2020 Hyundai Sonata HEV Limited: Food for Thought in a Hybrid Electric Vehicle

Experienced by Kimatni D. Rawlins

I love it! The 2020 Hyundai Sonata Hybrid Electric Vehicle (HEV) has a range of 560 miles and 47 combined mpg based on my driving style. It breaks down to 51 highway mpg and 45 city mpg.  I bet you can increase the range with extended economical habits. The Sonata HEV is so fuel-efficient and looks so good that it precipitates impromptu human behavior such as long drives hours away.

When the 8th-generation Sonata (Hyundai’s longest-standing and most successful model) arrived in a Shimmering Silver hue and spindle 17” alloy rims wrapped in Michelin tires, I knew that we would be putting out high mileage during Fit Fathers weekly test drive. To pay it forward, my wife and I decided to exercise for three hours to burn off 1000+ calories and then hit the road from Silver Spring, MD to Philadelphia, PA, to score some vegan cheesesteaks from the all-vegan Blackbird Pizzeria. I put work in on my new Specialized Sirrus 4.0 hybrid bike for two hours and boxed while Misa ran and jumped on the spin bike.

With this type of range, we can make the roundtrip journey twice and still have fuel for play. Additionally, the Hyundai HEV’s solar panel roof can increase mileage by 2 miles per day, which is akin to 700 “free” miles per year! The only downside is that you’ll be devoid of a sunroof.

For development, Hyundai lowered and widened the Sonata, increased its wheelbase, increased the wheel wells, enhanced the aerodynamics, and shortened the overhangs for an aggressive 3-dimensional look. We spotted quite a few older Sonatas on Highway 95 that were much smaller and mundane in comparison. The main design focus centered on the front fascia, which leaves the strongest impression on viewers. And one of the cooler features is the “Vortex Generators” atop the LED boomerang taillights, which reduces air turbulence along with the integrated trunk lip. These divots act as a spoiler to stabilize the Sonata at higher speeds.

The “vegan cheat meal day trip” was comfortable and entertaining. Smart Cruise Control became my best friend on the 2.5-hour drive up to the City of Brotherly Love. Hyundai says the interior was inspired by the unmatched sophistication of the legendary B-2 stealth bomber. The Korean sedan’s cabin is all-new with a full digital cluster display, Head-Up Display, and a paddle-shifting sports steering wheel. Moreover, the speedometer and tachometer change from digital gauges to video images when you actuate the turn signals. Hyundai first applied this technology to the innovative 2020 Palisade SUV.

For the price point of $36,430, the Sonata Hybrid Limited includes everything, such as the active technology, the Surround View Monitor, LED headlights and taillights, and Hyundai SmartSense Safety featuring Blind Spot Collision-Avoidance Assist with Rear Cross-Traffic Collision-Avoidance Assist. Keystones also include a wireless device charging pad, a fancy center stack with a 10.25″ touchscreen navigation, dual automatic climate control, and a 12.3″ digital instrument cluster.  My “sounds of freedom” reggae music blared from the impressive 12-speaker Bose CenterPoint premium audio when I tuned to the newly named Bob Marley’s Tuff Gong Radio on SiriusXM. For enthusiasts, the limited-run on Channel 42 will showcase the best of Marley, his label Tuff Gong, and iconic singers and family members close to the legend.

Behind the wheel, the Sonata moves fluidly and efficiently. The hybrid unit combines a 2-liter 4-cylinder hybrid engine, a permanent magnet synchronous motor (39 kW), and a 270v lithium-ion polymer battery and hybrid starter generator. Partnered with a 6-speed automatic transmission, the Sonata HEV puts out a total of 192-horsepower. Of course, those aren’t numbers that lead to euphoria, but the reduced visits to the pump more than make up for it. Drive modes can set the vehicle in Eco, Sport, Custom, or Smart settings depending on how you feel. Unquestionably for the highway cruise, I kept the ride in Eco mode. Once we arrived in Philly, the Sonata Hybrid moved effectively through the narrow streets and had no qualms maneuvering in tight city parking spaces.

The Sonata is the first of the family’s sedans to integrate Hyundai’s Sensuous Sportiness design language. The company borrowed some of the 2011 Sonata model’s styling cues since that left a good imprint on customers and elevated the vehicle’s craftsmanship for today’s expectations. With a long body, athletic side profile, and sleeker wheels, the edgy silhouette emphasizes a sporty Korean sedan with proportion characteristics of what you might see in 4-door coupes. Its elongated snout smiles with Hyundai’s grille and is highlighted by sexy DLRs connected to a light strip up each side of the hood.

The day trip to Blackbird was well worth it. Misa and I grubbed like kids after playing on a hot summer day. We only get to experience the vegan cheesesteak about once every four months, but if the 2020 Hyundai Sonata HEV Limited were at our disposal, that would change to twice a month. Here are a few cheat day strategies to keep up with your health goals:

-Drink only water all-day
-Workout for at least two hours times the morning of (mostly cardio)-Start the day off with a fiber-rich meal such as a fruit salad
-Eat raw broccoli or cauliflower after the cheat meal-The next day exercise at least twice