See the companion 'SUNDAY DRIVE' article 'TAIL OF THE DRAGON' as Vinnie takes the Sonata on one of America's most famous roads!
There are some cars that I test that I get to know better than others…usually because you spend more time in a car or take a long trip in one. Such is the case with the 2015 Hyundai Sonata Sport 2.0 T. I was expecting a solid mid size car…what I got was a whole lot more.
At first walk around, the Sonata cuts an attractive profile…well proportioned and without a lot of lines and creases it doesn’t need. From the less is more design school it’s not as edgy as some previous models. The Sonata gets a larger more pronounced grille and a bit more of an aggressive stance. The test car was an attractive autumn orange color that made the car stand out as well as looking great at the Halloween party I drove it to. The Sport version picks up some chrome accents on the rocker panels, attractive 18” wheels, a small spoiler on the deck lid and quad chrome exhaust tips that put a little more sport behind the Sport nameplate.
LOTS OF 'SPORTY' TOUCHES IN THE SONATA INTERIOR INCLUDING A SPORT STEERING WHEEL SEATS AND RACING GAS AND BRAKE PEDALS
Inside the cabin is roomy and well laid out. The seats are comfortable with side bolsters again to add sport to the sport package. A very welcome addition when you are spending two days and a thousand miles in a car! They also looked like they belonged in a more expensive car with orange piping on the black leather…very classy looking. The dash goes for the popular cockpit style that is anchored by a round speedo and tach with an information screen in the middle. It all works real well. The sport package shows up again in the steering wheel that is the now popular flat bottom “D cut” type with, a thicker leather wrapped feel and paddle shifters. Yes kids, the Sonata has grown up. The infotainment system is easy to use and Hyundai’s Bluelink connected car system is flawless.
THE 2.0 LITER TURBO DELIVERS A PEPPY DRIVE WHILE EXHAUST EXITS IN STYLE THROUGH QUAD TIPS
Under the hood the Sonata Sport gets the 2.0 liter turbo 245 hp four cylinder matched up to the 6 speed automatic. No more manual transmission for the Sonata and that’s a shame for this car. The revvy little engine was quite spry giving the Sonata plenty of power on the interstate without a lot of noise or vibration. The Sonata gives you three drive modes normal ECO or Sport that change steering and engine calibrations. I spent most of my time in 'sports' mode that stiffened up the steering and seemed to let the engine stretch out a bit, especially when I was in manual mode with the shift paddles.
I really put the Sonata through its paces on the famous Tail of the Dragon for The Sunday Drive and it responded better than I ever expected it to. The Sport gets better shocks and tires, 18 inch wheels and a stiffer sway bar front and rear. The result is a car that hugs the road about as well as any car in its class. Couple that up with the improved steering that has a confident road feel and you get a car that takes it quite well when you throw it around some tight curves while also delivering a comfortable ride on the interstate or city streets. Four wheel disc brakes delivered a confident feel to stopping in any of the road conditions I threw at the Sport.
The Hyundai Sonata Sport 2.0 T that I drove has a sticker price of $29,510 including Blue Link, Bluetooth, a comprehensive safety package including back up camera, blind spot warning, back up cross traffic monitor and a ton of airbags. Mileage figures come in at 23 city/32 highway/26 combined miles per gallon. The Sonata gets the 5 year/ 60,000 mi /10 year/100k warranty.It also scores high on crash tests from both the government and Insurance Institute of Highway Safety (IIHS) gaining the institutes Top Safety Pick rating.
The Montgomery, Alabama built 2015 Sonata Sport 2.0 T is a value packed car that gives you incredible bang for the buck, has a snappy answer every time you hit the gas pedal, is roomy on the inside, an eye catcher on the outside and is surprisingly responsive and fun to take on the country back roads and work out a little. It touches that portion of our car loving souls that knows that our cars are a bit more than just transportation…they are a little bit entertainment as well.
THE REDESIGNED SONATA HAS CLEANER LINES AND LOTS OF TRUNK SPACE
THE SONATA EVEN DRESSED UP AS A JACK O LANTERN FOR HALLOWEEN...I TOLD YOU THIS CAR IS FUN!
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