Hyundai Sonata Eco
Fuel Efficient/Excellent Value
By Ron Amadon
DAMASCUS, MD. – For the price of what it would cost you and your family to travel to Broadway, have dinner out, and get tickets* to “Hamilton,” you could buy a neat new, fuel sipping sedan.
And the midsize Sonata will last you longer than the show, but then again so will the effort to get tickets.
Enough of the Great White Way! Here is the bottom line right near the top line of this report. An MSRP of $24,685 including transportation. In today’s market that is a bargain.
Even better it doesn’t look or feel like a stripped down model. Acceleration should meet the demands of most customers supplied by a 1.6-liter turbocharged four with 177 horsepower and 195 lb-ft of torque matched to a responsive seven-speed-dual clutch transmission. Some testers rang up a 7.5 second 0-60 run.
So gas mileage must suffer, you may wonder. Nope. The Eco is EPA rated at 28 mpg city, 38 highway for a combined 32 mpg. In mostly stop and go errand running with one long highway trip, the Eco came in at 31 mpg for the week’s test. Not bad considering I only engaged the economy driving mode once.
Standard equipment includes a 7-inch touchscreen, up from 5 inches last year, with Android Auto integration, side mirror turn signal indicators, LED daytime running lights, eight way power driver seat with power lumbar, (very comfortable), satellite radio, projector headlights with automatic light control, rear view camera, and a 60/40 split folding rear seat among other items. Trunk space is a bit better than average for its class at 16.3 cubic feet.
This may be a midsize sedan but there is ample room for two adults to the rear and plenty of space for two in front. Three back there is not out of the question.
Controls are intuitive, fit and finish were just fine, and ventilation controls allowed us to quickly get nice and toasty during what was a cold and rainy week with temperatures well below seasonal averages. Knobs and switches abound. I love ‘em.
The roads around our office are still in wintertime mode with lots of potholes, and already sagging patch jobs. No big deal to the Eco that smoothed them out without a whimper.
A trip over I-70 demonstrated how quiet the interior was, much more so than one might expect at this price range.
On the down side, I did miss having a navi system in that center dash screen.
Yes, the marketplace is turning to SUV’s, crossovers and trucks, but there are still consumers out there that want a car! And if it is value for the dollar they are seeking, the Sonata Eco should be one of the first they try out.
For Edmunds.com said the Eco is their favorite in the Sonata lineup and Consumer Reports puts reliability at above average.
At less than $25K it should also make the monthly payment check easier to write. Smaller numbers and words – you might even save ink! J
*If you do snare tickets to “Hamilton” and have one to spare, you are my greatest friend.