The Sonata N Line is greater than only a fairly face.
Some automobiles simply shock the hell out of you, and nothing in current reminiscence has taken me aback fairly just like the 2021 Hyundai Sonata N Line. What I believed was going to be a pleasant midsize sedan with somewhat extra energy is definitely a correctly sporty automotive.
LikeExcellent powertrain and chassisSuper enjoyable to driveGreat fashion and tech
Do not LikeSome torque steerRough round city
Actual fast, a phrase concerning the letter N. The Sonata N Line is not a full-bore N, just like the Veloster N or upcoming Elantra N and Kona N. As a substitute, consider this as N-lite, identical to the Elantra N Line and the brand new Kona N Line and Tucson N Line. Acquired it? Good.
A practiced eye will shortly spot the variations between the Sonata N Line and its extra staid counterparts, although the adjustments are undoubtedly delicate. There is a new grille up entrance with bigger air intakes, and the Sonata’s superior daytime operating lights stay intact. Round again, the N Line will get quad exhaust pipes and a redesigned bumper and diffuser. New wheels spherical out the adjustments, and general, whereas these upgrades aren’t main, the N Line seems simply pretty much as good as every other new Sonata.
The massive upgrades begin below the hood, the place the Sonata N Line will get a 2.5-liter turbocharged inline-four engine, the identical one you will discover within the Genesis G80 and GV80, in addition to the Kia K5 GT and refreshed Stinger. Right here, it is tuned to ship 290 horsepower and 311 pound-feet of torque. Energy goes to the entrance wheels by way of an eight-speed dual-clutch automated transmission, which you will additionally discover within the Veloster N and Elantra N.
The Sonata rips off the road; it will do a front-drive burnout with out even making an attempt. However robust and highly effective because the engine is, the sedan’s chassis is the actual star of the present. The N Line dives into corners, and whereas the suspension retains the Sonata taut and planted in corners, it is not so stiff that it ends in a uneven trip over damaged pavement.
The N Line-specific 19-inch wheels look superior.
The steering is direct and communicative, and it is also good and heavy, which undoubtedly provides to general involvement. Yeah, there is a ton of torque steer due to the front-wheel-drive structure, nevertheless it’s simply managed, and actually, it simply makes me giggle.
In Sport Plus mode, the dual-clutch transmission will downshift below braking, although you do not essentially want this aggressive shift sample with how a lot torque is on faucet. Moreover, Sport Plus routinely turns off the traction management, which is odd, particularly since there is not any limited-slip differential, which means there’s numerous wheel spin whereas cornering should you aren’t cautious. Sport mode retains traction management on and nonetheless gives super-quick shifts. It is the way in which to go.
My tester is shod with Hyundai’s non-obligatory 245/40-series Continental Premium Contact 6 summer time tires, wrapped round 19-inch wheels. The summer time tire possibility provides $200 to the Sonata’s backside line, nevertheless it’s cash nicely spent contemplating the additional grip these rubbers supply.
Nothing mistaken with this cabin.
I’ll say, although, nice because the Sonata N Line is on a winding street, it may be somewhat robust round city. It often feels skittish and jumpy, and the brakes are grabby. No less than the N Line comes customary with a bunch of nice driver-assistance applied sciences, together with Hyundai’s hands-on Freeway Help that facilities the automotive in its lane, navigating round curves and utilizing adaptive cruise management to deal with braking and acceleration. It isn’t a silky clean cruiser, but when that is your precedence, simply get the usual Sonata.
The N Line’s EPA-estimated gasoline financial system figures aren’t too shabby, both: 23 miles per gallon metropolis, 33 mpg freeway and 27 mpg mixed. Good luck attaining these, although. Drive the Sonata N Line with gusto and you will commonly see numbers within the low 20s.
Apart from N Line-specific sport seats, this Sonata’s inside is rather like every other. Positive, there’s some pink distinction stitching and a few N badges, however that is about it. Fortunately, there’s loads of area up entrance, the again seat is roomy and the 16 cubic toes of trunk area is greater than ample.
The N Line will get the Sonata’s greatest infotainment tech, with a quick multimedia system housed on a 10.2-inch touchscreen, with Apple CarPlay and Android Auto customary. My colleagues like this technique for its ease of use, however I typically discover that straightforward instructions require further faucets. For instance, I can not cancel my present route immediately from the navigation map. I’ve to dig into the navigation menu to take action. Additional, the icons are small and simple to overlook when tapping across the display screen whereas driving. However hey, I can take heed to the sounds of nature app that features ambient noise from a snowy day, a seaside, a rainstorm, a forest and, curiously, an outside cafe. So, bonus I suppose?
It is a significantly fun-to-drive sedan.
There are not any possibility packages for the Sonata N Line, apart from some nicer paint colours and the aforementioned summer time tires. With its Quartz White exterior and higher tires, my tester comes out to $34,655 together with $1,005 for vacation spot. Sure, that is greater than $10,000 above the beginning worth of a base Sonata, however this automotive continues to be an amazing worth.
Consider it this fashion: The Sonata N Line technically competes with automobiles just like the Toyota Camry TRD and turbocharged Honda Accord and Mazda6, nevertheless it’s method higher to drive. You are getting a automotive that is nearer to Acura TLX and BMW three Collection ranges of enjoyment, and people automobiles value a complete lot extra. No, the N Line is not good, nevertheless it punches method above its weight and has all the customary Sonata’s nice infotainment and security tech, as well. This Hyundai may not instantly come to thoughts as a strong sport sedan, however belief me, it’s best to drive one. It would shock you.