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Cleaner And Greener 2020 Sonata Hybrid Has A Solar Roof!

The solar roof on the Sonata Hybrid will ensure that the batteries don’t run out of charge on the move

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  • The solar roof system charges the battery on the move.
  • Six hours of daily charging provides an extra 1300km range annually.
  • The Sonata Hybrid’s combined power output stands at 195PS.
  • It has a claimed fuel efficiency of 20.1 kmpl.
  • Comes with features like Digital Key via NFC technology, Blue Link connected-car tech and a 12.3-inch driver’s display.
  • However, the Sonata Hybrid is unlikely to be launched in India.

We have heard of solar panels being used for heating water and generating electricity for houses. But imagine the same being used on cars for recharging batteries. We are not talking about any whacky prototypes or one-offs here but a proper mainstream car, which is already on sale. That’s exactly what Hyundai has done. The Korean carmaker has unveiled the 2020 Hyundai Sonata hybrid and it features a ‘Solar Roof’.

The Sonata Hybrid launched in the US comes with a gigantic solar panel that’s integrated into the roof for recharging the battery on the move. Seen for the first time on a mainstream model, Hyundai claims that six hours of daily charging through the solar roof system can extend the car’s range by 1300km annually.

Under the hood, the Sonata Hybrid is powered by a 2.0-litre petrol unit that develops 152PS and 188Nm of torque. The electric motor develops 52PS and 205Nm. Combined power output stands at 195PS and the Sonata Hybrid has a claimed efficiency figure of 20.1kmpl. Mated to a 6-speed automatic transmission, the hybrid sedan also comes with ASC technology which controls the Hybrid Control Unit (HCU). The HCU controls the electric motor to align the rotational speeds of the engine and transmission. The end result is reduction in gear shift times by 30 per cent.

The Sonata Hybrid follows the ‘Sensuous 2.0’ design language from the Korean carmaker. It gets a big cascading grille that are flanked by LED headlamps. Then there are two chrome strips that merge from the DRLs and flow around the window line. In profile, the Sonata Hybrid gets aerodynamic alloy rims and a sharp crease. At the rear, the Sonata Hybrid gets a trunk spoiler and ‘C’ shaped connected LED tail lamps.

Inside, the Sonata gets a sleek dashboard. It also comes loaded with features like Digital Key via NFC technology, Blue Link connected-car tech, a 12.3-inch driver’s display, a 10.25-inch infotainment system, Android Auto, Apple CarPlay, wireless phone charger, Bose audio system, cruise control as well as remote parking assistant.

Note: Standard model cluster image used for representational purpose. 

It also comes with nifty safety features like forward collision-avoidance assist that is capable of pedestrian detection and lane follow assist. The lane follow assist adjusts steering inputs to keep the vehicle in the lane and works up to 145kmph. Other safety features include multiple airbags, ABS with EBD, front and rear parking sensors, 360-degree camera, blind spot detection and electronic stability program.

It is yet to be known whether the Sonata will make a comeback in India or not considering the poor response for the previous iterations of the Sonata. Internationally, the Sonata Hybrid rivals the Honda Accord Hybrid and Skoda Superb iV.

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