By on June 20, 2014


Hyundai will add a Sonata Eco model, featuring a 1.6L turbocharged four-cylinder engine and a dual clutch transmission, when the new generation sedan debuts for the 2015 model year.

Automotive News reports that the 1.6L mill will put down 177 horsepower and 195 lb-ft, through a 7-speed DCT. Fuel economy will rise to 28/38/32 mpg, versus 29 mpg combined for the Sonata with the standard 2.4L engine.

The Eco will start at $24,085, $2,215 more than a 2.4L Sonata SE but adds a back-up camera, a five-inch touchscreen, Hyundai’s BlueLink telematics system and slightly different interior trim.

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20 Comments on “Hyundai Introducing Sonata Eco With Dual Clutch, Turbo Engine...”

  • avatar

    Wow, a whole extra 3 mpg in combined fuel economy that won’t really happen because you’ll have a torque-less pig on your hands unless your in the boost. Are Hyundai and Ford trying to out do themselves for the most useless power train available in a sedan? Just get a hybrid already!

    • 0 avatar

      Regardless the powertrain, the new Sonata is the car to watch out for.

      More spacious than a lot of cars I could name- including the new 200.

    • 0 avatar

      Although I’m a huge fan of positive displacement supercharging and would rather see that than a turbo as the emerging trend, if the turbo is designed properly with active waste gate, twin scroll tech, or even simply small enough, it will spool up fast enough that lag will be minimal. Turbo design, with the exception of a few models from fiat, has been going that way for a while, and hence they have higher torque than most v6s have and at lower rpms.

  • avatar
    SCE to AUX

    Not sure this is a good idea.

    Driveability sounds questionable, and definitely not worth a premium price over the sweet 2.4 6-spd automatic they already produce, and for not much MPG improvement.

    I’m a Hyundai/Kia fan and owner, but getting the DCT thing right is a rare thing these days, and not worth the complexity, in my opinion.

    Having just bought an Optima Hybrid on clearance, I’d say the hybrid is truly the “Eco” model, especially if you don’t go crazy with options.

    • 0 avatar

      Volkswagen can do it. Everyone else?

      Eh… just look at the Focus. One of my friends has one, and it’s had a transmission repair. Only 21K miles.

      • 0 avatar

        Just how do DCTs handle low (parking lot and similar) speed? I understand most of them don’t have slushboxes nor claim any hybridness (the mild hybrid should make my issues moot)? Do they just slip clutch without informing the driver (whose knowledge of clutches likely ends with the idea that there are two of them in the car)? I understand that they are “wet clutches” and that they can usually tolerate a bunch of slipping (I think this is important in motorcycle riding), but the idea of inching around the DC beltway at those “clutch hostile” speeds seems like asking for trouble.

  • avatar

    Hyundai’s string of styling success has come to an end with this car. This should be called the Hyundai Siesta. Is there any reason that there are no reviews yet of the Hyundai Siesta? They are already showing up on dealer lots.

  • avatar

    Is it just me, or does this car look absurdly similar to the new Legacy?

  • avatar

    They need a 2.0T. Paying for an upgraded engine should get you something better.

    • 0 avatar

      They had a 2.0T on the previous generation. It was just a lot better on paper than in practice. Motor Trend found that the last gen 2.0T Sonata was just barely faster than the Camry Hybrid with much worse mileage and considerably behind the V6 Camry and Passat on acceleration while returning the same fuel economy.

  • avatar

    I like to read and comment once every couple of years or so. That being said…

    My wife drives a 2013 Sonata SE 2.0 Turbo with Tech Package (navi, climate control, useless sunroof, etc.) and I drive a 2014 Sonata GLS with Pop. Equip. Package and 2.4L engine. Before my wife upgraded (if you can call it that) to the Turbo, she had a 2011 GLS with a proper 6 speed manual and the 2.4L engine. The clutch and 6 speed manual were both cheap and of poor quality. Never mind the shift lever and pleader.

    We just test drove a 2015 SE with Pop. Equip. Package and we both agreed that Hyundai went the other way. The car is built cheaper, and is trying to hide the cheapness with LED fog lights and… well that’s about it. The instrument cluster looks terrible and the entire dash looks like it was put together by the accounting department at Saab right before said accountants were taken out and executed by the engineers so that they can get on with their work on the Saab 9000 without any budget restrictions… but I digress.

    All sarcasm and joking aside, I used to be a Hyundai fan and I was willing to give them my hard earned dollars. That’s no longer the case since they are building cars that I don’t want, with questionable quality and at price points that will buy me about anything that I want from their competitors.

    As for this new Sonata “Eco”, all I have to say is that it’s a really stupid idea and that whoever makes these decisions at Hyundai should lay off the “sauce” and take a look around in the real world. I don’t want a DCT in an economy car coupled with a Turbo engine. Hell, I don’t want an automatic coupled with a small Turbo either. If acquisition price and fuel economy are the key factors then please give me a proper manual that shift nicely and has decent gear ratios, a small Turbo were the boost comes on early and a durable clutch and a decent flywheel. Good ‘ol simple tech is the best. I recently borrowed a 1.6L Turbo Veloster with a 6 speed manual for a weekend from my local dealer and averaged 40MPG on the Highway, and 30 in mixed driving. I found the car to be horrible and the build quality sub par, however I liked that little engine. So it’s not out of the question that it will perform well in the Sonata, but it needs to be mated to the manual transmission. For that matter, so does the 2.0L Turbo.

    I doubt that it will ever happen, while this stupid thing will sell somewhat well, even if it’s Hyundai’s guinea pig for testing their first mass produced DCT (oh I know there is one in the regular 1.6L Veloster, but no one cares about that one since it’s low volume and kind of crap).

    One more thing: it annoys the hell out of me how the transmission is programmed in my wife’s 2013 Sonata Turbo. Instead of holding 6th gear with the torque convertor engaged when it goes up a hill for example on the freeway, it will disengage it and sometimes even downshift a gear if going slower. Never mind if you start from a standstill and you want to go up a hill, the engine will rev to 3500~4000 RPM, then shift a gear, then all over again. Where’s the boost?! Oh, right, that comes on later. WTF Hyundai? Give me a decent manual so I can make own shifting choices. If I want bland, boring and ordinary I can always get a Nissan Altima with a Xtronic CVT and average 38MPG all day on the highway. If you can’t beat Toyohondasan (and you can’t), then at least be the new Alfa Romeo for the rest of us… cheap, crappy and entertaining!

    • 0 avatar

      I couldn’t agree more. I recently had the misfortune to rent and drive for about a thousand miles over a weeks time a Hyundai Veloster with the standard 1.6 and 6-speed DCT. What a worthless pile of crap, I wanted to pull over about ever 20 miles a put a bullet in the cylinder head. It did nothing but downshift every 60 seconds because the engine is too small and the gearing is too long to keep up with it’s over weigh ass on the highway. And we’re talking about west Texas, not Colorado. Take off from a light and it tried to shift into every gear it had in the first 50 feet, and ended up being an obstruction in the road. I averaged 31 mpg with 90%highway driving. You couldn’t give me a Hyundai.

  • avatar
    S2k Chris

    This sounds like a great idea, but
    Hyundai has, like Ford delivered a car that will be
    Exhausting to drive if
    You are not constantly in the boost.

    Especially in a larger sedan meant to be full of people
    And their things, you want something with more
    Thrust than this will provide.

    Do automakers think we’re all
    Oblivious to the fact that these new engines are
    Great on paper, but completely lack
    Satisfaction on the streets?

  • avatar

    Comparing apples to apples, the Eco has the same equipment as the Sonata SE with the Pop Pkg, and costs about $800 more. Over 5 years at 15k a year, it is a slight (less than $200) money saver vs the 2.4. Hardly a game changer. More likely this is just a test to see how customers react to a small turbo motor in a midsize sedan. Ford didn’t give its customers a choice with the Fusion (ignoring the base 2.5), so they don’t really know what people would have chosen given other options.

  • avatar

    Everyone knows that these engines only exist for CAFE/EPA reasons. Otherwise automakers would continue using the reliable-as-a-hammer 2.5l-ish naturally aspirated four cylinder engines of a few years ago that are perfectly adequate and decent to drive.

  • avatar

    I am not opposed to small turbo engines in midsize sedans but this 1.6T better be an improvement over the 2.0T that they offered in the previous generation. It power delivery was so awful I would have chosen the 2.4 over the turbo any day of the week.

  • avatar

    Does anyone know who Hyundai’s DCT supplier is?? Is it made in house?? Hyundai tries too hard to be something it’s not and cannot. Is it necessary for an appliance to have a useless turbo with DCT and badge it with as an Eco?? It won’t win current Camry and Accord owners.

  • avatar

    I’m really curious how the Ford and Hyundai 1.6 turbos are in these largish sedans (Sonata, Fusion). I rented a Fusion for a very long drive recently, and with a choice of 1.6T and 2.5NA I took the 2.5, assuming it would be the more sensible powertrain. As it turns out, I doubt it. The throttle and transmission response were so bad that it’s hard to imagine the 1.6T could be worse. Slow to respond to the accelerator, even slower to stop responding after you’ve lifted off the accelerator, unwilling to downshift ever, and all the giant-Four idle shake you can eat. Ample power when floored and decent highway MPG though, in a car that’s stylish and comfortable and a fantastic handler.

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