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Honda Civic vs. Hyundai Elantra



  • liufeiliufei Posts: 201
    Ungh... I think I still dont get my point across. What I meant to say is that the number of Elantras on the road since the early 90's pale in comparison with the number of Civic. Thus, AIS should have much fewer call regarding the Elantra, not enough to make a representation of the "real" stats out there, or at least their representation will not be as accurate as Civic. Besides, how many mechanics "really" called AIS anyway if they have problem? Its not like all hyundai mechanics and honda mechanics going to call them when they have problem, remember, they only provides solution to those that are not familiar with. I sincerely doubt some mechanic will call them just to change the timing belt,hence skewing the stats even more.
    They only have like 30 something technician, I doubt they can handle thousands of call each month.
    Besides, their ratings and methods are inconsistent at best. For example: check out the Ford Taurus and the Honda Accord for instance. How can Carpoint categorized the PERIODIC failure of the transmission clutch piston that cost $915 to fix in the Taurus in the same category with the OCCASIONAL problem with the stop lamp switch in the Accord that only cost $85?? If its really based on the number of call/total problem, then there's definitely a problem with their method, since occasional problem will never reach the status of periodic problem,(otherwise they will call it periodic to begin with). Same thing with the cost outline.
    Also, all this auto-site has preference over some brand and "disgust" over the other. Carpoint seems to rank Japanese car lower while raising the score of domestic. Edmund and Consumer Report on the other hand, seems to be the exact opposite.
  • hello26hello26 Posts: 62
    I wanted to comment on the following:
    the british had always been copying the germans in
    design and engineering... look at the jags of 50
    tears ago and the jags of today and you will find
    the definite resemblance of the jags to the german
    mb and bmw...

    It's true! The man who designed the famous Jaguar
    XKE had Dr. Porsche's 956 in his mind's eye. I've looked at this and I'm glad I'm not the only one who sees it.

    However, Civics sold in the US are made in Canada.
    Production from Japan, if there is any, has the exact price structure. Canada labor costs, taxing, etc. relate to the North American Free Trade Agreement and similar trade agreements.
    The cost of living in Tokyo or New York doesn't come into it. South Korea's labor market affects the price of Hyundais. This does not mean that Hyundais are the same material quality as Hondas. It is apples to oranges Korea's economy to Japan's regarding US prices of Hyundai and Honda.
  • liufeiliufei Posts: 201
    I recalled a while back an influential person in Detroit (I think it was the retiring head of GM) said this statement:
    "...the only contribution the japanese auto maker have done to the auto industry is the coin holder in the dashboard."
    I doubt he still think this way. Given time, Korean car maker should be able to make significant contribution to the auto industry (if they havent done it now). Besides, Japanese auto-maker copy everything from their American counterpart to begin with.
    Personally, I prefer they stick with the tried and proven and just make it better than figling an entire new stuff. (hehe, sounds like that commercial..)

    Err... why do you keep bringing up the racing stuff? I dont think the civic owner are that stupid comparing theirs to a formula 1 (who is that stupid for pete's sake???)
    Being no.1 in peru or poland hardly a big testament to them. IF GM or Toyota want to, I seriously think they can flood the market with their offering and create some serious competition.
    I still dont think there's anything special with Korea. Right now they're enjoying the same thing Japan enjoyed in the 1980's, once the their cost rises, they will be less value-oriented. By that time, China probably going to take their place.

    You didnt respond to what I said regarding Korean worker, since Japan achieved what Korea just now achieved in shorter period of time, they should be even more amazing that the Korean isnt it?

    And regarding contributing to world peace and stability, THEY ARE PART OF THE PROBLEM to begin with! With their north and south division. Forcing the US to guard the whatever parallel that divide them. Sure glad its not becoming another Vietnam back there.
    It only make sense for them to reunited, and still they bicker and argue about it until now, while leaving thousands (or is it millions now) of the N.Korean die of hunger... (i guess pride over reality).
    For short, no, I dont think Korea are that amazing. They're just hard working ppl that try hard to succeed, and in some field, they have done a good job.
  • nikecarnikecar Posts: 460
    Forget the topic of Racing he brings up...why keep bring up the #1 shipbuilding point? Who cares? $10 coffee? who cares. But what to know why it $10? they don't grow it. they import and since they are stuck all the way where they are at, it costs alot more to bring it in. Supply and demand my man. Just like Hyundais. Not in demand so the price is down. Hondas in demand, so price is up.

    I could care less about coffee or Levis in Japan. i could care less about s.Korea being the largest shipbuilder.

    I DO care that my care will last 10 yrs easy. i do care about reliability as a whole although there are lemons in every car maker. until the Hyundais prove themselves over the next few years, you are not going to change anyones mind.
  • george00george00 Posts: 81
    I've been away from this site for some time and am dismayed to see isellhondas still at the same old game. If his name is accurate, then he must be being paid by Honda to trash other makes, for he wouldn't seem to have time to sell Hondas or anything else. Surely everybody on this site knows by now that he believes Hyundais have lower resale value than Hondas - why keep repeating it over and over, except to preempt serious conversation about these cars, which for many people represent one of the most important purchases of their lives. As for me, I own a Honda Accord with 100,000 miles and no problems, and a 6-month-old Hyundai Elantra with 5200 miles and no problems. Both terrific cars. I purchased the Elantra last November instead of a Honda Civic or Toyota Corolla, which of course I also tested, for the usual combination of comfort, driveability, perceived quality, and price. The Hyundai warranty was a consideration also, largely because it suggested that the company has confidence in its cars. As for resale value, of course that's also a consideration, but if you sell a new car within a couple of years of purchase, you will take a bath regardless of make, and if you keep it for 10 years, resale value is a distant thought. And don't forget that you have to pay sales taxes on the price in most states, and annual ad valorem taxes too, and your insurance premiums may also be affected by the cost of replacing your car, so the cheaper car isn't only cheaper to buy, it's cheaper to keep. In the long run, resale value is actually a rather complex equation. Anyway, I'd love to hear serious discussions of driving issues and give resale value a well deserved rest.
  • jxcarjxcar Posts: 8
    Yes, stats are not always "facts" for many reasons. Two of which I can think of are: 1. The methods to generate and/or interpret data are flawed. Like Liufei questioned, if AIS used the total number of calls as the standard for their rating, itÕs irrational. 2.People who collect the stats are biased. They may intentionally or subconsciously "select" certain kinds of data. However, I donÕt see any evidence that either of these two cases apply to the CarPoint ratings.

    ItÕs not that you didnÕt get your point across, but rather you didnÕt get my points. I tried to be as concise as possible in my last post, but now I guess IÕll have to be more specific.
    Yeah, I know youÕre suspecting that AIS doesnÕt have enough calls on Elantra because thereÕre just less of them sold. However, I explained to you last time that what theyÕre using is probably "a ratio" or a percentage------ number of calls over number of total cars sold for each model in a certain year. For example (hypothetically), in 1995, thereÕre 100,000 Civics sold in US while 30,000 Elantra were sold. They received a total numbers of 100 and 30 calls for these two respectively. Their ratings will be the same since the percentage is the same. I donÕt think theyÕd rate Civic less reliable than Elantra just because of the absolute numbers of 100 and 30.
    Sure, not all mechanics call in for every problem, but all cars are on the same ground STATSTICALLY, if the data pool is large enough. And what if thereÕs not enough data? They just donÕt have ratings for those. Guess why they donÕt have every car models, and why thereÕs no rating for cars less than 2 years old? ThatÕs the reason right there. Also, why almost all cars have a perfect rating in their first 3 or 4 years? ThereÕre just not enough problems for any of them up to this point to make the percentage larger than the threshold for "problematic". No poll or survey can be "complete" in that sense, not even the Census, right?

    "Thirty-one automotive specialists make up the core staff at AIS." Remember, thatÕs just the "core" staff. ItÕs hard to imagine they donÕt have any secretaries, line-operators, bookkeepers, etc. They claim that they receive 20,000 calls per month. ThatÕs about 1000 per working day, and about 30 calls per person. Is it really so hard to handle 4 or 5 calls per hour? I donÕt think so. That being said, even if they boasted about the number of calls a little bit, I donÕt see much difference itÕd make whether itÕs 20000 calls per month or 10000 calls per month.

    Now, about the example you described, to me, itÕs not that hard to understand. Let me try to give you a few POSSIBLE explanations. Remember that I donÕt know anything more than you do other than the info. they provided on that page.
    First of all, PERIODIC doesnÕt necessarily mean "more often" than OCCASIONAL. ItÕs hard to compare these two in terms of "frequency". It could mean "predictable" while the other means the opposite.
    Secondly, thereÕre only three categories in their rating system: good, moderate, bad. Although I also wish it to be more detailed, I can understand itÕs not that easy to do. So each category has a range. Maybe in this case, letÕs say, 0.9% of Taurus have that clutch piston problem, but only "more than 1% have severe problem" is qualified as "bad". While 0.3% of Accord have the lamp switch problem, only "less than 0.1% have (any) problem" is qualified as "good". So unfortunately (for Accord), they both fall into the category of "moderate". That may sound unfair in some cases, but overall itÕs reasonable and justified as long as the rule is applied to all the cars equally.
    At last, itÕs nice for they to give you the details of each rating, isnÕt it? The three categories maybe too simple and too rough, but with the details youÕd know exactly what youÕre looking for. Besides, that shows they are honest and serious, donÕt you think?

    As to the "preference" of certain websites, I have no idea and therefor no comment. Even if itÕs true, isnÕt it nice to have info. from both sides? I wish Edmunds would have some sort of rating like that one day.

    My point is: if thereÕs no evidence of mistake or intentional manipulation of data, STATS is more reliable and more believable than just what you hear from someone who owns or sells a certain car, because it's unbiased and has much larger database.
  • isellhondasisellhondas Issaquah WashingtonPosts: 17,593
    I'm not the one who started this forum. Go back and read all of the posts and you'll be able to see why I felt a rebuttal was in order.

    It's Honda Civic vs. Hyundai Elantra, remember?

    I guess you would like to see it totally one sided!
  • george00george00 Posts: 81
    No, not one-sided, just more interesting and aware of subtleties. As I said, after considering cheaper tax and insurance burdens for cheaper cars, resale value is not as straightforward as it might seem. In any event, it is only one of many considerations, most of them more important, and by now everyone knows that you consider it very important and completely skewed in Honda's favor. Couldn't we now discuss how Civic and Elantra compare in, say, quiet, comfort, reliability (not according to past statistics, which have always been available, but by actual personal experience, which the Internet makes more accessible than ever before), braking, steering, shifting, enjoyability, all those things which made up the car experience? Personally, my biggest complaint about the Elantra is that the driver's seat is too hard and too inward-curving at the shoulders. As for comparison, I found the Civic seat, when I test-drove the car, much more uncomfortable. Edumunds, by the way, rates the Elantra seat as the most comfortable of 9 economy cars, the Civic down at #7, only ahead of Corolla and Cavalier, behind Elantra, Protege, Neon, Sentra, Focus, and Nubira. What would be really wonderful is if anyone had suggestions for after-market seat covers designed to compensate for Elantra's shortcomings. Or, perhaps, given the subject of this forum, discussing optional seats for the Civic, if any are available - e.g., are leather seats available and do they make a difference in comfort? I suspect I am more sensitive to seat differences than some other people - at least, I have been told so - but I do know many people who are concerned about it. Again for purposes of comparison, my Accord seats are too low though otherwise comfortable, while my Elantra seats are positionally ideal but too hard and too curved. I'd love to hear other's comments on this, rather than just on the economics, though I suppose if I can't fix the seat I may be very interested indeed in resale value!
  • isellhondasisellhondas Issaquah WashingtonPosts: 17,593
    I know I harp on the resale bit too much. This time it was a rebuttal since someone else was crowing about what a "value" a Hyundai is to a Honda when it comes to the original price. I just *had* to remind that poster about the resale down the road.

    And, that's because I have to deal with this often in my business. I'm the bad guy who has to break the news to customers when I can't get a decent bid on their trade in.

    On seat comfort, that's another story. What is good for one might not be good for another.

    A long time ago, there was a poster here who was VERY unhappy about the seats in his new Accord Coupe! He ended up trading the car and taking a loss in the process. Now, nobody else responded back agreeing with him. When I jumped in and said that I hadn't heard that complaint, he snapped back that I was biased, etc. Well, that was at least two years ago and I STILL haven't heard a complaint on Accord Coupe seats.

    But, I don't doubt he was uncomfortable. I have no idea how large/small he is either.

    He did lose me a bit though when he said that his wife was having the same problem....hmmm.

    Does misery love company? Who knows?
  • hello26hello26 Posts: 62
    Car seats at the family sedan price level have up to 6 way power adjustment. Accord, Camry, Subaru, Taurus etc. An Audi A6 at the entry level luxury price (base) has 12 (two of these are lumbar). The magic number would be 8 without lumbar support so that the seat bottom can be adjusted. On the Camry the seat is higher in the front so that the seat hold you tipped over backwards. The Camry seat is wrong for many other reasons, no lumbar support at all, wrong shape at the shoulders, if it is not power you can end up straining all the muscles of your back to sit where you need to be
    because the seat back stops arbitrarily. A Lexus ES and the IS have no telesoping steering wheel.
    Telesoping steering wheel sounds trivial but all Honda/ Toyota universal midsize platform vehicles have long windshields flat over the drivers head so that the seat has to go backward. The arms have to remain stretched out. My point is- NO ECONOMY CAR IS COMFORTABLE. Civic seats can't beat anything. To say that Civic seats are better than any similar car or any simliar car has better seats is a comparison about nothing. I drive a puddle jumping car because 1. I don't have money for something else 2. I am young and I don't know the difference 3. I don't have back pain.
  • george00george00 Posts: 81
    Hello Hello26 and thank you so much for your informative note. My experience completely confirms your points, though I hadn't put it all together so well. Do you have any thoughts on the cars to look at for good seats if money were not an object, or the car could be bought used? By the way, what is a "puddle jumping car"? Thanks again.
  • hello26hello26 Posts: 62
    The best bargain in terms of ergonomics is the Audi 1.8T at 24.5k MSRP. It does not have power seats but they are very well designed. It has a telescoping steering wheel. Lexus ES and IS don't. In a Toyota you have to spend 37k to get one. People say that Volvos have best seats. I don't like Volvos so I don't care. Germany or Sweden is best. Even Volkwagen with low numbers of adjustment is better than other economy cars in terms of driving. I'd look at American cars. The Taurus is not as high build quality as Camry. However the seats and driving position are in a another league. A puddle jumping car is an expression "puddle jumper" used to describe a small 4 cyl. car.
  • bri70bri70 Posts: 147
    "My point is- NO ECONOMY

    I disagree with that sentiment. I just came from an 8 hour round trip from D.C. in my Elantra.

    The seats were absolutely great. I was not tired (unusual for me) and could have driven for many miles more. Overall, a very good car.

    I notice some people harping that the Elantra only has price going for it. Maybe they were not paying attention to the Edmunds and Car & Driver comparisons. Both publications lauded the Elantra's performance. What the Elantra lacks is refinement. That is its weak point. The engine is loud. Me, I have the radio on often so I barely notice it.
  • george00george00 Posts: 81
    Comfort is not a matter of "sentiment" but of personal experience and preference. It is not possible to agree or disagree with that but only to consider it sympathetically. You simply cannot tell me that I am comfortable when I am not, or that my lack of comfort results from my "harping" on value, which I have never done - I think it is an excellent car in its category, regardless of price - or of not "paying attention" to published reports, which I have done - in my posting about the Elantra seats, I not only referred to the pertinent Edmunds report, I cited its finding that the Elantra has the most comfortable seats of all the 9 economy cars under review, and I then named the others in order. I am happy that you find the Elantra seat comfortable, but I continue to have problems with it, and your posting does not make my back feel better at all.
  • liufeiliufei Posts: 201
    Heh, but for 1 Audi 1.8T, you can get 2 Elantra, so its just depend on what you want....
    And you're right, everyone has different preferences and biases, as long as it works for whoever purchasing it, it should not be a problem, thats the purpose of testdrive anyway.
  • elantra00elantra00 Posts: 225
    the engine is not loud at all. i have a 5spd. i was in a parking lot with a bunch of my friends after a party. we all were looking and testing out each others car. one of them was behind the wheel. i was in the passangers seat. the car was running. i said "lets go". he was about to turn the key. i said "its on" he goes no its not. i said "yes it is" an argument for 10 min. i finally told him to get out of the car and see for him self. he did. he also looked at the tach. regardless of this, it just goes to show you all that its a quiet car at idle. radio wasnt on either. when you rev it up, then its loud. but thats a twin cam for you. they are suppose to be loud, especially in a manual.

    about the audi 1.8T. that car has 150hp. the elantra 140. the elantra isnt even turbo charged and has only 10 hp less and 1/3 the price. audi should be ashamed of themselves. actually pretty funny come to think of it.
  • hello26hello26 Posts: 62
    You can get it with the 2.8 6 cyl. and with AWD.
    It wasn't an over all comparison (if I were talking about the car for reasons other than ergonomic superiority I would have to go into the 1.8 poor reliablity record...)

    Honestly if you never had back pain I don't wish you ever know how bad it is how profound the pain is pain from the inside of your body out every second of your existence. It's bad!

    I'll say this one more time for anyone who might be concerned with comfort: it's not the seats per se but the ergonomics of the whole car starting with the size and shape of the car's body (more vertical windwhield is better, the more the outside and the inside look like 90 degree angles the better). My Civic(RIP) is more comfortable
    than the Camry I rented for a month. The Camry seat bottom is too short so you hold your legs up yourself, the seat has no lumbar support, the top of the seat stabs you in the shoulders, the seat bottom is tilting backward, the seat is too far backward to escape the windshield/roof, your arms are outstretched to reach the steering wheel and you have to hold them up. Torture. Don't jump out of the frying pan into the fire. Don't think
    a car will be better because it is bigger or is the next model up. I would have bought a Camry if I had not rented one.
  • bri70bri70 Posts: 147
    "I am happy that you find the
    Elantra seat comfortable, but I continue to have
    problems with it, and your posting does not make my back feel better at all."

    LOL, of course you are right. I was only speaking for myself. I find the Elantra's seats to be excellent. As for not paying attention, I was referring to people that continue to dismiss the fact that the Elantra was considered one of the better performing cars.

    At highway speeds I find the Elantra to be loud. The auto trans does not shift as well as my old Dodge Shadow.
  • george00george00 Posts: 81
    Various postings about the auto transmission, which seems to be just about the only component which is giving trouble, and my own experiences test driving, persuaded me to get the 5-speed. The only trouble I find with it is some difficulty shifting into reverse, especially when just starting up (leaving the garage), though it's never cold here. Otherwise, I think it's an excellent transmission. As for noise, the engine is remarkably quiet - at idle, I have to check the tachometer to see if it's on. There is considerable road noise, however, probably caused by the Hankook tires; perhaps an undercoating would help, though it's not cheap ($180 here) and of course adds weight to the car. But the seat remains a problem. The strange thing is, the seat is what sold me the car! I thought it was much more comfortable than the Civic, Corolla, Focus, and even the VW Golf. I still think the driving position is excellent, and for the first half hour of driving (in other words, a typical test drive), it feels great. Then the hardness of the seat, and the way the top of the seat back presses into my shoulder-blades, start to take their toll. I've tried every kind of after-market seat cushion and cover without complete success - the sheepskin cover I'm now using (on the seatback only, not the seat, which would raise me too close to the roof) is the best but still leaves a lot to be desired. Oh well, maybe I just have to exercise more and strengthen my back to fit the car's, rather than the other way around.
  • george00george00 Posts: 81
    Uh oh, I spoke too soon about no problems. Between 65 and 75 mph a high-pitched tone comes out of the center of the dashboard, just above the radio, though it's hard to pinpoint the exact spot. It comes and goes, though as you go faster, it stays on longer (I couldn't see what happens when you go faster than 75, as that is the speed limit). As soon as I slow to below 65, it stops. I tried putting pressure on all the bits and pieces in that area of the dash but without effect. Any suggestions before I bring it to the dealer?
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