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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I got some great info from my post on Ford Fusion vs Sonata and think we've eliminated the Fusion for now. I'm looking for some good info on anyone that recently compared the 2010 Altima 4 Cylinder with the 2011 Sonata Limited. This would be a new vehicle for my wife, replacing a 2004 Santa Fe, main reason being she wants to go back to a car. We drove both today and as I'm typing this I am remembering she said she preferred the more solid feel of the Sonata and the additional bells and whistles.

We were talking a little bit ago and we were thinking the Altima may provide better reliability since it's been out much longer and had more time to iron out the details and get things right. It might have slightly better resale over time, but the numbers from Edmunds are very close when I modified things to match actual price quotes. Less of a warranty over the Hyundai, but if things are indeed more reliable and less problematic that would be less of an issue.

I personally didn't like the dash on the Altima, the Sonata interior is more Acura-ish, with the Altima being no frills.

I'm thinking I just answered my question, I really think the Sonata more matches what we're looking for overall. We may have to bite the bullet and hope for the best with the warranty there to back us up. But I'm definitely interested in hearing what others liked/disliked about the Altima. Thanks ahead of time!
 

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i think alot of people can help you with this question as altima was also my comparison before purchasing the sonata.
i may not be a lot of help, but this is my "dumb" reasoning:

- too many altimas
- sonata looks better
- sonata interior is bigger
- more features on sonata
- you get compliments from random people in the street and on the road in their cars. very good looking car!
 

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If reliability is your #1 priority, you should be looking at Honda and Toyota, not Nissan. But as you're probably aware of, ALL cars are going to have issues, including those 2. I'd value more a longer warranty, like Hyundai, which is what made me switch to Hyundai for the first time. My only concern is that direct injection is fairly new on gas engines, so am crossing my fingers it proves reliable on the Sonata. And not only problems with the high-pressure fuel pumps, but with carbon build-up over time. I just switched to fully synthetic oil at 1K miles, but am not sure how much that helps. My '08 Accord and '07 CR-V both burned oil since day 1, so I gave Hyundai a chance. We'll see if it lets me down or not. Since any car can be defective, just go with preference and price. Compared to a decade ago, pretty much ANY car is going to be reliable nowadays. What was a letdown to me was that this engine doesn't have hydraulic valve lifters, so besides being pretty noisy, valve adjustment (at least checking lash) is required every 60K miles. Bummer. But Honda is the same way (and its V6s still have freaking belt-driven cams). Another is the overboosted electric power steering even at highway speeds (Honda did get that one right). There's no perfect car out there, so at least make sure you enjoy driving it :thumbsup: .
 

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Altima is a nice car and recently was compared in Consumer Reports with the Sonata. The Sonata was not recommended but Consumers doesn't recommend new models. As a comparison there will be differences because the Altima has a CVT vs a six speed and the Altima is not nearly as sexy looking or feature laden for the money. It boils down to personal taste.
 

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As I mentioned in the other thread, front seat leg room was a big factor for me. But I eliminated the Altima pretty early in my decision process. I just didn't like the dash and I really don't like the CVT.
 

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Discussion Starter · #6 ·
Once again, thanks for all the great responses so far. I hadn't checked out Toyota since I had started to notice issues occurring more often in the newer models of people I know that drive them and in my own experience with a new Camry rental. The 'runaway car' issue definitely sealed the deal there also, whether it's a true problem or not. The Hondas I've heard great things about for the older ones, but again seems more issues with the newer ones and road noise seems to be more of an issue from reviews. Also once you add in all the features of the Sonata, the higher end Accord or even Civic end up being more.

And I agree on the Altima, every where you look you see one or five for that matter. The dash did nothing for me, but the wife said as long as there is XM, she could deal with it. But dealing with it means she definitely prefers the Hyundai as well.

Looks wise, feature wise and 10 minute ride wise we definitely prefer the Sonata. And with the business partner discount through work and the $500 Hyundai owner discount getting the price down to $23,362, the price is right as well. Just need to work a good deal on the trade-in and should be a done deal over the next few weeks. Thanks!
 

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I've driven plenty of both cars and it prefer the sonata mainly because of features and the interior is just sorry on the altima. I'd never buy a car that's been out for years, I prefer newer styled cars.
 

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I feel the Altima is at the back end of its life cycle and due for a redesign soon. I personally didnt care for the CVT transmission.

I did like the lower seat in the Altima versus the higher seat of the Sonata.

The Sonata feels more like a "cockpit" versus the openness of the Altima.

But like a person above said. Its about personal preference.
 

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For me I didn't really even consider the Altima based on size and options for the price tag that Nissan wants for it. At the end of the day people buy what they like and want.
 

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QUOTE (dudeman135 @ Jul 25 2010, 09:02 PM) index.php?act=findpost&pid=344721
I got some great info from my post on Ford Fusion vs Sonata and think we've eliminated the Fusion for now. I'm looking for some good info on anyone that recently compared the 2010 Altima 4 Cylinder with the 2011 Sonata Limited. This would be a new vehicle for my wife, replacing a 2004 Santa Fe, main reason being she wants to go back to a car. We drove both today and as I'm typing this I am remembering she said she preferred the more solid feel of the Sonata and the additional bells and whistles.

We were talking a little bit ago and we were thinking the Altima may provide better reliability since it's been out much longer and had more time to iron out the details and get things right. It might have slightly better resale over time, but the numbers from Edmunds are very close when I modified things to match actual price quotes. Less of a warranty over the Hyundai, but if things are indeed more reliable and less problematic that would be less of an issue.

I personally didn't like the dash on the Altima, the Sonata interior is more Acura-ish, with the Altima being no frills.

I'm thinking I just answered my question, I really think the Sonata more matches what we're looking for overall. We may have to bite the bullet and hope for the best with the warranty there to back us up. But I'm definitely interested in hearing what others liked/disliked about the Altima. Thanks ahead of time!
My wife and I test drove an Altima the day before we bought our sonatas. The car was ok, not a big fan of the CVT. The interior definately wasn't as nice as the sonata. it didn't have as many features as even a GLS. The sonata base model has audio controls on the leather wrapped steeting wheel, this was on the Altima's convenience pakage that cost another grand or so. All the ones that were on "special" for $299 month lease had hubcaps, my wifes car has wheels, power driver seat, auto lights, and was still $60 less a month to lease. The sonata rides a lot better, and has more room inside, and the trunk is bigger. It has more power, more torque, and gets better gas mileage. to me it's a no brainer The cocky sales manager was trying to pull some crap on me and started trashing hyundai. I pointed outside to my Santa Fe and he was like "don't get me wrong I love hyundai, i used to work for them, it's just not in the same league as Nissan" Then he told me that he NEVER lost a deal to a sonata since he's been with Nissan. The next day i leased a sonata and bought a sonata.....should I go back up there and show him my 2 new cars?
 

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I had narrowed it down to the altima and sonata SE. The Altima actually turned out to be cheaper by 2 grand because of discounts at the time at Nissan (both similarly equipped...sunroof, pushbutton start, proximity entry, navigation, etc). But i just liked the interior of the sonata more (although the altima had a gigantic glovebox compartment, which i really liked). The altima didn't have paddle shifters. Although the sonata has more horsepower on paper, the acceleration times etc are very similar as reported by consumer reports. The altima has been around for a long time with the same engine etc, so the reliability might be expected to be better (or at least is less of an unknown compared with the sonata). Roof strength is better on the Sonata (per IIHS testing). Crash testing slightly better for Sonata as well (per NHTSA rear passenger side impact test--though that was for the 2010 sonata).
 

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QUOTE (calguy @ Jul 26 2010, 03:03 PM) index.php?act=findpost&pid=344912
I had narrowed it down to the altima and sonata SE. The Altima actually turned out to be cheaper by 2 grand because of discounts at the time at Nissan (both similarly equipped...sunroof, pushbutton start, proximity entry, navigation, etc). But i just liked the interior of the sonata more (although the altima had a gigantic glovebox compartment, which i really liked). The altima didn't have paddle shifters. Although the sonata has more horsepower on paper, the acceleration times etc are very similar as reported by consumer reports. The altima has been around for a long time with the same engine etc, so the reliability might be expected to be better (or at least is less of an unknown compared with the sonata). Roof strength is better on the Sonata (per IIHS testing). Crash testing slightly better for Sonata as well (per NHTSA rear passenger side impact test).
Is there a published crash rating for the 2011 Sonata? My window sticker was "untested".

Would like to put my mind at ease if possible.
 

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QUOTE (rcweimer @ Jul 26 2010, 10:58 AM) index.php?act=findpost&pid=344860
The cocky sales manager was trying to pull some crap on me and started trashing hyundai. I pointed outside to my Santa Fe and he was like "don't get me wrong I love hyundai, i used to work for them, it's just not in the same league as Nissan" Then he told me that he NEVER lost a deal to a sonata since he's been with Nissan. The next day i leased a sonata and bought a sonata.....should I go back up there and show him my 2 new cars?
Off-topic, but this reminds me of 1992. I owned an '89 Sonata and was looking at a Chevy Lumina. Told the sales guy that I could get a new Sonata for $1500 less than the Lumina. He said, "Yea, but you can't really compare the Sonata and the Lumina. Not for $1500." I told him that the Camry was only $1500 more than Lumina and, well, you can't really compare a Camry and a Lumina, not for $1500. Needless to say, got that Lumina price down!

I love car buying. If I had the money I'd buy a new car every month.
 

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Discussion Starter · #18 ·
QUOTE (midas69 @ Jul 26 2010, 04:04 PM) index.php?act=findpost&pid=344932
I love car buying. If I had the money I'd buy a new car every month.
haha, me too actually! I've purchased 4 vehicles, soon to be 5, from dealers for myself or my wife over the last 20 years or so and learn something every time. It's a very predictable process actually and it's very fun when you're prepared with all of the pricing info from a place like Edmunds and know what incentives are offers, any dealer holdbacks, price quotes, etc. It makes my wife uncomfortable, but when all is said and done I think she enjoys watching things unfold as well.
 

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QUOTE (dudeman135 @ Jul 26 2010, 05:08 PM) index.php?act=findpost&pid=344992
haha, me too actually! I've purchased 4 vehicles, soon to be 5, from dealers for myself or my wife over the last 20 years or so and learn something every time. It's a very predictable process actually and it's very fun when you're prepared with all of the pricing info from a place like Edmunds and know what incentives are offers, any dealer holdbacks, price quotes, etc. It makes my wife uncomfortable, but when all is said and done I think she enjoys watching things unfold as well.
Haha, I've had 6 cars in the last 13 years. Had an Olds Intrigue that I only kept a little over a year (long story) and after that a series of 3 year leases. I'm sad that this is the first car I haven't leased since 1998. I'm going to miss the thrill of the hunt for a few extra years.
 

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I drive a Fusion for three years and gave it serious consideration this time around. Nice car, but nowhere near the car-for-the-money that the Sonata is. I agree with not looking at Altima for reliability. I'm a Nissan guy from way back, loved me my Z cars, but they're not exactly setting the reliability charts on fire. Generally ranked better than Chrysler, if that can be considered a compliment. And that CVT is annoying.
 
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