Safety is the main thing that representatives of the brand are talking about, presenting a new car - Hyundai Sonata DN8. Social media experts will probably say that Koreans are tired of accusations that their cars are made of foil. Although this, of course, is not the case - even the restyled Sonata in the last body (produced from 2014 to 2019, restyled in 2016) entered the Top Safety Pick + according to the American "insurance" rating IIHS. The score for a blow with a 15 percent overlap was also not bad - a good result was achieved just on the restyle by strengthening the doorway between the threshold and the door mount.
The eighth generation Sonata is built on a new modular platform with a completely revised power structure. The front, front fenders, and engine shield, sills, doorways, floor, rear spars - all these parts are now reinforced with elements of ultra-high-strength steel (in addition, lighter), made by hot stamping. There are six such elements in the construction of the floor alone.
In case of strong frontal impacts with small overlaps, the front wheels should protrude out of the arches (separate?) In order to ensure effective deformation of the front end crumple zones and the correct redistribution of impact energy. Thus, the vehicle is designed from the outset for better shock absorption in the event of an accident.
The presentation took place at the Hyundai academy in Moscow, and we were shown the car after side certification tests according to UNECE Rule No. 95 (hitting by a 950 kg bogie at a speed of 50 km / h). The deformations of the threshold and, most importantly, the struts were so insignificant that doors from another car, broken in the framework of a frontal crash test according to UNECE rules No. 94 (impact with 40% overlap at 56 km / h), were installed on this car. And these doors, though with difficulty, close and open!
A potentially high level of passive safety is not all the features of the new platform. Hyundai is talking about significantly improved noise and vibration isolation and handling. Driving tests will show if this is so, but for now let's take a closer look at the car.
The total body length has grown by 45 mm - up to 4900 mm. The width has grown by 25 mm, up to 1890 mm. The front overhang has decreased by 20 mm, the rear has increased by 30 mm. The wheelbase has expanded by 35 mm - it is now 2840 mm, the legroom for the rear passenger has increased. All seats are now lower, as are the powertrain and suspension attachment points - the overall center of gravity is lower.
So did the roof, which in some releases even allowed Hyundai to call the Sonata a four-door coupe or coupe-like sedan. Let's leave it on their conscience, but the car looks really good, despite the increased ground clearance of 155 mm - the result of Russian adaptation).
The wheel size for the top version is 235 / 45R18, while the simpler cars will have 17-inch wheels (they are definitely preferable for our roads).
Weight distribution is also optimized for hybrid versions, in theory, the car can be all-wheel drive - the floor design allows it. Hyundai says the new Sonata will be more fun to drive - increased body rigidity and a low center of gravity, while maintaining overall suspension kinematics (MacPherson strut + multi-link), complemented by modified subframes and an increased caster angle. As before in Russia, no electronically controlled suspension is offered for the Sonata.
In other markets, the Sonata will be sold in hybrid and gas versions, as well as with a 1.6 turbo engine. Russia will have two engines, both gasoline and naturally aspirated. The base will be the former 2.0-liter G4NA (150 hp / 192 Nm). The Theta 2.4 GDI series motor (G4KJ, 190 hp / 241 Nm) changes to 2.5 MPI (G4KM, 180 hp / 232 Nm). The engine of the new SmartStream family is located lower, shifted closer to the base, and instead of direct injection offers distributed injection.
Examination of the engine without a cover did not reveal the advertised feature of the SmartStream family of gasoline engines in the form of two injectors per cylinder. But maybe it's for the best. Both engines in Russia are aggregated only with the previous six-speed automatic transmission A6MF2 (even the gear ratios have not changed).
While only cars with 2.5 engine will be on sale, 2.0 appeared only next year. The acceleration dynamics is 9.2 to hundreds, and the maximum speed is 210 km / h. You can freely pour 92 into the new motor - not American, but ours, RON / AI. The decrease in the capacity of the fuel tank is disappointing - from 70 to 60 liters.
No turbines, variators and robots, for the sake of the most conservative buyers - taxi drivers or those who even have a poster with a Toyota Camry on the wall at the age of 50 (even if the poster and the wall are imaginary). However, Hyundai claims that this combination of the new engine and six-speed will be more economical than it was on the old 7th generation Sonata. If only because the total body weight has decreased by 24 kg. The curb weight of the 2.5 engine version dropped to 1484 ~ 1618 kg versus 1575 ~ 1680 kg.
Now about the appearance. If the general slanting, roundness of the lines were not a trademark of the brand, then this would be my main reproach - in my opinion, the car looks too Asian from the front, while they do not give it a bottle of soy sauce or a can of kim-chi, nor a pickled dog.
I specially checked it in the trunk. To straighten all these squiggles - it would turn out to be a cool Korean Audi A7. Ops, I forgot - after all, the status of an assimilated European of Korean origin was transferred to the Kia brand :)
On the other hand, a mixed-feeling face, I easily forgive Sonata for its cool adaptive LED optics with gradient LED triangles and just a gorgeous rear view in which I see … no, not Volvo or Audi, but a modern reflection of the legendary Sonata Y3 - a car, kill which (and even slightly injure) could neither the production in Taganrog, nor the ruthless exploitation of the target category of buyers who want to get the most for every penny invested - and so on for an infinitely long time.
A pleasant, positive association. And one more thing - the car looks much worse in dark blue than in some bright one, for example, red. This also suggests that the designers are great and made a bright typewriter (which is unlikely to be bought in Russia in normal, bright colors. Everything is as usual - black, blue, white, a saucepan).
On the rear lights - aerodynamic protrusions for the correct swirl of the air flow. This is the visible part - in general, Hyundai has done a great job on aerodynamics and, in particular, on the distribution of air flows outside, in the engine compartment and under the bottom covered with molded fiberglass shields (?), Which should improve fuel efficiency and stability at high speed.
The C-pillar, which slopes smoothly to the edge of the boot lid, conceals the significant radius of the roof oval; although it has gotten lower, it is evident that it is high enough for the tallest drivers.
This is confirmed in the cabin, which, as in the previous Sonata, practically does not cause conflicting emotions. In the test of the previous generation car, I rejoiced in the reasonable conservatism of the design friendly to the ignorant user. Here everything is the same in meaning, but growth is noticeable both in design and in quality.
Both, if not European, then American. The interface of the car has become even simpler and clearer, cheap buttons have been replaced with "rockers". Upholstered reclining seats - now with ventilation and heating, as well as the ability to maintain a position in an individual driver's profile - are typically American in comfort and shape.
Personalized settings profiles, 12.3-inch digital dash, projection screen, 10.25-inch multimedia screen, panoramic roof (+ 50k to the price), contour ambient lighting, wide, soft leather armrest on the door card, no protruding handle, finished with more delicate perforated leather chair …
Inside, the Sonata delights in the little things that never happened before. These are not all examples - the list goes on. A multimedia system with a Bose audio system with normal sound quality, the horizontally oriented screen has become more pleasant tactilely, the speed and picture from the camera (cameras - there is a circular view) is incomparably better than before, as is the interface itself.
Replaced with a high-quality "rocker" "cheap" plastic button for selecting the driving modes (which means changing the settings of the electronic gas pedal, automatic transmission and EUR). The set of electronic assistants has been expanded - the optional (+ 100k to the price) Smart Sense complex) includes automatic braking, hold in the middle of the lane, adaptive cruise, automatic high beam, electronic handbrake. There is monitoring of blind spots with the transmission of images from cameras in the side mirrors to the dashboard - like on the Kia K900. There is another interesting function - when passengers try to open their doors without looking, if there are objects in the blind zone, the locks will be locked until the obstacle disappears. I think this should be on all cars.
A bold decision is to abandon the usual automatic transmission selector. Instead, there is Shift By Wire technology and a choice of motion modes with buttons.
If you want to change gears manually - please, here are the petals under the heated steering wheel. Instead of one USB, there are two in front, plus a spacious Qi charging.
However, there is something that remains the same. Auto - only for front power windows. I also did not find a heated windshield in the mass in any of the complete sets.
Behind the seat with a margin - a tall person fits, even if the front seats are pushed back all the way (in this case, part of the feet is already hidden under the front seat, fortunately, there is a place for this). There are deep stampings on the ceiling, but the height margin for people with a height of 185 is small, a couple of fingers. There is no individual climate zone - only air ducts. But there was a USB-outlet instead of a 12-volt one.
From the "passenger" chips - heated seats, mechanical door curtains, a rear curtain with an electric drive (it is controlled by the driver and the front right seat control keys - it can be moved and folded back. On the ceiling in the handles there are individual lamps, which were so lacking in the last generation car.
The boot lid with a camera without a washer located on it opens by lightly pressing the middle segment of the logo - unusual. The volume of the trunk has not changed, 510 liters, under the floor there is a full-size wheel, there is no more noise in the spare wheel niche - a lot of bare metal. Closing the trunk is inconvenient - there is no handle on the inner surface of the door trimmed with soft material. An open flaw, especially for a car, which, in its essence, should often carry passengers. The company knows about the problem, they say, we will soon put the pen on and everything will be OK.
Now about the prices. They start at 1,499,000 rubles, which is the price of a basic two-liter car that is not yet on sale. The minimum retail offer for a car with 2.5 is a special “online version” of Sonata with LED floodlights, dual-zone climate, standard (analog) dashboard and an 8-inch media system screen - such a car is offered for 1,725,000 rubles, and only through the new online platform on the Hyundai website. As the company suggests, next year the system will allow not only to select a specific car with a specific VIN, but also to pay for it with a minimum commission. The salons that like to increase the price of the car will be on the way. The price of the top version from 2.5 according to the price list is 1,999,000, +50 for a panorama, +100 for a security system package and +15 for a metallic one. Total - a new car has not risen in price much,taking into account the expected growth in demand.
I will tell you about how the new Sonata rides very soon. In the meantime, the floor is yours, dear readers: How do you like the 8th generation Hyundai Sonata, would you buy yourself, or would you take something else instead? I am waiting for your opinions and advice in the comments!