Hyundai debuts engine improvements for top 2020 Sonata sedans

July 9, 2019

The looks aren't the only thing that's remarkable about the 2020 Hyundai Sonata sedan with its new turbocharged engine.

When it arrives later this year, the 2020 Sonata SEL and Sonata Limited will use a new engine technology developed by Hyundai to use less fuel and lower emissions by changing how the engine operates, depending on speed.

The 1.6-liter turbo-4 found in the Sonata SEL and Limited will be the first engine to use technology that controls how long cylinder valves are open during combustion. Hyundai estimates the technology will improve performance from its engine by 4 percent, reduce fuel consumption by 5 percent, and cut emissions by 12 percent. The 2020 Hyundai Sonata SEL and Sonata Limited, which will use the new engine, make 180 horsepower but aren't yet rated by the EPA for fuel economy.

At low speeds, the systems keep valves open longer to reduce friction and pressure on the cylinders. At high speeds, the systems close valves more quickly for higher performance. Previously, engines could control when valves open and closed, but couldn't control how long valves stayed open.

The new engine also uses exhaust gas recirculation at lower speeds to improve efficiency and lower nitrogen oxides emitted by the engine.

When it goes on sale later this year, the 2020 Hyundai Sonata will feature several other technologies developed by the automaker for the new sedan. In addition to its smartphone-based digital key, the Sonata also debuts chrome strip lighting that extends up from the headlights across the front of the car and a new platform for Hyundai that's lighter and stronger.

The new 2020 Sonata is expected to arrive in the U.S. within the next few months.

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