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Hyundai Sonata vs. Honda Accord vs. Toyota Camry vs. Ford Fusion



  • backybacky Twin CitiesPosts: 18,907
    Isn't the SEL the top-trim Fusion? And the Premier the top-trim Milan? If so, why didn't CR test a top-trim Sonata I wonder?

    Do you know how they ranked these 3 cars vs. others in their class, e.g. Accord and Camry?
  • scape2scape2 Posts: 4,124
    consumers are smarter than ever. With the internet they are learning more and more about vehicle quality and reliability. With all the chat rooms about cars around the net these days you can see there reliability and quality of ALL brands is in the open.
    My feelings are it is going to come to price/value. Some consumers with "blinders on" still believe Honda and Toyota will never, ever fall from thier thrones. I believe differently. If you get out on the net and read what consumers are saying you may change your thought process a bit. Hyundia is a threat to Honda more than Toyota right now. Quality is there in GM/Ford products. If some would do the research and read they would see this. This vehicle segment is the most intense fought after segment. With all the choices, consumers will be the winner. Choice is nice... :)
  • iluvmysephia1iluvmysephia1 Manson, WAPosts: 6,920
    a solid choice in this comparo, the Long-Haul Warranty and low initial price, as well as plenty of safety equipment built in at the factory and great looks to boot, the Sonata an easy choice here.

    I've been looking at the 2007 Kia Optima in pictures and feature content, etc. at the Kia Motors America website and that car is a looker.

    Actually, out of these cars here I'd get a 2007 Kia Optima. Great looks, great Warranty, an AM/FM/CD/Cassette changer and a 2.4L 4-cylinder engine coupled with a 5-speed tranny that is supposed to get over 30 miles per gallon.

    One thing I didn't find out was price, but I would venture a guess that the 4-cylinder 2007 Kia Optima in 5-speed tranny form would probably run you around $17,995, give or take a Hasselback completion or two. Not bad. Not bad at all, gentlemen.

    2011 Kia Soul Sport 5-speed

  • backybacky Twin CitiesPosts: 18,907
    Actually, out of these cars here I'd get a 2007 Kia Optima.

    That's great, iluv, but the Optima is not one of these cars here. :(

    The Sonata comes in 4-cylinder, stick-shift, 34 mpg highway form too, for under $18k. And it also offers a 235 hp V6, which apparently that "other car" will not.

    There is a Midsized Sedan discussion here where we are free to discuss the Optima and all the other mid-sizers ad nauseum.
  • alpha01alpha01 Posts: 4,747
    I dont think it matters that CR didnt test the Sonata LX. Their GLS V6 had the 17 inch tires (Premium Sport Pkg), so I highly doubt leather would have made a difference in the scoring. If anything, the $22,995 price tag spoke clearly to the value of the vehicle. Of course, they praised the car's standard safety features, engine refinement, room, equipment, etc. The V6 tested an entire 3 full seconds quicker to 60 (7.5 seconds vs. 10.5 seconds), but gave up only 2 MPG in their assessment of fuel efficiency (21 vs. 23). Those acceleration times, incidentally, were 5 tenths quicker, and 1 second slower than the V6 Fusion and 4 cylinder Milan, respectively.

    The Milan was about $20 or $21K, so maybe it wasnt a Premier, Im not totally familiar with the trim lines for that vehicle, I just know from reading the article on the newsstand that it was a 4 cylinder automatic with modest options and it placed behind the Sonata GLS 4 (which I believe had the Premium Pkg).

    Backy, does the Sonata require Premium fuel to hit its 162 horse rating for the 4 cylinder? Kia is showing on its website that the 2006.5 Optima requires premium fuel to achieve 161 horses....

  • driverdmdriverdm Posts: 505
    I know there are a lot of Hyundai lovers on this board and I admire them for their enthusiasm but let's call a spade a spade. Let's look at historical facts. Ford and GM resale values have been "low" because of heavy incentives and rebates and the gap is not always made up for entirely by the cheaper cost up front. Every body has complained about low Ford and GM resale values and now all of a sudden Hyundai doing the same thing is somehow okay. I just don't get it. If you pile rebates on, the resale value is hurt by it, likewise if you sell to fleets, the resale value is hurt. Ford has tried to keep incentives on the Fusion low and sales to fleets low as well and they have publicly said that it is to keep residual/resale value high. I think the people working at Ford whose job it is to know this stuff everyday, know better than us that rebates and fleet sales hurt resale values. Likewise, Honda has also said it and VW has also said it. These car companies know more about the car market than all of us do.
  • zen2zen2 Posts: 226
    11000 for a 2000 Accord? In your dreams? :)
  • goodegggoodegg Posts: 905
    You think the neg vibes on Hyundai are bad, don't even start with Kia. I think Hyundai is on their way to shedding these public perceptions. Kia (owned by Hyundai? and probably all 'owned' by the SK government when really scrutinized) will probably never shed the moniker of cheap.
  • backybacky Twin CitiesPosts: 18,907
    If you pile rebates on, the resale value is hurt by it, likewise if you sell to fleets, the resale value is hurt.

    I don't disagree and have stated such more than once in these discussions. I still maintain that it is possible to overcome higher depreciation by taking full advantage of rebates and negotiating a large discount. I know because I have successfully followed that strategy. I guess we will need to agree to disagree on that point.
  • backybacky Twin CitiesPosts: 18,907
    The LX also includes features such as power seat and telescopic wheel (could affect driving comfort for CR's testers), and convenience features such as auto climate control and Homelink mirror. Driving-wise, of course, there would have been no difference with the same 17" wheels as the LX.

    I wonder if the difference in transmissions (4-speed vs. 5-speed) had anything to do with the difference in 4-cylinder performance? I have not heard that the 4-cylinder Sonata recommends premium fuel, although I think the V6 does. Maybe a Sonata owner can look in their owner's manual and answer that for us.
  • cxccxc Posts: 122
    On highway, my 06 Sonata LX got 28 - 29 mpg on premium fuel while 31 - 32 mpg on regular fuel. There is no difference in terms of performance between regular and premium fuels. In the city driving, Sonata got about 22 mpg on both premium and regular fuels. DO NOT USE PREMIUM FUEL.
  • I own the I4 GLS and in the owner's manual is says to use regular 87 octane. Now I don't know if you get the 160 hp with that fuel or if you need the premium fuel to reach that hp. I do know that I put in both (Once by accident) and didn't notice any difference and I drive very aggresive.
  • I went to STL car show over weekend and found it very interesting overall. Granted a car show is great place to make up a list of potential cars to try, but not where you would make a final decision. I had the opportunity to investigate several of the models listed in this forum. I still like the Accord and Sonata use of wood trim and interior styling better than several of the other brands. I was very impressed by the Passat new style of dash as well as the sharpness of the G6 instrument pannel. I found that I did not like the Fusion/Milan/Lincoln grey looking wood trim. The 2007 Camry went to a mostly metal interior which did not trip my trigger and prefer the 2006 interior more. As far as outside looks go Ford has stepped it up with their new entries, but the 2007 Accord really does need to change a little more. I also liked the 2007 Camry rearend, but the front end looked more similar to a cross between the Mazada 6 and studabaker. Best leather seats in these price ranges was the Buick Lacerne which felt as comfortable as living room furniture (dash reminds you of your dad's oldsmobile). Biggest disappointment were the Charger/300 dashes and interior.

    For anyone in this forum who would like to see what the differences are in looks, I would recommend a local car show. After four hours of sitting in and looking at all the cars I am very happy with my Toyota Sienna, Hyundai Sonata and Honda Accord.
  • ctalkctalk Posts: 646
    Was the Accord, Camry, Altima...or any other mid-size ranked against those sedans?
  • alpha01alpha01 Posts: 4,747
    In the overall ratings, yes. I dont quite remember the ordering, but I do recall that the Sonata GLS V6 placed second only to the Accord EX 4 5A in the "Sedans Under $25,000" table.

  • jpnewtjpnewt Posts: 71
    But if you have to continually put rebates on a vehicle then how can your resale value ever go up? If the Sonata is such a great buy then the low price should be enough and no rebate should be necessary.
  • resale is also dictated by customer satisfaction and the resale of a car like the 2006 Sonata could go up even with all the rebates and etc due to demand. It does not matter what you pay, but what the demand is. Jaguar X-type are quite expensive, but their resale is awful due to quality problems and lack of demand. Toyota and Honda have good resale due to DEMAND - consumers believe these cars to be high mileage dependable cars. As more people buy the Sonata the demand will increase and the rebates will lesson. In five years if the demand for this model is high and the quality in high mileage is good, these cars will have equal value in the market to Accords and Camrys. For now, the value of the Sonata resale will be an unknown, which is the risk some will take.
  • kdhspyderkdhspyder Posts: 7,160
    The ultra agressive price is due to the rebates.

    The rebate program in theory anyway is a temporary measure. The List Price of a Sonata is about $2500 below the other midsized sedans similarly-equipped, but few would buy a Sonata at this time with only a $2500 discount. As production in AL comes up and they begin to fill the plant, they are buying volume now, the rebates are likely to become skinnier. If the new model does hold up in 3-5 years then the market values will start to come up also.
  • ontopontop Posts: 279
    Sonata is buying the market, apparently. Which is a good thing for consumers. Hyundai is putting out a better car now. If it lasts 5+ years and doesn't need a lot of maintenance, resale value is immaterial, especially if you can buy it for thousands less than a CamCord.

    Saw about 5 of em in a hotel parking lot the other day. Then I realized they were all rentals....
  • I am glad Consumer Reports liked the Fusion SEL. I've test driven all of these cars myself recently, and I found that I preferred the Fusion as well. By a big margin. The Fusion was a car that I actually wanted to BUY, as opposed to tolerate.

    Each to their own. I can understand why many people on this forum prefer the Sonata or the Accord or the Camry. But the Fusion is a darned good car -- and buyers really need to go and see the car for themselves, and drive it for themselves, rather than judging by the opinions of others.

  • goodegggoodegg Posts: 905
    I drove the Fusion - twice. The V6 SEL version. I thought the car was OK, but OK just doesn't cut it in the auto world today. Poorly placed HVAC controls, a few low quality controls, a shifter that offers you D or L as the only forward options, a hood that doesn't close confidently, huge door pulls that looked awkward, no moonroof, no power seatback tilt......

    This sector is a tough crowd. Ford taking on CamCords? And the new Sonata? They need a better offering to do it. A few refinements could go a long way.

    I liked the car's styling tho.
  • alpha01alpha01 Posts: 4,747
    The press generally disagrees with you. From Car and Driver to Consumer Reports, the Fusion as an overall effort is the first Ford to receive this level of praise since the Focus (which is now nothing special...)

    FWIW, the Fusion can be had with moonroof, and things like awkward looking door pulls are PURELY subjective. The Ford's handling capability, for example, can be measured objectively.

    Mind you, I'm not particularly a Fusion fan. But its the best middle price sedan produced by an American company, in my opinion, and holds its own against the Camry, Accord, and Sonata.

    What it lacks are standard safety features (ABS, side curtains), available safety features (stability control), V6 power, strong ergonomics. The price point could be a bit lower, though, $26.5K fully loaded... with no stability, no NAV, no Bluetooth...

  • backybacky Twin CitiesPosts: 18,907
    The door pulls I can live with. The Gillette Mach3 grille is a little harder for me to stomach. That is the price Ford pays for trying to be a little different in the styling department--less boring than competitors, but more polarizing. And I agree it is pricey for what you get, consdering the pricing of some good alternatives. Ride and handling-wise, though, it is a fine car. If Ford could just learn to sweat some of the fine points, they could have a class leader.
  • Holy cats! Is it just me or is the new Camry a sight for extremely sore eyes? I'm certain it's probably a better car performance-wise than the fully insulated triple latex '06 model it replaces, but at least the looks of the old one weren't so visually offensive. This is Toyota's new direction in "style"?

    Say what you will about the Fusion being too loud or rough around the edges, at least it attempts to appeal to some segment of the populace. And it's quite fetching. Likewise, some folks poo-poo the Sonata for being too conservative, but its lines are elegant nevertheless. What is going on at Toyota? The styling just keeps getting weirder and weirder.

    First it was the Avalon and then I saw the Echo (everyone's fave hat on wheels) replacement, the Yardos (Shriners of the world rejoice). Can someone say "clown car"? Now comes this Camry... with a grapefruit-sized zit on its face that looks like it should've popped three days ago.

    I keep hearing how Toyota is selling so many cars. But where? Is there some mystical land out there where everyone drives a Camry, wears checkered polyester pants and drinks rich, chocolatey Ovaltine?

    Toyota, send this one back please. It's not done yet.
  • blnewtoblnewto Posts: 146
    The Gillette Mach3 grille is a little harder for me to stomach.
    We also tested the FusionV6 (along w/ Maz6, Altima, Accord, Camry, & Jetta) and we found the Sonata GLSV6 to be a better choice for us. If all the comparable vehicles were priced equally only the Accord would have prevailed over the Sonata for us.

    Back to the Fusion, it was a nice overall package, but there seemed to be less refinement compared to the Sonata. Hard to pinpoint, just a general feeling we had about fit&finish, also a bit of road/wind noise that wasn't apparent in the Sonata. The V6 also wasn't quite as eager as the Sonatas, although plenty quick. Gotta agree about that grill, it's hideous~the Milan looks so much better, and I also dislike the "boy-racer" white-clear tail lenses. Just a bit too much of a "look at me" style for my taste :)
  • kdhspyderkdhspyder Posts: 7,160
    Well, there's a unique opinion. I guess you might not get one if I read between the lines. ;)
  • driverdmdriverdm Posts: 505
    Everyone loves to bash the Fusion. If this were the Sonata there would be people burning Hyundai signs on people's lawns. I mean come on. People will defend the Sonata's looks all day. Let someone say it looks "bland", they'll be ten posts and that person might get kicked off the board. Save for Backy, people nit pick this vehicle a part. It has come down to door handles and a grill now. Look at the new Camry grill, it is awful (I say this as I duck under my desk as I am sure some are already ready to hurl stones through my windows). How many people live with bad ergonomic vehicles or/with bland interiors? Spent any time in a BMW 3 Series lately? But don't let Ford misplace an HVAC, oh no, how could they dare put the temperature controls in the wrong place. The new Camry BLATANT rip off of a Mazda6 in many aspects (Yes, I said it!! Somebody had to) and I don't hear the fire storm over that. Okay, I am done ranting.... though I will be wearing my Teflon vest all day tomorrow and only go in public areas. I am afraid, someone please hold me.

  • iluvmysephia1iluvmysephia1 Manson, WAPosts: 6,920
    people that love Hyundai's are prevalent on this board and you just have to learn to live with it. I like the new Sonata but I also like the Ford Fusion. A lot.

    IMO Ford did a good job with the Fusion's grille. It says "look at me" but what have the boy racers been turning Honda Civics into for years? Big deal. IMO the Fusion looks way better than the raciest looking Civic you can find in Lost Wages or SO-Cal put together. Ford done it right, gentlemen. If I didn't want a subcompact like the '06 Kia Rio I would test drive the Fusion.

    Kia is producing a 2007 Optima that looks to pick me up above all four of these and put me into car balance once again. Only I don't want or need a car as big as these 4 or the 2007 Kia Optima. Kia just designs the bodies better and packs more value wallop than all four of these other carmakers. OK, I'm waiting, slap me upside my head, now. Right there-do it. Get it over with and move on. :surprise:

    Seattle 28, Pittsburgh 17. :shades:

    2011 Kia Soul Sport 5-speed

  • baggs32baggs32 Posts: 3,229
    Seattle 28, Pittsburgh 17.

    Allow me to correct iluvmysephia1's sudden case of dyslexia.

    That should be Pittsburgh 28, Seattle 17 (or less). Jerome and the boys are on a mission and ain't no one stoppin' them! :P
  • baggs32baggs32 Posts: 3,229
    Poorly placed HVAC controls, a few low quality controls, a shifter that offers you D or L as the only forward options, a hood that doesn't close confidently, huge door pulls that looked awkward, no moonroof, no power seatback tilt......

    I haven't sat in, or drove one myself but don't you think you're picking at nits a bit too much.

    Sure the HVAC controls are low but you can order them on the steering wheel too for very little money. The center stack on my Mazda6 is a nightmare. But having the audio controls on the steering wheel, and the automatic climate control takes all the pain away because I don't have to deal with all the buttons. BTW the HVAC controls in the 6 are way at the bottom too. I never heard anyone complain about their placement.

    Low quality controls? So the others compared here don't have any of those either? I bet I could find one or two.

    If you want more than D and L buy a stick shift. I've been driving for 17 years and have NEVER used anything other than D.

    How often do you go under that hood?

    Nothing wrong with a good door pull that anyone, short or tall, can use comfortably.

    You can order a moonroof so why mark that as a negative too?

    I've never had a vehicle with a power seatback tilt so I must be missing something there. I can say that I've never had a problem with the manual tilts though.

    I understand the Fusion isn't going to be the choice for everyone. But it sounds like you've grown so accustomed to a particular brand that giving another a chance would be like pulling your teeth out with the old slam-the-door method. :surprise:

    I've owned both Japanese and U.S. branded vehicles and both have their pros and cons. You learn to live with them. Especially if they're as minor as some of the things you pointed out regarding the Fusion.
This discussion has been closed.