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2020 Hyundai Sonata rediscovers bold design

Roadshow logo Roadshow 3/6/2019 Chris Paukert

a car parked on the side of a building

© Hyundai

The 2020 Hyundai Sonata is upon us, and the Korean automaker's mainstay family sedan actually appears to have more in common philosophically with the sixth-gen YF Sonata than its immediate predecessor, the 2015-2019 LF Sonata. That's because the new sedan has a new design unlike the model currently sitting in the company's showrooms.

As is the vogue these days, the new Sonata adopts a more radical roofline that lends the sedan a "four-door coupe" look, but the car's most unusual feature is the way the LED daytime running lamps form a strip that runs all the way up the outer edges of the hood, blending into the chrome surround of the side windows. The DRLs, dubbed Hidden Lighting Lamps, are secreted beneath a chromic trim piece, so when the themselves are not illuminated, they look like a simple accent trim, not lighting.

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a car parked on the side of a building: 2020 Hyundai Sonata© Provided by CBS Interactive Inc. 2020 Hyundai Sonata

The nose itself seems impossibly low and broad for a family sedan, looking almost sports-car-like in person. Hyundai has done a particularly nice job nuzzling the hood up to the amusingly named Digital Pulse Cascading Grille without a noticeable shut line.

Overall, the new Sonata sits 30 millimeters lower than its predecessor, the bodywork stretches a further 45 millimeters in length and it's also wider by 35 millimeters. The design's overall aesthetic draws heavily from the company's Le Fil Rouge concept car, which debuted at last year's Geneva Motor Show.

For the moment, the automaker isn't revealing anything about the 2020 Hyundai Sonata's powertrain, including whether or not it features any electrification options, so it's impossible to know how these cars might stack up against segment rivals like the Toyota Camry, HondaAccord and Chevrolet Malibu.

Hyundai has at least revealed a photo of the car's dashboard, which features a winged shape "inspired by a stealth aircraft." The low, narrow instrument panel features a large wide-aspect-ratio touchscreen above a set of slim HVAC vents. Based on the photos, there appears to be a new button-based gear selector adjacent to a set of USB-A and USB-C plugs, and the official press release makes note of some new capacitive-touch buttons.

Hyundai has not yet indicated where the 2020 Sonata will show its face in public, but given the timing of these first photos, next month's New York Auto Show seems like a particularly good bet.

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2020 Hyundai Sonata is a sharp-dressed sedan

This was originally published on Roadshow.


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