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2020 Hyundai Sonata Hybrid Energized by Solar Roof

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2020 Hyundai Sonata Hybrid
Photo: Hyundai

The 2020 Hyundai Sonata Hybrid will feature the automaker’s first solar-panel roof system for battery recharging.

The 2020 Sonata Hybrid’s solar technology, which takes up the entire roof of the car, gives the battery six extra hours of charging time a day and could increase the car’s travel distance by about 800 miles per year. That may not sound like much, but it’s only the first phase of a long-term Hyundai plan to equip its lineup with increasingly advanced solar charging systems.

A solar roof isn’t the only new tech featured on the new Sonata Hybrid. The car is also equipped with world’s first Active Shift Control (ACS) system. ACS communicates with the electric motor to align the speed of the engine and transmission and reduce gear-shifting time by up to 30 percent. This helps the transmission last longer by reducing friction and also allows the Sonata Hybrid to achieve better fuel economy and acceleration.

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The Sonata Hybrid’s powertrain connects a 150-horsepower 2.0-liter four-cylinder engine, a 51-horsepower electric motor, and a six-speed automatic transmission. This setup combines to put out a total of 192 horsepower.

To improve its aerodynamics and performance, the Sonata Hybrid also comes with model-exclusive design elements like a cross-hole cascading grille, a rear spoiler, and alloy wheels.

Joining the regular 2020 Sonata, the Sonata Hybrid features Hyundai’s new Digital Key, which uses Near Field Communication (NFC) tech to let drivers unlock the doors or remotely start the vehicle with a smartphone app.

The 2020 Hyundai Sonata Hybrid has been announced only for the South Korean market so far, but it’s expected to make its way to the U.S. as well.

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