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2021 Hyundai Sonata Pros vs Cons

Why Buy a 2021 Hyundai Sonata?
Reviewed & fact checked by
James MurdochNorman Ruckpaul

Are You Considering a 2021 Hyundai Sonata? Here Are Some Reasons For and Against

Imagine yourself immersed in a sleek and stylish sedan that is covered in intricate interior detailing and displays the latest technology attributes. The outside glistens in the sun as the light hits upscale exterior accents. A rounded front gives your new ride an appealing look that is the perfect mixture of sporty and modern.

What you are imagining is completely attainable in the 2021 Hyundai Sonata. As a popular model, the Hyundai Sonata has continued to rise to the top with unmatched cabin comfort, exceptional fuel economy, and overall value to buyers. Not only is the 2021 Hyundai Sonata fun to look at, it plays the part of being a dependable vehicle well, too.

What's New for 2021?

Even when considering a vehicle that has been around for years, consumers want to know what features will be introduced or revamped in the newest model year. The 2021 Hyundai Sonata does not let buyers down and incorporates many changes in its 2021 model. From a new tire and wheel combination to addition features, the 2021 Hyundai Sonata gets a new feel from the inside out. While the SE Plus model now comes standard with all-season tires atop 19-inch wheels, other models have also seen significant upgrades.

In fact, the SEL, SEL Plus, and Limited have implemented a mechanism to enter safe exiting of the vehicle while it is in a parallel parked position. Passengers are alerted to oncoming traffic to determine when the safest point of exit is. Additionally, the Limited Sonata model, which is also the most well-equipped, also comes with a power-adjustable driver’s seat with six-way functionality.

Ten Reasons You May Like the 2021 Hyundai Sonata – The Pros

1. Buyers can enjoy many trim level selections.

Contrary to other similar models, the 2021 Hyundai Sonata does not fail when it comes to providing options for consumers. In fact, this sedan offers four different trim levels in addition to three unique models. The SE, SEL, SEL Plus, and Limited are the trim level options buyers must choose from, while the Blue Hybrid, SEL Hybrid, and Limited Hybrid comprise the various model options of this sedan.

2. The 2021 Hyundai Sonata is a great value overall.

Rarely is it that we see a vehicle with so many interior attributes and exterior features on the market at such a great price. Expected to come in at approximately $30,000 for its median trim level, the Sonata offers a real value for buyers.

3. Consumers gain access to some hands-free driving capabilities.

This modern sedan is so advanced that it offers a limited number of semi-autonomous driving features. This feature can be seen in Hyundai's SmartSense technology that the Sonata relies on. Features that enhance parking accuracy and safety, rear sensors, and automatic braking can aide drivers in safe navigation and implement necessary precautions when drivers fail to do so.

4. Offers stable and responsive handling with balanced speed.

Some sedans can be quick and agile but lack the discipline they need to handle well. The 2021 Hyundai Sonata is both quick and responsive, which improves its stability and handling. A turbocharged 1.6-liter engine provides sufficient power for the Sonata, while an automatic transmission allows for smooth transitions.

5. Shifting is smooth and timed well.

Drivers do not have to prepare for jerky shifting and jarring acceleration in this sedan. An eight-speed automatic transmission that is convention serves the 2021 Hyundai Sonata well in its transitions. While many vehicles in the Sonata's class have moved toward a continuous variable transmission (CVT), the Hyundai Sonata has stayed true to its reliance on its tried and proven automatic transmission.

6. Economically responsible and fuel-efficient options are available.

As one can see from the trim levels offered by this vehicle, Hyundai is committed to offering hybrid vehicle options. With three hybrid trims total, buyers have several choices to select from in their goal of fuel efficiency and alternative fueling methods. Though these models may be slower to accelerate than their gasoline-based siblings, they are more modern and fuel-efficient than these other models.

7. Many fuel-efficient powertrain options.

Not only are the hybrid options able to attain exceptional fuel efficiency, but the gasoline engines of the 2021 Hyundai Sonata have a reputation of good fuel consumption, as well. Topping out at 31 combined MPG in its best engine offering, the Sonata still fares better than its top competition. Still yet, the engine that is not a turbo and hybrid options may get better fuel economy than the 1.6-liter, but this has not been tested by a rating agency, yet.

8. An attractive interior that stands out.

Feeling as though it is more upscale than the sticker price might suggest, the interior of the 2021 Hyundai Sonata is superb. With a high-class feel and ergonomic dashboard layout, this sedan is stylish and functional. Quality materials help this cabin feel lush and luxurious, while plenty of extra space is prevalent throughout.

9. A comfort and spacious cabin that is unexpected.

Based on its overall size, one might assume the storage space within this sedan is limited. Yet, 16 cubic feet of cargo space is available on the inside of this vehicle, which matches its capacity for seven suitcases in its trunk area. These specs are impressive for a mid-sized sedan.

10. High safety ratings by national agencies ensure passenger security.

While high safety ratings are not uncommon for private passenger cars, the 2021 Hyundai Sonata has received a ranking of five stars and has been named as a Top Safety Pick. The Sonata's integrated Hyundai SmartSense technology consists of a safety suite that is standard on all models.

Higher trim levels are graced with additional available safety features, like one that pulls the Sonata in and out of parking spaces for you. While this is reserved for the prominent Limited trim level, functionalities like blind-spot monitoring and rear cross-traffic alert are available on multiple trim level selections.

Reasons You May Not Like the 2021 Hyundai Sonata – The Cons

1. Provides a driving experience that only pleases a certain type of consumer.

Rather than appealing to the masses, the 2021 Hyundai Sonata seems to only please a certain niche of buyers. Those who are not concerned with ample horsepower and quick acceleration are often more pleased with this sedan than others.

2. Acceleration that is relaxed and easy-going.

If you are searching for a vehicle that will take you from 0-60 MPH quickly, the Hyundai Sonata is not for you. It is relaxed stance toward acceleration leisurely gets drivers up to their desired speed at its own pace.

3. Buyers should prepare for a bumpy ride.

The suspension of the 2021 Hyundai Sonata can use a bit of work. Buyers should not prepare themselves for a smooth ride, as many bumps in the road can be felt along the way. Though shifting is smooth for this vehicle, the components of the 2021 Hyundai Sonata themselves are what make a big difference in this vehicle's overall composure while driving on rough terrain.

How It Stacks Up to the Competition:

2021 Hyundai Sonata vs 2021 Honda Accord

One of the top competitors of the 2021 Hyundai Sonata is its closely related 2021 Honda Accord. If you are a buyer who is concerned with technology, styling, and safety features, the 2021 Hyundai Sonata is going to be a great choice over the Honda Accord. With a touchscreen that is just over 10-inches and a driver cluster that is just over 12-inches, the Sonata is well-equipped in the technology department. In comparison, the Honda Accord only has an 8.0-inch touchscreen option.

The overall style of the 2021 Hyundai Sonata also reigns supreme against the dated look of the 2021 Honda Accord. There is simply no comparison between the looks of these two sedans. However, both automakers are known for their outstanding warranty options, which makes all their models fierce competitors.

2021 Hyundai Sonata vs 2021 Toyota Camry

Though the sport similar front end structuring, the 2021 Hyundai Sonata and the 2021 Toyota Camry are different in many aspects. Coming in at a higher price point than the Camry, the Sonata is also jam packed with more features than the Camry can possibly offer. Sporting luxury features, a great warranty, and a variety of safety features, the 2021 Hyundai Sonata has an obvious edge over the awkward 2021 Toyota Camry that lacks power. The Sonata is simply more modern than even the most recent Camry model year can offer.


The 2021 Hyundai Sonata is a great buy for consumers who need the functionality and fuel efficiency of a commuting vehicle but long for the style of an upscale, luxury model. The Sonata is a safe model that is classy and modern. It also incorporates more space within than most other models that are similar in comparison. Not only is the Hyundai Sonata exceptional in all these ways, but it is also produced by an automaker with a history of excellence and unmatched warranty provisions.

Previous Hyundai Sonata Buying Guides:

Why buy a 2020 Hyundai Sonata? w/ pros vs cons