Changes for the 2015 Hyundai Sonata:
Every version of the Sonata is redesigned for the 2015 model year with the exception of the Sonata Hybrid, which continues in previous-generation format and is covered in a separate summary. The new 2015 Sonata is bigger inside and out, adds the latest safety and infotainment systems, is more fuel efficient, and is claimed to offer improved driving dynamics.
Five versions of the redesigned 2015 Sonata are for sale. The base model is called the SE, and buyers can upgrade to mid-level Sport or luxury-themed Limited trim. A new Sonata Eco model debuts for 2015, equipped with a more fuel-efficient powertrain, and the turbocharged Sonata Sport 2.0T returns for 2015.
Engines and Transmissions:
A 185-horsepower, 2.4-liter 4-cylinder engine is installed in the Sonata SE, Sport, and Limited models. The engine is less powerful than last year, but Hyundai says the power is more accessible at lower rpm than before. A 6-speed automatic transmission is standard.
The new Sonata Eco is equipped with a turbocharged, 1.6-liter 4-cylinder engine rated to make 177 horsepower. The key here is torque, which is more plentiful than what the base engine offers, and is available over much of the engine’s rev range. This engine is paired with a 7-speed dual-clutch automated manual gearbox.
The Sonata Sport 2.0T has a turbocharged 2.0-liter 4-cylinder engine, one generating 245 horsepower. That’s less than last year, but Hyundai claims it has simultaneously calibrated the powertrain to offer greater response and lower engine revs, so the car should actually feel more energetic than before.
Fuel Economy Ratings:
Based on EPA fuel economy ratings, the new Sonata Eco gets 32 mpg in combined driving, the standard 2.4-liter 4-cylinder returns 29 mpg, and the Sonata Sport 2.0T should deliver 26 mpg. If fuel economy is really important, though, know that the Sonata Hybrid is more efficient than any of these versions.
According to the NHTSA, the new Hyundai Sonata is a crash-test rock star, earning a 5-star rating in every assessment except for rollover resistance, for which it is awarded a 4-star rating. The Insurance Institute for Highway Safety (IIHS) agrees, giving the redesigned Sonata a “Top Safety Pick” rating.
Hyundai has significantly upgraded the Sonata’s tech-factor with this redesign. From the available 8-inch color touchscreen infotainment system and the optional 10-speaker, 400-watt premium sound system to the upgraded Smart Cruise control with stop/start capability and the extra-cost Smart trunk with hands-free opening, the new 2015 Sonata is rather sophisticated.
Safety systems are also improved. Blue Link telematics returns with Automatic Collision Notification and Assistance and SOS Emergency Assistance, and basic service is free for the first year. Buyers can upgrade to packages containing Speed Alert, Curfew Alert, Geo Fence capabilities, and more.
The new Sonata also offers rear parking assist sensors, as well as Blind Spot Detection, Rear Cross Traffic Alert, Lane Change Assist, Lane Departure Warning, and Forward Collision Warning systems.
Written by Christian Wardlaw
August 27, 2014
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