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2020 Hyundai Sonata Hybrid Trim Levels with Comparisons & Configurations.

2020 Hyundai Sonata Hybrid Trim Levels, Configurations & Comparisons: SE vs Limited, Hybrid & Plug-In

What 2020 Hyundai Sonata Hybrid Trim Level Should you Buy? What is the Difference Between Trims?

If you want a hybrid sedan without having to spend a small fortune, you will probably want to give the 2020 Hyundai Sonata Hybrid a test drive. Even if you are not considering a hybrid, the Sonata Hybrid might just change your mind. Why is that, you might ask? Well, there is a bevvy of things to enjoy about the Sonata Hybrid aside from its solar roof, new Active Shift Control (which lowers gear shifting times by 30%), and the 47.3 combined miles per gallon it gets on the 16-inch wheels.

You will have to decide which of its four trim levels you want to opt for. You can start out with the base Hybrid SE or go all the way up to the Plug-In Hybrid Limited. Making that choice might be kind of difficult since each of these four trim levels offer some fun and helpful features. But which one mixes standard features with power the best? Does one get a better fuel economy than the others? Which trim level will appeal the most to the average driver?

Read through to the end of this comparison novel, and you will find out which trim level we think provides the best overall value. Just be sure you pay attention to each trim level's details as you go, as some of them might speak to your individual needs.


Compare the 2020 Hyundai Sonata Hybrid SE vs Hybrid Limited. What is the difference?

The 2020 Hyundai Sonata Hybrid starts off with the Hybrid SE. This hybrid variant of the gas-powered Sonata's base SE trim gets 42 combined mpg (with 40 mpg in the city and 46 mpg on the highway). The second trim level up, the Hybrid Limited, gets 41 mpg combined (39 mpg in the city and 44 mpg on the highway). They are both powered by a standard 2.0-L GDI Atkinson cycle inline 4-cylinder and 38 kW (or 51 hp) electric motor with a 270-volt lithium-ion polymer battery. Combined, this system generates 193 hp. Front-wheel drive and a 6-speed automatic transmission come standard on both vehicles. Also, both are built with the same unibody design, front MacPherson struts with coil springs for the front suspension, a rear suspension with an independent multi-link design, column-mounted motor-driven power steering, drive gear select, and power 4-wheel disc brakes. The only difference? The Hybrid SE gets 16-inch Eco-spoke aluminum alloy wheels while the Hybrid Limited sits atop 17-inchers.

As far as safety features go, the Hybrid SE is fairly well-equipped for being a base trim level. It comes with blind spot detection (that has lane change assist and rear cross-traffic alert), a rear view camera, a tire pressure monitoring system, electronic stability and traction control, brake assist, a full array of airbags, easy-to-reach LATCH anchors for child car safety seats, a power window lock-out button, and remote keyless entry with a security alarm equipped. In addition to all that, the Hybrid Limited trim adds automatic emergency braking (equipped with pedestrian detection), lane keep assist, smart cruise control (which has a stop/start function), and automatic high beam assist. Rear parking sensors are available as an optional add-on.

For the most part, these two trim levels look the same on the outside. They each come adorned with a hands-free trunk release, body-colored power-folding side mirrors with a heating function and integrated turn indicators, a center high-mount stop light, welcome lights on the chrome door handles, a front grille also done in chrome, solar control glass, variable intermittent windshield wipers, a shark-fin style antenna mounted onto the roof, projector headlights with an automatic function, LED daytime running lights, LED taillights, and a proximity key that has a push button start.

The Hybrid Limited adds LED headlights, chrome side molding, and glossy DLO surround and mirror housing. Other than those details, it might be pretty difficult to tell these two trim levels apart upon first glance.

The interior is where things really get different. The Hybrid SE does stick to a moderate amount of interior features, and many of them are the necessities. The Hybrid Limited shakes things up quite a bit with a lot of upgrades and additions. So, what do they have in common? Both trims have a dual front automatic temperature control system, power windows with pinch protection and auto up/down on the driver's side, and power door locks. Leatherette door insert trims come standard, as do illuminated vanity mirrors on the sun visors up front, a tilt and telescoping steering column, a steering wheel with multiple controls (for cruise control, Bluetooth, and audio) mounted onto it, a Bluetooth hands-free phone system, USB and auxiliary input jacks, a 6-speaker sound system (with AM/FM/MP3 capabilities), smartphone app integration via Apple CarPlay and Android Auto, a 7-inch color touchscreen, and a 4.2-inch colored trip computer with an Electroluminescent Gauge Cluster (EGC).

What does the Hybrid Limited add to all of that? The panoramic tilt and slide sunroof is one of the most obvious differences. But you also get rear vents mounted onto the floor console, power up/down and pinch protection on the front passenger's window, sunshades for the rear side windows, an 8-way power-adjustable driver seat with power lumbar support, a 6-way power-adjustable front passenger seat, integrated memory settings for the side mirrors and driver's seat, ventilated front seats, leather seating (a nice upgrade from the Hybrid SE's premium cloth), a 60/40-split folding rear seat, gorgeous woodgrain appearance accents (instead of the Hybrid SE's metalgrain), premium door sill plates, and a leather-wrapped gear shift knob and steering wheel. Tech upgrades include the Blue Link Connected Car System, three years of complimentary service from the Blue Link Connected Care Package, a USB charge port for the rear, an auto-dimming rear view mirror with a digital compass and Home Link universal transceiver built in, an electronic parking brake with automatic vehicle hold, SiriusXM Satellite Radio, and HD Radio.

Interior options on the Hybrid Limited are quite numerous. These include 3D tech appearance accents (which are done in beautiful Blue Pearl leather), three years of complimentary service from the Blue Link Guidance Package, wireless phone charging, a premium Infinity sound system with a 400-watt external amplifier and subwoofer, and an 8-inch touchscreen display with built-in navigation. That sure does make for a lot to consider while customizing a new 2020 Hyundai Sonata Hybrid.

It should also be noted that all of these trim levels receive some extremely generous warranty coverage. Hyundai gives its customers a standard lifetime hybrid battery warranty, 5-year/60,000-mile new vehicle limited warranty, 10-year/100,000-mile powertrain warranty, 7-year/unlimited miles anti-perforation warranty, 10-year/100,000-mile hybrid systems components, and 5-year/unlimited miles 24-hour roadside assistance. For the price you pay on any of these trims, that's a good deal and will be tough for competitors to beat.

Compare the 2020 Hyundai Sonata Hybrid Limited vs Plug-In Hybrid. What is the difference?

So, how does the Plug-In Hybrid differ from the standard hybrids? Well, it is about as simple as it sounds. A plug-in needs to be plugged in so its batteries can recharge. They do have gas-powered engines equipped, but they are mostly there to charge the vehicle's battery once its power has been drained. It is a fairly simple but really revolutionary concept that has become trendy in the past decade.

The 2020 Hyundai Sonata Plug-In Hybrid has the same 2.0-L engine as the standard hybrids, but its electric motor is a 50 kW (67 hp) and electric battery is a 360-volt. Together, this system garners 202 hp and gets 39 mpg combined and is rated at 99 MPGe. Like the Hybrid Limited, it rides atop the 17-inch wheels.

With regard to safety features, everything that you get on the Hybrid SE, you get on the Plug-In Hybrid. The same goes for the exterior features. The Plug-In Hybrid does have a few interior differences though. It gets equipped with the floor console-mounted rear vents, power auto-up/down on the front passenger's window, the 8-way power-adjustable driver's seat, premium door sill plates, leather-wrapped gear shift knob and steering wheel, Blue Link technology packages, auto-dimming rear view mirror with the digital compass and Home Link, SiriusXM Satellite Radio, and HD Radio.

Compare the 2020 Hyundai Sonata Plug-In Hybrid vs Plug-In Limited. What is the difference?

As you might be able to guess, the Plug-In Hybrid Limited trim is the plug-in version of the Limited. Therefore, it is safe to say that it deeply resembles the Hybrid Limited. But it is a pretty big upgrade from that and the base Plug-In.

When it comes to safety features, the Plug-In Limited has, quite literally, everything. It comes with the Hybrid Limited's optional features as standard. This means you automatically get the rear parking sensors and automatic high beam assist (which you cannot get on the standard Plug-In Hybrid).

The only exterior feature that the Plug-In Limited lacks is the glossy DLO surround and mirror housing. Otherwise, expect to see the full array of chrome details and LED headlights, daytime running lights, and taillights. There is not much that is lacking from this trim level's body.

On the inside, the Plug-In Limited gets the full shebang as well. It gets equipped with all of the standard Plug-In Hybrid's features and adds the 6-way power-adjustable front passenger seat, integrated memory system for the side mirrors and driver seat, ventilated front seats, leather upholstery on the seats, woodgrain appearance accents, full array of Blue Link services, wireless phone charger, electronic parking brake with automatic vehicle hold, Infinity premium sound system, and 8-inch touchscreen display with built-in navigation. The 3D tech appearance accents are optional.


Which Trim to Choose?

The 2020 Hyundai Sonata Hybrid is both fuel efficient and family friendly. It offers a good amount of space for a midsize sedan, and the revamp it has undergone leaves it even more high-tech than before. Yeah, sure, the sedan segment might be dying out, but it has not gone totally out-of-style just yet. And the cool sedans are not all luxury ones priced well above reason. The 2020 Sonata Hybrid is super cool and super affordable, with a top starting MSRP of $33,000.

So, which trim level should you opt for? Honestly, whether you go for the standard or hybrid, get the Limited trim. You will not be shelling out that much extra money for it, and the Limited is absolutely loaded with all the right standard features. Its abundance of standard safety features alone should be enticing for most buyers. The upgraded infotainment features are a nice bonus, and the interior design - especially the leather seats - is beautiful and cozy at the same time. You cannot go wrong with this trim level. It will just be up to you to choose whether you would prefer a plug-in or standard hybrid powertrain.

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