2018 Hyundai Sonata: A Fresh Start to a New Model Year

Hyundai has taken its popular passenger car, the Sonata, and given it an update in features and looks.

What’s New?

The first thing you might notice is the front end of the newly designed Sonata. Hyundai replaced the old, smaller grille with a cascading grille that dominates the front and eliminates the colour-matched fascia of before. The new look narrows the nose and gives it more of an aggressive look.

The air scoops have been moved from the bumper area and relocated along the sides of the narrower face. They have gone from being an extension of the air dam to becoming a predominant part of the front end and house daytime LED running lights. These air scoops rest below much more aggressively styled headlamps that are longer and narrower than the previous year.

The slimmer headlights are equipped with LED illumination in the top trim levels.

The hood has been reworked, and Hyundai not only made it longer to match the new grille, they relocated the previous creases towards the centre of the hood. This move makes it almost appear as if the hood has an air scoop on it, but it doesn’t; an air scoop wouldn’t be out of character if Hyundai had added one, though.

Fenders appear to be beefier than before, which gives the new Sonata a crouched appearance.

The backend got a boost, too. Hyundai added a larger trunk lid and redesigned the rear fascia.

The license plate is now below the trunk lid on the bumper wraparound taillights that are as aggressively styled as the front headlights.

It also gave Hyundai room to make their signature “H” logo more predominant. The trunk lid latch release is hidden in that larger “H”, which should make it fun to watch people try to figure out how to open the trunk.

Interior Changes

While most of the big changes were done to the cosmetics on the exterior, Hyundai did tweak the interior and the centre stack specifically.

There was a total redesign of the controls on the infotainment and climate centre. The old black push buttons were thrown out and replaced with new, silver piano key-styled top-hinge buttons that lend a touch of sophistication to the dash. The dial graphics were freshened up, too.

Hyundai added a wireless charging pad to the centre console, and they put a USB charging port in the rear seat area. Now all devices can be charged up.

You can now talk to your Sonata. The telemetric in the Hyundai BlueLink lets you talk to Alexa of Amazon’s Echo and your Google Assistant. “Alexa, start my Sonata,” are not futuristic words; they are here and now. This is a paid service.

Performance and Safety

Hyundai replaced the 6-speed transmission on the 2.0-litre turbo model with an 8-speed automatic.

Handling has been improved due to a revised chassis that makes the chassis 12 percent stiffer, thanks in part to a new torsion bar and other adjustments. Hyundai reworked the rear suspension and increased the stiffness by 21 percent on the trailing links. Overall, this gives you better grip and control when cornering.

New standard safety features include blind-spot detection and rear cross-traffic alert.

There are a lot of new features in the 2018 Hyundai Sonata to love, but there are just as many in the 2017 Hyundai Sonata, so you have to see them both. Come by and see us for a test drive.