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Hyundai Sonata Hybrid
I saw the TV ads, and checked it out online, This car is showing great promise and a drivers car to boot, where the Fusion, Prius and Camry do not.
It is the first of it's kind to use the new Lithium/Polymer battery pack, something I personally use in my R/C Helicopters. Very lightweight, provide good power curve, and small in comparison to equivalent NiMh battery packs. Each cell provide 3.7 volts, compared to 1.5 volts of the other types. LiPo batteries do need to be balanced charged, so Hopefully Hyundai has that technology down, and considering they are using LG for the batteries, there is a very good possibility that they are.
It uses their 6 Speed electronic transmission, as opposed to the CVT and electric motor combination's the others use. The Electric drive motor that they use is in place of where the torque converter would be in a standard drive-train. This gives the car the ability to reach 74 MPH on pure electric. It also has the most HP of any Hybrid model @ 206 HP. The ability to shift gears is a big plus, something the other Hybrids lack, and after having owned and put 50K miles on the Camry and Prius myself, I can see this as a big well done on Hyundai's part.
The car itself has it's own style, specifically designed for low COD, .25, which is right where the Prius is, making it one slippery family sedan.
What I think will help make this car sell is the price, it's base price is lower than either the Fusion or the Camry, Fully loaded up to $3,000 less than either of its competitors.
It comes with the same warranty as the regular Sonata, 60 month 60k miles B2B, and 10 year, 100K drivetrain.
This car shows good promise, 6 speed transmission, so it should have plenty of Gitup and go, something the other Hybrids lack, Good pricing, puts it right in the market as an affordable Hybrid family Sedan.
EPA ratings are 35/40/37. Above the Camry, and just below the Fusion. Running on pure electric at highway speeds, something no other Hybrid can yet do, for how long though, is a wait and see.
Drawbacks however, there are only two models, two prices. Base and fully loaded, nothing in between, something that may hurt sales, as you only have a choice between a $26k model or a $31k model.
So has anyone seen one, test driven one, or bought one yet? Would be nice to know how the car handles.