The Hyundai Sonata is the flag-bearer for the Korean company. As its entry into the hotly contested midsize market, the Sonata could make or break the company. Sales have been strong for the Sonata for many years, but Hyundai is hoping that 2014 will be a breakout year for the sedan .
Thanks to a massive collection of changes and enhancements, the new 2014 Sonata wades into battle with the best suit of armor and weapons it has ever had at its disposal. The exterior design has seen updates, interior equipment has been upgraded, and interior refinement is at an all-time high.
Will this be enough to unseat the kings of the midsize market from Japan? The Accord , Altima and Camry have ruled this segment for decades, but Hyundai thinks it has a chance to break into the top three.
Read on to find out if the changes are going to be enough to allow the Sonata to usurp the throne.
Click past the jump to read more about the 2014 Hyundai Sonata.
The shape of the new 2014 Hyundai Sonata hasn’t really changed, but there are quite a few noticeable differences. The grille is new, the headlamps are now HID xenon units, the taillights are full LED and the rear end has been altered. The 17-inch wheel design is all-new as well. SE trim levels also get a standard body-color rear spoiler.
The differences are minor enough that many people won’t know it’s a new car, but they do enough to alter the overall look that most passersby will notice it seems to look better than all the other Sonatas on the road.
The changes are more than simple cosmetic alterations; they affect aerodynamics and allow the Sonata to cut a cleaner hole through the air than before.
2014 Hyundai Sonata - Exterior Dimensions
|Overall length||189.8 in.|
|Overall width||72.2 in.|
|Overall height||57.9 in.|
|Tread width (front/rear)||62.6 in. / 62.6 in.|
|Coefficient of Drag (Cd)||0.28|
2014 Hyundai Sonata - Standard Exterior Features
- Folding heated outside mirrors, body-color with dual power
- Bumpers, body-color
- Grille, body-color insert
- Chrome window belt moldings
- Door handles, body-color
- Solar control glass
- Front windshield, 2-speed with variable intermittent, speed sensitive
- Single, chrome-tipped rear exhaust
- Headlights, jeweled projector-lens
- Taillights, combination lamps
The inside of the new Sonata sees a huge collection of changes and improvements. All of the available screens are new; a new 8-inch screen navigation unit, new color screens for audio units and rear view camera use, and a new LCD information screen in the gauge cluster. There is also an optional carbon-fiber trim, LED dome light, ventilated driver’s seat and a new full-leather steering wheel on certain trims.
It is a smorgasbord of tech and luxury features.
The interior is also quitter than ever before thanks to new carpet, extra foam in the pillars and an additional dynamic damper to cut down on road noise. Even the new wheel design reduces wind noise.
That means the 2014 Sonata is the quietest ever.
2014 Hyundai Sonata - Interior Dimensions
|Front, without sunroof||40.0 in.||40.0 in.||-|
|Front, with sunroof||-||38.1 in.||38.1 in.|
|Front, with panoramic sunroof||-||-||38.2 in.|
|Rear, without sunroof||37.8 in.||37.8 in.||-|
|Rear, with sunroof||-||37.6 in.||37.6 in.|
|Rear, with panoramic sunroof||-||-||37.2 in.|
|Front||45.5 in.||45.5 in.||45.5 in.|
|Rear||34.6 in.||34.6 in.||34.6 in.|
|Front||57.9 in.||57.9 in.||57.9 in.|
|Rear||56.7 in.||56.7 in.||56.7 in.|
|Front||55.2 in.||55.2 in.||55.2 in.|
|Rear||54.9 in.||54.9 in.||54.9 in.|
|EPA passenger volume||103.8 cu. ft.||103.8 cu. ft.||103.8 cu. ft.|
|EPA cargo volume||16.4 cu. ft.||16.4 cu. ft.||16.4 cu. ft.|
|EPA total volume||120.2 cu. ft.||120.2 cu. ft.||120.2 cu. ft.|
2014 Hyundai Sonata - Standard Interior Features
- Roof trim, cloth
- Metal grain interior accents, all interior colors
- Door sill scuff plates
- Door handles, color keyed
- Door armrest, integrated
- Door pockets, small map
- Sunvisors with illuminated driver and passenger vanity mirror
- Foot brake
- Floor covering, full cut-pile carpeting
- Trunk lid liner
- Air conditioning
- Steering wheel, urethane
- Cruise control (steering wheel-mounted controls)
There have been massive changes to all the things you can see and touch, but most of what happens underneath the sheet metal has been left alone. The 2014 Sonata features the exact same powertrain choices as the previous car. That means the same 2.4-liter Theta II engine in the standard cars and a turbocharged 2.0-Liter Theta in the Turbo trim.
That isn’t necessarily a bad thing though. The base 2.4 is good for 190 horsepower and still returns 35 mpg, thanks in part to the six-speed automatic transmission. The SE trim comes standard with a new sports exhaust system for 2014 that adds 2 horsepower to the engine output.
The 2.0 Turbo is only good for 32 mpg on the highway, but with 274 horsepower at the call of your right foot, we can forgive the drop in fuel economy.
|Type||DOHC D-CVVT (Dual Continuously Variable Valve Timing) 4-cylinder||DOHC D-CVVT (Dual Continuously Variable Valve Timing) 4-cylinder||DOHC D-CVVT (Dual Continuously Variable Valve Timing) 4-cylinder|
|Materials||Aluminum block and heads||Aluminum block and heads||Aluminum block and heads|
|Bore and Stroke||88.0 mm x 97.0 mm||88.0 mm x 97.0 mm||88.0 mm x 97.0 mm|
|Displacement||2.4 liters / 2,359 cc||2.4 liters / 2,359 cc||2.4 liters / 2,359 cc|
|Horsepower||190 @ 6,300 rpm||192 @ 6,300 rpm||190 @ 6,300 rpm|
|Torque||179 lb-ft @ 4,250 rpm||181 lb-ft @ 4,250 rpm||179 lb-ft @ 4,250 rpm|
|Valves per cylinder||4||4||4|
Suspension and Brakes
In my experience, the ride and handling of the Sonata is the weakest link. The ride is supple enough, but when you really start to push on it in any sort of vigorous manner, it all begins to fall apart. Excessive lean and understeer were my main impressions of the setup.
Its very competent for commuting and the like, but it doesn’t inspire any level of confidence of excitement. This is a domain where the Accord and Ford Fusion both excel.
|27412F45||Sonata GLS||2.4L GDI 4-cyl.||6-Speed Automatic with SHIFTRONIC||$21,450|
|27412F4P||Sonata GLS||2.4L GDI 4-cyl.||PZEV 6-Speed Automatic with SHIFTRONIC||$21,450|
|27442F45||Sonata SE||2.4L GDI 4-cyl.||6-Speed Automatic with SHIFTRONIC||$24,300|
|27432F45||Sonata SE||2.0L Turbo GDI 4-cyl||6-Speed Automatic with SHIFTRONIC||$25,850|
|27472F45||Sonata Limited||2.4L GDI 4-cyl.||6-Speed Automatic with SHIFTRONIC||$27,000|
|27472F4P||Sonata Limited||2.4L GDI 4-cyl. PZEV||6-Speed Automatic with SHIFTRONIC||$27,000|
|27462F45||Sonata Limited||2.0L Turbo GDI 4-cyl||6-Speed Automatic with SHIFTRONIC||$28,550|
|GLS Popular Equipment Package||$900|
|SE Premium Package||$3,000|
|SE 2.0T Premium Package||$2,900|
|Limited Technology Package||$3,000|
|Limited 2.0T Technology Package||$3,200|
|ECM with HomeLink® and compass||$275|
|Rear lip spoiler||$250|
The Toyota Camry is getting a little long in the tooth, and besides its impeccable sales and reliability record, it has little to offer anyone with even the slightest enthusiast tendencies. It is still the best selling car you can buy in America though, and it will take a lot to kick it from that number-one position.
Gallery Toyota Camry
The Volkswagen Passat is a very attractive alternative to the Sonata. Not only does it have the refinement and build quality that only comes form the Germans, but it offers a V-6; an option many American buyers are still clamoring for. The Passat also offers a highly fuel-efficient, but very powerful diesel engine option. Something no other car in the class can currently claim.
Gallery Volkswagen Passat Sport
The Hyundai Sonata has come a long way since its mid-1980s birth as a cheap alternative to a "real car." Now loaded with items like navigation and leather, the Sonata has become a car that people want to buy, not just the car they could afford.
- Better interior refinement
- New technology equipment
- Powerful Turbo enigne option
- No V-6 available
- Exterior changes are minor
- No increase in performance for most models
Gallery Hyundai Sonata
Thanks to high customer satisfaction, exceptional safety, cutting-edge design and impressive power and fuel economy, the Hyundai Sonata remains one of the highest rated and best-selling midsize cars on the market. Fresh from receiving the honor of most dependable midsize car by J.D. Power and Associates in their 2013 Vehicle Dependability Study, Sonata enters the 2014 model year with exterior design enhancements, new safety technologies and a host of unique comfort and convenience features.
Building on an established reputation as a design trendsetter, Hyundai engineers, designers and product planners enhanced nearly every system in the car. In total, more than 50 Sonata major sub-systems are new or redesigned. The 2014 Sonata arrives with even greater value for money, adding highly desired features with an MSRP increase of only $155 on the Sonata GLS. Pricing for the exceptionally well-equipped 2014 Sonata GLS begins at $21,350.
NEW FEATURES FOR THE 2014 MODEL YEAR
- Exterior design enhancements include - refined grille designs, new 17-inch wheels, HID Xenon headlights, LED taillights and a new rear fascia insert
- Driver Selectable Steering Mode (DSSM) - standard on all trims
- Tire-specific Tire Pressure Monitoring System (TPMS) - standard on all trims
- Sport-tuned exhaust - standard on SE 2.0T
- Driver’s blind spot mirror - optional on GLS
- Blind Spot Detection System - optional on SE, standard on Limited
- Full-leather steering wheel - standard on SE and Limited
- Third-generation navigation and audio multimedia system with eight-inch touchscreen display - optional on SE and Limited
- 4.3-inch touchscreen audio display with rearview camera and HD Radio, optional on GLS - standard on SE and Limited
- New fully automated temperature controls - standard on Limited
- Supervision cluster with color LCD screen between the tachometer and speedometer - standard on SE and Limited
- Ventilated driver seat - standard on Limited
- Body-colored spoiler - standard on SE
- LED dome light optional on GLS - standard on SE and Limited
- Carbon fiber interior trim – standard on SE
- New 17-inch wheels for improved NVH
- Improved carpet for a quieter interior
- Additional foam in the A and B pillars for improved NVH
- Additional dynamic damper for improved NVH
FLUIDIC SCULPTURE DESIGN LANGUAGE
Fluidic Sculpture is the consistent, cohesive design language used throughout the entire Hyundai showroom. It gives the Sonata an upscale appearance along with aerodynamics that reduce wind noise and improve fuel economy. The new bolder grilles, rear fascia insert and optional HID Xenon headlights and LED taillights boost the flowing lines and integrate a new level of design precision. The fluid and precise exterior theme is completed by a set of all-new 17-inch multi-spoke wheels.
The sophisticated look continues inside, where Hyundai has created an even more upscale ambiance with:
- New full-leather steering wheel on SE and Limited
- New eight-inch navigation screen
- New color audio screens with HD Radio and rearview camera integration - optional on GLS and standard on SE and Limited
- New color LCD information screen between the tachometer and speedometer - standard on SE and Limited
- New ventilated driver seat - standard on Limited
- New LED dome light - optional on GLS and standard on SE and Limited
- New carbon fiber trim - standard on SE
NVH IMPROVEMENTS HAPPEN AT HYUNDAI SPEED
Since the launch of the current generation in 2010 as a 2011 model, Sonata has undergone significant changes to reduce cabin noise. These engineering changes will be noticed immediately by driver and passengers:
- New 17-inch wheels to reduce road noise inside the cabin
- Improved carpet insulating properties to block road and engine noise
- Additional foam in the A and B pillar to reduce road noise
- Additional dynamic damper to improve road noise
Sonata continues to be powered by the acclaimed Theta II GDI 2.4-liter four-cylinder engine. This engine continues to lead the mid-size segment in specific output more than three years after its initial introduction. Much of its advantage derives from its advanced Gasoline Direct-Injection (GDI) fuel delivery system, which contributes to increased horsepower and improved fuel efficiency. This higher pressure, more direct path of fuel delivery allows for greater control of the fuel mixture at the optimum moment, thus improving efficiency. The fuel is injected by a camshaft-driven, high-pressure pump that operates at pressures up to 2,175 psi. Direct injection also enables a higher-than-normal 11.3:1 compression ratio for increased power. The pistons are “dished” to increase combustion efficiency in the cylinder.
Sonata delivers an impressive 24 mpg city/35 mpg EPA estimated highway fuel economy rating with the standard six-speed automatic transmission with SHIFTRONIC®. The Theta II GDI engine produces 190 horsepower and 179 lb.-ft. of torquei. In the SE trim, which includes a standard dual exhaust, the engine delivers 192 horsepower and 181 lb.-ft. of torque. This high-tech, all-aluminum, 16-valve engine also features Dual Continuously Variable Valve Timing (DCVVT) and a Variable Induction System (VIS) for better engine breathing. A version of this engine also meets Partial Zero Emission Vehicle (PZEV) standards.
With the 2.0-liter Theta II turbocharged GDI engine, the 2014 Sonata offers an unprecedented combination of fuel efficiency and power – with 274 horsepower at 6,000 rpm and 269 lb.-ft of torque from 1,650 - 4,500 rpm and an EPA estimated 21 mpg city and 32 mpg highway with regular fuel. Hyundai’s turbocharged engine features a twin-scroll turbocharger that when combined with the GDI system, results in instantaneous power delivery. The 2.0T engine is available on the SE and Limited trim levels. The Sonata 2.0T SE adds a sport tuned exhaust for the 2014 model year. All 2014 Sonatas feature a six-speed automatic transmission with SHIFTRONIC® manual control.
ADVANCED STANDARD SAFETY TECHNOLOGIES: PART OF HYUNDAI’S ASSURANCE COMMITMENT
The 2014 Sonata now offers Hyundai’s Blind Spot Detection system (BSD). Using advanced sonar sensors, this system continually monitors traffic around the Sonata and if another vehicle is detected within a set distance, audio and visual elements alert the driver to the issue. A driver’s blind spot mirror also arrives on the 2014 Sonata and is standard on the high-volume GLS Popular Equipment Package and all SE and Limited models, replacing the traditional side view mirror, and features an integrated convex spotter mirror aimed directly at the Sonata’s blind spot.
The Tire Pressure Monitoring System (TPMS) has also been updated for 2014 to a system that identifies the specific tire with low pressure.
Standard 2014 Sonata safety technologies include:
- Electronic Stability Control (ESC)
- Anti-Lock Braking System (ABS) including Brake Assist
- Electronic Brake-force Distribution (EBD)
- Advanced airbags, driver and front passenger
- Side air curtains, front and rear passengers
- Active-front head restraints
- Shingle-style rear-seat head restraints
- Three-point seatbelts for all seating positions
- Front-seat seatbelt pretensioners and force limiters
- Outboard rear-seat Lower Anchors and Tethers for Children (LATCH) system for child seats
- Tire specific Tire Pressure Monitoring System (TPMS)
Additional safety technologies include:
- Rearview camera and driver’s blind spot mirror (New), both standard on the high-volume GLS Popular Equipment Package and all SE and Limited models
- Blind Spot Detection (New), standard on Limited and part of the Premium Package on SE and SE 2.0T
SUPPLE RIDE, AGILE HANDLING
Behind the wheel, drivers of the 2014 Sonata will benefit from Hyundai’s Driver Selectable Steering Mode, with three operating modes – Comfort, Normal and Sport. This innovative system allows drivers to adapt Sonata’s steering characteristics to varying driving preferences and road conditions. Comfort mode is ideal for city and parking environments, offering the greatest ease of steering with a decrease in steering effort from Normal mode. Normal mode is ideal for a mix of driving conditions. Meanwhile, Sport Mode is optimized for higher-speed freeways or winding roads and decreases power steering assist from Normal mode. The Driver Selectable Steering Mode not only adjusts power assistance levels in each mode, but also adjusts on-center build-up feel and steering build-up curves throughout the steering range, for a very natural and progressive feel. Steering dampening characteristics, active return and friction levels also have been optimized in Sonata.
An advanced four-wheel independent suspension system combines a supple ride with precise handling and steering response for Sonata GLS and Limited. Sonata uses MacPherson strut front and multi-link rear suspension systems with increased travel for optimum wheel control and a smoother ride. All four wheels are controlled by coil springs, fade-resistant dual flow dampers and stabilizer bars. The suspension has been optimized to help keep the vehicle flat during cornering and provide quick turn-in response. The rear suspension uses aluminum components to reduce weight and improve suspension performance. The GLS and Limited models also use advanced low-rolling resistance tires to help improve fuel economy while maintaining good ride and handling performance.
The Sonata SE is an even more exciting and willing partner for drivers who prefer a sportier ride and handling dynamics. The sport-tuned suspension features stiffer springs and larger stabilizer bars, resulting in a 20 percent increase in roll stiffness. Low profile 18-inch tires and an even more precise on-center steering feel round out the unique chassis components of the Sonata SE.
All Sonatas are equipped with motor-driven electric power steering that adjusts instantly to changing driving conditions while improving fuel economy over a conventional steering system. A quick-ratio steering rack is used for crisp feel on turn-in. Sonata’s turning diameter of 35.8 feet is better than Camry, Accord, Altima, Fusion and Malibu.
HYUNDAI PACKAGING EFFICIENCY
The sleek design, combined with Hyundai’s expertise in interior packaging, delivers class-leading interior comfort, functionality and practicality. A sleek roofline typically compromises headroom and interior volume, but at 120.2 cubic feet, the Sonata has more interior volume than all of its key competitors. It is so spacious that Sonata continues to be classified by the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) as a large car, truly a “class above” Camry, Altima, Fusion and Malibu (all are categorized as midsize cars). The Sonata shines even in trunk volume, with 16.4 cu. ft. of trunk space that gives it a 6.1 percent advantage over the Camry and a 10.4 percent advantage over Accord.
Sonata is rich in ultra-high-strength steel, leading to world-class body rigidity, yet it is lighter than many midsize sedans, while offering more interior room. This focus on power-to-weight ratio pays dividends across the board. The Sonata owes its ability to deliver both strong performance and excellent fuel economy in great part to its impressive power-to-weight efficiency.
THIRD-GENERATION NAVIGATION AND AUDIO TECHNOLOGY
Sonata SE and Limited models offer an optional multifunction eight-inch touch-screen display with navigation. This third-generation display features a simpler user interface, enhanced voice recognition commands and improved navigation screens. The system is more intuitive for commonly used tasks. Simple pop-up messages now appear to help pair a cell phone and the voice recognition software understands street addresses and cities all in one sentence. The route screen displays speed limits and details the next three maneuvers – one or two button pushes now complete most functions.
HD Radio technology is also integrated into all Sonatas equipped with color audio displays. An HD Radio icon on the display appears next to the channel frequency to notify the user when a station is broadcasting in HD.
Four audio systems are available on Sonata. Standard is an AM/FM/SiriusXM Satellite Radio/CD/MP3 audio system with six-speakers and iPod®/USB/auxiliary input jacks. The upgraded audio system boasts a 4.3-inch full color LCD screen with HD Radio and rearview camera. The third system consists of the Gen. 3.0 Navigation unit with Dimension audio with 10 speakers. Finally, the premium navigation system includes an Infinity® 550-watt, Logic 7® surround sound audio system with 12 speakers, including an available eight-inch subwoofer and external amplifier. A SiriusXM Satellite Radio interface is integrated into each head unit and features channel logos and Data services, such as NavWeather®, Stock Ticker and Sports Ticker. A Bluetooth hands-free phone system with voice recognition, address book download and audio streaming is also standard. Both navigation systems integrate rearview camera output. Blue Link™ turn-by-turn navigation is standard on all Sonata models (complimentary trial period).
HYUNDAI ASSURANCE CONNECTED CARE POWERED BY BLUE LINK®
Hyundai’s industry-leading telematics services program, Assurance Connected Care, is standard for three years on all 2014 Sonatas. This innovative ownership program provides Hyundai owners with proactive safety and car care services via the Hyundai Blue Link telematics system. These services include Automatic Collision Notification, Enhanced Roadside Assistance, Automatic Diagnostic Trouble Code Notification, Monthly Vehicle Health Report and in-vehicle Car Care Maintenance Scheduling.
Hyundai also recently introduced an all-new mobile application for the Blue Link telematics platform. The mobile app allows subscribers to remotely access various optional Blue Link features and services through compatible mobile devices. Completely redesigned from the ground up, the app has been significantly enhanced from the previous version and boasts a new user experience, faster navigation and innovative new features. Google Android® and Apple® iOS users can download the app today from Google Play or Apple iTunes, respectively. A BlackBerry® version is also available.
Blue Link is an innovative telematics solution that brings seamless connectivity for safety, service and infotainment capabilities and is offered in three packages: Assurance, Essentials and Guidance.