Hyundai has introduced a new technologically advanced automobile to rival its 2013 competitors. This rival comes in the form of the 2013 Sonata Hybrid and its alternative option of the Limited. Starting at $25,650 MSPR, the Sonata is given a 2.4L Atkinson Cycle 4-cylynder hybrid engine with 6-speed automatic transmission with shiftronic engine.
I recently paid a visit to a Hyundai dealership in the Raleigh area. The experts at Sport Durst of NC loaded me up with info on what makes this hybrid tick. Interestingly enough…most of the really cool stuff on the Sonata Hybrid is all hidden…under the hood. So we popped the hood and my guide gave me a little tour of the inner workings of this car. To start, the hybrid battery uses a polymer gel as the electrolyte that can deliver the same power as a regular engine with 25 percent less weight, 40 percent less volume, and 10 percent more efficiency. It will also last 1.7 times longer with a slow discharge to maintain power. Working simultaneously with the battery, the engine has a HEV system and a hybrid starter generator to give the hybrid up to 74 miles per hour on all-electric mode. There is also a 6-speed automatic transmission, providing 199 net horsepower on an estimated 40 highway miles per gallon. This steel high-tensile unibodied car also has a fully parallel hybrid system with Amplitude selective damping shock absorbers for smoother response and drive. Taking a test drive of the Sonata Hybrid through the streets of Raleigh, it, for the most part, felt like a normal car, including plenty of acceleration – and that was my main concern.
The exterior of the Hybrid Sonata provides both a luxurious look as well as functionality. Though subtly different from other Sontatas, the hybrid has the lowest coefficient of drag at 0.25. The Hybrid also has LED head light accents, LED tail lights, front fog lights, and side mirror turn signal indicators. To provide a lower aerodynamic drag, the Hybrid also has 16 inch or available 17 inch alloy wheels. Finally, protecting the cars interior and drivers, the windows are solar control and block UV rays. With a cooler interior, there’s less need to have the air conditioning on, saving gas and helping reduce emissions.
With a protected interior comes greater technology advancement. BlueLink technology is provided with personal displays. The driver’s seat is adjustable with lumbar support, heated front and back seats, and there are dual temperature controls. With the 6.5-inch touch screen display, drivers can locate points of interest, monitor their driving, and use SiriusXM with NaviTraffic to get an idea of traffic around them. Along with the SirusuXM Radio, audio options include AM, FM, CD, and MP3, built in iPod and USB ports, with an amplifying 400 Premium audio system. The Hybrids presence will only be intensified with the subwoofer and power adding external amplifier.
With any car looking to reduce emissions and lead its class in technology and aerodynamics, the Hybrid also has award-winning safety options include six air bags, 4 wheel ABS, traction control, rear back up camera, and electronic brake-free distribution with brake assist. Any driver looking for safety and efficiency will find it in the eco-friendly Hybrid Sonata. Though it may look a little different, it’s easy and more to love.