Car review: Hyundai turns up the fun factor with the midsize Sonata N Line

Making a new midsize car purchase, especially a sedan, usually means turning away from fun driving machines. Luckily, some sedans out there allow you to move the family around and have a good time behind the wheel.

Hyundai is one of those companies that has souped up its midsize Sonata sedan with a 2.5L turbo four-cylinder engine that pumps out 290hp. This is plenty of power to stay ahead of the crowd and it moves you quickly when you hit that gas. The handling is firmed up from other Sonata models so you can push this sedan on back roads and have some fun. The eight-speed dual clutch transmission provides quick shifts when you want spirited driving. However, it feels a bit like a slipping manual transmission in certain low-speed situations. Even with the power, the Sonata N Line still delivers good MPG.

The Hyundai Sonata N Line has a sportier look when compared to the other Hyundai models. The unique N front, rear fascia and special 19-inch wheels give the Sonata N Line a proper look to go with the extra power. The Sonata lines are fetching for a sedan with a longer hood and lower roofline that seems to end in a faux hatchback rear end.

When you climb in the Hyundai Sonata N Line, you have a roomy cabin with space for five. The cabin is spiced up with sport seats covered in leather with microfiber inserts. The driver is treated to a thick leather-covered steering wheel and there are even some paddles for that racecar feel. A 12.3-inch LCD cluster replaces the normal gauges. You have the usual tach, speedometer and even boost gauge when needed. The push button shifter saves space and after a few minutes of use becomes second nature. Trunk space is also impressive for a midsize sedan and a trunk height that makes loading a snap.

Cost: As tested $34,644

MPG: 23mpg city and 33mpg highway; I managed 26.3 mpg in 229 miles of mixed driving.

Safety: forward collision-avoidance assist; blind-spot collision warning and assist; lane keeping assist; lane following assist; driver attention warning; blind-spot view monitor; rear cross traffic alert and avoidance; safe exit warning;

Things to know: The sporty Sonata N Line spices up the midsize sedan market with a turbo-charged family ride with plenty of space and a fun-to-drive nature.


  • A fun-to-drive sporty sedan
  • Comfortable and spacious interior
  • The styling will get you noticed


  • Fuel economy suffers when you have fun behind the wheel
  • The push button transmission takes a bit to get used to
  • Dual clutch transmission feels a bit strange in slower speed situations

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