2019 Toyota Avalon Hybrid vs. 2019 Hyundai Sonata Hybrid

Detailed Review, Specifications & Comparison

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Safety

Over 200 people are killed each year when backed over by motor vehicles. The Avalon Hybrid Limited offers optional Rear Cross-Traffic Braking that uses rear sensors to monitor and automatically apply the brakes to prevent a rear collision. The Sonata Hybrid doesn’t offer backup collision prevention brakes.

The Avalon Hybrid Limited offers an optional Bird’s Eye View Camera to allow the driver to see objects all around the vehicle on a screen. The Sonata Hybrid only offers a rear monitor and rear parking sensors that beep or flash a light. That doesn’t help with obstacles to the front or sides.

Both the Avalon Hybrid and the Sonata Hybrid have standard driver and passenger frontal airbags, front side-impact airbags, driver knee airbags, side-impact head airbags, front seatbelt pretensioners, front wheel drive, height adjustable front shoulder belts, plastic fuel tanks, four-wheel antilock brakes, traction control, electronic stability systems to prevent skidding, daytime running lights, blind spot warning systems, rearview cameras and rear cross-path warning.

Warranty

Toyota pays for scheduled maintenance on the Avalon Hybrid for 2 years and 25000 miles. Toyota will pay for oil changes, lubrication and any other required maintenance. Hyundai doesn’t pay scheduled maintenance for the Sonata Hybrid.

There are over 47 percent more Toyota dealers than there are Hyundai dealers, which makes it easier should you ever need service under the Avalon Hybrid’s warranty.

Reliability

From surveys of all its subscribers, Consumer Reports’ December 2018 Auto Issue reports that Toyota vehicles are more reliable than Hyundai vehicles. Consumer Reports ranks Toyota second in reliability. Hyundai is ranked 10th.

Engine

The Avalon Hybrid’s 2.5 DOHC 4 cyl. hybrid produces 22 more horsepower (215 vs. 193) than the Sonata Hybrid’s 2.0 DOHC 4 cyl. hybrid.

Fuel Economy and Range

On the EPA test cycle the Avalon Hybrid gets better fuel mileage than the Sonata Hybrid:

 

 

 

MPG

Avalon Hybrid

 

 

XLE 2.5 4 cyl. Hybrid

43 city/44 hwy

 

 

2.5 4 cyl. Hybrid

43 city/43 hwy

Sonata Hybrid

 

 

SE 2.0 4 cyl. Hybrid

40 city/46 hwy

 

 

Limited 2.0 4 cyl. Hybrid

39 city/44 hwy

Transmission

The Avalon Hybrid has a standard continuously variable transmission (CVT). With no “steps” between gears, it can keep the engine at the most efficient speed for fuel economy, or keep it at its peak horsepower indefinitely for maximum acceleration. The Sonata Hybrid doesn’t offer a CVT.

Tires and Wheels

For better traction, the Avalon Hybrid has larger standard tires than the Sonata Hybrid (215/55R17 vs. 205/65R16). The Avalon Hybrid Limited’s tires are larger than the largest tires available on the Sonata Hybrid (235/40R18 vs. 215/55R17).

The Avalon Hybrid XLE’s standard tires provide better handling because they have a lower 55 series profile (height to width ratio) that provides a stiffer sidewall than the Sonata Hybrid’s standard 65 series tires. The Avalon Hybrid Limited’s tires have a lower 40 series profile than the Sonata Hybrid’s optional 55 series tires.

For better ride, handling and brake cooling the Avalon Hybrid XLE has standard 17-inch wheels. Smaller 16-inch wheels are standard on the Sonata Hybrid. The Avalon Hybrid Limited’s 18-inch wheels are larger than the 17-inch wheels optional on the Sonata Hybrid.

The Avalon Hybrid has a standard space-saver spare tire so you can replace a flat tire and drive to have the flat repaired or replaced. A spare tire isn’t available on the Sonata Hybrid; it requires you to depend on roadside assistance and your vehicle will have to be towed.

Suspension and Handling

For a smoother ride and more stable handling, the Avalon Hybrid’s wheelbase is 2.6 inches longer than on the Sonata Hybrid (113 inches vs. 110.4 inches).

Chassis

The front grille of the Avalon Hybrid uses electronically controlled shutters to close off airflow and reduce drag when less engine cooling is needed. This helps improve highway fuel economy. The Sonata Hybrid doesn’t offer active grille shutters.

Passenger Space

The Avalon Hybrid has .5 inches more front hip room, .4 inches more front shoulder room, 4.8 inches more rear legroom and .6 inches more rear shoulder room than the Sonata Hybrid.

Cargo Capacity

The Avalon Hybrid has a much larger trunk than the Sonata Hybrid (16.1 vs. 13.4 cubic feet).

To allow full utilization of available cargo room, the Avalon Hybrid’s trunk lid uses concealed beam hinges that don’t intrude into the trunk. The Sonata Hybrid’s useful trunk space is reduced by its intrusive beam hinge.

Ergonomics

The Avalon Hybrid’s front and rear power windows all open or close fully with one touch of the switches, making it more convenient at drive-up windows and toll booths, or when talking with someone outside the car. The Sonata Hybrid’s standard passenger windows don’t open or close automatically. With the Sonata Hybrid Limited’s power windows, only the front windows open or close automatically.

The Avalon Hybrid Limited’s standard wipers adjust their speed and turn on and off automatically according to the amount of rainfall on the windshield. The Sonata Hybrid’s intermittent wipers change speed with vehicle speed, but can’t turn on and off or change speed based on changing rainfall.

The Avalon Hybrid Limited has standard automatic dimming rear and side view mirrors which automatically darken quickly when headlights shine on them, keeping following vehicles from blinding or distracting the driver. The Sonata Hybrid offers an automatic rear view mirror, but its side mirrors don’t dim.

The Avalon Hybrid has standard heated front seats. Heated front seats are only available on the Sonata Hybrid Limited. The Avalon Hybrid Limited also has standard heated rear seats to keep those passengers extremely comfortable in the winter. Heated rear seats aren’t available in the Sonata Hybrid.

© 1991-2018 Advanta-STAR Automotive Research. All rights reserved.

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