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- More stylish than before
- Relaxing, comfortable ride quality
- Flexible engines
- Android or Apple, your interface is OK
- Roomy interior
- Light on personality
- Sport isn’t all that sporty
- Limited customization options
- Interior a little downmarket
The 2018 Hyundai Sonata receives a much-needed injection of style.
With three different engines and a bevy of trim levels, the 2018 Hyundai Sonata may sound complicated—it's not. The sharp mid-size sedan is a good value and better looking now.
It's also possible that those qualities will fall on deaf ears as buyers flock to SUVs that sometimes offer none of the above, and at a higher cost.
We say the Sonata is a compelling, high-value package that may be a little light on personality but is a pleasure to drive and has a roomy interior. We’ve rated it a 7.2 out of 10. (Read more about how we rate cars.)
This year, the Sonata has a new look outside, some minor tweaks inside, an available 8-speed automatic transmission, and a new Sport trim level. It’s not an all-new car, but it builds on the redesigned-for-2015 Sonata with a small injection of passion that should help it stand out once again. The Sonata is available in SE, Sport, Eco, and Limited trim levels, with a choice of three 4-cylinder engines.
Sonata SE, SEL Sport, and Limited versions all come standard with a 2.4-liter inline-4 rated at 185 horsepower. Optional on Sport and Limited models is a 2.0-liter turbo-4 rated at 245 hp. The Eco, which we haven’t driven for the 2018 model year, has its own 178-hp 1.6-liter turbo-4 and a unique 7-speed dual-clutch automatic transmission that helps it achieve the lowest fuel consumption of the group.
Hybrid and plug-in versions of the 2018 Sonata will follow; we’ll update this space when we know more and when we’ve driven them.
Even in Sport trim, the Sonata is quiet and composed; it’s certainly not a corner-carver, but it handles day-to-day tasks exceptionally well. Responsive steering and a plush ride help it stand out.
All trims are well-equipped, and this year Hyundai has significantly sliced the price of its range-topping Limited by deleting a formerly standard panoramic moonroof in favor of a smaller, traditional moonroof, and by dropping heated rear seats. We doubt too many buyers will miss those features, but they’ll probably appreciate the high-value SEL. Intended to be the most popular Sonata, it’s priced aggressively with desirable features such as a power driver’s seat, Apple CarPlay and Android Auto integration, and optional automatic emergency braking.