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2020 Hyundai Sonata might offer all-wheel drive

Building the sedan on a modular platform makes AWD possible.

The 2020 Hyundai Sonata will only be offered with front-wheel drive when it goes on sale, but it might gain all-wheel drive a little bit later in its production run.

While Hyundai has never offered the Sonata with all-wheel drive, the newest version of the nameplate rides on a modular platform named N3 developed to underpin sedans, crossovers, and SUVs. These body styles need to offer all-wheel drive, which means it's technically possible to make the configuration available on the Sonata.

"Yes," replied Jae Young Kim, the director of Hyundai's product division, when asked by CNET's Roadshow about the possibility of offering all-wheel drive. "We are currently reviewing the need for all-wheel drive in [the US] market," he added.

If the all-wheel drive Sonata gets the green light, it will compete against the Subaru Legacy and the Nissan Altima. Sending power to all four wheels would help the Sonata convince buyers not to switch to an SUV. Sharp style and state-of-the-art tech features might not be enough to prevent an exodus.

Hyundai won't start delivering the 2020 Sonata (pictured) until later in 2019, so it has time to decide whether or not to offer all-wheel drive. It's unclear when the configuration will be available if Hyundai decides to make it available. What's nearly certain is that, unlike Subaru, the company will charge extra for it.

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