Print 27 comment(s) - last by blckgrffn.. on Feb 25 at 12:03 PM

2011 Hyundai Sonata
Hybrid expected to use li-poly batteries and offer great fuel economy

Hybrid cars and SUVs are becoming more popular with drivers in America as people get more comfortable with hybrid technology and look to save on fuel costs. Most of the hybrid cars are smaller vehicles like the Prius, but there are also a selection of mid-size hybrids and even larger hybrids for those needing more space.

One of the newest mid-size hybrid cars is the Ford Fusion Hybrid that is EPA rated at 41 mpg in the city and 36 mpg on the highway, though some have reported even better fuel economy for the vehicle. Toyota also has a hybrid version of its best-selling Camry. Another big name in the auto industry is set to enter the hybrid mid-size market: Hyundai.

Hyundai is set to debut its new 2011 Sonata Hybrid at the New York Auto Show. A hybrid version of the Sonata should be very impressive considering that the standard version of the car with the 198 hp 2.4-liter four-cylinder is rated 35 mpg on the highway, putting it very near the Fusion Hybrids mpg rating.

The powertrain for the hybrid Sonata is said to be much like the one used in the Nuvis concept seen at the 2009 New York Auto Show with a 2.4-liter engine mated to a six-speed automatic transmission coupled with a 30kW electric motor and a 1.4kWh battery pack. The battery pack will use lithium-polymer batteries rather than the NiMH batteries other hybrids in its class use.

Pricing and availability for the hybrid Sonata have not been announced. The base Sonata starts at $19,195 with a six-speed manual and the high-end Sonata Limited goes for $25,295.

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RE: My opinion...
By jonmcc33 on 2/18/2010 1:24:19 PM , Rating: 2
Most Sonatas that I see on the road are V6 versions. Sales of brand new Sonatas were never that great but the real value is in used Sonatas. I got my 2006 Sonata V6 in Jan 2008 for $12,300. That's 42% off the MSRP after only 2 years and it was fully loaded. Many will complain that Hyundai vehicles do not retain their value (compared to Honda or Toyota) but that doesn't matter if you are buying a used car with no intention to trade it in. It's perfect for a used car buyer. A Honda or Toyota would have cost me more for less power, features and safety. I know because I looked at the Camry and Accord at the same time. Dealers laughed when I told them $15,000 for a 2-3 year old car, base models at that.

Anyway, turbo won't help the Sonata either. It's a mid-sized sedan and not a 2 door coupe. It needs torque to get up and go, not horsepower. My 2006 Sonata has 228lb-ft of torque at 3500RPM.

RE: My opinion...
By blckgrffn on 2/25/2010 12:03:51 PM , Rating: 2
My passat with a DI turbo 4 banger has more torque through more of its power band than your V6. And *only* ~200 HP.

DI turbo engines are great, too bad it needs premium fuel typically...

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