2018 Hyundai Sonata vs. VW Passat: What Car to Buy? [Video]

This week TFLcar’s offices took delivery of the 2018 Hyundai Sonata and Volkswagen Passat. We took ’em to the track to see how the sedans’ 0-60 times at altitude compare (video coming soon). In this review, Nathan and Roman walk us through the striking similarities of the two vehicles and their subtle, but important, differences.

Both sedans compete in one of the most competitive automotive segments in North America, sedans. That pits them up against the Toyota Camry, Honda Accord, and Ford Fusion. In other words, these cars offer a host of features both for performance and comfort at a fantastic value.

Watch the video to see what we’re talking about. Here are the Crib Notes:

2018 VW Passat

  • $28,815 price as tested (press cars are usually the fully-loaded, top price versions)
  • Engine: 1.8-liter Turbo 4-cylinder with 174 hp; 185 lb-ft. torque
  • Front wheel drive mated to a 6-speed transmission
  • EPA mpg: 23 city/34 hwy/ 27 combined
  • Slightly refreshed for 2018, but no major design or performance upgrades
  • Roman’s key feature: Best rear legroom in its class.
  • Roman’s key quibble: Outdated exterior design
  • Assembled in U.S.A.
  • Buy it: If you want a basic, value-priced sedan that’s fun to drive.
2018 VW Passat R
photo: VW

2018 Hyundai Sonata Sport

  • $28,610 price as tested
  • Engine: 2.0-liter direct injection turbo with 245 horsepower and 260 lb-ft. torque
  • Front wheel drive mated to an 8-speed transmission
  • EPA mpg: 23 city, 32 hwy, 26 combined
  • Totally new inside and out with 4-door coupe styling
  • Nathan’s key feature: Roomier front seats
  • Nathan’s key quibble: Engine’s turbo lag affects acceleration from a stop
  • Assembled in U.S.A.
  • Buy it: If you want a smooth, comfortable ride with plenty of passing power.
2018 Hyundai Sonata Sport
photo: Hyundai USA