2021 Hyundai Sonata N Line

2021 Hyundai Sonata N Line

The N Line is the sportiest version ever offered of the Hyundai Sonata. It’s a peppy midsize sedan with 290 horsepower that can provide an exhilarating ride! It also has an upscale cabin and is loaded with features and tech.

Base Price: $33,300
As Tested: $34,674
Horsepower: 290
Mileage: 23 mpg city/33 mpg highway/27 mpg combined

The N line is offered on some Hyundai vehicles, providing sportier performance and looks. For 2021, the N Line is available on the Sonata for the first time. The Sonata N Line competes well against the likes of other performance-oriented sedans including the Honda Accord 2.0T, Mazda 6, Nissan Maxima and Toyota Camry TRD.

The five-passenger 2021 Sonata N Line starts at $33,300. While there are some options such as summer tires, carpeted floor mats and cargo accessories, there are no available packages which keeps pricing simple. It’s only available with front-wheel-drive.

The N Line Sonata looks sporty with its sleek and low profile, rear spoiler, twin tip dual exhaust, N Line unique front and rear fascia, N badging, and glossy black grille, side mirrors and window surround moldings.

The engine is a 2.5-liter inline four-cylinder based on Sonata’s new four-cylinder engine and adds a turbocharger, a different cylinder head and some other tweaks to bump horsepower up to 290 and torque to 311 pound-feet. This is 99 more horses than the standard Sonata which has 191 hp. The transmission is a new eight-speed dual-clutch automatic.

This Sonata N Line is seriously quick with sharp handling. It gets up to speed in a flash for merging and passing at freeway speeds, and is fun to take out on twisty roads. The suspension is sport-tuned which provides a stiffer ride than the regular Sonata but still glides well over bumps and road imperfections. While it’s not going to rival a German sport sedan, the Sonata N Line is fun to drive and definitely not a boring family sedan.

Hyundai says the Sonata N Line is optimized to automatically sense driving styles and road conditions to optimize shift points. For example, the car will hold lower gears longer during performance driving for better acceleration out of corners. Or if you’re aggressively pushing the car on curvy roads, the car will use the full range of available engine RPM to maximize performance. All of these features can be configured in the infotainment system.

Fuel efficiency is not as good as the regular Sonata, but decent for a sportier sedan. EPA estimates for my tester are 23 mpg city and 33 mpg highway for a combined rating of 27 mpg. I got 25 mpg during my week with a mix of city and highway driving.

The interior is upscale and attractive, just like other Sonatas, which come well equipped with lots of amenities and tech. Most materials are soft-touch and look and feel good. The N Line gets special bolstered seats with leather and faux suede trim which are indeed supportive and comfortable. A 10.25-inch infotainment system with navigation dominates the center stack. Adults in both rows have decent leg- and headroom.

 The standard features on the N Line Sonata include proximity key, push-button start, remote start, N sport front seats with Nappa leather bolsters and faux suede inserts, leather-wrapped N sport steering wheel, 12.3-inch LCD cluster display, 10.25-inch touchscreen infotainment system, navigation, Bose premium audio with 12 speakers, Android Auto, Apple CarPlay, wireless device charging, second row air vent, panoramic sunroof, LED interior lighting including ambient lighting, automatic high-beam assist, and auto-dimming mirror with HomeLink.

Standard driver assistance technologies on the N Line include forward collision avoidance assist with pedestrian detection, automatic cruise control with stop & go, lane keeping assist, lane follow assist, blind spot collision avoidance assist with rear cross traffic collision avoidance assist, high beam assist, driver attention warning, rear occupant warning door logic and safety exit warning.

The infotainment system is user-friendly. The large 10.3-inchvscreen looks great and the system responds quickly to touch and voice commands.

The trunk has 16 cubic feet which is a little above average for a midsize sedan. The 60/40 split fold-down rear seats provide flexibility in hauling passengers and cargo. A hands-free trunk release is standard.

The good:

Sleek exterior

Fun to drive

Sporty, dynamic handling

Attractive, upscale cabin

Lots of standard features and tech

Standard Android Auto and Apple CarPlay

The not-so-good:

Ride can be stiff

Pricing info:

My tester starts at $33,300. Summer tires are $200. Carpeted floor mats are $169. Delivery fee is $1,005 bringing the grand total to $34,674.

Bottom line:

Mainstream midsize sedans are not exactly a hot category right now, but the new Sonata N Line sure adds some excitement to the segment. Watch out, Accord and Camry! If you’re in the market for a midsize sedan, definitely check out the 2021 Hyundai Sonata N Line if you want to add some zip and a smile to your drives.

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