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Honda Civic vs. Hyundai Elantra



  • bpizzutibpizzuti Posts: 2,743
    It's not (totally) about's about gearing. So what I really want to know is how many RPMs each engine turns at about 70-75 MPH (that's cruising speed on the interstates here unless one wants to get run off the road by angry drivers).
  • backybacky Twin CitiesPosts: 18,907
    Actually 32 mpg highway for the Sonata I4, or about 3% less than the Elantra. And we don't know what the ratings will be for the Touring yet. An acceptable tradeoff IMO for 37 more horses and the extra room and comfort of the Sonata.
  • bpizzutibpizzuti Posts: 2,743
    Unless one likes the hatch...I've still got my 04 Mazda3 5-door and a hatch REALLY comes in handy sometimes. But with the selection so narrow, I may break down and get a trunk anyway...can't get a Sonata with a hatch, can't get a regular Civic with a hatch sad, ya know?

    I'm semi-considering the Sonata, but I have to see how the incentives shake out. I'm really not too sure on getting something that big, though the range increase on the gas tank might be handy.

    Incidentally, Edmunds gives the Sonata I4 as 30 MPG highway. Elantra is 33 MPG, Civic is 36 MPGs.
  • thegraduatethegraduate Posts: 9,731
    Incidentally, Edmunds gives the Sonata I4 as 30 MPG highway.

    30 for the automatic, 31 for the manual. is the final say on EPA numbers, as far as I'm concerned.
  • delaluzdelaluz Posts: 48
    I own a 2007 Sonata I4 with auto. I got 32 MPG on a recent trip from NC to NY.

    I had owned a 2002 Elantra (auto) and averaged 28-30 mpg on my 26 mile round trip to work. With my Sonata I had averaged 25-26 for the same trip. I try to measure my mileage each tankfull by dividing miles on trip counter by gallons.

    I hope this info helps!
  • backybacky Twin CitiesPosts: 18,907
    Try checking the EPA numbers for the 2009 Sonata--they are improved for 2009 over 2008. I don't think they are posted yet on yet though.
  • thegraduatethegraduate Posts: 9,731
    I believe you are right; thanks for clarifying!
  • backybacky Twin CitiesPosts: 18,907
    If you want a hatch and factory nav and good fuel economy, your best bet might be the 2009 Fit or Matrix. Then there's the Prius, but it gets kind of pricey. And I read the 2009 SX4 will have nav standard, at a low price.

    Personally I never much understood the value of factory nav, when the time I need it most is when I am on a business trip out of town--driving a rental car. :surprise:
  • bpizzutibpizzuti Posts: 2,743
    Is the 2009 Fit going to have VSC/ESC/ESP/VSP or whatever other alphabet soup they use to denote traction and stability control? I haven't found out one way or the other.
  • backybacky Twin CitiesPosts: 18,907
    Yes, VSC will be availble on the Fit for 2009.
  • bpizzutibpizzuti Posts: 2,743
    Hmm, have to get in one, see if it's comfortable enough to spend 2 hours a day in. I like the seats, heh. Wonder how big the tank will be...
  • I am looking at 2008 Elantra vs 2009 civic. The Elantra due to an Oct. promotional deal is about 3,000 cheaper.I'm a little concerned that the Hyundai dealer has about 40 Elantras while the Honda dealer has only a few civics.I have 2 old Saturns that are about to die and not much money.
  • fushigifushigi Chicago suburbsPosts: 1,381
    I wouldn't base a purchase decision on dealer inventory levels. Maybe the Hyundai dealer just got a shipment while the Honda's were delayed. Maybe the Honda dealer was making better deals. Maybe the Honda dealer is going broke & can't get the credit to stock more vehicles. Maybe the Hyundai dealer is a high-volume dealer and cycles through a larger inventory. There are too many possible factors that have nothing to do with the vehicles themselves.

    Both are fine vehicles. Test drive them both; they will be different when it comes to comfort & performance. Then buy the one you like best.
    2017 Infiniti QX60 (me), 2012 Hyundai Elantra (wife)
  • targettuningtargettuning Posts: 1,371
    I currently have a 2006 Civic (bought new in the fall of 2005) that currently has about 18,500 miles. This is our first Honda product of any kind and I must say that I am hugely underwhelmed by the car. I like the styling and it produces good to very good fuel economy but it has had a laundry list of problems that surprise me from a Honda. I have since found that many of these problems are common to 2006-07 and even 2008 Civics. I would have thought that Honda would have engineered out some of these by now but I guess not. If you would scout around within this site you will certainly find many common problems described by owners other than me (although I have had my share of bitter ranting about the Civic). In general though you will find the Civic to be the more "sporting" of the two when it comes to handling. The trade off here is the Civic rides more stiffly. Don't take this wrong though the Elantra in not about to tip over in any turns and the average person won't miss the "go-cart" quick steering feel of the Civic. The Civic is also less comfortable by nature of its smaller and more noisy interior and the above mentioned stiff ride. The Elantra also has more standard equipment (safety and otherwise) including stability control. I rented a new generation Elantra about a year ago and found it to be a more relaxed highway cruiser, much like a 7/8 th size Sonata. Then there is the matter of warranty...mine for the Civic is about to run out (3 years-36,000 miles) and given the trouble we have had that worries me as well. Although we have experienced several common problems with other owners (as posted here) there are still more that our car did not exibit (yet) and I only hope they don't show up now that the warranty is about to expire. Price is yet another matter, since our 2006 EX automatic sedan cost very nearly $20K three model years ago (with NO discount of any kind offered) I would guess a similar 2009 would be firmly over $20K maybe even $21K My take on the two (a somewhat biased view to be sure) is go for the Elantra I wish I had.
  • nealmnealm Posts: 41
    I think you hit it on the head. Both cars are worthy, but for different drivers with different priorities. Having driven both, and being someone who prioritizes performance and road feel, as VW would call it "Fahrfignugen" the Civic was an obvious choice over the Elantra... and a VW Rabbit/ Jetta would be a great choice if it weren't for reliability issues.
  • srsllesrslle Posts: 5
    I love my new Elantra Touring. I like it better than the Honda Acoord and Fit. It is more car than the fit and a better upright ride, with alot more room than the Accord. Though it doesnt have the drag-racing quality of the Mazda 3 it is alot of fun to drive. The handling is precise, it has great pickup and even has a little of the go-cart quality of the Fit. That's a good thing. With XM radio its even more fun. I bought the lifetime subscription to XM. If I ever sell the car the subscription goes with it, so there's no loss in value.

    I was a little concerned about mileage but I am getting 30 mpg or more consistently in suburban driving here in Westchester county, NY.

    It's the best car I've ever owned. And I only paid $18,800 for the full SE version. Oh and those heated cloth seats are great. No cold-to-the-touch sensation when you first get in.

    It's also got almost all the safety equipment thats out there. All it needs is daytime running lights. Perhaps there's a kit available for that.

    When you test drive it make sure the tires are properly iflated. They come off the truck with too much pressure and that affects the ride.
  • I'm making my first car purchase and I'm trying to decide between a 2010 Civic and a 2010 Hyundai. I'm leaning toward a Civic b/c of Honda's reputation and reliability, but I also know that Hyundais are improving in terms of quality, performance, and the incredible 6 and 10-year warranties. Hydundai is also about $2000 less. Please help me decide!!!!
  • stushstush Posts: 62
    What type of Hyundai are you looking at. I would look at the Elantra. Maybe a little bigger than Civic. Not sure. All I can say is that I have 2 Hyundai's now. 02 Santa Fe and a 07 Entourage. The SF has 81,000 miles on it and it's been bullet proof. A couple of small problems with the Entourage that were common with the early models. Now at 55,000 miles and not a thing since about 8,000 miles. Never owned a Honda but Hyundai is on a roll. Give them a fair chance. You won't be disappointed.
  • backybacky Twin CitiesPosts: 18,907
    edited February 2010
    Depending on trim level of the Civic you are considering, you could go for either the Elantra GLS, Elantra SE, or even a Sonata. If you wouldn't mind a bigger car for the same money (or less) than a Civic, the Sonata is a very nice car and there's big deals available now on the 2010s as they are moved out for the all-new 2011s. You could get a Sonata GLS with more equipment than a Civic LX (e.g. ESC, iPod connector, and XM radio) for around $15-16k before T&L.

    On the Elantra, the GLS is most comparable to the Civic LX, and the SE with optional moonroof more comparable to the EX. The SE has a sport-tuned suspension and also ESC.

    I recommend you drive the Civic and Elantra back-to-back and see which you prefer. You might try the 2010 Sonata also if you could use a bigger car.

    Another car you might check out is the new-for-2010 Kia Forte. It's about the same size as the Elantra, but is priced a little lower. Kias have the same warranty as Hyundais. But the Forte has a more modern powertrain than the Elantra, e.g. an all-aluminum 156 hp 2.0L or a 172 (?) hp 2.4L I4, and a 5-speed automatic is available (Elantra has only a 4-speed automatic; the Civic has 5-speed auto). I think the Forte also has standard Bluetooth, if that is important to you. Both the Forte and Elantra are roomier than the Civic, especially in back. Finally, the Kia Optima is a very nice car for the money. It has the same I4 powertrain as the Sonata and like the Sonata has standard ESC. It has a little crisper handling than the 2010 Sonata GLS, which you might prefer if you like Hondas. You can probably get a 2010 Optima LX with automatic for under $15k before T&L.
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