2004 Hyundai Sonata 4 cylinder gas from North America


Don't walk away from it, RUN


Air bag light was on when purchased, and it remained on; seems to be an issue with this model.

Air conditioning ceased working 3 years and 9 months after I purchased the car. I don't know if it's an issue that can easily be resolved, because I can't see if the compressor is running and I can't add refrigerant unless I can determine if the compressor is running. I was going to have that determined when I had the tires rotated, but that's not going to happen now.

Yesterday the car died peacefully passing to the trash heap and I won't be buying another Hyundai ever; I got away cheap. The timing belt is the issue; some genius designer decided to make this a serpentine belt instead of a chain, and additionally they made it a non-interference design, so translated that means the belt can break, but the engine can keep running so that it destroys itself, valves & all sorts of expensive parts need to be replaced. Can you say built in obsolescence? I can!!

I didn't pay a lot for it and I didn't put any major money into it so I got away cheap. I paid $3789 for it 4 years ago and I know that the transmission is on its way out. I have been told that it will cost over $3k for just this repair, so I am donating this pile of metal and hope the charity can make some money from it. I am not walking away, I'm running. Don't buy this car and don't buy any year or model from them unless they have changed a lot of things. Check out other sites; it's scary.

General Comments:

Said it all above. They should be recalling based on the air bag situation alone, never mind the timing belt. Things are just not easy to do on this car. An example would be changing a headlight bulb; simple right? Not on this car. Same with the tail lights; nothing is easy.

Would you buy another car from this manufacturer? No

Review Date: 12th March, 2016

13th Mar 2016, 16:18

Not every 75000 miles, but the timing belt should be changed every 60000 miles.

13th Mar 2016, 20:26

FYI, IF an engine is of "non-interference" design, this means it will NOT self destruct if the timing belt snaps.

For example on my dad's old Volvo 240, which is also of non-interference design, when he neglected to replace the belt, the belt simply snapped and the car died on the side of the road. A tow and replacement of the belt was all that was needed to get it running again.

2004 Hyundai Sonata GLS 2.7 from Bulgaria


Good ride with some issues


Front axle was truly rusty and needed to be changed.

Clutch was changed at 130000.

Front brake disks changed when I acquired the vehicle.

General Comments:

The car is really comfortable for a long ride. The V6 engine has enough power to make a nice ride, without expecting great acceleration performance. The external sounds are not so well isolated. The suspension is nice and the interior is acceptable, except for the wood plastic imitation put on the GLS models. Some internally used materials are perhaps cheaper than I would like them to be - the leather colour starts to fall apart, and the same happens on the steering wheel.

In general the car is good, but some engineering decisions were not as good as we would like them to be:

1. The V6 engine is too heavy for the front axle and puts it under serious pressure. Combined with the nasty weather in central Europe, it has so much rust, that it needed to be replaced 9 years after the car was made.

2. The V6 engine is really powerful for the clutch installed, so if you like to drive the car in a more dynamic way, it needs to be replaced more often than for the 2.0 litre Sonata.

3. The fuel consumption is reasonable, but far away from the figures mentioned in the car's manual. According to the documentation of the car, a long trip takes 7.9 litres for 100 kilometers. I never reached this, regardless of my driving style. I reached 10-11 litres. Nevertheless, you don't buy a 2.7 petrol engine when you need fuel economy, right :-) ?

Would you buy another car from this manufacturer? Yes

Review Date: 14th August, 2014

13th Mar 2016, 16:14

The genius that conceived the engine for your Sonata also made a very curious suggestion to the extremely intelligent buyers required that they should replace the timing belt every 12 years or 8 years (for severe usage or temperature) or 75000 miles. Yours had 13 years and almost 90000 miles. Why have you not replaced the timing belt following purchase?

Hamor Metoomtam.

13th Mar 2016, 22:16

Hey Hamor, the writer doesn't mention anything about the timing belt; that doesn't mean it wasn't changed. Maybe as this is a MAINTENANCE item, he/she didn't see the need to mention it as it's NOT A FAULT OF THE CAR.