If someone told us 10 years ago that Hyundai would be making some of the best cars in their respective segments, we wouldn’t have believed them.
The company underwent massive changes over the last decade or so, becoming one of the leading car manufacturers. At the forefront of that charge is the Hyundai Sonata, their midsize offering. It’s always been a good proposition, but historically, it was only because of its price. Recent years saw the facelifted Sonata become a top contender in its respective class. The current-generation Sonata remains largely unchanged for 2017 but hey, when it isn’t broken, why fix it?
If we do have some criticism about the Sonata, it would be directed towards its exterior design. There’s nothing wrong with it per say, but it is a bit dated at the moment. It looks like a car from 3 years ago, which effectively, that’s what it is. It needs a minor facelift, something to liven it up a bit. Perhaps a new, fresh front fascia with mirroring rear to match. It certainly wouldn’t do any harm. Anyway, design is subjective and beauty is in the eye of the beholder, so we’ll leave that one up to you.
The midsize sedan is available in a couple of trims, with a Hybrid variant thrown in there too, but since that’s not really a trim, it’s better to leave it separately. Namely, the trims are: Base, SE, Sport, Eco, Limited, Sport 2.0T and Limited 2.0T. There are quite a few trims to choose from, but you can’t go wrong with any of them. The Base is great if you want the entry-level Sonata. It’s got A/C, cruise control, heated mirrors, power accessories and all the necessary technologies we expect today such as satellite radio and an USB port.
The best value for money lies in the midrange trims, the Sport and the Limited. If you can stretch it to the Limited, you’ll get nearly everything you will possibly ever need and more. The Sport 2.0T and Limited 2.0T are slightly different as they feature a turbocharged motor, as the name suggest. Name your pick really.
Speaking of engines, the base one is a 2.4 liter naturally aspirated four-cylinder with 185 hp and 178 lb-ft of torque. It’s capable of moving the Sonata reasonably well, sprinting to 60 mph in 8.2 seconds. It’s about average for this type of engine in the class, so no surprises there. The 2.0T trims get a 2.0 liter turbocharged four-cylinder unit with a substantial 245 horsepower and 260 pound-feet of torque. The 0-60 sprint is only slightly better than the 2.4 unit in the real world, so if you’re looking for performance, you won’t get a lot, despite the bigger power output. It does however return 26 mpg, which is still good, but not as good as the 2.4 liter’s 29 mpg.
The starting price for the 2017 Hyundai Sonata is $21,600, making it one of the best value for money midsize sedans currently. If we were you, we’d be tempted by one very much.