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Nissan Altima vs Hyundai Sonata



  • bhmr59bhmr59 Posts: 1,598
    Starryknight, You said you could get either car comparably equipped for about the same price. Are you comparing MSRP or actual prices available?

    I did a quick check here on Edmunds, and damn I forgot the numbers, but the most basic Altima had an invoice in the high $17's, I think. The Altima has a $500 rebate according to Edmunds.

    You should be able to buy an '07 Sonata below invoice and then deduct the $2K rebate. As you noted, the Sonata has a better warranty and more safety equipment. Those items are certainly worth something from a pricing point when comparing "comparably equipped" cars.

    My 2 man business has an '05 & an '07 Sonata...both 6 cyl and both excellent cars.

    Check your prices, there may be more of a difference than you think. Then decide, factoring in all the pro's & con's and price.
  • macakavamacakava Posts: 775
    I got my 2007 Sonata Limited (all V6 in 2007 )a month ago new with only 3 mls on ODO for $19.6K! Fully loaded with all options except sunroof which I don't need or used in my trade-in - just one less thing to go wrong, i.e. leaks or motor.

    Comparably equipped Accords, Camrys, Maximas, or even Altima would be at least $8K more. Not justifiable to me. Since I keep my cars 10+ years, the Sonata's 10 yr warranty is another plus if I need it.
  • macakavamacakava Posts: 775
    Let's wrap up this thread quickly.

    Sugar daddies (eg Renault) or Johns (eg JuiceMon) do not invest in companies (eg Nissan) or sweeties (eg Sweet Desire) without being concerned about ROI or having their wildest desires fulfilled. You can be assured that they are exerting influence over their subjects.

    If they don't, then another sugar daddy or John would take over and get what he wants. These are two companies/ entities of different business cultures.
  • bhmr59, As far as price comparisons are concerned, I guess I was thinking of the 08 Sonata as the 07's are in short supply around here if not already gone. All the Hyundai dealers in my area are mostly filled with 08's. The 07 Altima 2.5S I4 with convenience package, mats, mud guards, antilock brakes can be had for about $20,500. None of the lots around here have the basic Altimas. Those are special order from what I understand. 08 Sonata GLS V6 with popular equipment package, mud guards, mats is about $20,967. Each based on their respective invoices and both including their current rebates. If I can get the 07, then I guess the two cars wouldn't be that comparable.
  • langjielangjie Posts: 247
    with that said, quality for both companies have improved since 2001. i have an 07 altima and love it, absolutely love it. i don't mind the hyundai, but it never really interested me...the styling is too bland (and borrowed for that matter) for my taste...but taste is subjective
  • macakavamacakava Posts: 775
    The September 2007 issue of C & D has a long term test of the 2006 Sonata V6 LX after 40,000 miles. Report was very POSITIVE with NO unscheduled(warranty) repairs and lots of praises for the Sonata. The web link is not available yet - maybe at a later time.
  • jd10013jd10013 Posts: 779
    hyundai deffinitly has come a long way.
  • If you are buying used you can get a great deal on a 06 or 07 sonata as rental car companies use them for a year or so and turn them in. My brother is a used car dealer and we are buying them every two weeks at the auctions. Bang for the buck you can not beat this car but only for a used one because their value drops very fast on new ones. If you are going new I would go Nissan and the low interest rate is a bonus too. I just had a Altima hybrid delivered to me here in Houston last night and it is definitely a nicer car but I did spring for the tech pkg.
  • The Sonata and the Altima were my two finalists, and truth be told I wanted the Altima but bought the Sonata. (Altima S, 4-cyl, 6-speed manual vs Sonata GLS, 4-cyl, 5-speed manual).

    The Altima looks great, has "intelligent key", trip computer, telescoping wheel, 8 beverage holders (Sonata has 4), security system (engine immobilizer), big useable trunk, very roomy cabin, 2 inch longer wheelbase, bigger in the front seat in almost every dimension, audio jack for mp3, slightly better gas mileage.

    The Sonata looks nice, has XM, stability control, traction control, security system (alarm), huge trunk, very roomy cabin, A/C in the back, lighted vanity mirror, clock (no clock in Altima), heated exterior mirror, bigger in the backseat in every dimension.

    Because both are big enough in the front seat, I went with bigger backseat and trunk, and about $2000 less for Sonata. Yes, I'm having buyer's remorse a little because like I said I really wanted the Altima for looks and sportiness. But Hyundai just put together too good of a package.
  • Hey Starryknight,

    I own a 2004 Elantra Hatch and I love this car! It's not the most beautiful/stylish or sporty car out there, but for the price and practicality purposes, it's the best car I've ever owned!

    I do a lot of city driving which i hate and I've accumulated 65,000 miles on it already. However, I've never had it in for repairs and the dealer is so great to deal with.

    I've owned Civics in the past, so I can tell you I'm not biased against Japanese cars. They are great for what they do. However, they've increased their prices way above what they should be.

    The Altima looks pretty cutting edge(if you like Nissan's styling philosophy) but I think it looks too much like the Maxima and the other cars in their line up. Never really like the Maxima to begin with but applaud them for trying to be different. The Sonata on the other hand is derivitive, but in a good way. I like the overall purportion of the car and it looks very classy. Not as modern a look as the Nissan, but very nicely done in its own way. The interior is better on the Nissan but safety and cabin room is better on the Sonata.

    In terms of reliability, most of my friends would not buy Hyundai because they think Japanese cars are more desireable and reliabe. But you wouldn't imagine how many times I took them to the shop with my Elantra. Whether it be accidents, or minor repairs(especially electrical on the Honda's) or major repairs (more so on the Nissan's). They buy Honda, Acura, and Nissan for the most part and I can tell you the Nissan cars are the ones who enter the shop more often than not.

    Dating back 2 years ago, my friend's Sentra stopped working one morning so I tried to jumpstart it with my Elantra. Nothing happened so I had to drive him to the dealership.

    Eventually he got it fixed, but it cost him a fortune as it wasn't covered under warranty! With Hyundai, as long as you're doing regular maintenance, you're covered for much longer than Nissan. In fact I'm still covered for another 35,000 miles. I know the best warranty is the one you don't need to use and I haven't needed to use it (thank God). However, just to know that you're covered is such a blessing as I don't think I can afford to pay for the repair bills my friends have accumulated over the years.

    As for gas mileage, the civic did have better mileage. However, I did drive the Civic in hwy driving for the most part. When I drive the Elantra for hwy, I get really good mileage too.

    In the end, it's your choice Starryknight. But if you're a practical guy, you'll pick the Sonata. If you can afford to spend the money and you really like the Altima, go for it.

    Don't worry about depreciation as the Sonata costs considerably less and although the percentage in which it depreciates may be higher, the overall amount won't be less than the Altima because the Nissan costs that much more to begin with.

    So in essence if you judge reasonably, you can't go wrong with resale value in the Hyundai as well.

    You would be getting a much better deal with the Sonata in my opinion.
  • dgs4dgs4 Posts: 66
    Well, I don't quite fit in with the OP's thread title, as I purchased an 09 V6 Limited. But obviously I was car shopping the Altima when I decided to purchase a new car. I test drove the Accord V6 EX-L which I did not like at all, the Toyota Camry XLE V6 which wasn't too bad, but rather expensive at $32,000 (the one I tested was fully loaded with navigation, heated seats etc). The Camry felt real floaty on the road and the control in sharp turns was not very good, with excessive body roll. But it was comfortable, and absorbed bumps like they were nothing. I was able to understand and appreciate why the Camry sells so well, but I knew I needed to keep looking. Man they really wanted me to buy that car, as even though the sticker was $32,000 they were willing to take $3,000 off that price if I would buy "today." I was tempted, but purchasing a car is a big decision and I needed to test drive more before committing.

    I also test drove the Saturn Aura XR. That was a pretty decent car. I remember it being incredibly quiet on the freeway, with hardly any wind and road noise. I really liked that. Plus the V6 felt strong, although the paddle shifters were really gimmicky, and way too difficult to reach with the thumb to be of any real use. The car was pretty comfortable, and handled nicely. I did not like the turning radius, as I found out in the test drive when I needed to make a U-turn. I did some research after my test drive and found out it has a 40.4 foot turning radius, which explained why it was so difficult making that U-turn. Way too big for my liking. Plus there was no rear seat armrest/cup holders and there was no navigation system option. The Aura was nice, and the price was nice on it (I think it was $28,000 with a couple of options if I remember correctly) but I still knew I needed to keep looking.

    Then I checked out the Altima. I asked the salesman to get me the most loaded model they had. I had been driving a Dodge Neon for 10 years and I was going to treat myself to a much deserved nice car with all the bells and whistles. They brought me out a V6 SE model with the technology package and the anti-skid control option which brought the sticker price to $33,000. Nice car! I was very impressed during the test drive, and I loved all of the techno gadgets. There was more wind/road noise than I would like on the freeway but otherwise I really enjoyed that car. One thing I did not like was having to use premium gas and the fact the gas mileage was just "okay." But otherwise it as a great car.

    I came damn close to buying it, and if I hadn't test driven my 09 Hyundai Limited V6 with navigation the same day, I would have bought it. The Hyundai doesn't have as many techo gadgets as the Nissan, such as the HID lights, backup camera, or the really cool keyless entry/push starter button etc. But I thought the Hyundai was simply too good a value to pass up. The sticker on my car was $6,000 less than the Altima, and that doesn't factor in the enormous discount I got off the MSRP. The Nissan dealership was willing to make a deal on the Altima but it really wasn't so much as price since I could have easily afforded the Altima even at the sticker price. I just liked the Sonata more. It was more quiet on the freeway, got better gas mileage on regular unleaded, and was just as comfortable and spacious as the Altima. The sound system in the Sonata Limited is excellent, maybe not quite as good as the Bose in the Altima but good enough for me. The Hyundai really had everything I was looking for in a mid size sedan, and was a HUGE step up from the Neon I was driving the past 10 years.

    The Altima is an excellent car however. The handling is great, probably better than the Sonata, the CVT transmission is flawless, it has a ton of luxury/techno features if you buy the technology package, and it's just really a nice car. I couldn't fault anyone for buying an Altima. It's much better than anything else out there in the mid-size sedan class. I'm sure some would say it's also better than the 09 Sonata, and I couldn't fault anyone for thinking that. It's a great car, and one I came very close to buying. I don't have buyers remorse, but I must admit to missing some of these cool features on the Altima, the best being the keyless door unlocking. Very cool to just walk up to your car and pull the door open. Oh well, maybe the Altima will be the next car I purchase.
  • macakavamacakava Posts: 775
    I agree with your comments.

    I bought a new 2007 Sonata V6 Limited over a year ago for a great price of $19,500. It has been trouble free since then and a joy to drive. Comparably equipped Accord, Camry, Altima were at least $8K more.
  • madpistolmadpistol Posts: 126
    This is why I bought the Altima. The gadgets along with the fact that a 2.5 SL model is at least $1000 cheaper than a similarly equipped Accord EX-L 4-cyl or Camry XLE 4-cyl makes the Altima an absolutely terrific value. It puzzles me why more people don't test drive one and only compare Accord and Camry. I will admit that the ride of the Altima isn't as "refined" as the Accord or Camry, but with all the gadgets it offers plus the fact that it's a BLAST to drive no matter which model you choose, the Altima is a truly exceptional value in this class.

    At the same time, the new Malibu and '09 Sonata are setting the standard in this class for value. The Malibu is thousands under the Accord, and the Sonata is even less than the Malibu (I think). The only thing that I would be worried about in buying the Sonata would be resale value. To some people, it's a moot point if they like the car, but to me, it's an important factor as I will never be loaded with money. (I'm working on a Music Education degree, so in essence, I'm going to be a school teacher.) That was one of the only things that kept me from looking at the Sonata. I have no doubt in my mind that the Sonata is a great car, but I couldn't bring myself to get one after driving 3 other fantastic cars in this class that will hold their value far longer.
  • patpat Posts: 10,421
    A number of personally directed posts have been removed. If you want to compare Altimas and Sonatas without insulting others, you are welcome to continue participating in this conversation. Otherwise, please make your email addresses public in your profiles and take your verbal fisticuffs offline. Those kinds of posts are not welcome here.

    Thank you.
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