I previously owned a Chevy Cavalier. It was a cute, comfy, cheap car, but everything in the world went wrong with it and it was only three years old when I bought it. My 2009 Hyundai Sonata was purchased in 2013. I owned it for three years before it was wrecked in an accident. In those three years I never had to do anything other than oil change, wiper blade change, and new tires--all normal stuff. It ran perfectly and gave me no real trouble. Although it is a little too wide near the sideview mirror level, it is extremely spacious. I could sleep comfortably in the trunk or backseat if needed. It is super reliable. The one time the check engine light came on it turned out my gas cap was off. I love this car. It broke my heart when it was wrecked. But, even in that, it was a good car. A car clipped me while speeding. He was coming down the hill at a good speed and did not even brake. He smacked into the front/side of the car, and the car jerked but did not spin. The front was all smashed, but the damage was only about a foot in, and everything moved about a foot to the left from the side swipe. The rest of the car was fine. I could still drive it the few blocks home. The insurer just considered it a "total loss" because the cost of repairing it exceeded the retail value of the car. That is the main drawback. I don't know why, since it is a very good car, but it has very poor resale value (about $7,000 at just 7 years old). I owe more than the car is worth. I would highly recommend this car to anyone--but would recommend bargaining down to the Kelley Blue Book value, which is much less than what most dealers sell it for, to make sure you don't end up with a big gap to cover if the car goes kaput. Or, at least factor in the cost of gap insurance, which is really important if you get this car.
Bought this car in 2009 as a dealer demo with 5000 miles on it. Now 2/26/2016 has 55,000 miles and still drives and smells like a new car. Only problems I have had are the rear brakes, which I fixed myself with new calipers and rotors. Got tired of Hyundai denying the design defect and their refusal to fix under bumper to bumper coverage. The car is well designed, tight and as others have written the V-6 and transmission is fast. Pickup is faster than my 2006 Mustang GT. This is one the nicest cars I have ever owned and I have had Lincolns and Cadillacs. It isn't a plush ride but it is soft for a small car. Staying away from the Dealers and doing maintenance and repairs myself. Doing a brake job takes 30 minutes a wheel and changing the oil is just as fast. I just refuse to pay the Dealer $59 to have a $9 Cabin filter (another 15 min.) replaced. AUGUST 2016-UPDATE: Front speakers became intermittant. Always thought there were only two sound systems in the 2009 but found out I have a third..one with an external amplifier in the trunk passenger side wall.It is not an Infinity System. Repair price $275, replacement from Hyundai $550, bought a Rockford Fosgate 4 channel for $200 and cut the old one out . Didnt realize how bad the Hyundai System sounded . Everything working fine now. Car is still performing well although shift patterns sometimes get strange . UPDATE: AUGUST 30, 2017-Car still performing well, another 5k miles on it with no issues. So far very reliable. Will not even consider buying a new one with all the problems reported with them.
BEWARE!!! Hyundai Manufacturer "Bumper to Bumper" Warranty Not Always Honored by Dealerships!!
written on 09-15-2012
I bought an 09 Sonata V6 Limited in Dec of 08 and an Azera in Mar of 09. Both cars have needed repairs which I was assured by Hyundai Motors were covered by their bumper to bumper warranties, but which a local dealer, Doral Hyundai, refused to warranty, claiming owner fault rather than factory defect. They are [non-permissible content removed] extraordinaire! It is impossible to get them to fix anything under warranty; they always try to charge the vehicle owner. Hyundai has no way to make a dealer honor the factory warranty, claiming dealers are franchises and they can't make them do anything! Each dealer decides what they will or will not warranty. I had to "shop" for a dealer that would honor the warranty.
Most reliable vehicle, more so than the Corolla, Tacoma, Civic parked in the drive. 123,000 miles, never an issue. Picked it over the Camry & Accord because of comfort. Bought in spring of '08, but is an '09 model. Up to 37.5mpg hwy. Will definitely go Hyundai again. As of 10-28-16, the Sonata now has 123,419 miles, and I won't give it up! Runs perfectly on it's eight and one half year birthday. A couple of issues: First, the dashboard has too much glare in daylight, making it about impossible to see the speedometer with the sun beaming directly into the cockpit. Second, the dimmer rheostat doesn't dim the dash enough for nighttime driving, and as I work nights, it is a bit bothersome. Third, something new for this updated report - some rust on the driver's door, where the door skin folds over to the lower corner closest to the latch, it is crumbling, so it will be interesting to see how severe it becomes. I do wash and wax the car, regularly and it has not been driven on the salted NY winter roads. The car is now parked at our second home in Florida, so I am hoping the rust will not progress. I've also oiled that surface hoping to stop the rusting.
Great Car! I have get 40 Miles per gallon/6.9 liters per 100 liters on the highway and 35 Highway - City mixed. Just past my second anniversary and the 50,000 Km mark. I have done only regular maintenance. I appreciate the great dealer service too. I cannot say enough positive about the car as it is still just like new. I drove a Volvo before this and the Sonata is a superior car never mind the value for dollar you get!