• Hyundai Sonata N Line Takes on Honda Accord and Acura TLX in a Drag Race

The new kid on the block looks to chop down the grizzled vets

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The new-generation Hyundai Sonata has, for the most part, received rave reviews from a lot of people. While it does lack the kind of power that you’d expect it to have, the sporty sedan is still an engaging drive. Fortunately, there is a version of the new Sonata that addresses output concerns regarding the standard model and its 2.5-liter naturally aspirated four-cylinder engine.

Truth be told, the Sonata N-Line, with its 2..5-liter turbocharged four-banger unit, is more than just a step up from the standard Sonata. It plays in a different league where there’s enough power and performance to compete against the established models in its class, namely the Honda Accord and the Acura TLX. The folks from Throttle House took the track to find out, and the results, well, let’s just say that if you’re a betting man, you might be lighter in the pockets after watching this race.

This is an interesting mix of cars holding a drag race because you normally don’t see any of them partaking in drag races. But we’re here to find out if the new Hyundai Sonata N-Line has the straight-line chops to compete against the Honda Accord and the Acura TLX.

The Sonata N-Line is powered by a 2.5-liter turbocharged four-cylinder engine that produces 290 horsepower and 311 pound-feet of torque. Not only is that N-Line variant more powerful than the standard Sonata by 99 horsepower and 116 pound-feet of torque, but for the purpose of this race, the Sonata N-Line also has the edge in output over its two rivals.

Hyundai Sonata N Line Takes on Honda Accord and Acura TLX in a Drag Race
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The range-topping Accord is powered by a 2.0-liter turbocharged four-cylinder engine that produces 252 horsepower and 273 pound-feet of torque while the Acura TLX runs around with its own 2.0-liter turbocharged four-banger, producing 272 horsepower and 280 pound-feet of torque.

Based on these numbers, you’d figure that the Sonata N-Line would have a field day against its two rivals, but we know all too well that power doesn’t always translate in drag races.

Hyundai Sonata N Line Takes on Honda Accord and Acura TLX in a Drag Race
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If you’re going to base your prediction on who wins based solely on engine output, the Sonata N-Line is the easy answer since it has more power than its two rivals. But it’s also equipped with an eight-speed automatic transmission that sends power to the two front wheels. It’s the same setup in the Accord, but the Honda sports sedan is equipped with a 10-speed automatic transmission, which could come in handy when you’re in a race that requires quick and smooth gear changes. Meanwhile, the TLX’s turbo-four engine is paired to a six-speed automatic transmission that sends power to all four wheels of the sedan.

Hyundai Sonata N Line Takes on Honda Accord and Acura TLX in a Drag Race
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Without spoiling the results of the drag races, we’re not going to go deep on why the gearboxes played important roles in determining who won this race. Instead, we’ll say that the boys over at Throttle House provided a better understanding of the merits of all three sports sedans, particularly the Sonata N-Line.

Kirby Garlitos
Kirby Garlitos
Automotive Aftermarket Expert - kirby@topspeed.com
Kirby’s first exposure into the world of automobiles happened when he caught Knight Rider on television as a five-year old boy. David Hasselhoff didn’t leave much of an impression on him (that happened later on in Baywatch), but KITT certainly did. To this day, Kirby remains convinced that he will one day own a car with the same ‘spirit’ as the original KITT (not the 2008 monstrosity). He doesn't know when that will be, but until then, he’s committed to expressing his love for KITT, and all cars for that matter, here at TopSpeed.  Read full bio
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