#75 of 84 Well... we need to add the Koreans too.
Apr 03, 2001 (6:06 am)
What with the Elantra GT only a month or two away things are starting to look very interesting in the hatchback market. Still I am not sure it is really fair to compare all of these cars directly against one another. While the Elantra GT and the Mazda 5 door (or Protege 5 or whatever it is called this week) might be a reasonably good comparison comparing say a Saab with a Daewoo is akin to comparing a BMW 3 series with a Chevy Cavalier.. not that there is anything wrong with the Cavalier but it is simply in a completely different class of vehicle.
It was the cheapest-feeling car I have ever driven - it pulled to the right and made screeching noises right off the dealer lot. When I test drove it there were 11 miles on the odometer. The salesman could not explain or justify either the pulling or the noises.(I went on to test-drive a Nubira just to see if it was that car only. It also pulled, if you can believe it, and the lights did not work)
The way I see it:
Korean - OK value if you pick carefully, cheapest cars by far, MUST PICK VERY CAREFULLY!
Japanese - generally better build quality, better warranties, will last longer, feel more sophisticated
American - make cars that drive better than the Koreans when they are new, but break down and die sooner, have more recalls.
European - feel very sophisticated, heavy, luxurious even if they are not a luxury brand (i.e. VW Golf). Run well, but not light like the Japanese models, you'd better be loaded if you want to buy one
Hyundais are of much better quality these days than Mitsubishis. Talk about a major turnaround for a car company. They are the only Korean brand I would consider buying. In ten years the leading Japanese brands will have a major headache on their hands I am sure, competing with Hyundai.