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In the past twenty years hundreds of infants and young children have died after being left in vehicles, usually by accident. When turning the vehicle off, drivers of the Sonata Hybrid are reminded to check the back seat if they opened the rear door before starting out. The Corolla Hybrid doesn’t offer a back seat reminder.
Over 200 people are killed each year when backed over by motor vehicles. The Sonata Hybrid Limited has standard Reverse Collision-Avoidance Assist that uses rear sensors to monitor and automatically apply the brakes to prevent a rear collision. The Corolla Hybrid doesn’t offer backup collision prevention brakes.
The Sonata Hybrid Limited has a standard Around View Monitor to allow the driver to see objects all around the vehicle on a screen. The Corolla Hybrid only offers a rear monitor.
The Sonata Hybrid’s blind spot warning system uses digital cameras monitored by computer to alert the driver to moving objects in the vehicle’s blind spots where the side view mirrors don’t reveal them and moves the vehicle back into its lane. The Corolla Hybrid doesn’t offer a system to reveal objects in the driver’s blind spots.
To help make backing safer, the Sonata Hybrid’s cross-path warning system uses wide-angle radar in the rear bumper to alert the driver to vehicles approaching from the side, helping the driver avoid collisions. The Corolla Hybrid doesn’t offer a cross-path warning system.
Both the Sonata Hybrid and the Corolla 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, four-wheel antilock brakes, traction control, electronic stability systems to prevent skidding, crash mitigating brakes, daytime running lights, lane departure warning systems, rearview cameras and driver alert monitors.
For its top level performance in IIHS driver and passenger-side small overlap frontal, moderate overlap frontal, side impact, roof strength and head restraint tests, its standard vehicle-to-vehicle front crash prevention system, its standard vehicle-to-pedestrian front crash prevention system, and its available headlight’s “Good” rating, the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety grants the Sonata Hybrid the rating of “Top Pick” for 2020, a rating granted to only 30 vehicles tested by the IIHS. The Corolla Hybrid last would have qualified as a “Top Pick” in 2017.
The Sonata Hybrid comes with a full 5-year/60,000-mile basic warranty, which covers the entire car and includes 24-hour roadside assistance. The Corolla Hybrid’s 3-year/36,000-mile basic warranty expires 2 years and 24,000 miles sooner.
Hyundai’s powertrain warranty covers the Sonata Hybrid 5 years and 40,000 miles longer than Toyota covers the Corolla Hybrid. Any repair needed on the engine, transmission, axles, joints or driveshafts is fully covered for 10 years or 100,000 miles. Coverage on the Corolla Hybrid ends after only 5 years or 60,000 miles.
The Sonata Hybrid’s corrosion warranty is 2 years longer than the Corolla Hybrid’s (7 vs. 5 years).
Hyundai pays for scheduled maintenance on the Sonata Hybrid for 1 year and 5000 miles longer than Toyota pays for maintenance for the Corolla Hybrid (3/30,000 vs. 2/25000).
J.D. Power and Associates’ 2019 Initial Quality Study of new car owners surveyed provide the statistics that show that Hyundai vehicles are better in initial quality than Toyota vehicles. J.D. Power ranks Hyundai third in initial quality, above the industry average. With 19 more problems per 100 vehicles, Toyota is ranked 8th.
The Sonata Hybrid’s 2.0 DOHC 4-cylinder hybrid produces 71 more horsepower (192 vs. 121) and 165 lbs.-ft. more torque (271 vs. 106) than the Corolla Hybrid’s 1.8 DOHC 4-cylinder hybrid.
The Sonata Hybrid has 1.8 gallons more fuel capacity than the Corolla Hybrid (13.2 vs. 11.4 gallons), for longer range between fill-ups.
For better stopping power the Sonata Hybrid’s brake rotors are larger than those on the Corolla Hybrid:
The Sonata Hybrid’s standard front and rear disc brakes are vented to help dissipate heat for shorter stops with less fading. The rear discs on the Corolla Hybrid are solid, not vented.
For better traction, the Sonata Hybrid has larger standard tires than the Corolla Hybrid (205/65R16 vs. 195/65R15). The Sonata Hybrid SEL/Limited’s tires are larger than the largest tires available on the Corolla Hybrid (215/55R17 vs. 195/65R15).
The Sonata Hybrid SEL/Limited’s tires provide better handling because they have a lower 55 series profile (height to width ratio) that provides a stiffer sidewall than the Corolla Hybrid’s 65 series tires.
For better ride, handling and brake cooling the Sonata Hybrid Blue has standard 16-inch wheels. Only 15-inch wheels are available on the Corolla Hybrid. The Sonata Hybrid SEL/Limited has standard 17-inch wheels.
For a smoother ride and more stable handling, the Sonata Hybrid’s wheelbase is 5.5 inches longer than on the Corolla Hybrid (111.8 inches vs. 106.3 inches).
For better handling and stability, the average track (width between the wheels) on the Sonata Hybrid is 4.1 inches wider in the front and 3.3 inches wider in the rear than the track on the Corolla Hybrid.
The design of the Hyundai Sonata Hybrid amounts to more than styling. The Sonata Hybrid has an aerodynamic coefficient of drag of .24 Cd. That is significantly lower than the Corolla Hybrid (.28) and many sports cars. A more efficient exterior helps keep the interior quieter and helps the Sonata Hybrid get better fuel mileage.
Because it has more passenger and cargo room, the EPA rates the Sonata Hybrid a Large car, while the Corolla Hybrid is rated a Compact.
The Sonata Hybrid has 15.8 cubic feet more passenger volume than the Corolla Hybrid (104.4 vs. 88.6).
The Sonata Hybrid has 1.7 inches more front headroom, 3.8 inches more front legroom, 1.6 inches more front hip room, 3.1 inches more front shoulder room, 1.3 inches more rear headroom, 10.5 inches more rear hip room and 1.3 inches more rear shoulder room than the Corolla Hybrid.
The Sonata Hybrid has a much larger trunk than the Corolla Hybrid (16 vs. 13.1 cubic feet).
A standard locking glovebox keeps your small valuables safer in the Sonata Hybrid. The Corolla Hybrid doesn’t offer locking storage for small valuables.
To make loading groceries and cargo easier when your hands are full, just waiting momentarily behind the back bumper can open the Sonata Hybrid’s trunk, leaving your hands completely free. The Corolla Hybrid doesn’t offer a hands-free gesture to open its trunk, forcing you to put cargo down if your hands are full.
The Sonata Hybrid uses gas struts to support the hood for easier service access. The Corolla Hybrid uses a prop rod to support its heavy hood. It takes two hands to open the hood and set the prop rod, the prop rod gets in the way during maintenance and service, and the prop rod could be knocked out, causing the heavy hood to fall on the person maintaining or servicing the car.
When two different drivers share the Sonata Hybrid Limited, the memory system makes it convenient for both. Each setting activates different, customized memories for the driver’s seat position, outside mirror angle, climate settings and radio stations. The Corolla Hybrid doesn’t offer a memory system.
The Sonata Hybrid Limited has a standard heads-up display that projects speed and other key instrumentation readouts in front of the driver’s line of sight, allowing drivers to view information without diverting their eyes from the road. The Corolla Hybrid doesn’t offer a heads-up display.
The Sonata Hybrid’s speed-sensitive wipers speed up when the vehicle does, so that the driver doesn’t have to continually adjust the speed of the wipers. The Corolla Hybrid’s manually variable intermittent wipers have to be constantly adjusted.
The Insurance Institute for Highway Safety (IIHS) conducts detailed tests on headlights for their range both straight ahead and in curves and to be certain they don’t exceed acceptable amounts of glare to oncoming drivers. The Sonata Hybrid’s available headlights were rated “Good” by the IIHS, while the Corolla Hybrid’s headlights are rated “Marginal.”
When the Sonata Hybrid Limited is put in reverse, both rearview mirrors tilt from their original position. This gives the driver a better view of the curb during parallel parking maneuvers. Shifting out of reverse puts the mirrors into their original positions. The Corolla Hybrid’s mirrors don’t automatically adjust for backing.
The Sonata Hybrid’s optional rear view mirror has an automatic dimming feature. This mirror can be set to automatically darken quickly when headlights shine on it, keeping following vehicles from blinding or distracting the driver. The Corolla Hybrid doesn’t offer the luxury of an automatic dimming rear view mirror.
The Sonata Hybrid SEL/Limited has standard heated front seats, which keep the driver and front passenger extremely comfortable in the winter. Heated seats aren’t available in the Corolla Hybrid.
Standard air-conditioned seats in the Sonata Hybrid Limited keep the driver and front passenger comfortable and take the sting out of hot seats in Summer. The Corolla Hybrid doesn’t offer air-conditioned seats.
On extremely cold winter days, the Sonata Hybrid Limited’s standard heated steering wheel provides comfort, allowing the driver to steer safely and comfortably before the car heater warms up. The Corolla Hybrid doesn’t offer a heated steering wheel.
The Sonata Hybrid’s standard dual zone air conditioning allows the driver and front passenger to choose two completely different temperatures so people with different temperature preferences won’t have to compromise. This makes both the driver and front passenger as comfortable as possible. The Corolla Hybrid doesn’t offer dual zone air conditioning.
Both the Sonata Hybrid and the Corolla Hybrid offer rear vents. For greater rear passenger comfort, the Sonata Hybrid SEL/Limited has standard rear air conditioning vents to keep rear occupants cool in summer or warm in winter.
The Sonata Hybrid Limited’s standard GPS navigation system has a real-time traffic update feature that plots alternative routes to automatically bypass traffic problems. (Service not available in all areas.) The Corolla Hybrid’s available navigation system doesn’t offer real-time traffic updates.
To quickly and conveniently keep personal devices charged without cables tangling and wearing out, the Hyundai Sonata Hybrid SEL/Limited has a standard wireless phone charging system (Qi) in the center console. The Corolla Hybrid doesn’t offer wireless personal charging.
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