-cylinder with sufficient grunt to get off the road in a rush. There’s loads of torque all through the rev band; lag is minimal, and it’s nice sufficient to hearken to. Nonetheless, it isn’t a considerable efficiency improve – bigger four-cylinder turbo engines from Honda and Mazda are nonetheless a lot faster.
The N Line, nevertheless, is a lot faster. Acceleration is robust sufficient to trigger the steering wheel to squirm in your arms, notably a decrease speeds. With stiffer suspension elements and greater brakes, there’s extra to the N Line than simply additional energy. The automotive is extra responsive in corners however the experience doesn’t beat up occupants over dangerous pavement. We will discover extra about it beneath.
What different Hyundai Sonata critiques and comparisons can I learn?
2021 Hyundai Sonata N Line First Drive Evaluation
Our overview of the new-for-2021 Sonata N Line, which boasts extra horsepower than another household sedan. We would not name it a full-on sport mannequin, nevertheless, because it’s neatly not hardcore sufficient to place off those that simply need additional thrust and sharpened responses with out a punishing experience or hyperactive nature.
2020 Hyundai Sonata Baggage Check | How a lot matches within the trunk?
The official trunk quantity is 16.Three cubic-feet. Nice, however how a lot does that imply by way of precise stuff. This solutions that.
2020 Hyundai Sonata Hybrid vs Accord and Camry
The midsize sedan phase boasts a number of hybrid fashions. Here is how the Sonata stacks up towards the Honda Accord and Toyota Camry hybrids on paper.
How a lot is the 2021 Sonata value and what options can be found?
The Sonata SE is robustly geared up for a base-model automobile, however the true worth chief is the SEL Plus, which incorporates the 1.6-liter turbo engine, 18-inch alloy wheels, suede and leatherette seating surfaces, Qi wi-fi machine charging and a further USB cost port — amongst different helpful choices — all for a $4,600 premium. Which will sound like quite a bit, but it surely’s an excessive amount of gear for a value beneath $30,000.
For a full breakdown of every trim degree’s characteristic content material, specs and pricing, take a look at our 2021 Hyundai Sonata web page right here on Autoblog.
- SE: $24,705
- SEL: $26,805
- Hybrid Blue: $28,755
- SEL Plus: $29,305
- Hybrid SEL: $30,905
- N Line: $34,305
- Restricted: $34,955
- Hybrid Restricted: $36,305
What are the Sonata security scores and driver help options?
Customary security gear on the 2021 Sonata contains ahead collision warning with pedestrian and bicycle owner detection, computerized emergency braking, a driver inattention warning system, lane holding help with lane centering, a rear occupant alert system, computerized excessive beams and adaptive cruise management. All however the base SE get a blind-spot warning system, which is upgraded within the Restricted with the entire, multi-faceted array of blind-spot tech that we named Autoblog Expertise of the 12 months (see video beneath).
In addition to the sheer quantity of those security and driver help options, we have discovered them to be among the many best-executed on the phase. They do their job nicely with out annoying you.
The 2021 Sonata Restricted acquired an IIHS High Security Choose score, falling in need of the coveted High Security Choose+ because of the weaknesses of the headlights supplied as commonplace gear on the SE, SEL and SEL Plus trims. The federal government (NHTSA) offers the 2021 Sonata an total security score of 5 stars out of 5.