Accord owner considering Sonata V6LX- very nervous

Discussion in 'Hyundai Sonata' started by Robin, Dec 26, 2003.

  1. Robin

    Robin Guest

    I appear to be one of those people you're posting about who have
    pre-conceived ideas about Hyundai, yet have never owned one nor do I
    know anyone who has. I am now ending my current 3 yr lease on my 3rd
    Honda Accord VS EXL, and really would like to save some money this time
    around, and purchase a car rather than lease.

    An acquaintence recently purchased a Sonata V6 LX, is happy with it,
    but she's only had it 2 mos.

    With all my Honda's, the car has never been in the shop for other than
    regular maintenance (with the exception of one car one time when the gas
    gauage wasn't accurately reflecting current level, problem was fixed
    with the one visit to dealer).

    I realize it has the excellent warranty package, but I don't want
    inconvenience of having to use it. I've been spoiled by Honda.

    I read the earlier post "Can't tell you how pleased I am with new Sonata
    V6" with interest, yet while encouraging, not quite convinced. You know
    what the "perception" of Hyundai is out there, I am not mechanically
    inclined to fix a car or even identify what a problem might be if
    problem arises. I don't drive a car hard, and by leasing, have always
    had a new-ish car. Since I would be purchasing, I'm thinking about how
    the will hold up as it gets into its 3rd, 4th, and 5th year.

    On a consumer newsgroup, I posted a request for feedback on the Sonata
    V6 LX; I'm posting the responses below (total of 10 of them). I would
    like to ask you, as current or past Hyundai owners, to share your
    opinions with me, and if you feel confident about becoming a Hyundai
    owner, what are the reasons I should also. AGain, the warranty is nice,
    but don't want need to use it. If this is important, I do 80% city
    driving, 20% hwy, live in southern Calif (southern Orange County).

    1)Stop right here. That's a reason why NOT TO BUY a Hyundai.
    The only rason they offer such good packages is that they know their cars
    are crap. My cousing bought one; 6 months later she was already running
    into problems with it. She was so happy to get a Toyota a year after she
    bought one. Crap cars.

    2) *sigh*

    Robin, your sentiment is unfortunately typical of the average car
    buyer who make this kind of a mistake every day. Fortunately for you,
    you did decide to get the "second opinion".

    You are dead wrong in your reasoning: Hyundai's are more expensive
    than Honda/Toyotas! Not up-front, but definitely over the life of the
    car, no matter how long you keep it. The reason for that is piss-poor
    resale value of Hyundai! You might save $2,000-3,000 up front, but
    that Hyundai is going to be worth $5,000-$6,000 less than that
    comparable Accord in just three-four years!

    And if you're one of those people who keep their cars until they are
    ready for junk yard, don't kid yourself with that warranty. The
    Hyundai will die a lot earlier than Accord will, and it will be in the
    shop a LOT more frequently. If you simply look at the Consumer
    Report's summary of problems with the 2000 Sonata (that's the first
    year they made it), you'll see roughly the same frequency of problems
    as for 1995 Accord!!! That's simply mind-boggling!

    I also hope you're at least trying to compare apples to apples. The
    Sonata "V6", making 170hp, cannot be compared to Honda V6 making
    240hp. It is comparable to the Accord's 4-cylinder engine that makes

    And last, but not least, make sure that you really know what the cars
    are SELLING FOR, not just what their stickers are. Accords, for
    example, routinely sell at no more than 2% over dealer invoice. I'm
    not saying that Accord may cost about the same as Sonata, but the
    difference may be smaller than you think.

    Hope you will make the right decision. Good luck!

    3) Yeah, I totally agree. I've owned/own four cars, a Daewoo (Pontiac
    Lemans, I call it a Daewoo since it was a Daewoo repackaged for sell in
    America as a Lemans) Piece of crap car. I sold it after only havign it 1
    year. Since then, I've only owned Hondas, Crx SI (owned it for 9 years,
    66,000 miles and only one major repair during its life time ), CRV
    (going on 5, no problems) and just bought a brand new 04 Civic. Not only
    is Honda unbelievable in service and quality, but their resale value is
    unbelievably high (My Crx sold for $11,000 ). My cousin owned a
    Hyundai. She's hated since owning it for 6 months in. I've
    talked to a co-worder who has a Hyundai, she can't wait to trade her car
    in cause she can't stand its performance. Everyone I've known who has
    owned a Korean made car (KIA, Hyundai, Daewoo) all have been unsatisfied
    with their purchases. Not to say that korean cars are bad, but they
    sure dont rank up their with quality for hte price. I also would
    consider Toyota for my next purchase ( Supra's will be reissued
    in a couple of years) and hteir Camry's have always been their best line
    of cars. My last choice would be a Mazda (Mazda 6 or 3 or even the
    Mazda Speed Protege).

    4) And I'm on my third Mazda, 2 626's and a Millenia and loved them
    all. Not one of the three were ever in for service other than normal oil
    changes, etc.

    5) Are you a Honda dealer perchance? I have a 2001 Hyundai Elantra
    GT and it's been practically problem free. And to mention the
    reliability ratings of a 3 year old model from the first year it
    was out when it is obvious that there is data available for more
    recent models just smacks of presenting only the most negative
    information you can find.

    6) I have a 2000 Hyundai, with a new engine after only 60k. Before
    that, the head gasket had to be replaced, and the engine had to be
    flushed several times over a year's period at over $100 a pop. I've
    had to have the car towed several times because it kept dying on the
    road. Not only is Hyundai totally unreliable, but maintenance costs are

    7) Bill, why would you say such stupid things? It's really not like
    you. I guess you feel personally hurt by any negative comments about
    your car brand. I'll let the newbie-type "you must work for this company"
    comment slide, but let me address your second point.

    It should be obvious even to a 10 year-old that reliability
    differences become more pronounced as more time passes.That's why I
    tried to compare the oldest available model from Hyundai; that model
    year is 2000. By the way, having a car in its first model year is not
    the same as manufacturing your first car ever! Yes, all cars have
    minor bugs in their first year, but that shouldn't influence the
    long-term reliability much. Hyundai has been making cars for a long
    time now.

    Second, I can certainly use the 2001 model for comparison, even though
    it's not yet old enough to show all of its true colors. The 2001 has 5
    categories of issues that have 2-5% of owners reporting problems.
    Honda Accord has only two. Again, comparisons of older cars are much
    more meaningful than 2 year old ones.

    I'm just curious, are you trying to suggest that Hyundai makes cars or
    comparable reliability to Honda? If not, then what was the point of
    your wild accusations? Regret about making a dumb car buying decision?

    8) Buying a Honda doesn't guarantee reliablity. My Honda recently
    blew a gasket and required over $1500 in repairs. It only has around
    80,000 miles, if it were a Hyundai, it would've been fixed free.

    9) >My Honda recently blew a gasket and required over $1500 in
    repairs. It only has >around 80,000 miles, if it were a Hyundai, it
    would've been fixed free.

    80,000 miles? Do you know how much time that Hyundai will spend in the
    shop before it reaches 80,000 miles? Most of us with jobs would
    consider the lost time cost to be too high.

    10) >80,000 miles? Do you know how much time that Hyundai will spend
    in the
    not to defend Hyndai, but what facts did you use to come to this leap
    of faith?
    Robin, Dec 26, 2003
  2. Robin

    Old_Timer Guest

    Go to the following web page and check out the reliabliability records
    among the various makes. You may be surprised as to how the different
    makes compare.

    Old_Timer, Dec 27, 2003
  3. Robin

    Zotto Guest

    I am a V6 Sonata automatic owner with more than 33.000 miles at the moment;
    it was one of first MY2002 Sonata here in Italy where Sonatas are rare to
    see, and no problems till now, except a paint problem on alloy wheels solved
    in guarantee with substition of them; besides this is my 3rd Hyundai, and
    always been satisfied.
    Compared to Accord, may be you could find less power in engine, but about
    all other features no fear, at the moment Hyundai is a very affordable
    brand: be sure only to choose a good dealer and make regular service

    Zotto, Dec 27, 2003
  4. Robin

    windmere Guest

    I noticed you had no replies here for a whole day and I think I know why. If
    someone recommends that you buy a Sonata because they had a good experience,
    you will be very upset if something goes wrong with yours. You already
    believe from experience that Honda Accords are excellent cars. Therefore to
    switch to Hyundai to save money would mean you are taking a risk on an
    unknown. No one can promise that any car will be perfect as each is made
    individually in an assembly line. You happened to get an Accord that you
    know is perfect - why not buy it out now that the lease is over since you
    know it's a good car? Maybe your peace of mind is worth the extra money over
    what you'd save getting a Sonata.

    To balance this view, I can tell you my father in law bought a Sonata 3
    years ago, has driven it long distances, is very happy with it, and bought
    it because Consumer Reports recommended it. In general it receives the
    highest praise of all Hyundai models, and people are no longer afraid to buy
    one because of the good reviews from respected magazines. To balance that,
    some do have problems with their Sonatas. But read any car newsgroup and you
    will see problems and repairs, and that includes the luxury models.

    I drove a Hyundai Pony from 1984 to 2002, and am still fond of it, even
    though I have a new Toyota, which I do not like. I would not get a Honda
    Accord because they have some of the same features as the Toyota, and
    because I prefer smaller cars. But you already know what car you are
    happiest in. The time to change is when you are sick of your car, not just
    because the lease is up. If it really is a matter of not being able to
    afford it anymore, you can still drive an Accord somehow, even a used one.

    Over and over again in reviews you will see that people compare a new
    Hyundai to a 5 year old Honda. You can surmise from this that Hondas are
    built to last longer. I believe this is because of the corporate philosophy,
    in not cutting costs quite as much as Hyundai does. Hyundai prides
    themselves on building a decent car at the lowest possible price, they do
    not try to provide the same quality and luxury that the Japanese companies
    strive for. They also have not been selling cars in North America quite as
    long; it is possible they will catch up in another decade.

    I can truthfully say that my Hyundai Pony, though I was satisfied with it
    overall, did require repairs several times a year, which ended up costing a
    lot over the 18 years we drove it. We loved the car so we made the repairs
    but most people junked them rather than do the work.

    From all I have heard (and driving my brother's used Accord), Hondas do not
    break that easily. Right now it is one of the highest rated mid sized car in
    the world, maybe neck and neck with the VW Passat, but considered more
    reliable than VW.

    Hyundais have character and personality, and the owners learn to put up with
    the repairs and quirks. If you are not ready for that, and don't really
    want to gamble, go with your true instinct and keep the Accord or get a
    brand new one. If you really are adventurous and tired of leasing and don't
    want to pay the price of a new Accord, you could get a Sonata. Why not rent
    one for a few days to see if you'd really feel comfortable in it? I wish I
    had done that with my Toyota - some things are not apparent in a short test
    windmere, Dec 28, 2003
  5. Robin

    Robin Guest

    I want to thank you for your thoughtful and insightful response. You
    have made some very good points, which have helped me to make a
    decision. Because I place a high value on peace of mind, I am leaning
    away from Hyundai and now considering more seriously one of the big 3
    cars. Thank you again, and hope you adapt and begin to enjoy your
    Robin, Dec 28, 2003
  6. Robin

    Jason Guest

    I bought my 03 Sonata LX back in May. I've had a few little glitchy
    problems with it (my power driver's seat started creaking because it
    gets pretty cold around here and a couple bolts loosened up, the LX
    logo wasn't on the trunk upon delivery, neither problem took more than
    20 minutes to fix) but nothing major. So far I've got about 5400
    miles on the car.

    A few more things in response to all the stuff below:

    1. I'm not going to respond to this one. You can't take anyone
    seriously who doesn't know how to spell.

    2. There's some incorrect info in this post. Yeah, it's true that
    Hyundai's do not hold their value as well as Honda or Toyota vehicles.
    Still, why are you buying a car for the resale value? Shouldn't you
    buy the car that you want to buy based on the features and options?

    Yeah, it's also true that the 170 HP V6 is small compared to the 240
    HP V6 that comes in the Accord. Still, the Accord is much more
    expensive and it also weighs 150 lbs more. But let's do a quick price
    comparison here. The Sonata LX comes with leather seating, climate
    control, sunroof, electro-chromatic mirror, fog lamps, wood trim, etc.
    and has a MSRP of $22034 To get those same features on the Accord you
    need to buy the "EX V-6" model. The same options will cost you
    $27982. That's a difference of $5948. Is the extra power really
    worth an extra $6000 to you?

    The truth is that the two cars aren't in the same league (in the US,
    the China Sonata is another subject). If you can really afford the
    Accord Sedan EX V6 then you shouldn't be seriously considering the
    Sonata unless you are saving the money for something else (house,
    children, college, whatever).

    Finally, this post says that 2000 was the first model year for the
    Sonata. This is as wrong as could possibly be. The Sonata is
    currently on its 5th generation. Y1 was 89-94, Y2 was 95-96, Y3 was
    97-98, EF was 99-01, and the current generation, the New EF (aka EF2)
    is 02-04. A 6th generation (NF) is expected soon, probably in 2005.

    3. Hyundai vehicles aren't meant to be performance vehicles. If you
    really want to kick your Delta into gear ("Delta" is the code name for
    the 2.7L V6 used in the Sonata, Santa Fe, and Tiburon) you'll have to
    wait another month or two. On January 15th, US Hyundai dealerships
    are going to be selling factory-approved performance parts through
    H.A.R.D. Parts (think MOPAR or TRD). Supercharger and Turbocharger
    applications are going to be available. If you can't wait that long,
    Alpine Developments has a CARB-Approved S/C kit available right now
    that will add about 50 hp and 40 lb-ft of torque to the wheels. The
    kit will void your 10 year powertrain warranty but Alpine will cover
    it for 3 years (at which an extension to the full 10 years is
    available). Shark Racing will also be selling the 1320 Motorsports
    T/C kit. I do not believe that it CARB-Certified or that they supply
    a replacement warranty.

    4. What does owning 3 Mazda vehicles have to do with owning a
    Hyundai? Plus, neither the 626 nor the Millennia are still made.
    What does that tell you?

    5-10. I'm tired of typing. I'm not going to respond to these.
    Jason, Dec 28, 2003
  7. Robin

    Nick Guest

    Hi there Robin,

    One suggestion would be..if you are happy with your Accord, then why don't you buy it out from the lease? We have 3 Honda's in our household 2
    Accords, and one Integra and overall, I have not had any major issues with any of the cars. I can't say I have had the best of luck with my sister's
    99 Elantra though. The paint is not comparable to a Honda. In one section of the car, the paint has discolored and lost it shine. Hyundai refuses to
    re-paint it and blames that this was cause by buffing too hard. I do wax my cars (and I'd like Hyundai to prove to me that it was caused by buffing)
    so I can compare between the cars and the shine from my 95 Accord, still shines better than the Hyundai. Just recently I had to replace the spark plug
    wires which is no biggie, but considering that my Accord has over 110k and has not been changed yet, why should they have failed? Now we have this
    fuel line issue which I just posted yesterday that I have to fix. I hope that this isn't a trend in failing parts...My friend had a 94 Sonata and
    after the warranty expired it was nothing put one failing part after another. I'm not saying that these are major parts that are failing but still it
    shouldn't happen. Food for thought.

    Nick, Dec 28, 2003
  8. Robin

    theta00k Guest

    Well, expect to have some problems with distributor and EGR, which your
    sister's car doesn't have.
    You really shouldn't mess with anything under the hood if you can't tell
    whether the Elantra has a distributor.
    theta00k, Dec 28, 2003
  9. Robin

    XGCA Guest

    One CURRENT web article says it all:

    From: A two Hyundai Family! (02 XG350L & 02 Santa Fe LX), both top of
    the line!

    I could buy a third one in case one of them failed and still have
    money left over instead of buying two Accords (loaded)!!!

    By the way, I have owned over 18 BRAND NEW Fords in my life (not by
    choice mind you, company cars) and Hyundai is FAR more reliable than a
    Ford. I also owned three Dodges and a Porsche. Same holds true for the
    Dodge's (Porsche, there is no substitute).

    XGCA, Dec 29, 2003
  10. Robin

    random Guest

    To each his own.

    Take any story with a grain of salt.

    Not Hyundai related but anyway.
    Back in the early/mid 90's, my friend was looking at cars and decided to
    go with the Nissan Altima. His reasons were reliabilty, good track
    record of Nissan, poor track record of American cars. At the time I had
    a 91 Mustang GT. We argued back and forth about many things but bottom
    line, he bought the Altima. Within the first year, he to get his
    transmission replaced. The next year, his alternator replaced and in
    the shop several times for random stalling. The third year for a power
    steering noise and an idler for the belts. The forth year, he sold it.
    To this day 13 years later, I still have my Mustang and it has over
    150k miles very hard driven miles. The replacement parts are available
    everywhere and they are dirt cheap. I've only had to put about $1500
    into it so far and some of that was "wear items" like the clutch at 125K
    miles and an cat back exhaust at 150k miles.

    I don't really have a point of my story. I guess you win some and loose
    random, Jan 1, 2004
  11. Robin

    Robin Guest

    I think your story IS the answer to my question about a car and probably
    to life in general. There is a point to your story, and it's what
    windmere and a few others have been saying as well. Haven't made up my
    mind yet (Hyundai or other) but I have to say this group is one of the
    gentlest, friendly, knowledgeable and helpful groups I've posted to (and
    I've done a lot of posting!). My next idea is visit the waiting area at
    the service dept of my local Hyundai dealership and talk to a few car
    owners. Someone else made an excellent suggestion which I will also do
    - rent a new Sonata LX, and perhaps an XL350 and drive over a weekend.
    Will keep you posted. Happy New Year everyone.
    Robin, Jan 1, 2004
  12. Robin

    Old_Timer Guest

    Go to and then to the forum section. You can read a lot
    regarding other owners experiences.

    Old_Timer, Jan 4, 2004
  13. Robin

    Robin Guest

    Hi Old Timer,
    Thanks! I've registered and just spent more than an hour there, and of
    course, couldn't log out without posting a question!. Thx again.
    Robin, Jan 4, 2004
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