Hyundai has uncovered its new generation 2020 Sonata a little over a month before it celebrates its formal world premiere at the 2019 New York Auto Show on April 19.
Bolder looks and a four-door coupe body
Penned from a clean sheet, the eighth generation of Hyundai’s mid-size sedan marks a return to a more sporty, four-door coupe body style akin to the sixth generation model from 2009.
It’s the first production model to embody the Korean brand’s new design mantra dubbed Sensuous Sportiness design that was previewed by last year’s Le Fil Rouge concept (HDC-1) and which to some extent, hinted at the new Sonata.
“Sonata celebrates innovative coupe-like silhouette,” said Sang Yup Lee, senior vice president and head of the Hyundai Design Center. “A short overhang, sloping roofline and low deck lid create a balanced feel, and Hyundai’s signature chrome accent now goes all the way into the hood, making it look even longer. It also has LED lighting built in. These cues bring the Sensuous Sportiness design to life.”
Trick lights, sort of
In another first for a production Hyundai, the 2020 Sonata borrows of the Hidden Lighting Lamps from the HDC-2 concept car from last year’s Busan Motor Show. As the Korean company puts it, “the Hidden Lighting Lamps appear to be of a chromic material when switched off and become dramatically lit when turned on” to serve as Daytime Running Lights (DLRs).
It’s bigger too
Hyundai tells us that the new mid-size sedan comes with a 30mm (1.2 in.) lower height and a width extended by 25mm (1 in.). Its wheelbase is extended by 35mm (1.4 in), and its whole length by 45mm (1.8 in.).
Hyundai’s efforts to give the Sonata a more premium feel and attractive design aren’t limited to the exterior, as the cabin has been overhauled accordingly. Bypassing the designers’ claims of elements being inspired by a Stealth aircraft, it does look like a better place to sit in than before, with the compressed the height of the dashboard and HVAC vents giving it a cleaner and lighter look.
The centre-gauge cluster display is fully digital, while the infotainment screen gets capacitive touch buttons. There’s also a newly designed automatic transmission control with buttons instead of a traditional shifter. Yesterday, Hyundai confirmed that the Sonata will get a smartphone-based digital key. Owners will be able to download a smartphone app and then use it to unlock and start the vehicle.
Sales of the new Sonata will start worldwide in the second half of the year.