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$23,400 - 33,300 MSRP

2020 Hyundai Sonata Review

The fully redesigned 2020 Hyundai Sonata has one of the nicest interiors in the class, with a lengthy list of standard features and plenty of space for both driver and passengers. However, it ranks in the bottom half of our midsize car rankings because of its unenthusiastic handling and so-so engine power.

Pros & Cons

  • Well-built, classy cabin
  • Long list of standard features
  • Roomy seating
  • Meager engine power
  • Less athletic than rivals

Rankings & Research

The 2020 Hyundai Sonata ranked #8 in Midsize Cars. Currently the Hyundai Sonata has a score of 7.8 out of 10 which is based on our evaluation of 11 pieces of research and data elements using various sources.

7.8

Overall

Scorecard

Critics' Rating: 8.3
Performance: 6.6
Interior: 7.5
Safety:
This rating isn’t available yet for the current model year. In the meantime, last year’s rating of 9.7 for safety is being used to calculate this vehicle’s overall score.
TBD
Reliability:
This rating isn’t available yet for the current model year. In the meantime, last year’s rating of 3.0 for reliability is being used to calculate this vehicle’s overall score.
TBD

Is the Hyundai Sonata a Good Car?

It may have an unimpressive ranking, but the 2020 Sonata is a good midsize car. The Sonata has a high-end cabin with plenty of quality materials and ample seating space. It also boasts a healthy heaping of standard driver assistance features, some cool infotainment amenities, and an above-average-size trunk. Where the Sonata falters is performance. It lacks the lively handling of rivals, and its engine merely gets the job done.

Should I Buy the Hyundai Sonata?

As long as you don't prioritize an engaging drive, the Sonata should be on your radar. For the reasons listed above, the Sonata is an appealing option in this segment, but so are several rivals. The Toyota Camry has powerful engine options, athletic handling, and great safety and predicted reliability marks. The Kia Optima is a little more well-rounded than the Sonata, offering stronger engine choices and tighter handling than its Hyundai corporate cousin.

Compare the Sonata, Camry, and Optima »

Should I Buy a New or Used Hyundai Sonata?

Hyundai fully redesigned the Sonata for the 2020 model year. That means all older models are significantly different from the newest version. They'll likely cost a lot less, too, so you'll have to decide if spending more money for a 2020 model is worth it.

In addition to revamped interior and exterior styling, the 2020 Sonata features two powertrain options that are different from the trio of choices in the 2019 model. The 2020 Sonata also comes with a much longer list of standard active safety features, as well as newly optional amenities such as a 10.25-inch touch screen.

If you're interested in a Sonata Hybrid model, you'll have to buy a 2019 or older model for now. Hyundai will release a hybrid version of the redesigned Sonata, but they haven't announced when.

If you're considering an older model, be sure to read our 2018 Sonata and 2019 Sonata reviews to help make your decision. Also, check out our Used Car Deals page to learn about savings and discounts you can find on used cars.

Compare the 2018, 2019, and 2020 Sonata »

We Did the Research for You: 11 Reviews Analyzed

We analyzed 11 Hyundai Sonata reviews – along with reliability ratings, fuel economy estimates, and more – to help you decide if the 2020 Sonata is the right new car for you.

Why You Can Trust Us                        

U.S. News & World Report has been ranking cars, trucks, and SUVs since 2007, and our team has more than 75 years of combined automotive industry experience. To remain objective, we don't accept expensive gifts or trips from car companies, and an outside team manages the advertising on our site.

How Much Does the Hyundai Sonata Cost?

Starting prices for the redesigned 2020 Sonata range from $23,400 for the base SE trim to $33,300 for the range-topping Sonata Limited. For more information on prices, standard and available features, and trim levels, see our Which Hyundai Sonata Model Is Right for Me? section below.

Check out our U.S. News Best Price Program for great deals at your local Hyundai dealer. You can also find excellent manufacturer incentives on our Hyundai deals page.

Hyundai Sonata Versus the Competition

Which Is Better: Hyundai Sonata or Toyota Camry?

The Toyota Camry is one of the best all-around midsize cars. It has two powerful engine options, including a 301-horsepower V6 that is much stronger than any of the Sonata's available engines. The Camry also has livelier handling, along with some of the best fuel economy estimates in the class. Both cars have similarly impressive interiors with ample passenger space and a comparable list of standard safety and infotainment features. While the Sonata has a larger trunk and a longer warranty, the Camry's above-average predicted reliability rating and solid safety scores make it the better pick.

Which Is Better: Hyundai Sonata or Kia Optima?

The Hyundai Sonata and the Kia Optima are both products of the same parent company. Before the Sonata's redesign, these two cars had a lot in common, including the same lineup of powertrains and similar features. Neither is a bad pick in the class, and your choice may come down to personal preference. The Optima gives you a choice of three engines, including a 245-horsepower mill that's more powerful than anything the Sonata offers. You might also find the Optima a little nimbler from behind the wheel. On the flip side, the Sonata offers some features that the Optima doesn't, such as a 10.25-inch touch screen, lane tracing assist, and Hyundai's Digital Key. You'll get the same industry-leading warranty coverage with each car, as well as an impressive interior with roomy seating.

Compare the Sonata, Camry, and Optima »

Sonata Interior

How Many People Does the Sonata Seat?

The Hyundai Sonata sedan seats five people. All seats are comfortable, but the upholstery and cushions could be a little firmer to provide better support for long trips. A high driving position affords great outward visibility, which is aided by a low-sloping hood and thin roof pillars. There's ample legroom and a decent amount of headroom in the back seat, even for taller passengers.

The Sonata comes standard with cloth upholstery and manually adjustable front seats. You can upgrade to an eight-way power-adjustable driver's seat, a four-way power-adjustable passenger seat, heated front seats, and ventilated front seats. Optional upholstery choices include combination synthetic leather and suede, and full genuine leather.

Sonata and Child Car Seats

There are two complete sets of LATCH connectors for the rear outboard seats.

Sonata Interior Quality

The redesigned Sonata has upscale materials throughout the interior, and the overall design flows together nicely. Build quality is excellent as well, and not much road or wind noise enters the cabin.

Sonata Cargo Space

There's 16 cubic feet of trunk space in the 2020 Sonata. That's above average for a midsize car, and it's more than what some primary rivals offer. The Kia Optima has 15.9 cubic feet of space, and the Toyota Camry has up to 15.1 cubic feet.

The Sonata's trunk lip is a little high, so it might be tough to lift in heavier items. However, the trunk itself is open and square, a boon for holding bulky gear.

Sonata Infotainment, Bluetooth, and Navigation

The 2020 Sonata's standard infotainment system comes with an 8-inch touch-screen, Android Auto, Apple CarPlay, Bluetooth, and a USB port. Higher trims are available with a 10.25-inch touch screen and navigation. That upgraded interface can be found in other vehicles from the Hyundai/Kia family, including the all-new Hyundai Palisade and Kia Telluride midsize SUVs.

Both the standard and upgraded infotainment systems are easy to learn and operate. The few physical knobs and buttons on the dashboard include a volume knob and some adjustments for climate settings.

Other optional features include dual-zone automatic climate control, satellite radio, a 12.3-inch digital instrument display, wireless device charging, and a 12-speaker Bose premium stereo. The available Blue Link telematics system also enables remote start.

Making its debut in the redesigned Sonata is Hyundai's Digital Key. This feature uses near field communication technology (NFC) to allow Android phone customers to use their device to lock and unlock the car, as well as start it. You can also share the app with other drivers to give them access to the car.

Read more about interior »

Sonata Performance

Sonata Engine: Serviceable

The redesigned 2020 Hyundai Sonata launches with a 2.5-liter four-cylinder engine as its base mill. Output is rated at 191 horsepower and 181 pound-feet of torque. The Sonata's optional engine is a 1.6-liter turbocharged four-cylinder. Its specs are almost flipped from the base engine, as this one puts out 180 horsepower and 195 pound-feet of torque.

The turbo engine is adequate for most driving situations. Acceleration is decent, though you must hit the throttle hard to get the most power.

Both engines come mated to an eight-speed automatic transmission that delivers smooth and timely shifts.

Sonata Gas Mileage: Unknown for Now

Neither Hyundai nor the EPA has released fuel economy estimates for the 2020 Sonata as of this writing.

Sonata Ride and Handling: Somewhat Uninspiring

The Sonata offers a mostly comfortable ride, even over broken pavement and bumps in the road. However, opting for larger wheels makes things feel a little harsher, and the car jumps around more.

Body motions are well-controlled around corners, but steering response feels dull. This isn't a sports sedan by any means, and several rivals are more athletic overall.

Read more about performance »

Sonata Reliability

Is the Hyundai Sonata Reliable?

As of this writing, J.D. Power has not given the 2020 Hyundai Sonata a predicted reliability rating.

Hyundai Sonata Warranty

Hyundai covers the Sonata with a five-year/60,000-mile basic warranty and a 10-year/100,000-mile powertrain warranty. That's one of the longest warranties in the industry.

Read more about reliability »

Sonata Safety

Sonata Crash Test Results

At the time of writing, neither the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration nor the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety has crash tested the 2020 Sonata.

Sonata Safety Features

The redesigned Sonata's standard driver assistance features include adaptive cruise control, forward collision warning, pedestrian detection, automatic emergency braking, automatic high-beam headlights, lane departure warning, lane keep assist, lane tracing assist, driver attention monitoring, and a rearview camera.

Optional active safety features include blind spot monitoring, reverse automatic braking, a blind spot camera, a surround-view parking camera system, a head-up display, and front and rear parking sensors.

Also optional is remote parking assist, which you can use to automatically park and unpark the car from tight, perpendicular spots.

Read more about safety »

Sonata Dimensions and Weight

The Hyundai Sonata is 16.1 feet long. Hyundai has not announced the curb weight for the 2020 Sonata.

Where Is the 2020 Hyundai Sonata Built?

Hyundai builds the 2020 Sonata in Alabama.

Which Hyundai Sonata Model Is Right for Me?

The 2020 Hyundai Sonata comes in four trims: SE, SEL, SEL Plus, and Limited. SE and SEL models come standard with a 2.5-liter four-cylinder engine that produces 191 horsepower. SEL Plus and Limited trims feature a 1.6-liter turbocharged four-cylinder engine that produces 180 horsepower. All trims come with front-wheel drive and an eight-speed automatic transmission.

The base model has a good number of standard features, including a long list of driver assistance technologies. However, it's worth stepping up to at least the SEL trim for its added conveniences such as a power-adjustable driver's seat, heated front seats, blind spot monitoring, and dual-zone automatic climate control. You can also upgrade to the 10.25-inch touch screen in the SEL and SEL Plus trims (it comes standard in the Limited).

Hyundai Sonata SE

The 2020 Hyundai Sonata SE starts at $23,400 and comes standard with cloth upholstery, a six-way manually adjustable driver's seat, a four-way manually adjustable passenger seat, and an 8-inch touch-screen infotainment system with Android Auto, Apple CarPlay, a USB port, and Bluetooth.

Standard driver assistance features include adaptive cruise control, forward collision warning, pedestrian detection, automatic emergency braking, automatic high-beam headlights, lane departure warning, lane keep assist, lane tracing assist, driver attention monitoring, and a rearview camera.

Hyundai Sonata SEL

The Hyundai Sonata SEL has a starting MSRP of $25,500. The SEL adds an eight-way power-adjustable driver's seat, heated front seats, heated outside mirrors, and a hands-free power trunk. It also comes with proximity keyless entry, blind spot monitoring, dual-zone automatic climate control, HD Radio, satellite radio, Blue Link telematics, and remote start.

You can add the available Convenience package for $1,200. It includes a 12.3-inch digital instrument display, Digital Key, wireless device charging, an auto-dimming mirror, a leather-wrapped steering wheel, and a second-row USB port. A Premium package is also available. It costs $1,850 and requires the purchase of the Convenience package. It adds a 12-speaker Bose premium audio system, genuine leather seats, and a heated steering wheel. You can add a panoramic sunroof to either package for $1,000.

Hyundai Sonata SEL Plus

Additional features found in the Sonata SEL Plus include synthetic leather and suede upholstery, a 12.3-inch digital instrument display, wireless device charging, and paddle shifters. This trim starts at $27,400.

Hyundai Sonata Limited

The range-topping Sonata Limited starts at $33,300 and comes with genuine leather upholstery, a four-way power-adjustable passenger seat, ventilated front seats, a leather-wrapped dashboard, an auto-dimming rearview mirror, Digital Key, a panoramic sunroof, a 10.25-inch touch screen, navigation, and a 12-speaker Bose premium stereo.

Additional active safety features include reverse automatic braking, a blind spot camera, a surround-view parking camera system, remote parking assist, front and rear parking sensors, and a head-up display.

Check out our U.S. News Best Price Program for great savings at your local Hyundai dealer. You can also find excellent manufacturer incentives on our Hyundai deals page.

See 2020 Hyundai Sonata specs and trims »

The Final Call

The redesigned 2020 Hyundai Sonata tries to sing a new song in the competitive midsize car class, but it doesn’t hit all the right notes. Positives include a spacious, classy cabin, but this is a car that's far from fun to drive. We recommend checking out some other rivals before settling on this Hyundai.

Don’t just take our word for it. Check out comments from some of the reviews that drive our rankings and analysis.

  • "For the vast majority of family sedan buyers, of course, driving finesse isn't nearly as high on the shopping list as comfort, tech and safety. And the 2020 Hyundai Sonata feels set to ace the competition in these important disciplines." -- CNET
  • "The 2020 redesigned Sonata has distinctive design and cutting-edge technology and should set the new Sonata apart from its rivals." -- Consumer Reports
  • "Overall, the Sonata is quiet, comfortable and as satisfying to drive as any car in its class, which includes some formidable competitors like the Honda Accord, Toyota Camry and Nissan Altima." -- Kelley Blue Book

Buying

Expert Advice

Last Updated: November 21, 2019

Declining Sales: Hyundai Sonata sales land in the lower half of the midsize car class. Compared to the same period in 2018, sales have dropped by 15.7 percent. The class-leading Toyota Camry is currently outselling the Sonata about 4 to 1.

Research more buying advice »
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