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Midsize Sedans Comparison Thread



  • backybacky Twin CitiesPosts: 18,907
    As noted, the Sonata does some things better than the Camcord. Does that mean the Camcords are not in the same league as the Sonata? Of course not. Being in the same league doesn't mean that one car has to do EVERYTHING as well as another car. Overall, it has to be competitive. The '06 Sonata is competitive with the best in class, at a much lower price. That is what makes the Sonata compelling--not that it does everything as well as or better than an Accord or Camry.

    BTW, since Honda copied the rear end of the current generation Accord (before the '06 modification) from Buick, does that decrease your respect for Honda at all? ;)
  • maxamillion1maxamillion1 Posts: 1,467
    can we talk about something else beside the Sonata (and it's merits versus the Camcords)

    The car is COMPETITIVE..without a doubt...and we all should be glad that we have so many different choices. For example, the Sonata nor the Accord particularlly thrill me, but I find both to be respectable sedans in this class, along with the Camry, Altima and Mazda6.

    How about the fact that pricing for the Aura has been announced (check out and the fact that we have other cars in this class like the Fusion and Milan and others.

    Sometimes I think we should rename this forum Accord vs. Camry vs. Sonata because that's all we basically hear about in this forum and it has become oh so boring...I miss the early days of
  • patpat Posts: 10,421
    If you or anyone else wants to refocus the topic, I'm sure there are many of us who would be most grateful! :D
  • louisweilouiswei Posts: 3,717
    If you have read my post I said that Sonata is a very decent midsize sedan but it's just not in the same league as the CamCord. Why? Because this is only its first successful model. In order to be the same league it'll need to prove itself year after year like the CamCord did back in the 80's and 90's.

    As for the new Accord's rear end I personally don't think it's a copy from Buick. But if you insist, that's fine by me. It won't decrease my respect for Honda because it already proved itself with the 4th gen, 5th gen and the 6th gen. I am pretty sure Honda didn't copy from anybody to come up with those designs (same goes for the Camry).
  • louisweilouiswei Posts: 3,717
    Sometimes I think we should rename this forum Accord vs. Camry vs. Sonata because that's all we basically hear about in this forum

    It's because Accord, Camry and Sonata are currently the most popular midsize sedans on the market. Since this is a midsize sedan forum, I am not surprised to see the most popular cars in this segment being discussed the most.
  • maxamillion1maxamillion1 Posts: 1,467
    This may be true..but the Altima outsells the Sonata..and we hear basically NOTHING about those cars.

    The best selling sedans in this class are the Camry, Accord, Impala, Altima then Sonata thus far this year.

    The Malibu and Impala are big sellers, and the Fusion is selling well also, but we hear nothing, nada about them in this forum compared to the Camcordnata.

    The Sonata could eventually outsell the Altima (this year anyway) but then with the next generation Altima will probably continue to outsell the Sonata based on the fact that it will be new.
  • badgerfanbadgerfan Posts: 1,565
    Well, maxamillion, good luck, but you are fighting a losing battle. This discussion always reverts back to Sonata vs Camcords, no matter that Fusion/Milan, Altima, and possibly Saturn Aura are valid contenders.

    Truth is few of those who post here seem willing to admit that the competition is so close these days, any one of the top 5 or 6 brands in this class is a very good vehicle, and most of those who post for or against any one of them generally are exagerrating past and present reliability perceptions.
  • maxamillion1maxamillion1 Posts: 1,467
    A bit of history on the Accord I guess...
    The Accord proved itself back in the late 1980's when it became the best selling car in America (aka the 3rd generation). The 1986 Accords (with those flip up lights) were the benchmark cars of their class during those years and paved the way for the 4th generation (1990-92) that also sold in record numbers. While the 3rd was a good benchmark, the 4th generation went on to higher heights and really propelled the Accord in its class. Competition from Ford and Toyota ended the 4th gens reign as the best selling car in America. The 5th generation was actually considered a step back by many magazines and consumers because of its small size relative to the Camry and Taurus and in the beginning a lack of V6 power. The V6 came in 95 though.

    Honda had a wild idea that folks would move to smaller sedans, but the attempt failed, and the 5th generation was a bit of a setback for Honda, that's why the 6th was so major for a while. The 6th generation was seen as moving back in the right direction because of the proper (at the time) 3.0V6 and roomy (for the time) interior dimensions.

    My favorite generation of Accords have been the 4th and 6th generations. So the Accord basically established itself at the 2nd generation model, which my parents owned (a 1984 and 85 model) and Accords were considered good cars back then(not so sure about the 1st generation) but it was the third that gave the Accord its benchmark standards. Rarely has the car ever been rated any less than benchmark standards since this time even during the low selling times of the 5th generation.

    Will the Sonata have similar success? I most definitely think it will.

    I'm sure Alpha (who knows a great deal about Toyota's products) can give a brief history on the Accord if he feels so inclined.
  • patpat Posts: 10,421
    Why don't you give us some food for thought on the vehicles you see as major contenders to the two or three dominant ones in this conversation?
  • joe97joe97 Posts: 2,248
    "Take all these midsize cars and line them up. Offer them at the same price to the world. Now look at the sales numbers."

    I would not exactly speculate since we all know this will never happen.

    "How many people who would have bought a Camry and Accord before this would now switch to a Hyundai or Kia? Zero, because they would've been able to get one for less money before this leveling of the playing field.

    How many people who would have bought a Hyundai or Kia before this would now switch to a Toyota or Honda? Some number greater than zero (most likely each and every person who bought one because they wanted a midsize car but couldn't afford the Camry or Accord)."

    Very much an incorrect assessment, especially the 1st quoted paragrah. Keep in mind, Camrys and Accords are no longer superior than their compeitions. As mentioned previously, every car is more than competitive and each with own merits.
  • badgerfanbadgerfan Posts: 1,565
    If you want, you can type in badgerfan in the search box and read my past posts in this discussion.

    It seems no matter what a few less zealous people post, the discussion goes right back to Camcord vs Sonata.

    For my money, Fusion gets the vote as having the best combination of precise handling combined with a firm but not punishing ride, reasonable price, styling, and trunk space. My past experience with Ford products has been very good, so no reason to switch brands on that basis. The V-6 Duratech is a very decent reliable engine, and the whole package can be bought close to or under $20K (for a V-6 Fusion SE).

    Resale value? I could care less as I keep my cars at least ten years, and at that point condition of the vehicle counts more than brand regarding its remaining value. I never trade my cars in, I sell them outright, usually to the first buyer who actually comes over to check the vehicle out in person buys it due to it's excellent condition given it is a ten or more year old car.
  • ace35ace35 Posts: 131
    Im interested to here from people in here, whats your take on the new Saturn Aura, do you think it will compete well with the others in the class? Since Gm is touting how important this vehicle is and how competitive it will be. I like the looks of it, not to pleased that gm is putting a pushrod V6 and a 4sp as the standard powertrain. The upgrade engine seems nice however. How's pricing compared to the others in the class ?
  • joe97joe97 Posts: 2,248
    I personally like the Aura a lot - it den. gets my vote :)

    The only shortfall I see is not having a I4 option.
  • badgerfanbadgerfan Posts: 1,565
    Aura looks promising, and I am not bothered that much by the 3.5 pushrod V-6 and four speed in the base model. It is quite a fuel efficient engine, and since pushrod engines generally develop most of their torque and peak power at somewhat lower engine speeds than OHC engines, the returns are diminishing when applying 5 or 6 speed transmissions to pushrod engines. GM four speeds are known for smoothness and are pretty reliable.

    If GM sticks to the no dicker pricing on these Auras, for $20K I would still be inclined to shop the competition unless they hit it out of the park in all other areas, such as handling, interior quality, etc.
  • have you seen the new rear of accord? it looks like maxima. and look at the rear of last gen camry and look at the 1997-1999 sonatas. also look at the last gen odyssey's to 2nd gen sonatas. it's a clone.

    before disrespecting hyundai look at the other hyundai models. hyundai has many current original designs-elantra, santa fe, tucson, and tiburon. azera does resemble mazda in front, but looks sleek and orginal from the rear and side.
  • bobadbobad Posts: 1,587
    azera does resemble mazda in front, but looks sleek and orginal from the rear and side.

    If one really thinks about it, there are too many cars, and too few styling possibliities. The math catches up, and the car makers simply run out of permutations.
  • alpha01alpha01 Posts: 4,747
    Has Nissan resolved the engine fire issue and have all sales of the 2.5L models of the Altima and Sentra been cleared as "good to go"?

    I remember reading about the 17 fires that prompted the sales halt of a large portion of the current inventory, but I've not read of the solution or what happened with those vehicles.

    Also, I'm interested to know the cause, as likely near a million of those engines are on the road since late '01 (including my Sentra), I'm not sure why this issue would crop up now....

    Here's Nissan's own press release, but there has not been a follow-up on
    "GARDENA, CA (June 2, 2006) – Nissan North America, Inc., today directed its dealers to stop selling certain 2006 model year, four-cylinder Altimas and Nissan Sentra SE-Rs because of reports of excessive oil consumption while it continues to investigate potential causes.

    The condition, if not detected or addressed properly, could lead to the potential for engine damage, or failure which could result in a fire in extreme cases. The National Highway Transportation and Safety Administration has been advised of Nissan’s action.

    Nissan estimates that about 100,000 Altimas and Sentra SE-Rs built between January and May 2006 may be subject to excessive oil consumption. There have been about 215 reports of excessive oil consumption, mostly from rental-car fleets, and 17 reports of engine fires, resulting in one minor injury.

    Nissan is aggressively working to find a definite cause and solution for the condition.

    Nissan is advising owners of these vehicles that they should frequently check and maintain the engine oil level. If the engine oil level is kept at the proper level, there should be no engine damage and no risk of engine failure or a resulting fire. If the engine oil level is not registered at all on the dip stick, customers are urged to immediately add oil and bring their vehicle to a Nissan dealer.

    In the interest of customer satisfaction, Nissan has extended the engine portion of the Powertrain Coverage of the vehicles’ warranty on Altimas and Sentra SE-Rs built during the January to May 2006 period to 84 months or 100,000 miles, whichever comes first.

    Nissan is taking these actions as part of its commitment to provide the highest levels of product quality and customer satisfaction.

    In North America, Nissan\'s operations include automotive styling, engineering, consumer and corporate financing, sales and marketing, distribution and manufacturing. More information on Nissan in North America and the complete line of Nissan and Infiniti vehicles can be found online at and"

    I think this shows impressive committment to the customer in some ways.

    With that said, I think the reason that conversation frequently turns to Camcord vs. Sonata is that the Camry and Accord are generally top sellers and held in highest regard in the segment. The Sonata is the first serious threat since the '02 Altima, and quite frankly, there's not a lot of buzz on the new Altima given that its not available for drive yet, pricing isn't out, etc...

  • ace35ace35 Posts: 131
    i agree, it seems like now the hot styling detail seems to be the "bangle butt" everyone has it from, Merc S550, Camry, Azera, ect... I for one like the bangle look, it adds dimension and presence to the rear of the car.
  • m1miatam1miata Posts: 4,556
    Or in many cases like they forgot to add the trunk lid in the design and had to slap one on later which doesn't fit. It is like we can add another couple of cubic feet of space with a little taller butt here, so lets make a hump on that baby in the back. Yes, if done with enough grace, it is OK I suppose. Mr. Bangle went overboard on that 7 series.
  • choe13choe13 Posts: 348
    first the reason why impala and fusion sale is because they are american cars in american soil. Same as bimmers in germany and hyundai in korea.

    If this was a neutral country i don't know how the impala can have a chance with a sonata(honestly what one thing does it do better, it is not in the same neighborhood as in quality and priced higher(pretty crazy)

    What awards has the altima won? i think nil. Interior was below par in tightness and quality material, spectacular engine, good handling, size, looks cool, so so overall quality, priced almost as high as camcords

    camry, accord and now the sonata are winnign alot of awards, good quality(jd power)etc. These cars i feel nail down the fundamentals of what a good mid size car should be, but of course the sonata is winner in my books with its pricing, tremendous value, high in safety(abs, esc, awsome brake grips), respectable performance and of course the sharpest dressed sedan currently
  • ace35ace35 Posts: 131
    LOL, yea the 7 series is a little overdone (putting it nicely) but with the restyle they kinda toned it down a little.
  • ace35ace35 Posts: 131
    Will the altima offer ESC at all ?
  • m1miatam1miata Posts: 4,556
    The Fusion and Milan are pretty sharp is style, as is the Altima which captured the Passat look, only with better tail lights. Yes I like the tail lights, and I am fifty something now.

    So if ya wanted a sharp looking car with a V6 is it on this list:
    Malibu (yes, they call it that in name only)
    Subaru Legacy
  • backybacky Twin CitiesPosts: 18,907
    A glaring omission IMO is the Mazda6--one of the best-looking mid-sized cars I think.
  • louisweilouiswei Posts: 3,717
    If I want a SHARP looking car with a V6 I'll be willing to spend some extra cash and go one segment up: entry-level luxury sedan.

    IMO, cars in the midsize segment will offer you a decent V6 with an average look (give or take a little) which get you from point A to point B without any drama.

    I think I can generalize the midsize sedans into 3 groups:

    1. CamCord: Camry, Accord (pretty obvious here)
    2. The Sporty Ones: Mazda6, Altima, Legacy
    3. Every Body else: The rest...

  • choe13choe13 Posts: 348
    the 2006 mazda 6 updgrade is relaly nice i agree(looks more carved, love the clear tail light, flatter front end). Before the upgrade it had style but something was quite not cohesive about it.

    Backy would you agree?

    The worst upgrade i've seen is the accord in terms of exterior looks. The ugly rear but was not pretty but it worked better with the way the front light were shaped than the recent ultra vanilla style lights
  • ace35ace35 Posts: 131
    I think you can slot the 06 Sonata into the #1 category.
  • backybacky Twin CitiesPosts: 18,907
    I liked the looks of the Mazda6 before the changes for '06. I especially like the 5-door.

    I agree the back-end change on the Accord is not great. Maybe a little better than the old styling though. There is something about the squareness of the back end now that doesn't jive with the rest of the car. It's as if different design teams did the front 2/3 of the car and the back 1/3.

    I do think the Sonata is one of the best-looking mid-sized cars. It is also one of the blandest-looking mid-sized cars. There was a study done awhile back about what kinds of faces most people find "beautiful". They are the so-called "blurry" faces, that is, nondescript without any stand-out features. That is why I think cars like the Sonata are pleasing to the eye--clean lines, but nothing to jar the senses. Cars like that may not get a strong emotional response on their styling, but it's likely few will find them offensive enough to strike them off their "consider" list. For example, the Fusion is that way for me. A little too "hey look at me, I have a Gillette razor in my grille!" for me. :)
  • louisweilouiswei Posts: 3,717
    I think you can slot the 06 Sonata into the #1 category.


    Not yet at least.
  • bobadbobad Posts: 1,587
    I gotta say I agree. For pure looks, I slightly prefer the Mazda6 to all the rest. But what do I know, I also like the styling of the FMZ and 07 Camry too. Awww what the heck? I like the styling of all of them. My least favorite styling is the Altima, but I don't dislike it.
This discussion has been closed.