Owning a hybrid is not what it once was, thanks to a worldwide trend pushing for more economically and environmentally friendly vehicles. Hyundai has been riding this wave for a few years now with their Sonata, and the 2016 Sonata Hybrid Limited shows just how dedicated the South Korean automaker is to advancing hybrid technology. A 2.0-liter 4-cylinder hybrid engine and a 270 V lithium-polymer battery work in conjunction to create the comfortable and efficient ride that you'd expect from the four-door sedan. Power is adequately rated at a combined 193 hp, which is plenty for merges on the highway. In pure electric mode the car is incredibly quiet, both inside the cabin and outside, with only a hint of the simulated engine noise. The only interruption to the quietness is when the gasoline engine kicks in, which is both a smooth and unnoticeable transition.
Thanks to this hybrid system, the Sonata Hybrid celebrates 40 mpg city and 44 mph highway, for a combined 42 mpg. Even with these "green" numbers, the Sonata Hybrid drives just like a car with a fully gasoline-powered engine. One great thing about hybrid and electric cars nowadays is that they come in all shapes and sizes. You can go from the tiny Chevrolet Spark EV, to the Sonata Hybrid, which offers a spacious interior and trunk. In the front, adult passengers have a great deal of legroom to work with, while the backseats see a slight reduction in headroom. In the trunk is 13.3 cu. ft. of cargo space, only 3 cu. ft. less than the standard Sonata offers. Aside from the spaciousness, Hyundai packed the Sonata Hybrid with a wide-range of technology features. For connectivity and media, there is Bluetooth media streaming; the SiriusXM Travel Link, which is included in the Ultimate Package for $4,500; Hyundai Blue Link Telematics System; and USB ports. Displaying all of this information is either the standard 5-inch touchscreen display, or the optional 8-inch touchscreen display with navigation, included in the Ultimate Package. Setting the Limited edition apart from the SE are a number of interior features, such as the rear side window sunshades, 8-way power driver seat, 6-way power passenger seat, heated and ventilated front seats, a 60/40 split fold-down rear seatback and more. Hyundai made sure that the Sonata Hybrid stood out from the pack by adding some new exterior pieces. This includes the 17-inch "Eco-Spoke" alloy wheels, a redesigned front fascia and hybrid badging. There aren't drastic differences between the Sonata and Sonata Hybrid, but when parked next to each other, you can tell. The 2016 Hyundai Sonata Hybrid Limited starts at $30,100 and is currently available for purchase.