Last post on Nov 30, 2013 at 9:44 AM
You are in the Sedans
What is this discussion about?
Chevrolet Malibu, Nissan Maxima, Mazda MAZDA3, Nissan Altima, Honda Accord, Honda Civic, Hyundai Elantra, Lexus IS 250, Acura TSX, Car Comparisons, Sedan
#2223 of 3633 Re: Altima, Accord or....KIA?! [wik82]
May 17, 2011 (9:28 am)
There's nothing wrong at all with Hyundai. But it is a known fact that Kia is their budget line and is not as well built nor as reliable. Also, a $30K car, when it was new, should stomp all over a $20K car from another manufacturer, just because of the extra materials and refinement. Nobody questions that a TSX is a better car than a Civic. Well, DUH - you get what you pay for. And the smart person buys the 3 year old TSX instead of a Civic. At least around where I live. Same price for more bling and a bit better image with the neighbors doesn't hurt, either
Worshiping MPG can be penny-wise and pound foolish. 27 vs 30 mpg is 3703 vs 3333 gallons over 100K miles. 370 gallons. Even at today's insane prices, it's about $1500 over 5-8 years for the average drive. If you drive 8-10K a year like I do, that's about $150 a year. Hardly worth worrying about.
The added insurance, taxes, registration, and depreciation on a new car is a fool's errand if there ever was one, compared to buying a CPO one a few years old. But you want something that is well enough built and depreciates quickly.
This is why domestics, since they depreciate more quickly, can be a better deal. It's dead-simple to get a 2007 GM or Ford car for $2K less than an import. That's your fuel difference and more (less sales tax, less insurance, etc - all adds up to a few hundred more over the years)
BUT... GM and Ford make engines that are actually among the most fuel-efficient on the planet, currently. Getting 27-30mpg highway out of a nearly 4000lb car is quite amazing, in fact. The new engine Ford has in its Mustang is incredible. 300HP and 29mpg highway. Kia has.. yeah, keep looking.
If you want your cake and want to eat it as well, there is one last choice that I would recommend :
A 2007 Honda Accord VP/SE with manual. This was a budget model with literally nothing on it. You could buy one new for about $19K and for a basic car to get around in, it was perfect. In terms of refinement, though, it was an Accord through and through. Just without the leather and fancy extras. But with ABS and the necessities, of course.
Also, the manual in it is the best one that I've driven for any car under $40K. Video game easy and precise as a rifle bolt. The Kia gearbox feels like a rubbery box of old parts by comparison. So do most Ford and GM manuals as well, to be un-biased. Even the gearbox on a CTS isn't as nice. Its main claim to fame, though, is that everything is servo-controlled, so it's not going to wear your leg out. I could teach a new driver how to drive one like a pro in an hour or two. Easiest manual that I've ever driven other than maybe a Porsche. (but for a Boxster's price, the gearbox had better be telepathic)
http://www.cars.com/go/search/detail.jsp?tracktype=usedcc&csDlId=&csDgId=&listin- - - gId=65092889
This is essentially the same thing as a VP with a better stereo. Honda has a superb certified program as well.
Cheap, reliable, and fantastic MPG. 23/31 with manual.(note - this is "new" MPG, the original on the window sticker was 24/34. 35mpg+ on long drives is easily possible. On regular gas as well.
This was also the last year of the previous model, so all the bugs were worked out.
Whew. thanks for putting up with me
#2224 of 3633 Re: Altima, Accord or....KIA?! [plekto]
May 17, 2011 (10:18 am)
Great info...do you test drive cars for a living? Seriously I'm just curious, plenty of people that post here know a heck of a lot more than I do...you seem to be one of them hahah
You mentioned Kia is the "budget line" of Hyundai? I just thought they were both Korean competitors...In the case of the Optima VS Sonata, are you saying the Sonata would be much better because it isn't the budget line, or...???
The CVT transmission thing is really scaring me about the Altima. It seems to be enough to really push me more in the direction of the Accord or Sonata/Optima.
I honestly think both Korean makes are pretty slick looking. A close friend got a new Elentra about 2 weeks ago. She was very pleased with the service she got and the deal. At least locally though, the Optima is on special for a 159/month lease while the Sonata is at 199/month (both 3 years). I e-mailed the Kia dealership, simply to open the lines of communication, yesterday and have yet to hear back from them. I am concerned about the potential lack of customer service.
My buddy who works at the Honda dealership won't let me go wrong if I go through them. I guess I just have to debate on if a lower monthly for a lease is better for me at this point, or if the buying used, with a higher monthly but ownership is best....pretty hard to decide.
#2225 of 3633 Re: Altima, Accord or....KIA?! [wik82]
May 17, 2011 (10:39 am)
Why do you think you need to go new with Hyundai/Kia? The previous-generation Sonata and Optima are good cars also, and used prices are very reasonable. I bought a 2007 Sonata GLS 18 months ago and it's been a great car. A lot of those 2006-2010 Sonatas came with a moonroof, even in the the low-end GLS trim.
I did mention the 2007 Accord with a stick a few posts back. My son just bought a 2007 Accord SE with a stick, 90k miles on it but in excellent condition, paid a little over $9k for it. I'm sure it has lots of miles left in it--looks nearly new inside and out, drives like new also. The SE doesn't have a moonroof, but you can get the Accord EX with a stick also (or automatic, your choice).
#2226 of 3633 Re: Altima, Accord or....KIA?! [backy]
May 17, 2011 (10:47 am)
I was under the impression, in the case of the Optima at least, maybe not the Sonata, that the new, redesigned model was far superior to the former ones. The Sonata isn't necessarily the same, but my mistake, I had thought the implication as far as the KIA was that they just recently started "picking it up" as far as quality and such.
#2227 of 3633 Re: Altima, Accord or....KIA?! [wik82]
May 17, 2011 (11:08 am)
Hyundai is the parent company and as such is a bit like how Infiniti is to NIssan - just with budget cars. Years ago, Kia was its own company and was far ahead of Hyundai in quality. Hyundai bought them out, essentially flipped the brands around and used Kia's technology to help revitalize their vehicles. Now they are comparable to the other budget makes like Nissan and Mazda. But in all of this, Kia became the second class citizen, and if you know anything about Asian companies, the main brand is always superior (or to be more exact, the lower brand never is allowed to compete equally - there's always a few things de-tuned or missing from it)
My best friend and I used to spend weekends going around and test-driving cars for fun and also hanging out at local record stores, video arcades, pawn shops, and so on - all vintage/low-tech entertainment. Usually followed by a lunch at some place with more MSG than should be allowable by law
I still like to drive cars as a result, even years later. So when something new comes out, I test it thoroughly(sometimes both of us if he's in town).
I wish I could get paid to review cars. Because if it sucks, I'll tell you. But editors are so scared of losing ad revenue that "it was moderately quick" is about as close to "It was as slow as a snail on Prozac" as you'll ever read.
Back to cars... I've driven the new Elantra and it's OK - it feels like everybody else's basic box. Nothing bad, but it's a basic thing to get from point A to B. Zero feeling of fun to drive. Of course, a Buick and an Accord and most other stuff like that is also unimpressive to me. But among those basic machines, the best engines go to Honda and then GM and then Toyota. Everything else is 5th place or worse. The best transmissions are made by GM, then Ford, and a lot of GM transmissions are re-branded in imports as well (Honda makes their own automatics, though). Manuals, though, are pretty much each company. Honda and Mazda are the best of the basic makes, IME.
But none of these cars, while fine to get around in, feel like a BMW. Or a CTS. Or a G37. (this list is pretty much the list for Europe/U.S./Japan when it comes to entry level luxury sport sedans, btw) Myself, I've leearned to just save my pennies and always get the better car, even used, because I like driving and when you get in a car that makes you happy every time you sit in it, it's worth it. I've never felt that way in a Toyota. But I have in a Mercedes.
BTW, the best BMW 3 series ever was the E36. I'd honestly take a 99 M3 convertible over almost anything new on the market.
http://www.cars.com/go/search/detail.jsp?tracktype=usedcc&csDlId=&csDgId=&listin- - - gId=54790460
Every time I check the price on one, I want it more. For this price, I could live with the repair bills. The only thing comparable to it new would cost 50K+.
P.S. If you have a friend at a Honda dealership, you might get a good deal. Honda has leases that are very good. But most leases limit your miles and they will charge you for every tiny scuff when you turn it in. Even the Honda Accord lease is $9100 in payments over three years. And you're better off just owning a CPO for $15K at that price, since it'll easily be worth the $6K difference at 9 years old. Most leases aren't any better than owning - usually the only time it makes sense is on something that is expensive to repair, like a BMW or Mercedes if they are having a crazy promotion that month.
Your friend can find a 2007 CPO Accord with stick if you want for probably $15K. Get a good radio put in it for $300 and you're set.
#2228 of 3633 Re: Altima, Accord or....KIA?! [wik82]
May 17, 2011 (1:52 pm)
Yes, the new Sonata and Optima are far superior to the former ones. But redesigns tend to be that way. That doesn't mean the former Sonata and Optima are bad cars. When the 2006 Sonata debuted in early 2005, Edmunds did a comparo against Accord and Camry, with all cars at a similar price point. Sonata won. Optima beat Camry in multiple comparos. The 2009-10 Optima is better than earlier years because it got standard ABS and ESC--those were hard to find on the Optima before 2009. For 2009, both cars got a 175 hp I4 and 5-speed automatic even in the base trim (was 162 hp and a 4AT before that). The Optima has a little tauter ride and handling than the Sonata. But the Sonata is a little bigger inside (that changed for the 2011 redesigns.) So you might find one more to your liking than the other.
If you can find a 2009-10 Sonata or Optima at a good price, they might be worth taking a look at. Another bonus is they have a 5-year, 60k mile bumper-to-bumper warranty, so you might get some new-car warranty with that used car (I did with my used Sonata).
#2229 of 3633 Re: Altima, Accord or....KIA?! [wik82]
May 17, 2011 (6:16 pm)
First of all, you won't want an 07 Accord VP or SE (as was suggested) because they don't have a sunroof. You'd want an EX.
Secondly, the Sonata and Optima would be better deals used than new because of the huge hit in resale value. Hondas don't depreciate nearly as quickly. Backy is correct in that the Korean cars have come a long way in quality.
Finally, you probably won't want to take anyone's word for ride, comfort, etc. because we are all different. Some like soft and cushy, others prefer stiff and sporty. Judge for yourself when you take the test drives.
#2230 of 3633 Re: Altima, Accord or....KIA?! [tallman1]
May 17, 2011 (7:56 pm)
So he should pay 3-4K more (used price) for a sunroof and some leather and bling? That's just silly. The advantage of the VP is that it is Hyundai cheap used and Honda quality.
The only differences between the VP and the normal lower model of the Accord (or Civic) is that it is missing two rear speakers (literally missing the speakers - everything is there to screw them into the brackets and attach the wires), has a basic radio ( aftermarket ones work better anyways and will be installed by the dealer or previous owner anyways), and is missing the rear sway bar ($150-$200 to do yourself - hardly makes a difference in how it drives).
Not bad for an average of $1500-$2000 off of a normal DX or LX.
#2231 of 3633 Re: Altima, Accord or....KIA?! [plekto]
May 17, 2011 (8:41 pm)
In several of his posts, he made it very clear that a sunroof was a top priority. I'm not judging anything, I'm just responding to what he said he wants. What you think is "just silly" doesn't matter. As a big fan of sunroofs, I guess that makes me silly too.
BTW, you don't need to have leather to get a sunroof in an Accord. The EX has cloth seats. And since the EX has the sunroof, there are a few more differences between the VP and the EX than speakers, a radio, and a sway bar.
#2232 of 3633 Re: Altima, Accord or....KIA?! [wik82]
May 18, 2011 (4:06 am)
I am the person who discussed the public relations issues with Hyundai and Kia dealers. I live in North Jersey. There are two Hyundai dealers in my area. One is associated with a Chrysler Dealer, and one is a "stand alone dealership!" ---- Both have a reputation for "poor customer relations" and "poor service." ---- The Kia dealer, was a former Jeep dealership, with the same owners. In 1995, I leased a loaded / top of the line Jeep Grand Cherokee from this dealer that was the "vehicle from HELL!" (It lived in the service department!) This vehicle had electrical and drive train problems throughout the term of the lease. At the end of the lease, the dealer offered to lease me a new jeep at his cost. I rejected his offer, and went to a foreign name plate. So, as you can see, while I think Hyundai & Kia make beautiful vehicles in the upper end of their line, the dealers in my area prevent me from considering these products. This is the fault of the parent company. They do not put high enough demands on the dealership for "customer satisfaction" and "service excellence." ----------- Best regards. --------- Dwayne