Plug-in Hybrid Cars

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All-new Exterior Color Palette available early 2017

Highly Efficient Blue Link® Smartphone App Controls Charging Schedule Remotely

FOUNTAIN VALLEY, Calif. Sept. 12, 2017 – The 2017 Hyundai Sonata Plug-in Hybrid Electric Vehicle (PHEV) offers a class-leading estimated 27 miles of all-electric range and can recharge in less than three hours with a Level-Two charger. It offers the best of both worlds by providing the power delivery of a hybrid gasoline engine, perfect for long trips, with the additional benefit of environmentally friendly all-electric range for commuting. As a result, many consumers will be able to complete their daily commute without using a single drop of fuel, and total estimated range is an impressive 590 miles. The 2017 Sonata Plug-in Hybrid receives a new exterior color palette early in the 2017 calendar year. It is built at the Asan, South Korea plant and is available now at Hyundai dealers.

2017 Pricing

  • Sonata Plug-in Hybrid - 2.0L Hybrid Engine/Electric Motor - $34,600
  • Sonata Plug-in Hybrid Limited - 2.0L Hybrid Engine/Electric Motor - $38,600
  • Sonata Plug-in Hybrid Limited with Blue Pearl Interior - 2.0L Hybrid Engine/Electric Motor - $38,600

* Freight charges are $835


Although the Sonata Plug-in Hybrid is very technologically advanced, it drives similarly to the regular Sonata Hybrid, but with the additional benefit of extended all-electric range. A 9.8 kWh lithium-ion polymer battery pack, more than five times larger than the Sonata Hybrid’s battery, gives the Sonata Plug-in Hybrid an estimated all-electric range of up to 27 miles, further than any other midsize PHEV sedan.

The Sonata Plug-in Hybrid uses a six-speed automatic transmission with Hyundai’s Transmission-Mounted Electrical Device (TMED), a 50 kW electric motor, in place of a torque converter. The 50 kW electric motor is 32 percent more powerful than the motor used the in Sonata Hybrid and allows EV operation at higher engine load and speed. A 2.0-liter Nu four-cylinder GDI engine coupled with the electric motor allows the Sonata Plug-in Hybrid to operate just like the Sonata Hybrid once the onboard battery charge is depleted. Sonata PHEV’s Nu engine produces 154 horsepower and 140 lb. ft. of torque and the total system output is 202 horsepower at 6,000 rpm.

Sonata PHEV delivers an estimated 99 MPGe combined when operating in EV mode. In hybrid mode, the Sonata PHEV returns an estimated 39 mpg combined. Recharge time ranges from less than three hours at a 240V Level-Two charging station to less than nine hours using a standard 120V outlet.


Sonata Plug-in Hybrid uses the same functional design cues as the Sonata Hybrid to improve its drag coefficient to an industry-leading 0.24 as well as provide visual cues to distinguish the hybrid models from other Sonatas. A distinctive instrument cluster provides Sonata Plug-in Hybrid drivers with additional information about the Plug-in Hybrid’s functions. A charge indicator is located on top of the dashboard to make it easy to see the state of charge from outside the vehicle.

Early in 2017, Sonata Plug-in will offer an all-new exterior color palette, including: Hyper White, Nocturne Black, Metropolis Gray and Skyline Blue. Interior seating color choices include cloth or leather seating configurations in gray or a Blue Pearl option for leather seats. Sonata Plug-in Hybrids equipped with Blue Pearl leather seats will include contrast stitching and trim accent pieces.


Owners can manage and monitor the Sonata Plug-In Hybrid Electric Vehicle remotely via the Blue Link smartphone app. With the app, owners can access real-time data from their Sonata PHEV and perform specific commands like starting the engine and locking doors. Plus, users can search for points of interest using Google with voice or text and have the directions when they start their Sonata Plug-in Hybrid.

The most useful feature of the app is managing the car’s charging schedule. Owners are given vehicle charging options that they can select while in the car, but users can also manage them remotely via smartphone. Immediate charge is the simplest option, as charging begins as soon as the Sonata Plug-in Hybrid is plugged in.

Individuals that have different electric rates at various times may want to schedule the charge. Users can do that with the new app based on time and date. For example, charging could be set to start at 10 p.m. on Wednesdays and Thursdays on a weekly basis.

Remote Control Services:

  • Start or stop charging
  • Set up charging schedule with days of the week and time
  • Climate control and defroster

Connected Car Services:

  • Vehicle diagnostics/status
  • Existing battery level
  • Real-time electric range
  • Real-time fuel range
  • Charge status
  • Plug status (in/out)
  • Time left until fully charged


2017 Sonata Plug-in Hybrid comes standard with seven airbags, including a driver’s knee airbag. Electronic Stability Control, Vehicle Stability Management, Traction Control, ABS and a Tire Pressure Monitoring System with individual tire pressure display, and a rearview camera are also standard. Projector headlamps are standard while HID Xenon headlamps are available.

Hyundai offers many active safety technologies for the Sonata Plug-in Hybrid to assist drivers and help prevent accidents. No longer reserved for luxury cars, advanced safety technologies such as Forward Collision Warning and Lane Departure Warning are also available in this midsize sedan.

Sonata Plug-in Hybrid’s standard advanced Blind Spot Detection system is designed to alert drivers of an approaching vehicle in the next lane if the turn signal is activated. Drivers are first alerted of a vehicle in the blind spot by warning lights in the side mirrors. When the turn signal is activated, the Lane Change Assist system determines the closing speed of any vehicle in the adjacent lane to determine if the lane change is safe. If the system determines the vehicle in the other lane is closing too quickly, it sounds an audible alarm to warn the driver that the lane change is unsafe.

Rear Cross-traffic Alert (RCTA) is another feature derived from the Sonata Plug-in Hybrid’s advanced Blind Spot Detection system. RCTA scans the areas to each side of the vehicle when drivers are backing out of parking spaces. If the system detects another vehicle is approaching from the side, the Sonata driver is given an audible alert. This system is another tool that helps Sonata drivers utilize the active safety technology.

An available Lane Departure Warning System uses a forward-facing camera to recognize lane markers. If the system detects the vehicle is headed outside the lane markers, a warning light on the dashboard illuminates and an audible sound alerts the driver.


The Sonata Plug-in Hybrid delivers the convenient technology one would expect in a luxury vehicle in an incredibly efficient mid-size hybrid sedan. Hyundai’s Hands-free Smart Trunk is standard on the Sonata Plug-in Hybrid. An electronic parking brake with automatic vehicle hold, Integrated Memory System for driver’s seat and side mirrors, ventilated front seats, power front seats with adjustable driver lumbar support and Smart Cruise Control featuring stop/start capability are all available on Sonata Plug-in Hybrid.


All Sonata Plug-in Hybrids come standard with an eight-inch color touchscreen navigation system with Apple CarPlay® and Android Auto® smartphone integration, iPod®/USB and auxiliary input jacks, SiriusXM® satellite radio and Bluetooth® phone connectivity with phonebook transfer and voice-recognition. Available upgrades include a nine-speaker Infinity premium audio system with subwoofer and external Infinity® amplifier.

Hyundai’s eight-inch navigation system offers a map and music split-screen display and the ability to record SiriusXM presets 1-6. Switching to a preset station in the middle of your favorite song won’t be an annoyance any longer. Rewind up to 22 minutes to listen to the full song or catch up on a sports broadcast. SiriusXM Travel Link® provides access to traffic information, sports scores, weather, stock prices, fuel prices and local movie times. All Sonata Plug-in Hybrids will also support “Eyes Free” Siri integration, which allows drivers to perform a variety of functions without taking their eyes off the road.


The Sonata Plug-in Hybrid will be distributed in California, Connecticut, Maine, Maryland, Massachusetts, New Jersey, New York, Oregon, Rhode Island and Vermont, but customers in any of the other states can custom order the vehicle at their local Hyundai dealer in any state. Sonata Plug-in Hybrid buyers are currently eligible for a $4,919 federal tax credit. These tax credits reduce the amount of federal tax the purchaser is liable for, making them much more valuable than tax deductions. Local incentives may also be available; for example, the Sonata Plug-in Hybrid qualifies for a $1,500 cash rebate through state-level programs in Massachusetts and Rhode Island. In addition, the Sonata Plug-in Hybrid is eligible for HOV-lane access in certain states.










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Ford considers building a plug-in hybrid

Ford considers building a plug-in hybrid - Filed under: , , Ford's director of hybrid programs, Nancy Gioia delivered a speech at the Automotive News World Congress, in Dearborn and revealed that Ford is considering building a plug-in hybrid vehicle. So far, Ford's hybrid efforts have been limited to the Escape/Mariner/Tribute, although a Fusion hybrid is under development and should be available some time in 2008.As usual, the main problem is the battery. According to Gioia, the extra cost of the lithium ion battery could be prohibitive unless additional tax credits are made available. A LiIon battery is a necessity in order to get sufficient range to justify the extra complexity of the plug-in architecture. Ford showed a plug-in series hybrid, the Airstream concept at the Detroit Auto Show although, unlike the Chevy Volt, it uses a hydrogen fuel cell instead of an internal combustion engine.A Ford spokesman confirmed that Ford has been actively testing a variety of plug-in hybrid vehicles with different configurations and platforms for some time including the HyDrive system that underpins the Airstream concept. However, until a suitable battery can be found, Ford won't be committing to a production date or platform.[Source: Automotive News - subscription required] Read | Permalink | Email this | Linking Blogs | CommentsBOLD MOVES: THE FUTURE OF FORD Step behind the curtain at Ford Motor. Experience the documentary first-hand. [EV's @ AutoBlogGreen]

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The Volt May be First, But E-Flex is the Key

The Volt May be First, But E-Flex is the Key -

Although the first E-Flex concept—the Volt—is using a combustion engine genset, GM is also at work on a fuel-cell variant that will use the upcoming 5th generation stack. Click to enlarge.

While it was the introduction of the Chevrolet Volt—a plug-in series hybrid electric drive vehicle (earlier post)—that generated the most excitement at the North American International Auto Show, it is the accompanying announcement of the E-Flex system that is the key, according to Nick Zielinski, chief engineer for the Volt.

The Volt represents the first application of the E-Flex System, a developing vehicle architecture that will encompass a range of compact to intermediate vehicles with all-electric drive systems (the “E”) powered by electricity from a variety of sources (the “Flex”).

Broadly defined, the E-Flex architecture consists of an electric drive motor, on-board storage for electricity (battery or fuel cell), on-board mechanisms for producing electricity, grid charging (plug-in) capability, and the associated power electronics and control systems.

E-Flex vehicles can include the genset-powered plug-in series hybrid (such as the announced Volt), a fuel-cell hybrid, or a pure battery electric vehicle. GM envisions a range of genset options for the E-Flex vehicles, including engines optimized to run on E85 or E100 and biodiesel.

There is much overlap between E-Flex needs and work being done in other parts of GM—specifically fuel cell vehicle development and the mechanical hybrid systems. (In its evolving taxonomy of offerings, GM refers to its existing portfolio of hybrids as “mechanical hybrids”—i.e., the engine provides mechanical drive power in addition to the electric drive power.)

The drive motor in the Volt, for example, is the same system being used in the Equinox Fuel Cell Vehicle. The upcoming 5th generation fuel cell stack that will be applied in a GM fuel cell vehicle will also find its way onto an E-Flex platform.

And although it is not yet determined, it is possible that the battery pack work being done for the development of the Saturn VUE Green Line plug-in two-mode hybrid (earlier post) will also apply to E-Flex vehicles.

Of all the elements, the electric drive—the motor and the controller system—is the farthest along. The technology in the motor is already on the road in the Equinox fuel cell program. We’ve been working the details of those systems—the controls, the inverter—for the last three or four years. We’ve made major advances in motor efficiency, and also in the size of the controls and the inverter, which are substantially smaller than a few years ago. And we have plans in place [in the fuel cell program] for much more compact inverter packages.

The generator itself is technology very similar to the [drive] motor. We feel we can share a lot of the technology between the two—the electronics controls are very similar.

Least mature is the large energy store battery. The new work is more in the battery pack. The challenge is the systems integration of all those cells. One of the key elements of integrating the batter pack system is cooling, and understanding temperature deltas across the pack as your charge it. —Nick Zielinski

In working through battery pack management and control, GM combines simulation-based analysis, hardware cycling tests and then into vehicles for road testing.

We depend very heavily on the computer simulation work, and also depend heavily on component-level testing.—Nick Zielinski

Presumably, the work being done on integration and control—and the development of optimal operating strategies—for the battery packs in the VUE plug-in hybrid will support the more rapid deployment of E-Flex vehicles (and vice versa).

There are organizational intersections where work is done, that can merge together where it makes sense on the E-Flex. We need to come up with the most efficient and highest level of component sharing with E-Flex—and we are setting up the organization to make that happen.—Nick Zielinski

[Green Car Congress]

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GM Introduces E-Flex Electric Vehicle System; Chevrolet Volt the First Application

GM Introduces E-Flex Electric Vehicle System; Chevrolet Volt the First Application -

Powertrain of the Chevy Volt E-Flex Concept. Click to enlarge.

GM has introduced a new family of electric vehicle propulsion systems—the E-Flex Systems—and is showing the first concept application of E-Flex at the North American International Auto Show: the Chevrolet Volt, a 40-mile all-electric range (AER) plug-in hybrid.

E-Flex initially uses a plug-in capable, battery-dominant series hybrid architecture. The E-Flex vehicles are all electrically-driven, feature common drivetrain components, and will be able to create electricity on board (either through a genset or a fuel cell). Regenerative braking will also contribute to the on-board electricity generation. (“E” stands for electric drive and “Flex” for the different sources of electricity.)

We are focused on reducing our dependence on petroleum—today we are 98% dependent [and] we don’t think that is a good business strategy at all.

—Beth Lowery, GM VP Energy and Environment

There has been some speculation in the press that perhaps this is a publicity stunt on our part. This is not a publicity stunt, nor is it a science fair project. This is something that we have been working on for close to a year.

—Jon Lauckner, GM VP Global Program Management

GM is developing the E-Flex System in parallel to its mechanical hybrid efforts—including the development of the Saturn VUE Green Line two-mode plug-in hybrid (earlier post), for which GM just awarded lithium-ion battery contracts (earlier post)—as well as its ongoing fuel-cell vehicle development efforts.

In its evolving taxonomy of offerings, GM refers to its existing portfolio of hybrids as “mechanical hybrids”—i.e., the engine provides mechanical drive power in addition to the electric drive power.

There is tremendous synergy between the fuel cell vehicle program and the E-Flex program—Nick Zielinski is the chief engineer for the fuel cell program and the Volt Concept, as one example.

Furthermore, GM leveraged its experience with the EV1 in the design of both the E-Flex System and the Volt. The use of the range extender in the Volt design, for example, originated with feedback from EV1 customers about not wanting to have to plan their lives around the next charge, according to Tony Posawatz, GM Vehicle Line Director.

GM envisions a range of genset options for the E-Flex vehicles, including engines optimized to run on E85 or E100 and biodiesel.

The Chevrolet Volt.

The Chevrolet Volt. GM chose its Global Compact vehicle architecture (Cobalt-sized) for its first E-Flex application, the Chevrolet Volt.

The Volt uses the same electric motor as used in the Equinox Fuel Cell vehicle in its electric powertrain: a 120 kW peak machine that develops 320 Nm (236 lb-ft) of torque.

The Volt will use a 16 kWh lithium-ion battery pack that delivers 136 kW of peak power. Plug-in charging is designed for the home (110V, 15 amps) and will take between 6 to 6.5 hours.

The Volt can support all-electric mode from 0 to its top speed of 100 mph (with bursts to 120 mph). Acceleration from 0 to 60 mph takes 8 to 8.5 seconds. The basic operating strategy is to run the vehicle in all-electric mode until the state-of-charge (SOC) of the battery reaches 30%—that strategy delivers approximately a 40-mile range.

The 53 kW motor generator set (genset) allows the on-the-fly recharging of the battery. The genset in the current Volt concept uses a 1-liter, 3-cylinder, turbocharged engine.

You can drive at a continuous 70 mph, and the generator will not be on continuously. At 100 mph,the genset can maintain the charge in the battery and the speed of the vehicle. There are no compromises for the customers in the vehicle.

—Nick Zielinski, chief engineer

The Volt concept configuration features a 12-gallon fuel capacity, giving the vehicle a total driving range of around 640 miles—which works out to a nominal gasoline fuel efficiency of about 50 miles per gallon. (Presumably range would increase with a diesel variant.)

The less one drives before plugging in to recharge, however, the higher the experienced fuel efficiency. A daily drive of 60 miles, combined with a nightly recharge to support the first 40 all-electric miles, would yield an effective 150 mpg according to GM’s calculations, for example.

For comparable performance with a fuel-cell version of the Volt, GM anticipates needing 4 kg of hydrogen on-board.

The Volt also features some advanced materials contributions from GE Automotive Plastics, including weight reductions of up to 50% on the hood and doors through the use of high-performance composites.

Actual production of the vehicle is dependent on further battery development, and GM made no announcements about partners involved in the development of the battery pack for the Volt. The profile for the battery in the Volt is different than that of the pack being developed for the VUE plug-in.

GM would like to minimize the different battery packs within the E-Flex family of vehicles. One notable exception to this would in a fuel-cell configuration. In that case, the battery would be smaller, and more focused as power battery first and energy battery second (due to the ability of the fuel cell to produce the electricity on-board.)

However, GM is also clear that it wants to use common systems and controls wherever possible across applications. To that end, elements such as the charging systems will likely be common across mechanical-hybrid plug-ins and E-Flex plug-ins. [Green Car Congress]


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