On top of sporty updates from the regular model

Introduced in 2015, the current-generation Sonata replaced a model that was around for only five years. Unlike its predecessor, the current sedan is set to hang around a bit longer, having received a consistent facelift in 2017. With the almost redesigned Sonata in dealerships, Hyundai is rolling out similar updates for the hybrid and plug-in hybrid versions. Both were unveiled at the 2018 Chicago Auto Show.

Not surprisingly, exterior updates are similar to the regular model. The front fascia now sports larger, more aggressive headlamps, a bigger grille with a new mesh, and a reshaped engine hood. The new headlamps features LED technology with dynamic cornering function. A new decklid and taillights round off the rear section, while the sides get new 16- and 17-inch "eco-spoke" wheel designs.

The cabin boasts a new center stack and steering wheel, the latter available with heating. The upgraded navigation system includes new Bird’s Eye View map perspective. Models equipped with navigation get wireless phone charging, while a rear USB charging port is available for all trims. Blind-spot detection with Rear Cross-traffic Alert and Lane Change Assist are standard, while Automatic Emergency Braking (AEB) and Lane Keep Assist are available as options for the first time.

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What About Power?

Hyundai Sonata Hybrid Gets More Power, Better Mileage in Chicago
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Total range for the Hybrid model is estimated at "more than 650 miles"

The Sonata Hybrid gets its juice from a 2.0-liter four-cylinder engine paired to a six-speed automatic transmission that houses a 38-kW electric motor and clutch. The gas engine cranks out 154 horsepower and 140 pound-feet of torque, while the motor adds 51 horses and 151 pound-feet. Hybrid net system power is rated at 193 horsepower. EPA estimates aren’t yet available, but internal testing returned estimates of 39 mpg in the city, 45 mpg on the highway, and 42 mpg combined. Total range is estimated at "more than 650 miles," a 50-mile improvement over the outgoing model. The hybrid can be operated on electric power only at speeds of up to 75 mph.

Hyundai Sonata Hybrid Gets More Power, Better Mileage in Chicago
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The 9.8-kWh lithium-ion battery is more than five times larger than the Hybrid's battery and gives the sedan an all-electric range of up to 27 miles

The Plug-in Hybrid model gets the same gas engine, but a different electric motor and extended range. The 9.8-kWh lithium-ion battery is more than five times larger than the Hybrid’s battery and gives the sedan an all-electric range of up to 27 miles. Recharging the batter takes only three hours with a level-two charger. The total range is slightly lower than the Hybrid, however, being estimated at 590 miles. The 50-kW electric motor is 32 percent more powerful than the motor used in the Hybrid, which increases total system output to 202 horsepower.

References

Hyundai Sonata

2018 Hyundai Sonata Exterior High Resolution
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Read our full review on the 2018 Hyundai Sonata.

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Read more Chicago Auto Show news.

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