March 8, 2022
The Sonata offers more standard comfort and safety features than its competition. Also, the mid-size car typically lasts over 200,000 miles or 20 years - with some owners reporting over 300,000 miles. But beware of the four-cylinder engine used between 2011 and 2013, which can suffer a major mechanical failure.
- Since 2010, Hyundai has offered four generationssonataSedans, including the current model that debuted for 2020.
- The lineup includes everything from mainstream four-cylinder models to turbocharged four-cylinders, V6s and hybrids.
- A well maintained Sonata can last up to 200,000 miles with regular maintenance.
- The weakest link in the Sonata is the four-cylinder engine used between 2011 and 2013, which can suffer major mechanical failure.
- Several recalls have attempted to address issues with the 2011-2013 Sonata, but owners continue to report problems.
- It may be more complex, but the Sonata Hybrid has a good reliability record.
Hyundai's Sonata can last between 200,000 and 300,000 miles in its lifetime, which is about 20 years of service
In general, the Sonata was well received by owners and the media. Reviews from Sonata owners continuevehicle historyare generally in the mid to upper four-star (out of five-star) range, from a low of4.1 stars for the 2013 modelto five stars for the latest models.
It's not hard to find used Sonata sedans for sale online with 200,000 miles or more indicating good longevity. While most of the high mile Sonatas currently for sale have more than 200,000 miles from the2015 model yearor older, some newer models are starting to approach those high mileages.
Owners on Hyundai forumssome report more than 300,000 miles. At an average of around 14,000 miles a year, that means some riders can get up to 20 years out of a Sonata.
Regular maintenance is crucial to getting the most out of a Sonata, but the 2011-2013 models should be avoided
A redesign for themodel year 2011gave the Sonata a fresh, flat styling. Unfortunately, this model year was accompanied by a four-cylinder engine called the Theta II, which can be problematic, if not disastrous.
Complaints reported online by owners mainly focus on internal issues such as bearing failures and blown piston rings, which can lead to metal slivers inside the engine, leading to potential mechanical seizure. The cost of replacing an engine can exceed the value of the car.
According to car complaints, the 2011 model year is to be avoided due to the high probability of engine failure. Similar complaints follow the Sonata through 2013, suggesting internal changes made the engine more reliable starting with the 2014 model year.
The Sonata's Theta II engine was so problematic that the automaker issued multiple recalls to fix internal components used in the 2011-2013 Sonata models. These concerns are echoed by the National Highway Traffic Safety AdministrationLogged over 3,000 complaints from Sonata owners from 2011. Motorists only realized in March 2022 that the four-cylinder engine can eat while driving.
If you are considering a used Hyundai Sonata, look for 2016 and later models to get the best reliability record
While the more conservative styling of the redesigned 2015 Sonata isn't as visually appealing, this generation of the midsize sedan has a better reliability record than its predecessor.
until2016model yearCar Complaints rates the Sonata as "fairly good".Reported problem areas taper significantly closer to the current model year.
JD Power agreesRated the 2016 Sonata as "great" for its reliability. Even newer models are about the same, save for a small dip for the 2020 model year when the Sonata was redesigned again.
The Hyundai Sonata's longevity makes it a good used car buy, but the hybrid model has a problem with battery failure that can eventually add over $1,500 to the cost
Hyundai has offered a gasoline-electric version of the Sonata sedan since the 2012 model year. With its electric motor and lithium-polymer battery pack, the Sonata Hybrid can drive purely electrically for short journeys to save fuel.
Although this powertrain is technically more complex than the base four-cylinder, there are fewer complaints from owners online. The biggest problem is battery failure. A replacement battery can cost around $1,500, plus an additional $300 to $400 for professional installation.according to retailer Best Hybrid Batteries.
While Hyundai Sonata gas and hybrid models are decent used car options, it's important to consider the bigger issues that can cost you more money in the long run.
frequently asked Questions
VonStephanie Stephan| March 8, 2022
What is the 2017 Hyundai Sonata Reliability Rating?
The 2017 Hyundai Sonata was designed by J.D. Power & Associates rated excellent with four out of five predicted reliability ratings. Consumer reviews gave the Sonata 4.8 out of five stars for reliability and praised its performance, design and comfort.
What is the reliability rating of the 2011 Hyundai Sonata?
Consumer Reports gave the 2011 Hyundai Sonata its worst reliability rating of one out of five, for the Sonata's defective body paintwork, engine and steering. 3,045 NHTSA complaints and 14 recalls exist for the 2011 Hyundai Sonata due to fuel leaks, airbags, suspension and power steering issues.
John Smith on June 13, 2021
Structural problems with cracking welds on my Hyundai Sonata
When I was five months old, I heard a metallic crunch in the driver's side roof. Took the car to the dealer and they said the weld on the A-pillar was broken and they had to weld it back together. Nine months later it happened again, this time breaking three more welds on the windshield. Now I'm worried about the safety of the car in case of an accident. After speaking to several body shops, they all said they'd never heard of welds breaking in a new car, only if it was in a wreck.
Rod N on March 31, 2022
2007 Hyundai Sonata Limited v6
This is the best sonata ever. Say what you will about the latest model, but it just can't beat this one. Our 2007 Hyundai Sonata Limited v6 has just clocked up 400,000 miles and continues to purr on the original powertrain. Everything still works great, even the heated seats! Our first major engine repair was in 2021 when we had to replace the throttle body assembly. It is an amazing vehicle and a great blessing in our lives. Thank you Hyundai!
Noel B am 10. September 2021
Safety issues and an engine recall
When I try to look left or right before making a turn, there are countless blind spots. I have to adjust my head to look out the window to have a clear view. Otherwise the car blinds me. There is a recall for the engine. My oil does not stay in the vehicle. The car does not shine so quickly.
Larry WILL am 7. August 2021
Reliable is the only way to describe the Hyundai Sonata
Since I leased, I have a new one every 3 years. I think in all the years I've had a Sonata there was once a software update and once my car wouldn't start and it was supposed to be a known problem and they helped me get it working over the phone. I brought it in and they replaced a sensor. It's a good, reliable car.
Marcus M am 4. August 2021
Repeated mechanical problems with the Hyundai Sonata
My car had repeated mechanical problems and does not appear to be a reliable car even though everything was covered by a factory warranty. Bad enough that the motor had to be replaced. They told us there were metal splinters in the oil pan and there were knocking noises with the engine running.
Natalie S on June 14, 2021
Continuous problems with my Hyundai Sonata are popping up
The oil pan broke when changing the oil. The seat belt does not fully retract. The seat gets stuck when adjusting. Acceleration is weak. The software update didn't go through BC I was told my car didn't need to be done and then my car turned off mid-drive. Radio was always hissing.
Lavish Sharma am 16. August 2021
Hyundai Sonata: Best option for the long run
I bought the car last year, to be honest I drive a lot. I've had rough times and this thing has never let me down. Runs perfectly after appropriate maintenance. I've got about 62,000 miles on it and it still accelerates like new. If you want to have one for the long term, this is the best option.
Christoph F am 11. September 2021
My Hyundai Sonata is safe and reliable
This car drives very smoothly and is very reliable in bad weather. It is a steering technology that helps keep the car in your lane on roads/highways etc. It's really excellent. I feel safe in this car.
Rosa J am 19. August 2021
Bad technique in the Sonata caused big problems
In 4 years, on clean, paved roads, the inverter was damaged twice and had to be replaced. Failure to shield the inverter -- which costs almost $1,000 each time -- is a major technical error.
Violet D am 17. August 2021
Manufacturing defects on the Hyundai Sonata caused problems
Numerous manufacturing defects. Condensation in headlights keeps water in the mirrors, interior finish sucks! Machine the headlights and side mirrors to the dealer for replacement and the problem is still there.
Assumpta Sandrasagra am 08.09.2021
Important transmission problems
The first year itself has problems. They changed the gearbox in the first year, it took 6 months to get the parts. Every year the dealers change the gearbox. I changed the gearbox three times.
Jimmy V am 25. August 2021
Hyundai Sonata: engine replacement at 38,000 miles
The engine has 38,000 miles on it and is making a horrible clicking noise that the dealer can't diagnose. They swapped the motor but the noise is still there.
Virginia M on June 30, 2021
Oil consumption problems on Hyundai Sonata
There's a class action lawsuit. It drinks oil. I have to oil my car every 3 weeks. After a year of owning the car. We had to replace the battery.
ally P am 21. November 2021
I will continue to use Hyundai Sonatas as my daily vehicle
It's a great vehicle and very reliable. I have safety features like a great rear view camera. This is my second and the previous one I had for 10 years.
Joshan N. on February 16, 2022
Minor issues but affordable maintenance
It has been a very reliable car so far and with very easy and affordable maintenance. The problem is very minor, including wind noise.
Brielle M on October 13, 2021
Engine problems with my Hyundai Sonata
Engine problems and I have to drive to the dealer all the time. I've had to replace rotors and brakes several times and it still squeaks.
Henny N am 19. November 2021
Hyundai Sonatas will never give you a problem
My Hyundai Sonata is extremely comfortable and very reliable. I have no problems with my car and I also feel very safe!
Matthew D on December 13, 2021
The Hyundai Sonata is reliable with a few minor issues
It's a reliable car. Mine has over 100,000km on it. I had battery issues but overall the car is very good.
Lorraine M on January 20, 2022
So far no problems with the Hyundai Sonata
No problems to date, this is a very reliable vehicle. This vehicle drives very quietly, has great power.
Hyundai Sonata reliability: how long does it last?