2011 hyndai sonata vs 2011 camry le

fivedawgsfivedawgs Member Posts: 7
edited June 2018 in General
I have been researching both vehicles for about three weeks now. At first, I wanted to buy the honda accord but couldn't afford nor see a 2011 or 2010 accord with less than 100k miles.

Pro for Hyundai
- ranked one by consumer reports

Cons:
- engine seized up which occurs at 90k miles and a bunch of recalls


Pro for the Camry
- seriously couldn't find any, it's average at best

Cons:
- Burns lot of oil and transmission problem!

So which one should I purchase?

Best Answer

Answers

  • nyccarguynyccarguy Stamford, CTMember Posts: 15,356
    What's your budget? What's your commute like? Just at a glance, "engine seized up" would automatically disqualify it in my book.

    2001 Prelude Type SH, 2022 Highlander XLE AWD, 2022 Wrangler Unlimited 4Xe

  • fivedawgsfivedawgs Member Posts: 7
    edited June 2018
    nyccarguy said:

    What's your budget? What's your commute like? Just at a glance, "engine seized up" would automatically disqualify it in my book.

    My budget is 7k buy out price, meaning TTL indeed. The commute is not bad less than 20-mile radius as I would be moving to another city for graduate school.

    I agree that the possibility of having my engine "seized up" is utterly unattractive, but the stats for the Camry don't look that good as well.

    Included these two links for the main sonata problems ( https://www.carcomplaints.com/Hyundai/Sonata/2011/engine/engine_seized.shtml) and (https://www.carcomplaints.com/Hyundai/Sonata/2011/engine/engine_stalled_cut-off_while_driving.shtml)

    And here are the ones for the main Camry problems (https://www.carcomplaints.com/Toyota/Camry/2011/transmission/transmission_failure.shtml) and (https://www.carcomplaints.com/Toyota/Camry/2011/engine/excessive_oil_consumption.shtml)
  • Mr_ShiftrightMr_Shiftright Sonoma, CaliforniaMember Posts: 64,482
    Well it's interesting when you read these complaints---one of the Camry owners thinks it's outrageous that he has to check his oil level every two weeks.

    What I'm driving at is this: when you read these complaints, you don't know how well the cars were taken care of, or even if they used the correctly specified oil in the engine.

    As for engine seizure, these comments are also interesting. The owner hears a bad noise and then notes that it "gets worse when accelerating". You see the problem here? He kept driving and THEN the engine seized.

    Okay--let's presume that both these cars had engines that used oil. That's still no excuse for having them blow up.

    On any used car you buy, get a pre-purchase inspection done. Can you actually check for oil consumption? Yes, you can, with a cylinder leakdown test. You can also live with a car that burns a quart every 1500 miles. That's about 5 tank fill-ups, at which point one would hope you'd be checking the oil anyway.

    Seems like you are shopping in the $6K range, which means you are going to have to settle for a higher mileage car. On the positive side, if the engine runs great at 100K miles, and isn't spewing out blue smoke or rattling like an old typewriter, chances are it's going to run a good while longer.

    Don't let the small % of failures recorded for these cars (or ANY car you buy, which will have similar comments), distract you from all the other things to look for---bad tires, bad brakes, corroded exhaust system, malfunctioning HVAC--these all cost money to fix as well.

    So that's why a pre-purchase inspection is a lot better strategy than trying to calculate odds off the internet.
  • fivedawgsfivedawgs Member Posts: 7

    Well it's interesting when you read these complaints---one of the Camry owners thinks it's outrageous that he has to check his oil level every two weeks.

    What I'm driving at is this: when you read these complaints, you don't know how well the cars were taken care of, or even if they used the correctly specified oil in the engine.

    As for engine seizure, these comments are also interesting. The owner hears a bad noise and then notes that it "gets worse when accelerating". You see the problem here? He kept driving and THEN the engine seized.

    Okay--let's presume that both these cars had engines that used oil. That's still no excuse for having them blow up.

    On any used car you buy, get a pre-purchase inspection done. Can you actually check for oil consumption? Yes, you can, with a cylinder leakdown test. You can also live with a car that burns a quart every 1500 miles. That's about 5 tank fill-ups, at which point one would hope you'd be checking the oil anyway.

    Seems like you are shopping in the $6K range, which means you are going to have to settle for a higher mileage car. On the positive side, if the engine runs great at 100K miles, and isn't spewing out blue smoke or rattling like an old typewriter, chances are it's going to run a good while longer.

    Don't let the small % of failures recorded for these cars (or ANY car you buy, which will have similar comments), distract you from all the other things to look for---bad tires, bad brakes, corroded exhaust system, malfunctioning HVAC--these all cost money to fix as well.

    So that's why a pre-purchase inspection is a lot better strategy than trying to calculate odds off the internet.

    Based on your experience with cars, which one would you purchase?
  • fivedawgsfivedawgs Member Posts: 7

    I'd buy the Camry because if you don't like it, it would be easier to bail on it. Everybody wants affordable used Camrys. But you know, at this price point, either one might work. Used cars can't be compared like new cars. Every used car is different. A clean, well-kept Hyundai might be a great deal better a purchase than a neglected Camry.

    So, your recommendation is to go with a pre-purchase inspection and then purchase the Camry if both cars are well maintained?
  • benjaminhbenjaminh Member Posts: 6,080
    edited June 2018
    According to Leasehackr.com it was possible a few months ago to lease a brand-new 2018 Sonata for less than $200 a month with 0 down. My guess is similar deals might be possible now....

    https://leasehackr.com/blog/2018/3/20/hyundai-sonata-164-month-0-down

    Would you consider something like that? Would that be possible for you financially? Might be better than buying a 2010 with almost 100k miles and all sorts of possible problems—and just plain old regular maintenance coming up, like tires, tune-up, brakes, shocks, etc.

    And a new Sonata with discounts starts at c. $20k, and Hyundai will give you 0% financing over 5 years. Here's an example from my local dealer:

    https://www.oxmoorhyundai.com/inventory/2018-hyundai-sonata-se-fwd-4d-sedan-5npe24af8jh649074

    With a small downpayment that would mean monthly payments of c. $300 a month. Just a thought. $300 month is a lot, but compared to a possible $1500 repair and/or maintenance bill on a used 7k car maybe it's not so bad?
    2018 Acura TLX 2.4 Tech 4WS (mine), 2018 Honda CR-V EX AWD (wife's)
  • fivedawgsfivedawgs Member Posts: 7
    benjaminh said:

    According to Leasehackr.com it was possible a few months ago to lease a brand-new 2018 Sonata for less than $200 a month with 0 down. My guess is similar deals might be possible now....

    https://leasehackr.com/blog/2018/3/20/hyundai-sonata-164-month-0-down

    Would you consider something like that? Would that be possible for you financially? Might be better than buying a 2010 with almost 100k miles and all sorts of possible problems—and just plain old regular maintenance coming up, like tires, tune-up, brakes, shocks, etc.

    I am a graduate student. So i cant possibly justify putting 200 down a month for a brand new car. The insurance fee is going to be insane! Unless you think otherwise.
  • benjaminhbenjaminh Member Posts: 6,080
    edited June 2018
    fivedawgs said:

    benjaminh said:

    According to Leasehackr.com it was possible a few months ago to lease a brand-new 2018 Sonata for less than $200 a month with 0 down. My guess is similar deals might be possible now....

    https://leasehackr.com/blog/2018/3/20/hyundai-sonata-164-month-0-down

    Would you consider something like that? Would that be possible for you financially? Might be better than buying a 2010 with almost 100k miles and all sorts of possible problems—and just plain old regular maintenance coming up, like tires, tune-up, brakes, shocks, etc.

    I am a graduate student. So i cant possibly justify putting 200 down a month for a brand new car. The insurance fee is going to be insane! Unless you think otherwise.
    My guess is that the insurance on a new car won't be that much more. But something.

    I was a grad student too 25 years ago, and I bought some used cars that ended up being a lot of trouble and money and stress. I even bought "1 owner" cars that were checked out by mechanics. But most cars starting at c. 100k miles need a lot of maintenance and repairs.

    At one point I added up all the maintenance and repair costs for our used cars and I realized I could have actually just bought a new car for the same amount of money, and saved myself a lot of stress and hassle. I've bought new cars ever since. And, if I could go back and give myself advice in grad school I would have said just get the new Honda or Toyota or whatever.

    Hyundai usually is almost as good in terms of quality, longevity, etc. as Honda and Toyota these days.

    Do you have money saved up for buying this used car? Or are you financing it? If you're financing it, a used car might have a finance rate of c. 8% or so, depending on your credit. Over 3 years of financing at a rate like that you'd pay thousands of dollars in interest even for a used car.

    But if Hyundai is willing to finance you, you could save a lot of money. An Elantra is less than a Sonata, but still a good car.

    The Civic of today is the same size as an Accord from 25 years ago.

    So "compact" cars today, in other words, are almost midsize and might work for you.
    2018 Acura TLX 2.4 Tech 4WS (mine), 2018 Honda CR-V EX AWD (wife's)
  • benjaminhbenjaminh Member Posts: 6,080
    There's a new Hyundai Elantra at my local dealer for $15k....

    https://www.oxmoorhyundai.com/inventory/2018-hyundai-sonata-se-fwd-4d-sedan-5npe24af8jh649074

    Mr_Shiftright has offered great advice, of course. My 2 cents about leasing or buying new might not be practical. But it might be worth exploring imho.
    2018 Acura TLX 2.4 Tech 4WS (mine), 2018 Honda CR-V EX AWD (wife's)
  • fivedawgsfivedawgs Member Posts: 7
    benjaminh said:

    There's a new Hyundai Elantra at my local dealer for $15k....

    https://www.oxmoorhyundai.com/inventory/2018-hyundai-sonata-se-fwd-4d-sedan-5npe24af8jh649074

    Mr_Shiftright has offered great advice, of course. My 2 cents about leasing or buying new might not be practical. But it might be worth exploring imho.

    I do have 8k saved up.
  • fivedawgsfivedawgs Member Posts: 7
    benjaminh said:

    fivedawgs said:

    benjaminh said:

    According to Leasehackr.com it was possible a few months ago to lease a brand-new 2018 Sonata for less than $200 a month with 0 down. My guess is similar deals might be possible now....

    https://leasehackr.com/blog/2018/3/20/hyundai-sonata-164-month-0-down

    Would you consider something like that? Would that be possible for you financially? Might be better than buying a 2010 with almost 100k miles and all sorts of possible problems—and just plain old regular maintenance coming up, like tires, tune-up, brakes, shocks, etc.

    I am a graduate student. So i cant possibly justify putting 200 down a month for a brand new car. The insurance fee is going to be insane! Unless you think otherwise.
    My guess is that the insurance on a new car won't be that much more. But something.

    I was a grad student too 25 years ago, and I bought some used cars that ended up being a lot of trouble and money and stress. I even bought "1 owner" cars that were checked out by mechanics. But most cars starting at c. 100k miles need a lot of maintenance and repairs.

    At one point I added up all the maintenance and repair costs for our used cars and I realized I could have actually just bought a new car for the same amount of money, and saved myself a lot of stress and hassle. I've bought new cars ever since. And, if I could go back and give myself advice in grad school I would have said just get the new Honda or Toyota or whatever.

    Hyundai usually is almost as good in terms of quality, longevity, etc. as Honda and Toyota these days.

    Do you have money saved up for buying this used car? Or are you financing it? If you're financing it, a used car might have a finance rate of c. 8% or so, depending on your credit. Over 3 years of financing at a rate like that you'd pay thousands of dollars in interest even for a used car.

    But if Hyundai is willing to finance you, you could save a lot of money. An Elantra is less than a Sonata, but still a good car.

    The Civic of today is the same size as an Accord from 25 years ago.

    So "compact" cars today, in other words, are almost midsize and might work for you.
    This actually makes sense when you think about it.
  • benjaminhbenjaminh Member Posts: 6,080
    edited June 2018
    fivedawgs said:

    benjaminh said:

    There's a new Hyundai Elantra at my local dealer for $15k....

    https://www.oxmoorhyundai.com/inventory/2018-hyundai-sonata-se-fwd-4d-sedan-5npe24af8jh649074

    Mr_Shiftright has offered great advice, of course. My 2 cents about leasing or buying new might not be practical. But it might be worth exploring imho.

    I do have 8k saved up.
    That's great. A used car might be the way to go.

    But if your credit rating qualifies you for low financing from Hyundai or Honda or Toyota, that might be a path to consider. Pretty much everyone in grad school has enough to worry about without worrying about whether their car is going to break down too, or what repair or maintenance bill might be coming next month or next week. Just to say the obvious, a new car only needs basically oil changes every c.6 months for the first three years. If anything else happens you're covered by the warranty. If you just put c. $2k down on a new car, there'd still be the rest saved to either make the monthly payments or whatever. Even compared to a 2010, many 2018 cars get better mpg. For instance, a 2018 Civic will save c.$500 a year in gas if you drive c. 15k miles a year compared to a 2010 Sonata. New cars are often safer too. On the credit thing, just maybe it might be possible for a parent or other relative to co-sign for the loan to get the low interest rate. If one of my children asked me for that, I think I would do it. Again, just a thought.
    2018 Acura TLX 2.4 Tech 4WS (mine), 2018 Honda CR-V EX AWD (wife's)
  • kyfdxkyfdx Moderator Posts: 207,822
    If he can pay cash, he can go without collision/comprehensive. If he is a young driver, that could save him $100/mo. (and, on a $7K car, that's what I would recommend).

    I think your plan is good. Expand your search from these two cars...

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  • graphicguygraphicguy Edmunds Poster EmeritusMember Posts: 13,452
    Ah....the old paralysis by analysis.

    As mentioned, I think it's pretty much a toss up. Faced with investing good money in a car that's proved troublesome over its lifetime or to buy something with problems that are quite noticeable (burning oil?).

    100K miles on a car isn't the "bugaboo" it used to be in cars over the last several years. If an engine was "seized", that means it likely wasn't well cared for to begin with.

    I do agree that the Camry will be easier to get into, and out of, so that should go into your thinking.

    I also agree to expand your search. You should be able to find something which is relatively trouble free for $8K.

    But, there's something to be said about those who suggested to get a new Sonata on a $200 lease. Put that $8K in an account and draw it down to pay for a 36 month lease. You'll have a trouble free car that's under bumper to bumper warranty with no risk of having a large repair bill that's bound to happen with a used car with high mileage.

    My guess is the used car you buy for $6K-$8K will be worth much less at the end of that same 3 year period....and potentially will cost you much more than that in repairs.
    2022 Honda Accord Hybrid Touring
  • graphicguygraphicguy Edmunds Poster EmeritusMember Posts: 13,452
    Wait...just a couple of questions. Are the cars you're looking at the ones actually in your link? If you're just going off of a couple of internet complaints, don't put much stock on those. It's the internet. Who knows what those people did, or didn't do when it comes to maintenance.
    2022 Honda Accord Hybrid Touring
  • nyccarguynyccarguy Stamford, CTMember Posts: 15,356
    I'm going to second what @graphicguy said. Take your $8K and stick it into a checking account and use that to make your lease payments (as long as your credit is good). Look at a new Corolla LE. Shop around. I'm sure you can get one for less than $200 per month. They have $750 College Grad Rebate too. A $7,000 car today is a miled up piece of garbage that either someone is trying to get rid of or some dealer bought as a trade in for $4K. Even if the car is trouble free, reliable, and doesn't need any repairs; older, high mileage cars need maintenance to keep them going (new shocks/struts, new tires, brakes, brake fluid, transmission fluid, coolant)

    2001 Prelude Type SH, 2022 Highlander XLE AWD, 2022 Wrangler Unlimited 4Xe

  • benjaminhbenjaminh Member Posts: 6,080
    edited June 2018
    The official Hyundai lease offer on a new Sonata SEL is $199 a month with c.$2k down. But that's the "list price," which is open to negotiation. With some persistent negotiation, and a willingness to walk away, you might be able to get rid of that downpayment.

    https://www.hyundaiusa.com/sonata/index.aspx

    The lease offer on the Elantra is $179 a month with 2k down.

    The SEL Sonata is a very nice car. It's one step up from the already well-equipped base model. It has a list price of c. $25k, and so being able to lease it for c.$200 or so a month is a good deal. It has CarPlay/AndroidAuto (great feature), power seat, blind-spot detection system with cross traffic alert, heated side mirrors to defrost on cold days, 5 star safety rating, etc, etc. Might well be a car you would want to own in the long run—maybe even 10 years. In fact Hyundai has a 10 year engine and transmission warranty. Here's one at my local dealer in red. Nice car imho....

    https://www.oxmoorhyundai.com/inventory/2018-hyundai-sonata-sel-fwd-4d-sedan-5npe34af7jh626088

    Compare that to car with almost 100k miles that almost certainly has issues, and that you'll probably be dying to get rid of in 3 or 4 years. And then you'll have to start all over with a new car search with a new pile of cash (because the resale value of that used car which now has c. 160k miles on it now has dropped a lot—no matter how much money you've put into it). And so, over c. 10 years two junky used cars, or one nice new car for about the same money. But the new car, if you can swing it, will be a pleasure to drive almost every day. The used ones? Maybe yes, maybe no, depending on the day.
    2018 Acura TLX 2.4 Tech 4WS (mine), 2018 Honda CR-V EX AWD (wife's)
  • Mr_ShiftrightMr_Shiftright Sonoma, CaliforniaMember Posts: 64,482
    Another consideration, though, on a lease is that his insurance will be considerably higher--he wouldn't need comp/collision/gap on a $5,000 car. That could nick him another $50 a month.

    I just don't like to encourage people on a very tight budget to go into debt, even though on paper it makes sense to lease.
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