Used 2013 Hyundai Sonata Sedan Review & Ratings | Edmunds

Used 2013 Hyundai Sonata Sedan Review

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Edmunds Expert Review of the 2013 Hyundai Sonata Sedan

  • B Edmunds Rating
  • Despite the newer midsize sedan rivals that have hit the market, the 2013 Hyundai Sonata remains a top pick in a very competitive set.

  • Safety | Rating Details
  • Pros

    Lots of standard and optional features for the money; stylish and comfortable cabin; strong acceleration; top fuel economy; lengthy warranty.

  • Cons

    Distinctive styling affects rear headroom; rough ride in SE trim.

  • What's New for 2013

    The 2013 Hyundai Sonata receives a minor shuffling of features among trim levels. Most notably, the base GLS model's manual transmission is no longer available, as a six-speed automatic is now standard throughout the lineup.

Full 2013 Hyundai Sonata Review

What's New for 2013

The 2013 Hyundai Sonata receives a minor shuffling of features among trim levels. Most notably, the base GLS model's manual transmission is no longer available, as a six-speed automatic is now standard throughout the lineup.

Introduction

It seems like only yesterday that the Hyundai Sonata set the midsize family sedan market ablaze with sharp styling, class-leading comfort, generous feature offerings and overall value. Now, just two years on, the pressure is mounting from newly redesigned competitors made by Chevrolet, Ford, Honda, Nissan and Toyota.

To its credit, the 2013 Hyundai Sonata remains an excellent choice. With a long list of standard features -- some of which are options on other sedans -- the Sonata provides a lot of bang for the buck. Add to this the availability of two strong engine choices (along with a Sonata hybrid model that is covered in a separate review), admirable fuel economy, top safety scores and a lengthy warranty and it becomes clear why the Sonata is far from becoming yesterday's news.

Still, recent redesigns to the 2013 Ford Fusion and 2013 Honda Accord mean that the Sonata now has some company at the top. We would suggest that potential buyers take a look at all three of these midsize sedans, as the advantages among them are slight. By the same token we'd recommend the Kia Optima, which shares much of the Hyundai's underpinnings wrapped in an evocative exterior. Though not quite as impressive as these others, the Toyota Camry also earns our recommendation, buoyed by its reputation for bulletproof reliability.

The good news is that among these choices, there's really no loser in the bunch. The 2013 Hyundai Sonata may not enjoy the sizable lead it recently had, but the standard it set is still very much a bright spot in what used to be a bland and uninspiring class of cars.

Body Styles, Trim Levels, and Options

The 2013 Hyundai Sonata is available in GLS, SE and Limited trim levels.

Standard equipment on the GLS includes 16-inch steel wheels, keyless entry, air-conditioning, cruise control, full power accessories, heated mirrors, a tilt-and-telescoping steering column, a 60/40-split rear seatback, a trip computer, Bluetooth and a six-speaker sound system with a CD player, satellite radio, an iPod/USB audio interface and an auxiliary audio jack. An optional Popular Equipment package adds alloy wheels, foglights, automatic headlights, heated front seats and an eight-way power driver seat.

The sporty SE includes all of the above and adds 18-inch alloy wheels with performance tires, a dark chrome grille, a sport-tuned suspension, keyless ignition/entry and leather/cloth upholstery. Opting for the SE with the turbocharged engine also adds dual-zone automatic climate control and steering-wheel-mounted paddle shifters. An optional Navigation and Sunroof package bundles (you guessed it) a navigation system with touchscreen display, a rearview camera, premium Infinity speakers and a sunroof.

The plush Sonata Limited has all the SE's features, but it offers 17-inch alloy wheels, a cushier suspension and full leather upholstery. It also gains turn-signal repeaters in the outside mirrors, a sunroof, heated rear seats, dual-zone automatic climate control, an auto-dimming rearview mirror, an upgraded audio system (with HD radio) and unique interior accents. The turbocharged Limited variant adds 18-inch wheels, dual exhaust tips and shift paddles on the steering wheel. The optional Limited Premium package adds a panoramic sunroof, the navigation system with the touchscreen display, a back-up camera and premium Infinity speakers.

Powertrains and Performance

Powering the 2013 Hyundai Sonata GLS is a 2.4-liter four-cylinder engine that produces 198 horsepower and 184 pound-feet of torque. Sonatas sold in states that utilize California emissions standards can have PZEV emissions certification, though output drops slightly to 190 hp. A six-speed automatic is the sole transmission offered on all trims. In Edmunds performance testing, the GLS accelerated from zero to 60 mph in 7.9 seconds, which is quick for a base-model sedan.

The dual-exhaust SE makes slightly more power at 200 hp and 186 lb-ft. Both the GLS and SE engines have an EPA-estimated fuel economy rating of 24 mpg city/35 mpg highway and 28 mpg in combined driving.

A powerful turbocharged 2.0-liter engine generating 274 hp and 269 lb-ft of torque is available on SE and Limited models. This added boost in power gets the Sonata to 60 mph in 6.7 seconds, which is about average for midsize sedans with an engine upgrade. The EPA estimates fuel economy at a still favorable 22/34/26 mpg.

Safety

Standard safety features on all 2013 Hyundai Sonatas include antilock disc brakes, traction control, stability control, front seat side-impact airbags, full-length side curtain airbags and active front head restraints. Also standard is BlueLink, Hyundai's emergency telematics system, which provides services such as remote access, emergency assistance, theft recovery and teen-driver-oriented geo-fencing.

In government testing, the Sonata earned a top five-star rating for overall crash protection, with four out of five stars for total front-impact protection and five stars for total side-impact protection. In Insurance Institute for Highway Safety testing, the Hyundai Sonata earned a top rating of "Good" for frontal-offset, side-impact and roof-strength protection.

In Edmunds brake testing, both a Sonata GLS and SE turbo came to a stop from 60 mph in about 120 feet, which is slightly better than average for the class.

Interior Design and Special Features

The Sonata feels as well built inside as it does out. The dash and center stack meld together in a seamless flow, while trapezoidal vents, sharp blue backlighting and, on some models, brushed-metal-style trim pieces create an environment that looks both modern and upscale. While overall interior materials quality is merely average, the knobs, switches and controls operate with a feel and precision befitting a more expensive car, and the Limited trim -- with its available two-tone color schemes, piano-black trim and padded door panels -- is particularly appealing.

The optional touchscreen adds clarity and vibrancy to an already intuitive system for operating and viewing climate control, navigation, audio and phone functions. Similar to OnStar, Hyundai's BlueLink telematics offers services like emergency crash response, remote opening of door locks, turn-by-turn navigation, and speed and curfew limits for younger drivers.

The Sonata offers enough room for four adults to stretch out. Five can make do on shorter trips. But in our experience, headroom both front and rear is merely adequate, and 6-foot-tall passengers in back may find their heads bumping the ceiling due to the Sonata's sloped roof line.

Driving Impressions

As far as driving dynamics are concerned, the 2013 Hyundai Sonata strikes a perfectly acceptable balance between comfort and confidence. Its chassis and suspension are taut, but not so taut that they transmit the road's every bump and rumble. Drivers seeking a measure of sport can opt for the SE, although its sharper handling capabilities don't really justify its rougher, bumpier ride. The Sonata's steering is OK but doesn't transmit much road feel, and the effort is artificially heavy.

On the move, the 2.4-liter engine provides thoroughly respectable acceleration for a four-cylinder midsize sedan. Gearshifts from the automatic transmission are seamless and drama-free. Power delivery from the turbocharged engine is smooth and linear, with no detectable turbo lag. Its excellent fuel economy is icing on the cake.

What Others Are Saying

Customer Reviews

Average Consumer Rating (See all 53 reviews) | Write a Review


Perfect car!

by on
Vehicle: 2013 Hyundai Sonata SE 4dr Sedan (2.0L 4cyl Turbo 6A)

Great car by far! i have owned around 14 cars or so. By far this one is the best one that i have ever had.Drives amazing,looks beautiful and sound system is great!And of course is pretty fast. Turbo kicks in very good.The only bad thing Gas mileage,the material which the interior was built feels pretty cheap but looks very nice.Did have a Recall but Dealership fixed it with no problems. Has push start and other great things. The amazing thing is that Hyundai's vehicles have warranty for 100,000 miles or 10 years so if anything would to happen they will fix it. I currently finished my lease and traded it back in.But i am working on getting another one either that or a 4 door genesis.




Worst car i ever owned!

by on
Vehicle: 2013 Hyundai Sonata Limited 4dr Sedan (2.4L 4cyl 6A)

I have owned many cars and this one by far is the worst. Its bad on gas, burns oil and the steering is seriously messed up. I keep hearing how this manufacturer has come a long way, which makes me question how thats being measured. I Returned the first week of owning it. If you never driven any other car in the past 20 years this might be the car for you.




Not good on gas

by on
Vehicle: 2013 Hyundai Sonata Limited 4dr Sedan (2.4L 4cyl 6A)

The car is great . I rented an older Sonata and feel in love and decided to purchase my own. I live in NYC, which means if deals with heavy traffic. I average about 23mpg. I am really disappointed with that. Might as well get an SUV, with more space and use up the same amount of gas.



2 of 2 people found this review helpful

2013 sonata burning oil

by on
Vehicle: 2013 Hyundai Sonata GLS 4dr Sedan (2.4L 4cyl 6A)

I loved my 2002 Elantra. I needed a larger vehicle so I bought a brand new 2013 Sonata. My Sonata started burning oil around 36,500 miles. I have been going back a fourth to the dealership doing oil consumption tests. After 3 tests, it has burned up 4.5 quarts in about 2,000 miles. I still can't get anyone to fix the problem. Instead, the dealership says I need to do 1,000 more miles of oil consumption tests and corporate says I need to do 3,000 more miles of oil consumption tests. The warranty sounds great but good luck with getting them to fix anything that is covered.



3 of 3 people found this review helpful

Great value and great mpg

by on
Vehicle: 2013 Hyundai Sonata GLS 4dr Sedan (2.4L 4cyl 6A)

i am getting about 500 miles from a full tank of gas(18gal) and averaging 28-29mpg. i commute in NYC and always caught in heavy traffic. if i am on the highway without traffic i am getting 35 to 40 mpg. i dont understand some ppl here getting 23 at best. i already put 35,000 and so far so good.



14 of 14 people found this review helpful

Some good and compromised quality issues

by on
Vehicle: 2013 Hyundai Sonata Limited 4dr Sedan (2.4L 4cyl 6A)

I own a Hyundai Sonata 2013 Limited and have put 18 K miles on it. Hyundai Sonata is a solid car overall with a powerful engine, great design and several added features for a lower price. It also has very good safety ratings (which hopefully will not be tested while I am on the road). But to gain on these aspects, there are some compromises made by the company in making this car, which are pretty glaring and somewhat annoying.



Talk About The 2013 Sonata

2013 Hyundai Sonata Discussions See all Started By

srijans
srijans
12-10-2013
When I turn on the A/C or the Heat I cannot set it to both the Windshield and the Leg. I thought it was by design untill my friend today said that it works for him in his Sonata....


jimmyohio75
jimmyohio75
03-01-2015
in 12 months and I am looking at getting a Sonata next time around. I want to make sure that I don't get taken advantage of again. Here is my main question:...


michellej87
michellej87
06-12-2013
I started noticing this now that I am using AC more often (bought 2013 sonata in winter)...



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