Hyundai has announced full details for its updated 2013 Sonata Hybrid.
With pricing starting from $25,650, $200 lower than the outgoing 2012 Sonata Hybrid, the new model also gets up to 6 percent better gas mileage and a increased driving in electric-only mode.
All Sonata Hybrids use a 2.4-liter, four-cylinder Atkinson cycle gasoline engine. This sends power through a six-speed automatic transmission to the front wheels.
Hyundai has made tweaks to ensure the Sonata Hybrid makes use of its electric powertrain more often.
An improved 47 kW lithium polymer battery pack is more powerful and more energy dense than that of the old car, and lighter too--weight has been cut from 92.4 pounds to 87.8. The smaller pack has also liberated 1.4 cu.ft. of trunk space, now at 12.1 cu.ft.
The pack's improved efficiency means more power can be harvested from regenerative braking and from the engine, meaning more electric power when you need it. The higher-output electric motor also helps boost gas mileage, letting the engine work a little less hard and allowing the car to generate more electricity when decelerating.
An updated Hybrid Starter Generator improves charging capacity and engine starting. Hyundai also says the combination of these upgraded components reduces friction, and therefore wear, in the 6-speed transmission.
Exterior styling is largely unchanged, but some aerodynamic changes reduce the 2013 Sonata Hybrid's drag coefficient to only 0.24--one of the lowest on the market.
The upshot of these changes is combined economy of 38 mpg on the Sonata Hybrid and 37 mpg on the Limited trim level, which features a higher, less economy-orientated specification. Both models get city mileage of 36 mpg, and 40 mpg highway.
The 2013 Hyundai Sonata Hybrid starts at $25,650, plus a mandatory $795 delivery fee. Standard features include 16-inch Eco-spoke alloy wheels, keyless entry, heated front seats, Bluetooth, Hyundai Blue Link telematics and more.
With $30,550 plus $795 delivery to spend, you can get the Sonata Hybrid Limited. This features a wheel upgrade to 17-inch Eco-spoke alloys, leather seats, wheel and shift knob, navigation, a backup camera, HD radio and more besides. A panoramic glass sunroof is a $1,000 option.