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Hyundai Sonata 2005 and earlier



  • ray_h71ray_h71 Posts: 212
    I know people who wear fake Rolexes, too. Don't get me wrong, people. I think Sonatas are lotsa car for the bucks. But, I'm a realist and no amount of speed-graphics decals, polyurathane body cladding, and fart pipes will change the basic nature of the handling the Hyudnai engineers dialed into the Sonata. A Sonata is thrifty to buy, thrifty to operate, and a well-appointed family hauler. Period. The poster I responded to wanted an honest evaluation coming from a car known for its handling prowess out of the box. I saw no reason to sugar-coat what I feel are Hyundai's weak points. I also advised him to drive one for himself, since hands-on is the only way to judge. (Shoot, he might even like it and end up buying one...) If my anecdotal comments based on personal experience make me "a bit nasty to Hyundai", then...
  • redzx3redzx3 Posts: 16
    Look's like a Jag and i'm told that all the time .If you don't like the Sonata then go buy a toy or a honda but you get a better looking car in the Sonata and it drive's just as nice with the V6.
  • jimbeaumijimbeaumi Posts: 620
    Earlier you state: "Talk about Hyundai brakes. Bad news." Perhaps that should read, "talk about XG300 brakes", because my Elantra's brakes have been one of its best features in over 33K miles. I'd call that good news.
  • wpbharrywpbharry Posts: 399
    Jim, can't speak for the Elantra since I haven't driven it (and don't plan to, but I may have to...). The XG is so overweight, that that might be the cause of my feeling that it was underbraked. I've heard the same from Sonata-intenders too, and someone at work recently rear-ended (what is going on?) somebody with her Kia Sedona minivan because the brakes wouldn't let her stop in (she claims) "plenty of time". The Sedona is a tank also. The Elantra and Accent are lightweights, so maybe that's it.

    My sister began her driving career in a brand-new '87 Excel GLS, which caused her to rear-end 3 people over the life of that car (5 years). Don't start with the "Hyundai's completely different now" stuff. Hyundai (and now Kia) has weak brakes, period. After seeing "The Amazing Race 4" on TV this summer, which made a stop in Korea, I can see why. Traffic over there never moves at more than 25 mph. So, I can see why the brakes aren't great (who needs 'em?) and the handling is a bit sloppy.

    Let's hope things improve with the opening of Hyundai's first US factory next year (and testing facility), but then quality might tank for a year or (more likely) 2 or 3.

    I'll probably end up with a Hyundai at some point in the future, but not this time around, I don't think. I DO think that Hyundai knocked one out of the park with the styling of the current Sonata; makes me wonder what's coming for an encore.
  • jimbeaumijimbeaumi Posts: 620
    The XG350's brakes have been enlarged for 2004. And by the way, Hyundai IS completely different now, otherwise I would not have given them my money.
  • I have purchased both a 2001 Elantra and a 2003 Sonata for family members and I don't recall the brakes being an issue. Maybe not outstanding, but certainly more than adequate...

    As any cop will tell you, anyone who has a rear-end collision is following too close. To have 3 in 5 years is truly remarkable...
  • redzx3redzx3 Posts: 16
    I have a 2003 Sonata GLS V6 and my brakes are GREAT. I would have to say being a ER Nurse that if you hit someone 5 time's in one year that you need to go to driveing school so that will not happen a 6th time .Hyundai is not the same car that it use to be Hyundai is so much better then it was in the 80's and 90's !I have always had toyota's and i get a new car every 2 years so i have had alot of new ford's and toyota's over the years and now i'm driveing a Hyundai and i'm a Nurse at that so that say's alot for Hyundai for me to buy one .Keep up the good work Hyundai your doing a great job ..
  • wpbharrywpbharry Posts: 399
    And you cruise at 90 mph? Hope you're not in your Sonata when I need you. Might have to slam on the brakes!

    Funny, guys, but really, the brakes are the pits.

    Jim, but you don't have an XG350.

    Not knocking Hyundai (it's the next Honda, for sure), but a bit too early for me to spend my hard-earned bucks. Convince me otherwise. Ray, join in.
  • wpbharrywpbharry Posts: 399
    my sister switched to Saturns after the fiasco with the Hyundai. She's in the market for a new car within the next year too, and HATES the new ION. She can afford a Lexus, but chooses (as do we all) to spend her money in other more important places.

    She gives me that "evil eye" whenever I discuss a Sonata. "Just like Mom's last Taurus wagon", she says (a mess). "Anyone who'd buy a Hyundai, must have had Fords in their past".

    I'm a bit more forgiving.

    Think we'll both be headed over to GM once again.
  • riezriez Posts: 2,361
    Brake issue is more tied to longevity than it is to single time use performance. Though if you pull out the published test reports on Sonatas, you'll find that their braking distances are longer than average. Braking distances without ABS for Hyundais have been terrible. (My Sonata GLS V6 5-speed manual with Pkg 13 has ABS/TC. She is an early build MY2000, built in summer of 1999.)

    Real issue is how the brakes hold up over time. Brake rotor warping developed in mine after about 18,000 miles (noticed the slight shuddering). Very pronounced up front by 24,000 miles. Had two front rotors replaced under warranty. They turned the rear rotors, but turning only delays further problems. Rear brakes went at about 38,000. Now at 46,000 miles the fronts are warped. I'm going to have to get them replaced, again.

    Warping has become a much more common problem across a lot of marques and models. In the ever-expanding search for lighter, safer cars, manufacturers have tended to use lighter, less durable components to reduce unsprung mass. And they cannot use superior asbestos-lined brake pads. All adds up to heat eventually warping the rotors and pads wearing out faster.

    Key to stopping rotor warping is to use a larger diameter AND thicker brake. Warping most pronounced in thinner rotors. Just making the diameter larger won't solve the problem if the rotors are too thin to begin with. But thickness adds unsprung mass to car.

    No wonder better aftermarket brake systems by Brembo and others are all the rage. They are meeting a real need for superior heat dissipation.
  • wpbharrywpbharry Posts: 399
    Very intelligent post. Thanks for the input. Please give us more, as the situation calls for it.

    Personally, I also think that aluminum wheel design is a culprit. Lots of open spaces for the H2O when you go through a car wash.

    Have those on my '98 Malibu, and have never had a warping issue. Drums in the rear, by the way. Next car, whatever it may be, will be all-discs.

  • Hi, this is my first post.

    I'm being offered a deal for $9,995 on a 2002 Sonata V6 (not GLS) with about 13,000 miles on it by a dealer. It has no sun/mooon, ABS or TC. Carfax gave it a clean bill of health.

    Do you all consider this offer worthwhile? How much would the car depreciate by end of 2005?

    Also, is it more prudent to wait till Jan '04 for a used car?

    Thanks in advance,
  • jimbeaumijimbeaumi Posts: 620
    But Harry, you did not specify XG350.
  • wpbharrywpbharry Posts: 399
    You're right. Valid point.

    Have a great Labor Day weekend. Not car shopping; we're entertaining.
  • I just bought the Sonata GLS-V6 with ABS option.
    I've been driving 93 audi 90, and drove other cars before.... but the brake seems to work great.

    Anyway... my question is... does anyone know of any web site where I could find the information on the performance specs on Sonatas?
    Like braking distance, 0-60mph.. and other stuffs.
    I remember seeing some of those specs on some magazines.. but I can't seem to find it. If anyone knows it, please let me know.
  • riezriez Posts: 2,361
    charlie616... There are tons of sources out there.

    Annual Auto Guides:

    - AAA Auto Guide (USA)
    - Daniel Heraud's Road Report (Canadian)
    - Jacques Duval's Auto Guide (Canadian)

    Edmunds published some comparison test results (e.g., '99 "Bread-n-butter Sedan Comparison").

    Some magazine results:

    Car & Driver, 2/03: Comparison test with Hyundai Sonata GLS 2.7L V6 automatic and Kia Optima LX 2.4L I4. 10-car test. [NOTE: Sonata had 2nd worst braking distance. Optima had 3rd worst braking distance. But neither car had ABS.]

    Car & Driver, 9/01: Road Test of Kia Optima SE 2.5L V6 automatic with ABS. [NOTE: This car braked WORSE than the non-ABS car in the 2/03 test.]

    Consmer Reports, 6/01: Comparison test with Hyundai Sonata GLS 2.5L V6 automatic with ABS.

    Car & Driver, 9/99: 8-car comparison test with Sonata GLS 2.5L V6 automatic (no ABS).

    Motor Trend, 5/99: First test of Sonata GLS 2.5L V6 automatic with ABS.

    Car & Driver, 4/99: Full road test report on Sonata GLS 2.5L V6 automatic (no ABS).

    Automobile, 4/99: Initial preview (no test data).

    Car & Driver, 99: Initial preview (no test data).

    Some foreign tests:

    Australian NRMA ( published test results of 2.0L I4 automatic and 2.5L V6 manual. No ABS.

    British Top Gear magazine, 2/99: Comparision test of Sonata 2.5L V6 automatic with ABS.
  • riezriez Posts: 2,361
    Car & Driver, 2/02: Sonata GLS 2.7L V6 automatic.
  • I've driven Sonata GLS-V6 for few days now
    and I like the car most of the time.
    One thing that bothers a bit is the suspenstion
    and the tire.
    I've noticed that reviews on the tires they used
    (Honda and Acura used them, too) Michelin Energy
    Plus wasn't good.
    It was a rainy day in the East Coast today, and
    I've noticed that the when I'm cornering, the
    tire doesn't grip the road well.
    I'm also feeling that the suspension itself is
    soft, too.
    If there's anyone who changed the cartridge or
    upgraded their suspension system, can you let me
    know where you can find them?
    Also, if someone could comment on the tires it
    would be nice, too.
  • riezriez Posts: 2,361
    charlie616... Sonata is known for its soft suspension, almost to the point of wallowing. She wasn't designed for aggressive handling. The soft suspension set up and non-aggressive tires have been discussed by most reviewers in the press. More aggressive rubber can help handling but might add tire noise.
  • justinjustin Posts: 1,918
    just read through the last few posts. have to say: anyone that thinks that Hyundai brakes are bad enough to cause three rear end collision needs a reality check. not being mean here, but the ONLY thing that causes one to ram into another from behind is careless/reckless driving. period. ask any competent law enforcement officer. brakes have nothing to do with it. kind of makes me laugh. "officer, yes, i know, this is the third time i have slammed my car into someone. but, please, you must understand, i am driving a Hyundai!" i would pay a huge amount of money to see the look on the police officers face. priceless.
  • I wanted to see if anyone has experience with this situation... I have a 2000 Sonata GLS, and I've been happy with the warranty/dealership up to this point (especially when the transmission needed replacement at 50K miles - no charge). I purchased a 10/100 extended protection plan with the car at the dealership. Now, however, my car has just passed 60K miles and the extended protection plan has kicked in -- and, right on cue, the Sonata needed work. The O-2 sensors (which have been replaced before) are covered, but something called a Crankshaft Position Sensor is not covered, according to the dealership's service manager. Can Hyundai just exclude whatever they want? The EPP I purchased was represented to me as a 100K mile bumper-to-bumper warranty.
  • riezriez Posts: 2,361
    joseph_owens... The warranty is a contract. You are both bound by its terms. It covers what it covers and nothing more. Or less. Do you have a complete copy of it? Read it over very carefully. First couple steps I'd take are to discuss it with the dealership and get them to show you specifically where the item in question is NOT covered. And you can also call Hyundai's Customer Service number and discuss the issue with them.
  • The crankshaft position sensor is part of the engine, and I just had mine replaced at 57,000 miles due to the engine acting up and not letting me go above 3000 RPM in my 2000 GLS. This should be covered under the 10/100,000 powertrain warranty.
  • riezriez Posts: 2,361
    In today's car section of the Omaha World-Herald, there is an ad for Stan Olsen Hyundai. They are offering the following monstrosity:

    "Luxury Choice--'03 Sonata Grand Touring Package, carriage roof and gold plating, exclusively at Stan Olsen". [No price given.]

    Run, don't walk, away from this beast and dealers that do this kind of auto malpractice. Can only imagine how garish it is and the markup. What a waste!
  • hjr2hjr2 Posts: 105
    1999 GLSV6, Ebony Black Sonata. Automatic, everything minus abs.
    it is about 6 weeks over 4 years old. 103,000 miles.
    Here is what I fixed out of pocket so far:
    1) Vapor recirculation thing for fuel tank(emissions control: cost was 350 dollars. I did get taken . Another place woul dhave done it for 100 dollars less).
    2) New Alternator at 99,000 miles a few months back.
    That was 550 dollars for everything.

    Not fixed(and will not be fixed. may get a cheap boom box with 150 watts/cd player, and plug into 12V outlet)
    Cd/Cassette player is dead.
    Only radio works. Was quoted 800-1000 dollars for new system to be ordered/installed!
    No "wrecks" at the "junk yard", either. I checked.

    I will keep the car until it is in bad shape, or I can afford a new car,again(in 4-5 years).
    I like it,still.

    Do not know what I will buy next time. I never know until the last moment(have owned Chevy,Nissan,Hyundai).
    If they have something that looks good, runs good, and fair priced, I will return. If I see something I like better, elsewhere, I will go there.
    I do like the Hyundai, though.
  • waxywaxy Posts: 8
    I bought a 2001 Sonata GLS V6 new just over 2 years ago and have been very pleased with performance to date. Now, with just over 40,000 kms (24,000 miles) on the odometer, I'm suddenly experiencing electrical system problems - very sluggish starter, clock auto-resetting to 1:00 o'clock, etc.

    The original battery is still in the car and I'm wondering what others may have experienced in terms of an effective lifetime for these batteries.

    Thanks, Waxy

    PS - BTW, I do try to conserve battery output but we've just finished with a long, hot summer and the air conditioning has been on a lot...
  • On my 2000 GLS the battery started going bad at 57,000 miles, but if you live in a colder climate that can shorten the life of the battery.
  • My family owns a 2000 Sonata V6 and it's got about 81000 kms. We experienced similar problem with the battery life (sluggish start mainly), and talked to our friend mechanic and informed us that Hyundai uses not so great battery, which lacks the power especially in brutal Canadian weather. New battery gives absolutely no problem and I'm glad cuz last Toronto winter was in one word BRUTAL!

    All in all, cars running flawlessly except for a CEL that we had about a year ago. Hopefully, the car will be good for another 100K.

  • Just referring back to several previous posts regarding brake performance.....

    I'm not gonna argue with anyone regarding stats in auto magazines.... I agree that the Sonata doesn't have the brake performance of a Porsche but it's not so bad that it would cause rear end collisions. Come on guys!!! Can't you guys judge distance?? Aren't you guys familiar with your cars limits by now?? I live in Toronto, Canada and I've faced 3 brutal Canadian winters with the Sonata without winter tires nor ABS. Did I have any single problem with the brakes? NOPE. It's all matter of judgement and with little precaution, accidents can be avoided. Don't blame your mistakes on the car.

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