2011 Sonata LE

g550drvrg550drvr Member Posts: 3
edited September 2014 in Hyundai
For those of you that are considering a new Sonata, consider my findings:
I have owned the car now for three months. I just went over 3600 miles. I love the looks of the car and the mileage. Just took a 1500 mile trip and averaged 34.2 mpg. at 70 mph. Fit and finish is good.
The problems are as follows: I have owned over 140 cars on my day. This car is the forst that needs CONSTANT attention to how it tracks down the road! It over steers when you correct the track. Took it to the Dealer to get corrected, BEFORE, I took this last trip. They found it had an alignment problem, after the cross rotated the two from tires. The problem still persists! The tendancy of the car is to ALWAYS go to the left, even when you are in the right lane and the crown of the road slopes to the right! VERY DANGEROUS!
The car is VERY uncomfortable after driving 700 miles, with four breaks during that segment. Don't know why kids love the "fitted" seat that wedges you in the seat. VERY uncomfortable! Not sure why engineers design such a seat like I am going to experience 4 or 5 G's in a turn? Please... The road noise is VERY loud and after this trip is just about to the point of unbearable. you can hardly hear the speaker on the car blue tooth with the volume full and the person on the call cannot hear you for all of the road noise. Oh , the ride is impecible on good blacktop pavement, but other types of payvement is completely unacceptable! Sound proofing? Front passenger seat is too low long term riding, especially with no electronic adjustments.
The sunroof noise level is also excessive. I have a Saturn Vue that virtually has NO wind noise with the roof fully open. The ride with the 19 inch tiers make the ride VERY rough and you can hear EVERY crack/groove in the pavement. It's just like driving the go cart I had when I was a youngster. Constantly working on keeping the car straight, not being able to hear anything with all of the noise and riding on a washboard, if you will. Other than that, the Sonata has truly come a long way. Would I purchase again or cecommend to anyone? The asnwer would assuredly be a definite NO. That is really too bad...I was expecting more from the Design Engineers with Hyundai.


  • backybacky Twin CitiesMember Posts: 18,946
    In what country/countries is the "LE" trim sold?

    The Sonata doesn't offer 19" wheels as standard equipment, at least not in the USA. Did you add them? Why, if you don't like tire noise? Lower profile tires will almost always be rougher riding and noisier than taller tires.

    What was the last car you owned, before the Sonata?

    140 cars... wow, I thought I had owned a lot of cars over the years! That's like, nearly five per year for 30 years!
  • g550drvrg550drvr Member Posts: 3
    Well, I made a mistake. The trim is the LE with the larger (18") wheels? My bad. I knew the ride would potentially be bad, but not that LOUD and bad. The tracking is what's my concern...Just takes off, normally left, even with the crown of the road trimming off right. Not sure what the cure is after what the Dealer did to correct things. The last car was a 2006 Grand Cherokee. Got tired of the 13 mpg in town and NEVER over 21 mpg at any speed on the highway.
    The best car I ever had was the 1994 Lexus LS400. PERFECT...should have kept it!
    Believe it or not, I have kept a record of all the cars through the years since 1968. The first was a 1963 Chevy Biscayne. Paid $150 for it! Many buy them and then turn them to pay for school with about a dozen for the drag strip. I truly wished that better engineering in the suspension, sound acoustics and comfort items would have been better addressed that what I have found to date.
    I have already contacted the Dealer about possibly turning in the Sonata under a Lemon Law protection and upgrading to the Azera. Comfort it appears to be much better. Still have to test drive to see if road noises and tracking are an issue. time will tell if that is the resolve.
  • g550drvrg550drvr Member Posts: 3
    Well, I did it AGAIN! The Sonata is the SE Trim! Too much Christmas on my mind, I suppose.
  • backybacky Twin CitiesMember Posts: 18,946
    edited December 2010
    Yes, the SE has the 18" wheels.

    Did you test drive the other trims? I am wondering how they might fare on noise with the taller sidewalls. Also, have you tried driving another SE to see if it acts differently than your car?

    Before the Sonata, have you owned a car with electronic steering assist? It can be a much different feel than conventional steering. My Sentra for example has a "lighter" feel to the steering that took some getting used to. It doesn't veer to one side, but I feel better keeping both hands on the wheel (which I guess is safer anyway).
  • ewg54ewg54 Member Posts: 25
    edited December 2010
    The SE its the "Sports Edition" and it's chassis is tuned to the enthusiest. I noticed when I test drove it it was a bit noiser inside than the limited that I did eventually buy. The limited has the feel I like, but i do like the dual exhaust on the SE though which is why I test drove that trim in the first place.
  • shabadoo25shabadoo25 Member Posts: 232
    I had a 2011 Limited for 6 months and dumped it for an Acura, for a lot of the reasons listed by the OP. Uncomfortable seats, excessive road noise and dash rattles that popped up after about 800 miles.

    The new Sonata is gorgeous on the outside and has lots of great toys, but the actual driving experience and comfort are as blah/bad as an 80's domestic sedan.
  • nj2pa2ncnj2pa2nc Member Posts: 811
    we own both a 06 tsx and a '11 sonata gls. They both have manual transmission. I wish the sonata would have offered more options with the MT (power seats, sunroof, etc) but for what we spent on it-it is a great car. We must be one of the lucky ones-no rattles on either car (knock-on-wood). One of the complaints of acura's is also the rattles. As far as road noise-it depends on what type of road surface. Our sonata, bought in July, has 10,000+ miles and our tsx, bought new 11/06, has 118,000+ miles (still has the original brakes. We bought both cars from the same dealership in Pa.
  • backybacky Twin CitiesMember Posts: 18,946
    The new Sonata is gorgeous on the outside and has lots of great toys, but the actual driving experience and comfort are as blah/bad as an 80's domestic sedan.

    You have got to be kidding. I've driven many '80s domestic sedans, and the 2011 Sonata is light years removed from those cars--unless you like sofa-cushy velour seats, squishy ride/handling, and lots of tacky chrome inside and out. Not to mention abysmal quality/reliability including rattles galore. Also, not many domestic sedans of that time had anything near 198 hp--not even V6s!
  • aqua33v6aqua33v6 Member Posts: 38
    I agree. Imagine this wacky scenario: you have a time machine, and you bring a new Sonata 2.4L back to the year 2000, with all the "Hyundai" and "Sonata" emblems covered with tape. Then, you find people driving brand new midsize family sedans, let them test drive the Sonata, and then tell them that the car they just drove is a 4 cylinder Hyundai Sonata. Can you imagine the responses you'd get?

    Or, how about if your brought a new Sonata 2.0T back to the year 2002, found people driving brand new G35's, TL-S's, A4's/A6's, 330i's, etc. Imagine the responses you'd get after they drive it then you tell them "this is a Hyundai Sonata 2.0L turbo model."

    Imagine all the blank stares!
  • shabadoo25shabadoo25 Member Posts: 232
    I think if you took a turbo Sonata back in time, people would wonder why you would spend money on a car that pulls hard to the left at highway speeds.
  • snowallergysnowallergy Member Posts: 135
    Thanks for your honesty. Many buyers of new cars wouldn't admit it if they thought the car wasn't up to snuff. I'd considered the Kia Optima after first looking at the sonata. Yes, the exterior designs have come a long way.

    But the more I read, the less I wanted either of these. TG for these forums.
  • snowallergysnowallergy Member Posts: 135
    In order to truly enjoy the 198 HP, I think you'd have to go back in time 30 years. With todays traffic, you're lucky if you use or need 60% of that HP. This is another reason why I think the turbo is a total waste, in addition to the added complexity of a turbo. Complex cars is something hyundai should avoid building until it can get the basics right first.
  • backybacky Twin CitiesMember Posts: 18,946
    I personally don't need 274 hp, or even 198 hp, in a family sedan. The 162 hp in my 2007 Sonata is more than enough to pull me out of trouble (or get me into trouble).

    But some folks would like more power in their cars, maybe because they have to pass on a lot of 2-lane roads or they just like to feel their necks snap back when they pull out. I did own a 328Ci with 193 horses for awhile, and that was a lot of fun. I think it's great that kind of power is available in a low-cost ($20k is low these days) sedan, with 35 mpg highway fuel economy to boot. That wasn't available 30 years ago, at ANY price.
  • temer93temer93 Member Posts: 1
    After considering many different cars over the past month, my wife and I took the plunge and bought a 2011 Sonata on Jan 31st (2011). We had been really pleased with the car (especially the MPG given that we formerly drove a Ford Expedition!) until last night. As my wife was coming home last night, the car hesitated while taking off from a stoplight, then completely died after crossing the intersection. My wife tried to restart it, which resulted in smoke coming out from under the hood and into the passenger compartment --- but the car would not restart. Roadside assist towed it into the dealership last night. After examining the car today, the dealership reports that:

    1. The smoke my wife saw was caused by the starter motor remaining continuously engaged as it tried to restart the engine (our car is a Limited with the push button start --- as I understand it, once the button is pushed, the starter cranks until the engine starts ---- this seems like a crazy design to me, but that is what the service manager told me).

    2. The engine would not restart because it had experienced a catastrophic internal failure and will need to be replaced.

    So far, Hyundai has been great about it. They provided us a rental car until our car is fixed and are hauling in a new engine from Chicago. They plan to install the new engine next week.

    According to the service manager, this is the first time he has ever had to replace an engine with less than 1,000 miles on it. I just hope they can get the electrical fire smell out of the interior!

    I'll let everyone know how things turn out.
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