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2003 Sonata

Overall rating:  Product Rating: 4.0

Reviewed by 22 users

Reliability:
Build Quality
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Reviews written: 16
View all reviews by rodandkathy




Happy with the car


by rodandkathy:      Jan 4, 2005 - Updated Jan 6, 2005


Product Rating: 4.0 Recommended: Yes 

Pros: engine, styling, quality, value (loaded with features)
Cons: climate controls, air conditioning, customer service
The Bottom Line: I enjoy driving this car and would recommend it. I would also recommend the V6 engine.


I am very happy with my Sonata, with a few minor exceptions.

After a few thousand mile break-in, the V6 is very peppy. The car leans a little on exit ramps but I admit I take them faster than I should.

I like the exterior and interior styling. The car is comfortable and the controls are (mostly) user friendly. The instrument panel is well designed and gives adequate information. The interior materials are of good quality and tasteful. The inside of the trunk is lighted and has good quality carpeting. When you open the hood, it lifts and stays open by itself, which I really like. My model is equipped with one of those sport-shift gadgets that lets you manually switch gears on the automatic transmission. It's a cool feature but I never use it. The stereo works well but you should replace the speakers if you like your music loud. The power moon roof can either tilt or open. I use that a lot in the summer.

I don't know how to explain this but I just feel good driving this car. It's comfortable and well designed.

Ok, here are the negatives.

The A/C comes on automatically when you change the climate controls (like switch from defrost to bi-level or vice versa). Unlike my Ford, the Sonata isn't smart enough to know that you don't need A/C when it's below freezing outside. Have to constantly hit the button to turn it off. The dealer says this is normal operation. Found the A/C fuse and removed it. This will save my sanity until I put it back in the spring.

Another issue with the A/C, it's barely adequate in the summer (Baltimore MD). I don't think it would be strong enough for southern states.

I contacted Hyundai because the spare tire on my car was supposed to be recalled but I never received a recall notice. They told me that because of the date my car was built, it doesn't qualify. This is in spite of the fact that it came equipped with the spare tire being recalled.

None of these problems are show stoppers and overall, I am still very happy with the car. In fact, I might buy another Hyundai. You get a lot for the money.
Amount Paid (US$): 18,300
Condition: New
Model Year: 2003
Model and Options: GLS, Automatic, V6, sunroof
Product Rating: 4.0
Recommended: Yes 
Reliability:  
Build Quality  
Roominess:  
Seat Comfort:  

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