Lockport Union-Sun & Journal Online

Z_CNHI News Service

September 16, 2013

Sonata's hybrid gets mileage boost

The Hyundai Sonata has been one of the world's hottest cars since it was redesigned in 2009.

It's also been widely praised in the automotive press as a symbol of Hyundai's resurgence. This is a brand that used to be known for cheap economy cars but, after a rapid climb in the 2000s, built one of the best family sedans in the world with this new Sonata.

For the past two years, though, the Sonata lineup has had a weak link - its hybrid version.

Introduced in 2011, the Sonata Hybrid didn't quite match the gas mileage and overall refinement of other hybrids that had been on the market longer. The 2012 Sonata Hybrid, for example, was rated for 34 mpg in the city compared to, say, 41 mpg in the Ford Fusion Hybrid.

You can tell Hyundai is trying to address these issues with some tweaks it made to the 2013 hybrid version.

It gets better gas mileage, for starters.

Hyundai changed the hybrid system so that less power comes from the gasoline engine in comparison to the electric motors, so the mileage ratings are bumped up to 36 in the city and 40 on the highway. That's an increase of 2 mpg city and 1 mpg highway. It's not a massive change but still noteworthy.

The bigger difference is in the hybrid system's feel. Engineers spent a lot of time ironing out the clunkiness that hybrids sometimes have when braking and transitioning between gasoline and battery power, so it's got a smoother feeling this year. It can also run longer on purely electric power before the engine fires up.

Aside from that, the Sonata Hybrid still has the same features that make the regular Sonata so popular and praiseworthy.

To my eyes, it's one of the best-looking family cars for sale today. It's sleek, modern, highly styled and visually interesting at a time when most sedans have opted for more boring and conservative bodies.

Text Only
Z_CNHI News Service
  • Affirmative action ruling challenges colleges seeking diversity

    The U.S. Supreme Court's support of Michigan's ban on race-based affirmative action in university admissions may spur colleges to find new ways to achieve diversity without using racial preferences.

    April 23, 2014

  • A 'wearable robot' helps her walk again

    Science is about facts, numbers, laws and formulas. To be really good at it, you need to spend a lot of time in school. But science is also about something more: dreaming big and helping people.

    April 23, 2014

  • Cuba is running out of condoms

    The newest item on Cuba's list of dwindling commodities is condoms, which are now reportedly in short supply. In response, the Cuban government has approved the sale of expired condoms.

    April 23, 2014

  • The waffle taco's biggest enemy isn't McDonald's. It's consumer habits.

    Gesturing to Taco Bell, Thompson said McDonald's had "not seen an impact relative to the most recent competitor that entered the [breakfast] space," and that new competition would only make McDonald's pursue breakfast more aggressively.

    April 23, 2014

  • Screen Shot 2014-04-22 at 4.42.47 PM.png VIDEO: Leopard attacks crowd in India

    A leopard caused panic in the city of Chandrapur when it sprung from the roof of a house and charged at rescue workers.

    April 22, 2014 1 Photo

  • The top 12 government programs ever

    Which federal programs and policies succeed in being cost-effective and targeting those who need them most? These two tests are obvious: After all, why would we spend taxpayers' money on a program that isn't worth what it costs or helps those who do not need help?

    April 22, 2014

  • In cuffs... 'Warlock' in West Virginia accused of sexual assault

    Police in West Virginia say a man claiming to be a “warlock” used promises of magical spells to lure children into committing sexual acts with him.

    April 22, 2014 1 Photo

  • Lindley, Tom.jpg Basketball stars may linger on campus a while longer

    The NBA seems serious about raising its minimum age, which could signal the end of the one-and-done era in college basketball.

    April 22, 2014 1 Photo

  • Cats outsmart the researchers

    I knew a lot had been written about dogs, and I assumed there must be at least a handful of studies on cats. But after weeks of scouring the scientific world for someone - anyone - who studied how cats think, all I was left with was this statement, laughed over the phone to me by one of the world's top animal cognition experts, a Hungarian scientist named Ádám Miklósi.

    April 22, 2014

  • McCain 1 House Republicans are more active on Twitter than Democrats

    Your representative in the House is almost certainly on Twitter. Your senator definitely is. But how are they using the social network? Are Democrats more active than Republicans, or vice versa? Who has the most followers on the Hill?

    April 22, 2014 1 Photo

Featured Ads
Community Events
Photos


Twitter Updates
Follow us on twitter
Front page
AP Video
Seasonal Content
Hyperlocal Search
Premier Guide
Find a business

Walking Fingers
Maps, Menus, Store hours, Coupons, and more...
Premier Guide
AP Video
Seasonal Content
Helium debate
Helium
Section Teases

Seasonal Content
Parade
Magazine

Click HERE to read all your Parade favorites including Hollywood Wire, Celebrity interviews and photo galleries, Food recipes and cooking tips, Games and lots more.