Hyundai Sonata PHEV Gets Up To 27 Miles Of Electric Range, According To EPA

OCT 5 2015 BY ERIC LOVEDAY 39

Hyundai Sonata PHEV On Sale In The US In 2015

Hyundai Sonata PHEV On Sale In The US In 2015

In terms of maximum electric range, the Hyundai Sonata Plug-In Hybrid is quite the over-achiever.

When Hyundai first announced the Sonata PHEV, the automaker listed its electric range at up to 22 miles.  A few months later, Hyundai revised that figure to up to 24 miles.

Now, with official EPA testing complete, the maximum electric range, from its 9.8 kWh LG Chem battery pack with a lifetime warranty, is listed at 27 miles.

Hyundai Sonata PHEV Gets Electric Range Rating Of 0 To 27 Miles

Hyundai Sonata PHEV Gets Electric Range Rating Of 0 To 27 Miles

Hyundai Sonata PHEV Sign

Hyundai Sonata PHEV Signage From NAIAS 2015

Aside from the Chevrolet Volt and Cadillac ELR, the Sonata PHEV has more electric range than any other 2016 plug-in hybrid in the U.S.

Officially listed with an electric range of 0 to 27 miles, the Sonata PHEV seems impressive on paper.

Its composite MPG figures are as follows:

  • 57 city
  • 60 highway
  • 59 combined

Additionally, the Sonata PHEV has an impressive total range of 600 miles, a figure that beats all other plug-in hybrids available in the U.S. for 2016.

Hyundai Sonata PHEV

Hyundai Sonata PHEV

Some additional details on the Sonata PHEV:

Hyundai Sonata PHEV Interior

Hyundai Sonata PHEV Interior

Hyundai soon will launch in the US and Canada its first plug-in hybrid vehicle – the Sonata PHEV, which will be in competition with the Ford Fusion Energi and Honda Accord PHEV.

Sonata PHEV’s advantage will be a slightly bigger battery (9.8 kWh from LG Chem), which lets it qualify for $4,917 worth of federal tax credit. And it comes with a Lifetime battery warranty..

50 kW electric motor is combined with a 2.0L GDI engine and six-speed automatic gearbox for a total of 151 kW of system power. All-electric mode is available up to 75 mph (121 km/h).

Hyundai Sonata PHEV will be manufactured in South Korea and enter market this fall, initially in the ZEV states (California, Connecticut, Maine, Maryland, Massachusetts, New Jersey, New York, Oregon, Rhode Island and Vermont).

And here’s a link to a post comparing the Sonata PHEV to the Ford Fusion Energi and Honda Accord Plug-In Hybrid.

We eagerly await Hyundai’s pricing announcement for the Sonata PHEV.  We expect to see it get a base price of approximately $32,000.

Categories: Hyundai

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39 Comments on "Hyundai Sonata PHEV Gets Up To 27 Miles Of Electric Range, According To EPA"

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Well, the 27 miles of range is great news… We need more PHEVs with this kind of range (rather than the 15-ish miles we see so often) but the thing that worries me is the 50 Kw electric motor.. I’m not sure how it is geared, but it sounds like it will be a total snail in EV mode.

Come on! So close to being a good PHEV. Put a 110 kW motor already.

With a 50 kW motor in a midsize sedan the ICE will have to come on far too often. Why give it 27 miles of range if you can’t actually use it in pure EV mode? Sure it will boost gas mileage but with 27 miles range and a decent sized electric motor you can do more than boost mpg you can mostly just not use gas.

That depends on driving style. With light foot 50 kW should be adequate for everything except overtaking and very steep uphills. There is no need to accelerate like maniac in normal driving.

The same could be said for all cars. You could claim that an ICE with 67 hp should be enough.

I’ve been driving a Volt for over 3 years and I enjoy getting in and driving it like a normal car in pure EV mode whether it be driving with a light foot or just driving normally up and down hills, jumping onto the freeway up to 65 miles an hour and back off again and many other scenarios where everyday driving requires more than 67 hp.

It wouldn’t have cost much if anything more to drop in at least a 111 kW / 150 hp motor. Then you could have Eco and Sport settings to maximize efficiency or fun without having to engage the gas engine.

It would have required a larger motor and motor controller. Those aren’t free – either $$ or weight or packaging.

The compromise is that these PHEVs will either be disappointingly slow in EV-only mode or else they will burn some amount of gas in daily driving; the Volt is the still the only real PHEV to be an EV first and range-extender gas vehicle second.

The ONLY one? How about: BMW i3 Rex, Cadillac ELR, Fisker Karma.

Or the I8 or Porsche Panamera PHEV.

Typical GM Fanboyism. Comparing the tiny compact to a midsize car.

Is a midsize really a midsize if it’s cargo space is smaller than its compact competitior?

“It would have required a larger motor and motor controller. Those aren’t free – either $$ or weight or packaging.” I get that. But the Volt does it and they have been able to offer it at a reasonable price. Although in this article they are estimating that it will cost $32,000 I’ve seen other estimates that guess as high as $40,000. Either way it will cost around the same as a Volt but with a less expensive battery pack and a less expensive motor and controller. And it turns out it has less cargo volume than the Volt. 9.9 cu. ft. trunk space without the ability to fold the seats down. So with a smaller motor and half the range of the Volt. Then after the battery is depleted it gets 40 mpg in hybrid mode to the Volt’s 42 mpg. It’s also slower than the Volt in performance. Even using both the gas and electric motor it’s slower than the Volt in EV mode. I guess the thing the Sonata has over the Volt it 3 inches more legroom in front and 1 inch more legroom in back with a better 5th seat. It’s a little wider too.… Read more »

“I guess the thing the Sonata has over the Volt it 3 inches more legroom in front and 1 inch more legroom in back with a better 5th seat. It’s a little wider too.”

That was enough for the originator of “GM-Volt.com” to dump the compact Volt for another car.

I have driven a lot with 65 hp engine, and it was fairly decent. It was a sub-compact so obviously much lighter than Sonata, but I rarely used full power. Only situation where it was seriously limited was overtaking on upphill on freeway.

In low speed city driving 50 kW electric can be quite nice to drive with instant low rpm torque.

“It wouldn’t have cost much if anything more to drop in at least a 111 kW / 150 hp motor.”

If only it was that simple. The power is propably limited by the battery. Higher power would require bigger battery, and that would take more space. They would have to redesign the whole car to get more space for the battery.

The myth that car manufacturers always overestimate EV range is now completely busted. First Volt gen 2 was estimated 50 miles and officially EPA rated 53 miles and now Sonata PHEV was estimated 24 miles and EPA rated 27 miles.

Much of the historic image of car makers over-estimating range was due to changes in the rules. Way back before the first EV’s were sold in the US, we used to use a different EPA test cycle. No A/C or heat, slower speeds, etc. Lots of car makers based their pre-production range estimates on that test cycle, not the current test cycle. By the way, California STILL uses the old test cycle for calculating ZEV credits. So while it is “old”, it is still very much a valid test that is still currently used. By the time lots of those pre-production EV’s made it into production, the EPA had changed the rules, and they all got lower range ratings. That started an entire meme that really wasn’t the fault of any of those car makers. On top of that, may Japanese and European companies that first release their EV’s in their own home market, first release their range numbers based upon the Japanese or EU test cycles. These test cycles reflect slower driving speeds in Japan, and typical EU driving conditions. EV’s get better range in those conditions, so they get rated higher than the EPA does for the US.… Read more »

+1. Well written. One real mistake that japanese and european car makers occasionally do is stating their EU or Japan range on their US web site before getting EPA ratings. They certainly know the differences in test cycles and should be able to make better pre-release estimate.

All electric up to 75MPH… with a 50kW motor. That’s got to take a while.

Interesting to see how Hyundai has positioned its PHEV: 50kW motor with 0 to 27 mile EPA AER.

With just 50kW, this mid-size PHEV will operate in blended mode when the driver wants power, as indicated by the EPA AER rating of 0 to 27, rather than 27. Will that deter buyers or is that the sweet spot for an affordable PHEV?

In addition to drivers who commute less than 27 miles a day, there are plenty who commute 20 to 27 miles each way and can plug in at work or in a car park. My guess is that many mainstream commuters wont mind if a powerful gas engine kicks in when they accelerate hard.

Will the Sonata PHEV be able to outsell the PiP, Volt, Soul EV & Leaf in Carb states? How soon will Hyundai offer it in all 50 states?

It will be easy for the next Toyota PIP to beat 50kW as the existing PIP already has 60kW.
Toyota will have to match ~10kWh to avoid Hyundai eating their lunch.
Will Toyota have lost many of its Prius customers to Hyundai by the time the next PiP arrives?

Initial driving impressions of the Sonata PHEV sound favorable:

When I bought my Fusion Energi I thought I would be ok with the gas engine kicking on when needed.. Now I try to avoid it as much as possible. The performance on electric only is good enough for my driving style, but any less performance and it wouldn’t be acceptable.

That was kind of my thinking as well. I don’t own one, but I’ve driven the C-Max Energi a few times and I think the 68 Kw in EV mode is just barely acceptable for daily driving. I could get by with it. I suspect for the most part I would rarely see the engine turn on. But anything less, and I don’t think I could tolerate it because the engine would be turning on probably every drive.

I actually hope Ford will increase the power on future versions, maybe up to 80 Kw, since I believe the motor can handle it, the battery is the limitation I think.

Or they could go crazy and put in a 100 kW motor.

How much power can the battery pack put out? If the battery pack is limited to 50 kW output, then a more powerful motor won’t help any.

Hmm, 0 to 100 km/h in 9 seconds in wet conditions, with the engine working hard:

The acceleration of the Volt will give it a competitive advantage for buyers whose needs are met by its compact size.

Wow. I wonder what the 0-60 in EV mode would be?

I keep wondering the same. And I also wonder exactly how low or high the electric motor is geared. It’s possible it may be geared so that it delivers great performance when driving around town at 0 to 45 mph. But freeway speeds may require the engine.

probably will be able to cruise at highway speeds all electric. On ramp acceleration no can do

nice to see more EREV’s. This can only help grow public awareness and grow the market.

EREV is a type of PHEV where you get full performance in EV mode until the battery is empty. Among PHEVs, this one actually appears to be the farthest of all of them from qualifying as an EREV, despite the decent battery size.

Yeah.. definitely not an EREV.

This is good. That’s getting close to the Gen 1 Volt’s 35 miles, and better gasoline economy. Not much electric power, though.

Oh, GM. The things you could do with a Malibu EREV, Equinox EREV and Silverado EREV.

It’s baffling. Even if the larger platforms lost 10-15 miles of electric range you would still have a full performance 38 mile EREV with high 30’s in hybrid mode.

They couldn’t sell them fast enough.

50 kw on a midsize car is fine for me.. TO me the big news is 24 mile range (better than any product except of course GM’s PHEV’s), and the fact that it is a MIDSIZE.

Of course, the video says that 40 MPG in a “BIG” car is great! Which it is.

Loved this car, right up until I found out that the PHEV version doesn’t have fold down rear seats. Only the Hybrid version has fold down rear seats.

*face palm*

I’ve decided never to buy a car unless it has a hatchback. The hatchback is much more convinient

the more other companies try to introduce PHEVs, the more apparent it is that GM’s PHEV/EREV technology is far superior to that of other auto makers.

+1. I do worry though that through the savvy marketing of the other car makers the Volt will get lost among the crowd to the average consumer who doesn’t know the difference.

That’s where GM needs to be very,very clear in their marketing strategy. So far they haven’t.

The Volt is technologically superior, but the Sonata is large enough to fit a taller driver and still have room in the back to bring the kids along for a road trip.

the Cadillac PHEV CT6 is a bigger car than is the Sonata, yet the CT6 gets better AER.

How sad that 27 miles of EV range actually catapults this PHEV into 2nd place, yet remains a distant also-ran behind the Volt, which will be upping its EPA-rated EV range from 38 miles to 50 miles in the next model year.

The fact is that 27 miles will be “mixed mode” which is how Prius Plugin got 11 miles.

27 miles just means that if you drive as slow as grandma on a two lane road and feather it, you may get up to 27 EV miles out of your total mixed miles.

But most buyers will never know the difference.

Clearly, we need the EREV category.