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2019 Hyundai Sonata Overview

Hyundai first introduced the midsize Sonata in the United States in 1988. Drastic improvements over the years have helped the Sonata establish its reputation as a value-oriented leader in the segment. The Sonata was refreshed in mid-2018 and the 2019 model carries over unchanged, though Hyundai has tweaked the trim levels’ naming convention.

The Sonata exterior design is relatively simple; a sloping rear roofline adds a distinctive touch. The 2018 refresh included a new front fascia and mesh grille on the SEL, Sport, and Limited trim levels. The 2018 color palette, which carries over, consists of Quartz White Pearl, Symphony Silver, Machine Gray, Electric Blue, Lakeside Blue, Scarlet Red, and Phantom Black.

The Sonata offers three engines. The entry powertrain is a 2.4-liter 4-cylinder engine, making 185 horsepower and 178 pound-feet of torque, matched with a 6-speed automatic transmission. For more power, the turbocharged 2.0-liter 4-cylinder engine offers 245 hp and 260 lb-ft. It’s paired to an 8-speed automatic transmission. The Sonata Eco model features an engine exclusive to that trim, a turbocharged 1.6-liter 4-cylinder, that comes with a 7-speed automatic transmission and is rated for 178 hp and 195 lb-ft. All Sonata models are front-wheel drive (FWD). The best EPA ratings come from the Eco model, which gets 28 mpg city, 37 mpg highway, and 31 mpg combined. The base 2.4-liter engine is next, with ratings of 25 city, 33 highway, and 28 combined. With the turbocharged 2.0-liter engine, buyers can expect 23 city, 32 highway, and 26 combined.

The 2019 Sonata delivers an updated equipment menu. The SE and Eco trim levels are sparsely equipped, but include the Hyundai Blue Link infotainment system with a 7-inch display. SEL and Sport models get wireless device charging, a heated steering wheel, and dual-zone climate control. Limited and Limited 2.0T trims get leather upholstery; a panoramic sunroof is optional on the former and standard on the latter.

Hyundai’s Blue Link system features Bluetooth, Apple CarPlay, and Android Auto. A 7-inch touch screen comes standard. The available 8-inch touch screen includes navigation. The base 6-speaker audio system supports AM/FM radio and MP3 compatibility and includes steering wheel-mounted controls, and an upgrade to a 10-speaker Infinity system with satellite radio is available.

The Sonata fares well in crash tests, earning a 5-star overall rating from National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) and Good scores from every Insurance Institute for Highway Safety (IIHS) test it completed. Every Sonata includes a reversing camera, blind-spot detection, and lane-change assist. Optional features include rear parking sensors, automatic emergency braking, lane-departure warning, lane-keep assist, adaptive headlights, and adaptive cruise control.

The 2019 Hyundai Sonata maintains its position as a strong competitor in the midsize segment, making it a good choice for budget-conscious shoppers.


Cherise is a Chicago-based freelance writer and editor with nearly 15 years of experience covering the automotive industry. Cherise loves writing about car culture and sharing common-sense car-buying advice. She owns a 2019 Subaru WRX Series.Gray, 2020 Subaru Outback Onyx XT, 2007 Genuine Buddy Italia 150, 2015 Honda Grom, and 1979 Boston Whaler Montauk.

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