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Hyundai Sonata Hybrid 2020 debuts with high-tech solar roof

The Hyundai Sonata Hybrid 2020 brings some advanced tech, including solar panels on the roof.

The Hyundai Sonata Hybrid 2020 model will not only debut a new high-tech drivetrain, but it will also be able to use its roof to charge its batteries.

According to Hyundai, the new Sonata Hybrid will be able to recharge the car’s battery pack just by being parked outside. The brand claims that if the roof is exposed to six hours of sunlight per day, it will offer customers up to 1300km of EV motoring over a 12-month period.

The Sonata will also debut a new Active Shift Control (ASC) system, which is essentially an advanced transmission technology to improve shift times and efficiency. The brand says “ASC not only improves hybrid vehicle’s acceleration performance and fuel economy, but also durability of the transmission by minimising friction during a gear shift”.

The Sonata Hybrid is powered by 2.0-litre petrol engine with a maximum of 112kW and 188Nm, and it is teamed to a six-speed hybrid automatic transmission and an electric motor capable of producing 38kW and 205Nm. The combined system output is 143kW, which is a bit lower than a Toyota Camry Hybrid (160kW combined).

And because it’s a hybrid, the name of the game is fuel efficiency - Hyundai claims the Sonata Hybrid will use just 5.0 litres per 100 kilometres for the model on 16-inch alloy wheels, or 5.2L/100km for the version on 17s. Those figures are for the Korean market model, but it’s interesting to note that those numbers are also higher than a Camry Hybrid (4.2L/100km claimed).

The new Sonata model is a large car, at 4900mm long (on a 2840mm wheelbase), 1860mm wide and 1445mm tall, and it has a still-strong 510-litre boot capacity.

And it looks different to the regular Sonata as well, bringing a model-specific grille with cross holes, a unique rear spoiler and specially-designed alloy wheels for better aerodynamics. The Sonata Hybrid also offers Hyundai’s new Digital Key tech, which allows you to use your phone, rather than your car keys, to open and run the car.

Hyundai Australia has confirmed that the Sonata Hybrid is “currently under review for the Australian market”, but that the regular model range will be on sale in fourth quarter of 2019.

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Matt Campbell
Managing Editor - Head of Video
Matt Campbell has been at the forefront of automotive media for more than a decade, working not only on car reviews and news, but also helping manage automotive outputs across...
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