Wednesday, December 17, 2014

Hyundai Sonata (LF) Hybrid

A few months ago, the Hyundai Sonata has been given its full model change under the LF codename and for this new generation, it focuses on four terms; RUN. TURN, STOP, and PROTECT. RUN refers to the engine choices, TURN refers to the handling characteristics although this new model now comes with some multilink cleverness, STOP and PROTECT refers to the safety features. It was launched prior to the upcoming 30th anniversary of the Sonata next year since its debut late 1985 and while the rapidly-growing carmaker has big plans for the Sonata's 30th birthday next year, they've added a new Hybrid model to the mix.

2015 Hyundai Sonata Hybrid

The new and improved Sonata Hybrid still emphasizes on four terms; RUN. TURN, STOP, and PROTECT, while delivering its own blend of fuel-efficiency for the roads of today. On the exterior view, the Sonata Hybrid features a different look than the standard model judging from its different front grille, new alloy wheels, and a new rear lamp design that is very different from the standard model.

2015 Hyundai Sonata Hybrid interior

On the inside, it looks pretty much the same as the normal Sonata and it's lavishly equipped with cutting-edge technology that will seduce you to its connectivity whim. Plus, it's surprisingly comfortable as well even in the back seats just like the original. The only difference in the Hybrid model is this 4.2 Color TFT LCD on the dashboard that monitors how I'm driving. It monitors how fuel-efficient am I driving, the range, the mileage, and so on. There's so much to explore about the new interior from the driver's point of view.

2015 Hyundai Sonata Hybrid speedometer
Now, let's talk more about the biggest improvement on the hybrid drivetrain. For the brand new Sonata Hybrid, the 2.0L Nu engine as seen from the previous YF Sonata Hybrid model has been given the GDi treatment. Yes. It now comes with Gasoline Direct Injection so it's now more powerful than ever with 156PS of power output. This new engine is mated with an electric motor generating 38kW of power and an improved Li-ion battery with 13.3% higher capacity and relocated under the boot floor for added space at the back. Sounds good enough for us and with the 6-speed automatic gearbox, the new model delivers a combined fuel economy of 18.2km/L. That's two times less than its rivals from Japan but don't be fooled because it's much more engageable to drive rather than those CVT-powered hybrid saloons from this class.

2015 Hyundai Sonata Hybrid

Just like the normal model, the new Sonata Hybrid comes with some optional safety features including the Forward Collision Warning System, Advanced Smart Cruise Control, Lane Departure Warning System, Blind Spot Detection, and not to mention the Advanced Smart Parking Assist System where you can let the parking all by itself when it spots a vacant parking space. Looks like this hybrid saloon really sticks true to its promise that its petrol-powered version delivers.

The new Sonata Hybrid starts at 28,700,000 up to 32,000,000 Korean Won plus additional costs for optional extras depending on the variant.

Available colors: Ice Mint, Ice White, Platinum Silver, Polished Metal, Night Sky, Remington Red, and Phantom Black.

Photo: Toyota Motor Corporation

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