2019 Hyundai Sonata Hybrid Review

Pros & Cons

  • Spacious interior with seats that are good for the long haul
  • Smooth highway ride with minimal road noise
  • Infotainment interface is easy to understand and use
  • Rear headroom is a little tighter than in some competitors
  • Brakes feel grabby and can make it hard to stop smoothly
  • Fuel economy trails that of other top hybrids
Other years
List Price Estimate
$17,799 - $20,106

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Which Sonata Hybrid does Edmunds recommend?

Though it's hard to argue with the SE trim level's list of standard features and low price, we like the Limited for its extra equipment. These include a panoramic sunroof, upscale leather interior and more driver aids such as adaptive cruise control, automatic emergency braking and lane keeping assist.

Edmunds' Expert Review

Overall rating

7.5 / 10

You might be surprised to learn how little you need to sacrifice to get high fuel economy from a midsize sedan these days. The 2019 Hyundai Sonata Hybrid, for example, provides the same high level of comfort and features we like in the standard Sonata and then tops it all off with an EPA-estimated 42 mpg in mixed driving. The Hybrid does cost a little more than the regular Sonata, but it comes with plenty of standard equipment. The Sonata Hybrid also retains Hyundai's attractive warranties, capped off with a 10-year/100,000-mile powertrain warranty.

The Sonata Hybrid isn't the only offering, of course. With the Ford Fusion Hybrid, Honda Accord Hybrid and Toyota Camry Hybrid also vying for your attention, it'll likely be worth your time to shop around. Some of these cars offer even higher fuel economy and more advanced driver safety aids as standard. But overall we find the 2019 Sonata Hybrid to be an agreeable and easy-driving sedan.

2019 Hyundai Sonata Hybrid models

The 2019 Hyundai Sonata Hybrid is available in SE and Limited trim levels. The regular Sonata and the Sonata Plug-In Hybrid are reviewed separately.

Both trim levels are powered by a 2.0-liter four-cylinder engine paired with an electric motor for a combined 193 horsepower. Power is sent to the front wheels through a six-speed automatic transmission. Energy captured from regenerative braking is stored in a trunk-mounted battery pack.

Standard equipment on the SE includes 16-inch alloy wheels, automatic headlights, LED running lights, heated side mirrors, hands-free trunk operation, dual-zone automatic climate control, keyless entry, push-button start, cloth upholstery, a tilt-and-telescoping steering wheel, a rearview camera, a 7-inch touchscreen, Bluetooth, Apple CarPlay and Android Auto smartphone integration, satellite radio, and a six-speaker audio system with USB and auxiliary inputs. Driver aids include blind-spot monitoring and rear cross-traffic alert.

Stepping up to the Limited adds 17-inch wheels, LED headlights that bend in the direction of turns, automatic high beams, a panoramic sunroof, power-adjustable front seats with heating and ventilation, driver-seat memory functions, 60/40-split folding rear seats, leather upholstery, a leather-wrapped steering wheel, wood-grain-look interior accents, rear-seat climate control vents, HD Radio, and a three-year complimentary subscription to Hyundai's Blue Link remote services. For 2019 the Limited sees the addition of adaptive cruise control, lane keeping assist and automatic emergency braking.

The Ultimate package for the Sonata Hybrid Limited adds more driver assistance in the forms of drowsy driver warning and rear parking sensors. Other upgrades include unique interior accent panels, a heated steering wheel, rear window shades, an 8-inch touchscreen navigation system, wireless phone charging, and a premium 10-speaker Infinity sound system.

Trim tested

Each vehicle typically comes in multiple versions that are fundamentally similar. The ratings in this review are based on our full test of the Hyundai Sonata Hybrid Limited (2.0L inline-4 hybrid | 6-speed automatic | FWD).

NOTE: Since this test was conducted in 2016, the current Sonata Hybrid has received some revisions, including improved touchscreen displays, Apple and Android smartphone integration, and additional driver aids. Our findings remain broadly applicable to this year's Sonata Hybrid, however.

Driving

7.0
The Sonata Hybrid's performance is unremarkable, but the six-speed automatic transmission is a delight compared to CVT automatics found in most hybrids. Handling is decent, but braking action is not intuitive.

Acceleration

7.5
It's smooth leaving a stop thanks to initial electric-only power. The gas engine-electric motor combo gives strong midrange response, but with our measured 0-60 mph acceleration run of 8.5 seconds, the Sonata Hybrid is slower than main rivals. The traditional six-speed automatic shifts nearly imperceptibly.

Braking

5.0
The brake feel is disappointing. Blame it on the regenerative braking. The pedal is initially grabby, especially at highway speeds, followed by a long, disconcerting dead period within the pedal stroke. Panic stops from 60 mph in our testing were decent, needing just 119 feet.

Steering

7.0
The Sonata Hybrid goes pretty much where you point it. We noticed little difference between the Eco and the Sport steering modes. It errs on the light side of assist, which drivers will appreciate around town.

Handling

7.5
The Sonata Hybrid has a surprisingly willing chassis; this thing doesn't hate corners. It worked well at our test track and on twisty roads, where it proved hospitable to driver inputs. The low-grip tires do squeal early in corners, though.

Drivability

8.0
If not for the "even-horrible-for-a-hybrid" brakes, this car would rate higher. The electric-only start-off gives smooth getaways, the transmission makes subtle shifts, the steering is light and easy, and the outward views are decent.

Comfort

7.5
The front seats are comfy. The ride is decently smooth until you hit a big bump. Wind, engine and tire noise is well-damped, except the tires are quite loud over surface changes.

Seat comfort

8.0
The front seats are excellent. The cushions are on the firm side, but the side bolsters are soft and don't dig in. The leather could be more supple. The rear seatbacks have a near-perfect angle.

Ride comfort

7.0
In most situations, the Sonata Hybrid feels like it's softly sprung. The ride is unobtrusive, and it soaks up smaller pavement ripples easily. But in contrast to other Sonatas we've tested, big bumps upset the cabin dramatically.

Noise & vibration

8.0
The levels of wind and road noise are well-controlled, though the tires can get noisy when the road surface changes. The engine is restrained, both in power and sound. There's some suspension noise when driving over larger bumps.

Interior

8.0
The Sonata Hybrid's interior isn't as stylish as some in the class, but the controls are easy to learn and use. Entering or exiting the car is easy enough, and outward visibility is better than most.

Ease of use

9.0
The controls are simple yet logical, with clearly legible gauges. The flat, expansive center stack has large buttons and grippy knobs. The standard touchscreen is user-friendly. The audio tuning knob, though, is far away from the driver.

Getting in/getting out

8.0
The wide-opening front doors make things easy. The seats' side bolsters don't hamper entry and exit. The rear doors have a large entryway. You only need to duck your head slightly to avoid the roof.

Roominess

7.5
Although hampered by the panoramic sunroof, front headroom is still good enough for average-size adults. There's excellent elbow room. The back seat is roomy, although headroom is tighter than in some rivals.

Visibility

8.0
The Sonata Hybrid has excellent outward views. Blind-spot detection and a rearview camera come standard, while lane departure warning is standard for the Limited trim and rear parking sensors are optional for the Limited.

Quality

7.5
Hyundai knows how to make nice-looking interiors. The Limited's leather upholstery, though not overly supple, feels high-quality. The only weird issues on our test car were a creaky rearview mirror and some squeaks from trim pieces over big bumps.

Utility

8.0
While most hybrids inevitably sacrifice some trunk or interior space to make a home for the battery pack, the Sonata Hybrid manages to retain a good bit of usable space. It doesn't give up much trunk space to the regular Sonata, and it's a bit better than many hybrid sedans.

Small-item storage

7.5
Though the glovebox is a bit on the smaller side, there's plenty of other places to put things. Storage below the center armrest is ample, and there's a handy place to put things just in front of the shift lever. The cupholders tend to hold odds and ends better than they hold drinks.

Cargo space

7.5
Thanks to the battery placement, the trunk is 13.4 cubic feet. That's about 3 cubic feet smaller than the standard Sonata's trunk, but it's still about average for the class. The rear seats do fold down.

Technology

8.0
Hyundai's infotainment system is one of the better and easier ones to use. The colors and graphics are sharp and clear, the virtual buttons are large, and the system responds quickly to touch and voice commands.

Audio & navigation

8.0
A six-speaker audio system comes standard, but the 10-speaker Infinity system is an excellent sonic upgrade. Shame it's only available in the Limited's optional Ultimate package, as is the larger 8-inch touchscreen. The navigation system features a bird's-eye map view.

Smartphone integration

8.0
Apple CarPlay and Android Auto are standard features. Wireless device charging is available, but only in the Limited's Ultimate package. Rear passengers will be pleased to see a USB port available for charging a phone or device.

Driver aids

7.0
Blind-spot monitoring and rear cross-traffic alert are standard, but restricting a key feature such as automatic emergency braking to the Limited trim isn't good enough when some competitors offer a full suite of driver aids as standard equipment.

EdmundsScorecard

Overall7.5 / 10
Driving7.0
Comfort7.5
Interior8.0
Utility8.0
Technology8.0

Consumer reviews

There are no consumer reviews for the Used 2019 Hyundai Sonata Hybrid.


Safety

Our experts like the Sonata Hybrid models:

Blind-Spot Monitoring With Rear Cross-Traffic Alert
Warns the driver of cars in the blind spot of the adjacent lane or when cars are approaching from the side while in reverse.
Smart Cruise Control With Stop-Start
Detects vehicles in front of the car and automatically adjusts the cruise speed to maintain a preset distance. Can even bring the car to a full stop.
Lane Keeping Assist
Applies corrective steering assistance to help keep the car positioned in its lane if it senses the vehicle drifting.

NHTSA Overall Rating

The National Highway Transportation Safety Administration offers independent analysis.
  • Frontal Barrier Crash Rating
    Overall5 / 5
    Driver5 / 5
    Passenger5 / 5
  • Side Crash Rating
    Overall5 / 5
  • Side Barrier Rating
    Overall5 / 5
    Driver5 / 5
    Passenger5 / 5
  • Combined Side Barrier & Pole Ratings
    Front Seat5 / 5
    Back Seat5 / 5
  • Rollover
    Rollover4 / 5
    Dynamic Test ResultNo Tip
    Risk Of Rollover10.5%
IIHS Rating
The Insurance Institute of Highway Safety uses extensive crash tests to determine car safety.
  • Side Impact Test
    Good
  • Roof Strength Test
    Good
  • Rear Crash Protection / Head Restraint
    Good
  • IIHS Small Overlap Front Test
    Not Tested
  • Moderate Overlap Front Test
    Good

More about the 2019 Hyundai Sonata Hybrid

Used 2019 Hyundai Sonata Hybrid Overview

The Used 2019 Hyundai Sonata Hybrid is offered in the following submodels: Sonata Hybrid Sedan. Available styles include SE 4dr Sedan (2.0L 4cyl gas/electric hybrid 6A), and Limited 4dr Sedan (2.0L 4cyl gas/electric hybrid 6A).

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Should I lease or buy a 2019 Hyundai Sonata Hybrid?

Is it better to lease or buy a car? Ask most people and they'll probably tell you that car buying is the way to go. And from a financial perspective, it's true, provided you're willing to make higher monthly payments, pay off the loan in full and keep the car for a few years. Leasing, on the other hand, can be a less expensive option on a month-to-month basis. It's also good if you're someone who likes to drive a new car every three years or so.

Check out Hyundai lease specials
Check out Hyundai Sonata Hybrid lease specials