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Economy Sedans (~$16k-$20k)

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Comments

  • joe97joe97 Posts: 2,248
    You sure VW isn't paying you? They better hand you a VW if they haven't already.

    Your comparison is laughable, by the way. Look again what standard features that are offered on the base model of the Sonata [GLS].
  • "You sure VW isn't paying you?"

    Nope, not sure.

    "Your comparison is laughable, by the way. Look again what standard features that are offered on the base model of the Sonata [GLS]."

    Care to elaborate?
  • joe97joe97 Posts: 2,248
    A head-to-head comparison between the Sonata GLS and Jetta VE would reveal the advantage of the Sonata GLS:

    MSRP is cheaper on the Sonata
    Electronic Stability Control standard
    Vehicle Stability Control System standard
    Front seat active head restraints
    Steering Wheel Mounted Controls standard
    Leather Steering Wheel standard
    Power Window Lockout/Override standard
    Second Row Fold-Down Armrest

    Driver Multi-Adjustable Power Seat optional vs. N/A on Jetta VE
    Full size vs. compact
    Larger, rommier, fuel efficient, longer warranty, larger wheel and more...
  • backybacky Twin CitiesPosts: 18,695
    I was thinking of the 2007 pricing for the Sonata GLS when I said it costs less than the Jetta VE. For 2007 Hyundai has dropped the price on the GLS by making alloys and some features such as the fake wood (or carbon fiber) trim optional. So now the GLS starts just over $17k, and still under $18k with all the trim items that were on the '06 GLS (except alloys) plus power driver's seat. Fortunately they left all the safety features standard.

    Anyway, a correction on your post: all trim levels of the Sonata have a height-adjustable driver's seat (power seat is part of an option package that starts at $500; standard on the Limited trim).

    So I agree the Jetta VE is a very nice package for the money, for a compact-sized car (two size classes below the full-sized Sonata), but one thing to consider is what kind of discounts and rebates are available off the list price. We know that big discounts and rebates are available on Sonatas. How about the Jetta? Or would that compact-size car wind up costing a lot more than the full-sized Sonata? Then it is a question of the extra features on the Jetta vs. the room and lower price of the Sonata.

    P.S. IMO the Sonata has much classier looks than the Corolla-esque Jetta, but as you say, that is a matter of opinion.
  • I'm not going to even bother having a friendly debate with someone who doesn't understand that "Electronic Stability Control standard" and "Vehicle Stability Control System standard" are one in the same. If you meant TCS, than that's another story.

    Not sure how you get that the Sonata GLS (2006 OR 2007) is cheaper MSRP than Jetta VE.

    2006 Sonata GLS AUTO: $19,395
    2006 Jetta VE AUTO: $18,975

    2007 Sonata GLS AUTO: $18,295
    2007 Jetta (dropped "VE" nomanclature): $17,565 6-speed Tiptronic
  • 2006 Sonata GLS AUTO: $19,395
    2006 Jetta VE AUTO: $18,975

    2007 Sonata GLS AUTO: $18,295
    2007 Jetta (dropped "VE" nomanclature): $17,565 6-speed Tiptronic

    "Anyway, a correction on your post: all trim levels of the Sonata have a height-adjustable driver's seat"

    According to edmunds, height adjustible seats is listed as "optional." No mention of this feature being standard on Hyundai's website. Please cite your source.

    "P.S. IMO the Sonata has much classier looks than the Corolla-esque Jetta, but as you say, that is a matter of opinion."

    A matter of opinion. We'll leave it at that.
  • sandman46sandman46 Posts: 1,798
    For the money, the Sonata is a much better car. The extra room is a plus for many folks actually. And the reliability factor is a really important issue for most folks, and let's be honest...VW sucks in this category. Just read some of the VW forums & you'll see.
    We almost bought the Jetta last year...but ended up with the Mazda 3s. The Jetta VE was pretty cheap looking inside eventhough it drove nicely. The only way to get the Jetta is with the leatherette seating surfaces anyways. Thought about the Jetta last week again, and the Volvo S40, but ended up with a Civic LX and so far just love the car. Quality & ergonomics are 1st rate and the reliability is...well it's a Honda...nothing else to say on that point.
    The only saving grace for us is that if we did buy the VW, the dealer is within 2 miles of the house...not enough to want it though. Can't understand why VW's reliability still sucks after all this time. Can someone answer me this question?

    The Sandman :confuse:
  • joe97joe97 Posts: 2,248
    The current Sonata GLS starts at 17,795 (inc. $600 destination charge).

    The current Jetta Value Edition starts at 18,810 (inc. $630 destination charge).
  • backybacky Twin CitiesPosts: 18,695
    I've sat in every trim level of Sonata there is; they all have either a manual or power seat height adjuster as standard.

    As for pricing... can you confirm that the 2007 Jetta VE has at least the same level of equipment as the 2006 base Jetta? VW's web site still has the 2006 model info. Also, as I mentioned I think it is more realistic to compare prices people actually pay, including rebates and discounts, rather than MSRPs when talking about value. So for example, a top-trim Sonata LX with 234 hp V6, leather, manumatic transmission, and lot of other goodies can be had now for around $18k + T&L according to reports on the Sonata Prices Paid discussion.
  • Please refer to my previous post. Your prices are wrong.
  • "I've sat in every trim level of Sonata there is; they all have either a manual or power seat height adjuster as standard."

    That's great! Please cite your source.

    "Also, as I mentioned I think it is more realistic to compare prices people actually pay, including rebates and discounts, rather than MSRPs when talking about value."

    YOU (not me) FIRST attempted to claim the Sonata GLS AUTO's MSRP was LOWER than the JETTA VE. You were incorrect.
  • joe97joe97 Posts: 2,248
  • backybacky Twin CitiesPosts: 18,695
    My source is my EYES.

    I never said I was talking specifically about the Sonata GLS automatic's pricing. Please re-read my posts. I made it clear I was talking about the 2007 Sonata GLS--which is available with manual or automatic transmissions.
  • "My source is my EYES."

    Now that's objective. You made a claim that Edmunds and Hyundai's information is incorrect regarding seat height adjustment being standard. Again, I ask you to please cite your source so that anyone interested in purchasing a Sonata GLS has all the accurate information.

    You said: "For example, compared to a full-size Sonata GLS, the Jetta VE costs more MSRP"

    Either Auto or MANUAL, the Sonata GLS (2006 or 2007) costs MORE MSRP than a JETTA VE.

    2007 Sonata GLS MANUAL: $17,195
    2007 JETTA MANUAL: $16,490

    2007 Sonata GLS AUTO: $18,295
    2007 Jetta (dropped "VE" nomanclature): $17,565 6-speed Tiptronic

    And good luck finding ANY 5-speed Sonata's. A quick look at the 4 largest Hyundai Dealers in my area did not have a SINGLE Sonata 5-speed from the over 400 models available. When I bought my 2004 Elantra 5-speed, I had to wait over 3 months just to find one. AT the time I was told that while Hyundai technically made a Sonata (2004) 5-speed, it would be nearly impossible to purchase NEW.

    You were incorrect on pricing. It's an honest mistake. Let's move on.
  • sandman46sandman46 Posts: 1,798
    Always love your insight when you review cars on Edmunds. You've always tried to keep emotions out and facts in. Makes for a more pleasant exchange of ideas and leaves out the "attitude" which is inappropriate.
    Having driven both cars, the Sonata, in my opinion, is the better car. The Sonata seats were top notch, and this is someone who has severe back issues and needs a back friendly seat. The looks are very "Accordish" which is a good thing.
    The Jetta looks very similar to the wife's 3s and she actually preferred it but the VE model just didn't work for her...not enough "goodies" to justify paying over $20,000. And the "lack of reliability" was the final nail in the coffin...so to speak.
    Both good cars, just depends on what one wants to pay and how much time one wants to wait in the service departments customer lounge.
    Please, let's keep the conversation going...but civilly without all those pesky emotions. And by the way, love my Civic LX after almost a week!

    The Sandman :) :) :)
  • The Mazda 3 is a great car as well. My neighbor just got a 2006 Civic and loves it. She raves about the 5-speed MANUAL. I have to admit it's better than the Jetta's.

    And until we see long term reliability data on the 2005.5 or 2006 Jetta, I think its a bit premature to consider it unreliable based on previous models. After all, it was only in 2004 that JDpower rated Hyundai and KIA at the bottom of the barrel in terms of LONG TERM dependability (KIA BELOW VW and Hyundai about the same level). http://www.jdpower.com/corporate/news/releases/pressrelease.asp?ID=2004055

    Even in JD power's most recent long term dependability survey (2005), Hyundai and Kia still rate far below AVERAGE. KIA is the LOWEST rated brand. http://www.jdpower.com/corporate/news/releases/pressrelease.asp?ID=2005089

    Compare a Honda or Toyota to VW, and its no contest who wins in terms of reliability. But Hyundai, it's much closer.
  • VW Jetta vs. Hyundai Sonata?

    Who cares?

    You are probably comparing 2 cars with 2 completely different types of buyers. I have no source - so sue me - but I would bet you both that a person interested in a Jetta would not even consider a Sonata and vice versa. They are two completely different cars aimed at completely different audiences.

    It's kinda like comparing a Mercedes CLK350 with a Toyota Camry. :shades:
  • patpat Posts: 10,421
    Umm ... YOU quoted the poster as reporting "I've sat in every trim level of Sonata there is; they all have either a manual or power seat height adjuster as standard." and you asked for a source for that statement.

    A response of "My source is my EYES." is completely appropriate to back up the statement you questioned.

    I agree with the last poster - those who are looking at Sonatas and those who are looking at Jettas are generally not cross-shopping the other. I'm not sure why you need to grind a vehicle under your heel, but it is entirely unnecessary and it's time for you to move on.
  • nj2pa2ncnj2pa2nc Posts: 813
    have you looked for a 5-speed lately. The last time I bought my elantra for service in PA (3-29-06) the sales manager wanted to know if I would be interested in a 5-speed sonata. They had 4 at the time. I said no I loved my 05 Gt with Manual transmission. I did not have to wait for that either. They had it in stock.
  • backybacky Twin CitiesPosts: 18,695
    Interesting you would cite a study (2005 JD Power VDS) that shows VW fourteen spots worse than Hyundai. I'm not sure what you are trying to show there except perhaps that Hyundai as a brand is much more reliable than VW. And the gap from Honda to Hyundai is significantly smaller than the gap between Hyundai and VW. So it appears VW has a much more catching up to do in long-term reliability than does Hyundai.

    So if I were playing percentages on reliability in this class, based on the JD Power 2005 VDS, the order would be:

    Corolla
    Civic
    Focus (and Fusion S?)
    Cobalt (and Malibu?)
    ION (discontinued after 2006)
    Mazda3
    Elantra (and Sonata GLS?)
    Impreza
    Caliber
    Sentra
    Lancer
    Aerio (and Forenza?)
    Jetta
    Spectra

    I can't stand the driving position of the Corolla, the Civic is a very good car but IMO overpriced, the Cobalt has insufficient room in the backseat and other major deficiencies, and the ION is going away soon (plus just isn't a very good car IMO). So that leaves the Mazda3 and Elantra at the top of my "consider" list in this class. The Jetta is a very good car also, albeit with the reliability history issue, but if I were to go that route it would be with the lower-priced and more versatile Rabbit.
  • joe97joe97 Posts: 2,248
    In all fairness and reference to your JD Power VDS citings, almost every automaker improved in their ratings - Hyundai +115 to 260 (middle of the pack); VW +51 to 335 (bottom five); Kia +35 to 397 (bottom five). Hyundai is coming very close to the industry average (2005 - shy of 23 at 237). What you fail to mention is Hyundai's dramatic improvement in quality and reliabilty, such as above and 3rd place overall finish in the most recent IQS study. VW, however, is still at the bottom of the barrel in important studies such as IQS, VDS, and Customer Retention.
  • dc_driverdc_driver Posts: 712
    I have owned a 99 VW Jetta (V6) and now own a 06 Mazda 3i Touring model. Even though I did not consider VW again after my :lemon: Jetta, let's see how the 06 Jetta (VE) and 06 Mazda 3i Touring models stack up..

    Using the invoice price (since it is easy to get invoice on both vehicles if you are a smart shopper), here is what you get:

    Mazda 3i Touring (5sp MAT): Base invoice price including destination = $15,535
    VW Jetta VE (5sp MAT): Base invoice price including destination = $17,679

    So, just to be fair to the Mazda, what does the extra $2K plus get you.. Invoice for a 3i Touring with 6 disc changer/power sunroof,all weather floor mats, rear lip spoiler, side airbags+ABS upgrade, and wheel locks still comes in at $17,100...

    Now lets compare the vehicles. Although the VW has the same horsepower and more torque (150hp each, VW has 170lbs/ft torque to the 3's 135lb ft), the VW also weighs over 500lbs more. On the track, the 3i clocks 0-60 in 8.23 seconds, while the VW comes in at 9.57 seconds. 1/4 mile in the VW is 17sec vs. 16.40 in the Mazda. Remember, for the price of the VW VE edition, one could easily get a Mazda 3s for even better performance.

    The Mazda also has 16" alloy wheels compared to 15" wheels on the VW with plastic wheel covers. Both vehicles have similar safety features (although the VW offers optional rear torso airbags and stability control). The 3i gets better mpg 28/35 vs the VW's 22/30 for both city and highway. The 3i offers more front and rear legroom, and more front headroom. The Mazda, overall, has more passenger volume than the Jetta VE. Warranties are nearly identical, but the Mazda 3 has a better reliability rating per JD Powers and Consumer Reports. The Mazda is built in Japan, the VW, contrary to popular belief that this is a German built sedan, is built in Mexico.

    Don't know about the rest of you, but I would pick the loaded, faster, roomier Mazda 3i Touring anyday vs a VW Jetta VE, and still keep over $500 in my pocket...
  • sandman46sandman46 Posts: 1,798
    Just depends on what a person values most in the compact and mid size car range. Love 'em all and have tested all to. We just picked the Mazda 3s & Civic LX for our family. We're quite satisfied with both and hopefully won't be in the market again for another 3 or 4 years. Mr. & Mrs. Sandman are happy and have 2 great cars for under $35k.
    Ain't life grand!!!!!

    The Sandman Family :) :) :) :) :)
  • dc_driverdc_driver Posts: 712
    I think you have the two top cars in the small car (if you consider them small) class. I really debated over the Mazda 3 and Civic, but Honda dealers in my area do not have any manuals in stock (LX or EX) and just did not want to deal like Mazda did.

    Having just purchased a Honda EX-L at the end of April, I was shocked when the best price that same dealer offered was MSRP with their "appearance package" thrown in. I called about six local Honda dealers and only two offered below MSRP (the best being $400). Several dealers never even called me back after they stated they needed to do some research to find the car I wanted (manual) even after I told them that I was ready to put money down that day..

    Going back to your situation, if we needed two cars in this class I would definitely get a Honda Civic just so that I had something different to drive :)

    I was also very impressed with the Hyundai Sonata I drove a month or so back. What a great deal. I just wanted something a little more sporty and fun to drive since our other vehicle is a minivan and I had enough money from my trade-in to pay cash for the loaded Mazda 3i Touring (w/ sunroof/6 disc changer, rear lip spoiler, side airbags, etc)..

    Zoom, zoom..
  • The Mazda 3 is a great car, let me say first. But there's some serious problems with your post:

    "Now lets compare the vehicles. Although the VW has the same horsepower and more torque (150hp each, VW has 170lbs/ft torque to the 3's 135lb ft), the VW also weighs over 500lbs more. On the track, the 3i clocks 0-60 in 8.23 seconds, while the VW comes in at 9.57 seconds. 1/4 mile in the VW is 17sec vs. 16.40 in the Mazda"

    Wrong. The Jetta is faster than even the Mazda 3s to 60 MPH.

    Mazda 3s AUTO (160 HP 2.3 liter) 0-60: 9.5s; 1/4mile: 16.70
    http://www.edmunds.com/apps/vdpcontainers/do/vdp/articleId=106881/pageNumber=14

    VW Jetta AUTO: 0-60: 9.42s; 1/4mile: 17.17s
    http://www.edmunds.com/apps/vdpcontainers/do/vdp/articleId=105254/pageNumber=4

    Unfortunately, Edmunds did not test the 5-speed Jetta 2.5, but forum participants indicate that it should run 0-60 in mid 8 second range.

    Given the difference in standard equipment between the Mazda 3i and Jetta VE, it's a fairer comparsion with the Mazda 3s, which will run you $18K compraitively equipped.

    Again, the Mazda 3 is a great auto. Will certainly consider it when I look to get a new auto soon.
  • dc_driverdc_driver Posts: 712
    Hmm. Edmunds seems to contradict themselves on performance:
    http://www.edmunds.com/insideline/do/Drives/Comparos/articleId=108601/pageId=677- - - 00

    That article states the 0-60 times for the 3s automatic at 8.3 seconds and quarter mile at 16.4. This is inline with other sites I have seen (Motortrend, MSN, etc).

    The manual 3s gets clocked in the high 7's.. Not sure about the manual Jetta VE. Will try and pull some numbers but mid 8's sounds right. As I stated the 31 Touring clocks 8.23 with a manual..

    My point in comparing the loaded 3iTouring to the Jetta VE was to show that a loaded 3i Touring could be had for less than the Jetta VE and would have more features...

    EDIT: I see now. The comparison test you linked to was with the 2005 Mazda3s which had a 4 speed automatic tranny. The 06 3s has a five speed automatic which has manual shift mode.. So, the 06 Mazda 3s w/automatic should easily best the Jetta VE w/automatic.
  • "That article states the 0-60 times for the 3s automatic at 8.3 seconds and quarter mile at 16.4"

    Actualy, your quoted article says 8.6 seconds to 60 MPH.
  • dc_driverdc_driver Posts: 712
    "That article states the 0-60 times for the 3s automatic at 8.3 seconds and quarter mile at 16.4"

    "Actually, your quoted article says 8.6 seconds to 60 MPH."

    I stand corrected. At any rate the 06 Mazda 3s will handily beat the Jetta 2.5 at the track.

    Now the GLI would be another story... Although the new Mazda3speed should beat it pretty easy for probably a lot less money....
  • backybacky Twin CitiesPosts: 18,695
    I would take the Mazda3i Touring also. It's my top choice in this class right now. But I'll have to see if that changes once the all-new Elantra, Sentra, and (next spring) Corolla are available. I'd be surprised if any of those cars match the Mazda3 in handling, but that's not #1 on my priority list.
  • dc_driverdc_driver Posts: 712
    Hyundai's been doing really great things lately, and I too would wait to see what the next gen Elantra offers. I have seen some pictures, and am not too sure about how I feel about the exterior, although many cars look different in person.

    Toyota also makes a quality product and the Corolla is a very solid car at a great price.

    Very happy with my 3 so far. It is mostly a commuter car, but I have found a couple of reasons to run some errands this weekend ;)
This discussion has been closed.