2012 Hyundai Sonata Review, Problems, Reliability, Value, Life Expectancy, MPG (2024)

Alex Showalter

Jan 11, 2022

The 2012 Hyundai Sonata is a midsize car with a price range of $8,141 to $12,352. Mechanical problems are extremely common and costly to repair out of warranty, making the Sonata a car buyers should avoid.

2012 Hyundai Sonata Review, Problems, Reliability, Value, Life Expectancy, MPG (1)

The Good

There are a lot of high quality interior materials compared to other budget-friendly midsize sedans, good performance with the upgraded turbocharged engine, and a longer warranty.

The Bad

Engine failures are still very common, the rear headroom is limited due to the sloping roof line, and the firm suspension is uncomfortable on rough roads.

2012 Hyundai Sonata: Quick Overview

  • New features for the 2012 model year are minimal including standard BlueLink telecommunications, and better fuel economy.
  • Reliability ratings are average according to J.D. Power, with fewer problems than the 2011 model.
  • Two engine choices are available, one with a turbo, and one naturally-aspirated.
  • Fuel economy is good, tying for 3rd place out of 15 midsize cars with a combined rating of up to 27 miles per gallon.
  • Safety ratings are excellent with a perfect 5-star rating in government crash tests and a Top Safety Pick award from the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety.
  • The 2012 Hyundai Sonata ranks 8th out of 15 midsize cars, based on owner reviews. Serious mechanical reliability concerns make the Sonata a car buyers should steer clear of.

Expert Ratings

KBB

3.9/5

US News

7.9/10

Positive Owner Reviews

Dee E

Love this car!

Purchased the SE January 2012. Love my car! Never have had a problem with the vehicle. It currently has 80,000 miles. I do take it to the dealer every 3 months for oil changes and routine maintenance. I also stay on top of any recalls and have them immediately addressed.

Rachel H

Hyundai has the best warranty out there for people who drive

It gets great gas mileage, drives smooth, and it just looks great

Kimberly D

Luxury feel for a reasonable price.

The Sonata is a great value. It has all the bells and whistles. It has be dependable. It has a smooth ride and low maintenance. I love the sound system. I feel like I am driving sports car. It is great on mileage. I would recommend this vehicle to anyone looking for a family sedan.

Bonnie L

The best Hyundai ever made.

I love my sonata. It is very comfortable, has all the extras including sunroof, rear camera, navigation system and best of all, it has a turbo engine. Even though it is a 4 cylinder it will get when it needs to and I love that. Pulling out in traffic is not scary cause I know I will be up to speed with others very quickly.

Rae W

It has very good safety ratings.

I love the way my sonata handles and love the body style. It is also very good on gas. I do not like the blind spots or the location of speaker for Bluetooth.

Marilyn Z

The windshield blades make a scratching sound.

Its small and easy to drive. Very comfortable to drive. Easy on gas. It does have 2 dead spots. So sometimes you don't see the other car. I wish it had better control with the seat levers.

Isabel G

It is a limited edition, so might not be available again.

Drives very smooth, color of interior and exterior was perfect, though it was a used car it was in almost perfect condition.

Kip S

2012 sonata just hit 100k.

Minimal problems. Only maintained the oil, brakes, battery, standard car maintenance. Nothing major has to be done to my car currently. It has been very kind to me. I believe this car is built to hold up for another one hundred miles. I am happy with my purchase. Just stay up to date on the quarterly maintenance.

Negative Owner Reviews

randee H

Great car..Lovely ride. Would recommend it for sure.

I love the Hyundai, very attractive car. Good performance. Very reliable... Features are what I need. I haven't had any problems to deal with. Love the ride, and back seat space. Very good looking car. Very streamline. I would buy another one. I think the car is very good.

Joanna W

Do not buy a Hyundai- save yourself the headache.

Electrical issues with tail lights and headlights. Plastic parts that tend to break and are placed I. Difficult to maneuver areas requiring professional and costly replacement. For example, a bunion in the steering column wore out. The part itself is 1. 98, labor 400. 00. Money pit.

kenneth S

This car has been cheaply produced and led to many accidents and recalls.

This car has to many recalls and does not feel safe anymore. We have experienced 3 significant recalls. The features are totally outdated. The engine has since been replaced through one of these recalls and now the brakes need changing. It has become a potential death trap.

Lesli L

Will never buy a Hyundai again.

I have had problems with my vehicle & Hyundai since the day I bought it. There have been so many recalls, my engine went out & it took several months to get repaired, everything on the inside is falling apart- it is been the worst car I have ever owned.

abbey M

Engine and everything else problems.

Burns oil constantly need money sunk in it horrible. Finding a replacement engine didn't fix the oil burning problem. The car is cute but nothing seems to make any sense. To change your turn signal bulb it instructs you to go through the wheel well. Just off the way stuff.

Ashley o.

Stuck paying for a junk pile

Had my engine lock up on a busy highway with no warning indication. I sat in my car for 2 hours in 100+ heat waiting for the dealership to come tow me. I had the car for only two weeks. Engine recall. Hyundai kept my car for over a month before deciding that they had to fix it cost free. Was told they had no loaner cars even though my friend was given one a few days after i was told no. Lost my job due to no transportation (i drive for a living.)My check engine light NEVER comes on before a problem occurs. I have had problem after problem since the engine replacement. Breaks grind (all new pads and such) and won't "catch" when I go to stop. Caused me to hit a Great Pyrenees. Unfortunately that baby died and my car is very dented. The electrical system goes haywire. I have to replace headlights and taillights every few weeks. I now have 3 new tickets because of the taillights/headlights that I can't pay. My shifter slips out of gear. When I try to accelerate the car seems very sluggish and has trouble shifting to the next gear. Rpms run high on idle. Used to have ok gas mileage until the engine replacement, now im lucky to get 18 mpg. This car has less than 80,000 miles on it. I've tried to talk to the dealership that fixed it and can't seems to get a call back. Car had one previous owner. My application to switch ownership for blue link or to use myhyundai.com was blatantly ignored or discarded. Then found out that starting January 1st blue link for the car will be shut off permanently. This car is a nightmare. I found the class action lawsuit and can't get a response or call back to see if we qualify. Oh, I forgot to mention...I have only had this car since June of 2021. This all has been over a few months. I miss my Honda hr-v (best sporty mom car in the world.)

Kay H

2012 Hyundai Sonata. It is just an okay car, gets you from here to there.

It is an okay car, nothing special to me. It sits low to the ground and the rear window is smallish. I have a hard time adjusting the rear view mirror to see behind effectively. The driver's seat is adjustable, however the passenger seat does not adjust any more than forward or back and recline. This seat also sits low so when I am in the passenger seat, I feel like I have to roll out of the car. This Sonata has a 4 cylinder engine, enough power on acceleration. There have been a few minor recalls, however I do not recall anything serious. When we went to a Hyundai dealer to look at cars, I felt invisible, they salesman just dealt with my husband. On the test drive I was stuck in the back seat, while my husband drove and salesman was next to him. If I had a chance to drive the car, even around the parking lot, I would have seen that I cannot see the front end of the car, so it is hard to tell how close you are to an object.

Sara S

2012 Hyundai sonata. Good reliable car for a 16 year old.

I just feel like my car has a ton of problems all of the time. I need to get my 4th alternator is 2 years and I find that outrageous. It does has Bluetooth which I really enjoy and it has a ubs and 2 cigarette lighters. My engine light is always on for my o2 sensor which will not do anything bad but it is just always on but other than those two problems it is a great car and it gets good mileage on it.

What Problems Does the 2012 Hyundai Sonata Have?

The 2012 Hyundai Sonata has more problems than other midsize cars on the market in the same price range. There are no major reliability improvements until the 2014 model year.

Engine problems are extremely common, including complete failures. The only way to fix a failure is to replace the entire engine, costing over $4,000 when the car is out of warranty. There was also a lawsuit about engine failures, which extended the warranty to 10 years or 120,000 miles. More information on the lawsuit can be found here.

Clicking while steering is another problem mentioned by owners. The best way to fix the problem is to replace the coupling on the steering column. A replacement costs about $300, depending on local labor rates.

Cracking dashboards are also brought up by owners. In hotter climates the dash plastics expand and contract, leading to cracks forming. If you notice the dash cracking, there are two choices. You can either buy a $70 to $100 cover or replace the assembly, costing about $800.

There are 8 recalls affecting the car, worse than average for a vehicle from 2012. The recalls include curtain airbags, transmission shift cable, connecting rod wear in the engine, brake pedal stopper, seat belt linkages, and a high pressure fuel pipe leak. Most serious are connecting rods in the engine since failures lead to the engines seizing up.

What are the Prices, Models & Specs?

The 2012 Hyundai Sonata is more expensive than other midsize cars on the market with a price range of $8,141 to $12,352, depending on the model and mileage. When new, the price range was $19,795 to $28,195. Depreciation is average for the class, losing about 45% of the value over the first 5 years of ownership.

  • GLS is the entry-level model with 16-inch steel wheels, cloth interior, keyless entry, cruise control, and a 6-speaker stereo system with satellite radio, Bluetooth, USB, and AM/FM/CD playback.
  • SE is next in the lineup with 18-inch alloy wheels, leather and cloth interior, black grille, sportier suspension, dual-zone climate control, and paddle shifters. An optional 2.0L turbocharged engine is also available.
  • Limited is the flagship model with 17-inch alloy wheels, leather seating, smoother suspension, panoramic sunroof, heated front and rear seats, and an Infinity stereo system.

GLS

198 HP 28 MPG

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2.4L SE

200 HP 28 MPG

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Hybrid

206 HP 37-37 MPG

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2.4L Limited

198 HP 28 MPG

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2.4L Limited w/Wine Int

198 HP 28 MPG

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2.0T Limited

274 HP 26 MPG

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2.0T Limited w/Wine Int

274 HP 26 MPG

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How Long Will the 2012 Hyundai Sonata Last?

A properly cared for 2012 Hyundai Sonata will last about 200,000 miles, which is average for the class. Expensive engine failures are very common, around 100,000 miles, which may mechanically total the car if the warranty has expired. Regular annual maintenance costs are average for a midsize car. Repair Pal estimates them to be $482 per year.

Bonnie W

It has been very reliable. I have had no problems except the driver's seat plastic where the controls are sometimes pops off, but that is it.

Sherhonda S

It is pretty reliable. I did have a problem with the car starting up one time. And it runs the battery down pretty fast.

Kaleigh B

Yes, the Hyundai sonata is reliable. I have not had any problems with the car since I bought it. I plan to keep it for a couple more years.

Bradford H

The only problem I have ever had with this car is the battery started acting up. Other than that no major problems, which is another reason I love this car so much.

Donna G

It is very reliable. Got better tires than what came with car so it is good in snow and not bad in ice either. The heater/ac works well and it defrosts quickly.

Brooke J

Yes it is reliable, it had one issue with the engine but it was replaced for free by Hyundai themselves which was appreciated.

Siray F

Yes reliable and any issues were addressed and has been fixed by dealer; would get another sonata in future.

Jacquelyn F

As previously stated the engine had to be replaced. We have no problem since then. It is driven daily and meets all of our travel needs. The ability to control the heat or air conditioning is a positive feature. I feel comfortable when traveling in the vehicle.

What Technology & Safety Features Are Included?

Technology is average for the class in the 2012 Hyundai Sonata, with decent features included in the entry-level models.

  • Standard technology includes a stereo system with AM/FM/CD, Bluetooth, and USB connectivity as well as 6 speakers.
  • Upgrades include a 7-inch touchscreen infotainment system, navigation, and a 9-speaker Infinity stereo system.
  • Standard safety equipment includes airbags, antilock disc brakes, stability and traction control, and BlueLink emergency communications. An optional rearview camera is available with the navigation system.
2012 Hyundai Sonata Review, Problems, Reliability, Value, Life Expectancy, MPG (2)

What Engine Options are Available?

Performance in the 2012 Sonata is good for a midsize sedan. With the upgraded 2.0L turbocharged engine, the car goes from 0 to 60 miles per hour in 6.7 seconds.

  • The base engine is a 2.4L 4-cylinder with 198 horsepower
  • An optional engine on the SE and Limited modes is the 2.0L turbocharged 4-cylinder which has 274 horsepower.

What Color Options are Available?

How Big is the Sonata?

The 2012 Hyundai Sonata is a midsize sedan, and is similar in size to other cars but has a lower sloping roofline which limits headroom. There’s a good amount of passenger room in the front seats, and ample legroom for adults in the back seats. The 16.4 cubic foot trunk is larger than some competitors, and easily fits 4 suitcases.

2012 Hyundai Sonata Review, Problems, Reliability, Value, Life Expectancy, MPG (3)

How Does the 2012 Hyundai Sonata Compare to Other Cars?

Ranking 8th out of 15 midsize cars, based on owner reviews, the 2012 Hyundai Sonata is in the lower half of the class.

A highly-rated competitor is the more expensive Toyota Camry. The Camry offers significantly better reliability ratings, as well as more conservative interior and exterior styling. Where the Sonata stands out is with better interior materials, and more technology available. Overall, the Camry is the better choice for a used car since they last much longer.

Another midsize sedan in the same price range is the Nissan Altima. An Altima has more power, and a larger cabin. The Sonata offers better technology, and a smoother ride. Neither sedan is a great choice though, since the Altima has transmission problems, and the Sonata has engine failures. If you’re in the market for a midsize car, we recommend checking out the choices from Honda and Toyota.

Ranks #8 Midsize Cars by Owners

1

2012 Honda Crosstour

4.59

2

2012 Subaru Legacy

4.54

8

2012 Hyundai Sonata

4.27

Final Verdict: Is the 2012 Hyundai Sonata a Good Car?

No, the 2012 Hyundai Sonata is not a good car based on information from 663 verified owner reviews, and 16 government and automotive websites. Some positives of the car include a nice interior for the price, and more modern styling than a lot of rivals. The downsides are just too serious though, with complete engine failures, and other mechanical problems with the steering and suspension. Overall, the 2012 Sonata is a car buyers should avoid since there are better choices on the market in the same price range.

Owner Reviews

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Stephanie 2012 Hyundai Sonata SE Turbo on July 26, 2022

My 2012 Sonata Problems

I love my “Heather” she has 122K miles. A few months ago I was driving at night with my lights on and my lights flickered when I turned on my blinker. Then my ceiling light would always stay on when the car was closed and locked Then last week my car died. I was at a light and when it turned green I pressed on the gas and she wouldn’t go but 2 miles per hour. So I had to pull over and you know the rest. I had it towed to my Hyundai dealership and they asked to see every receipt I had on every maintenance and oil change I’ve had on the car in order to get the approval on a new motor. I brought in my paperwork from Hyundai and Jiffy Lube and they approved me with a quickness. What helped is that I had purchased their extended warranty when I bought the car used from them. My radio stopped working for 2 months and then all of a sudden it came back on. Lastly, I’ve had to replace my waste gate twice.

Ashley o. on November 30, 2021

Stuck paying for a junk pile

Had my engine lock up on a busy highway with no warning indication. I sat in my car for 2 hours in 100+ heat waiting for the dealership to come tow me. I had the car for only two weeks. Engine recall. Hyundai kept my car for over a month before deciding that they had to fix it cost free. Was told they had no loaner cars even though my friend was given one a few days after i was told no. Lost my job due to no transportation (i drive for a living.)My check engine light NEVER comes on before a problem occurs. I have had problem after problem since the engine replacement. Breaks grind (all new pads and such) and won't "catch" when I go to stop. Caused me to hit a Great Pyrenees. Unfortunately that baby died and my car is very dented. The electrical system goes haywire. I have to replace headlights and taillights every few weeks. I now have 3 new tickets because of the taillights/headlights that I can't pay. My shifter slips out of gear. When I try to accelerate the car seems very sluggish and has trouble shifting to the next gear. Rpms run high on idle. Used to have ok gas mileage until the engine replacement, now im lucky to get 18 mpg. This car has less than 80,000 miles on it. I've tried to talk to the dealership that fixed it and can't seems to get a call back. Car had one previous owner. My application to switch ownership for blue link or to use myhyundai.com was blatantly ignored or discarded. Then found out that starting January 1st blue link for the car will be shut off permanently. This car is a nightmare. I found the class action lawsuit and can't get a response or call back to see if we qualify. Oh, I forgot to mention...I have only had this car since June of 2021. This all has been over a few months. I miss my Honda hr-v (best sporty mom car in the world.)

Kevin P on June 24, 2021

Very reliable, I would recommend this car to anyone.

I bought this car new. I haven't had any problems with it yet. It runs great, it handles nice. I keep the maintenance up on it every year. Regular oil changes every 5000 miles. It has all the normal features, automatic windows, heated seats, it is an automatic and drives nice. It is silver and in great shape. I have 156,000 miles on it and it still starts every morning.

Chrystal L on June 21, 2021

Why I am in love with my Hyundai sonata.

My car is wonderful on gas which is really a plus as I have to do a lot of running around. It is a mid sized vehicle that has plenty of space for my family of 4. I have fairly tall sons and they are never uncomfortable on long rides. The navigation system really comes in handy when I am unable to use the GPS on my phone. I have a sunroof that opens slightly or I can open it all the way up. I use the tilt feature more often than the slide feature. It is a push button start which took some getting used to because I would always forget my keys in the car or forget to press the button to turn it off. My favorite feature is the slot to insert the key fob, which is located inside the center console, should your battery die and the car cannot recognize the key to start the vehicle. My battery died when I was out once and thank goodness for that slot!

Steve L on June 21, 2021

A blazing black hot rod 2012 sonata.

The 2012 sonata really drives and runs great as advertised. It is a very reliable vehicles it has never broken down, it gets anywhere from 25 to 30 miles per gallon in the gas tank. It is very spacious in the back for my daughter and her 1 million toys. Overall this vehicle is very nice and heat for a family.

Margaret L on June 20, 2021

2012 Hyundai Elantra is a fantastic car for the money.

It is, a fantastic car. Great gas mileage. It is super easy to drive. The back seat is roomy also. Only issue we have has are with the headlights seemingly burning out a, little quicker than with previous car. The battery lasted over 3 years which living in a, warm climate seemed very good I would buy this brand of a vehicle again.

Karla C on June 19, 2021

Great economic car, with reliability to get to where you need to go.

One of the good cars out there, reliable, spacious, great with gasoline, very reliable have taken a couple of long distance trips with no problems. Maintenance on the car is very low just needs routine care. Great car for everyday use. All in all great car.

Colby W on June 13, 2021

One of the more comfortable cars I have ever driven.

The issues are very minimal. I find that sometimes the sunroof needs to be reseated so no wind noise is heard above your head. The sound system is great. The drivability is very smooth and comfortable. The noise level inside the car is comfortable. There is cupholders everywhere and Sirius XM came included with the car.

Chalysa S on June 7, 2021

I love my Hyundai sonata 2.0t!

I love my Hyundai sonata 2.0t! It is beautiful and so comfy. I have enjoyed several hours-long road trips without issue. The speed and quick acceleration are handy for getting away from unsafe situations and also just fun. I find the maintenance to be incredibly easy and affordable, whether that be taking it in for an oil change or changing the brake pads myself. Refueling is also relatively affordable with the decent gas mileage.

Ceejay M on June 5, 2021

Hyundai sonata. Sky blue with expensive wheels.

It is really a good car. Picks up speed at a 4 sec. It really come with a nice cool sound system. Have been using it for over 2 years now and the engine still sounds real good. Shocks are still okay and maintenance is very cheap. And fuel too. It is a 4 piston engine so it really does not consume but that does not mean it does not speed up.

Veronica H on May 28, 2021

This car is affordable quality.

The only issue that I have with this car is that it has had quite a few recalls on it. Other than that, I find this car extremely comfortable. It has plenty of room but is still compact. It is very easy to drive and extremely reliable. The seats even have adjustable lumbar support. Extremely practical for a small family as well as extremely affordable.

Melissa J on May 23, 2021

Why I love my Hyundai sonata!

I have really enjoyed my Hyundai sonata. It has been a reliable car to me and I have had it for over 5 years now. The overall comfort of the car is good as well. I always take it on long car rides because the back seats are very spacious and can carry all of the luggage or family members if they are coming along. I have only had a couple problems with my car but nothing very serious. My overall impression on the car has been good.

David B on May 23, 2021

An incredibly reliable car.

This car is extremely reliable. The only issues that have been posed with this vehicle are the tremendous amount of dealership recalls. I have had to take my vehicle into the dealership on multiple occasions to have parts replaced as a result of the manufacturer. Aside from that, the car has great gas mileage, never has problems running and performs well.

Tyler S on May 22, 2021

More in the vehicle then you would expect.

I really enjoy my sonata. It has a screen display as well as Bluetooth for music or phone calls. It also has added auxiliary plug in, as well at a USB port. There are cup holders in all doors. It offers an adjustable lumbar support button on the driver seat which is really nice when my back starts hurting on long drives.

Tyrone R on May 14, 2021

Surprisingly agile car for the price segment, but too many issues.

Comfort wise, the car is ok. The seats are a perfect hybrid of leather and cloth, made for long term trips. There are plenty of features for a car in this price range. One of the most important are the paddle shifters. They turn what looks like an ordinary economic car into a somewhat sportier sedan. Acceleration from a stand still when shifting gears is way better than something you should expect when using something from this car segment. However, that is where the praise stops. The cars in this generation for Hyundai have engine issues, electrical issues, and oil burning issues. Reliability is horrible. I was driving on the highway in the left lane doing 70 miles per hour when the engine suddenly failed. I almost died trying to float over to the right shoulder. After I finally got the engine replaced, the battery died. 3 times. Then the alternator. Then the fuel pump went bad. I had the car for a total of 5 months at this point.

Bailey C on May 14, 2021

Great car. Insured. Bad on gas if in a city.

All around great car. It does burn gas more if I stay in the city. The engine is insured so if it breaks they will replace it. The navigation system is good and always working. It is helped me when my phone is out of service. Plenty of room in the front.

Stephanie L on May 13, 2021

Hyundai sonata is reliable.

The sonata has been a fairly stable and reliable car over the past 8 years that I have had it. Other than some minor issues, including a wheel clicking noise and some tire pressure instances, the car runs smoothly and is a good car for traveling to and from work and school. It can hold a good amount of people and is sleek looking.

Jayne W on May 12, 2021

Reliable car with good gas mileage.

I bought my car brand new. I have owned my car for 8 years. It has been reliable and comfortable for my family. I enjoy the gas mileage. It is usually about 25-30 mpg in the city. I especially like that I can monitor the gas mileage on the dashboard.

Susan B on May 10, 2021

2013 Hyundai sonata is a great family car.

I have had issues with the lights on the front and the back. We ended up having to replace the entire light component. The car drives smoothly, gets great gas mileage, and is very comfortable. Back seat passengers have plenty of space for their legs. I have had very little issues with this car.

Nicholas D on May 7, 2021

A lot of room, great gas mileage, and appealing to the eye.

My vehicle is very dependable and has excellent gas mileage. It is big for a sedan and has plenty of room for passengers. The gas mileage in eco mode is also a huge added benefit to this model. The only issue I have had with it is it drains batteries quicker than other cars I have driven.

Savannah M on May 6, 2021

Electrical issues, but besides that, I love the car.

Serious electrical issues that are very expensive to fix. The car is pretty reliable besides that and has nice features and comfortable seats. The best feature would be the Bluetooth ability for the radio and there is also the aux option. I enjoy how large the car is.

cristina P on May 6, 2021

Not best quality but overall satisfied.

I feel as though my car has gone through many problems over the years and have never really said I love my car. It doesn't really feel like a smooth drive nor quiet. The inside of the car itself is great very spacious and storage. I love having a sunglasses holder as well. The back seat is great too, it even has a drop down console for drinks.

Kat M on May 1, 2021

Vet dealership carefully and research vehicle recall history.

Recall in 2016 due to metal shards in engine. Dealer replaced engine free of charge. They also paid for a rental car. Brought recall to their attention when we received the notice. They have a poor inspection. Had problems a few months later. Loud engine knocking Ave car was not drivable. Brought car back to the dealer. Took four months to fix it, but they paid for the rental car.

Kaleigh B on April 29, 2021

A great review on a great car.

The car is very reliable. I was in a fender bender once and there wasn't much damage. Turbo works well and gives a great boost, but you can't beat it or you'll have some issues like I did and had to replace the wastegate. Interior and exterior is beautiful with leather heated seats included in front and back. The full sunroof adds a nice touch to the look of the car and gives a great view to passengers in the back. The car drives smoothly and has a good mile per gallon average. I would recommend this car to anyone that wants to buy it.

William B on April 23, 2021

Fair car, with a good look, a decent value.

It breaks down too often and the electronics do not work that well. The doors on my car are broken. Also, the locking system does not work very well. There have been a few too many repairs for my taste. The car does run pretty well but I had to replace the starter.

Jacob M on April 21, 2021

Sonata Hyundai performance reviews.

Honestly, this car has been great. It is taken me across the nation reliably. My only complaint is the amount of recalls that have happened in the past. There have been 8 in two years. Around 8 years old I have started running into some maintenance issues. But overall nice car.

Parker S on April 20, 2021

2012 Hyundai sonata is a dream!

I have had zero issues with reliability on this car. I took this car across country and it handled it perfectly. The car gets good gas mileage for year as sometimes I average up to 36 mpg. It has automated seats which is amazing for a 2012. It handles incredibly smoothly too.

Cynthia B on April 16, 2021

2012 Hyundai sonatas are filled with recalls.

Shortly after purchase the engine was under recall, had to be replaced and was without car for 5 months. Rental was provided another nightmare. Dealership was useless. I wouldn't buy a Hyundai again, ever. Purchasing a new car soon, just not sure of brand.

Gracie S on April 13, 2021

Best trunk space ever, would recommend this vehicle.

My car is absolutely wonderful. I have driven many cars, but none are as comfortable as this one. The trunk is huge, the seats are comfortable, I just wish that living in the south I hadn't gotten black interiors because it holds heat. This car is super reliable, and has not ever given me any major problems. I have driven it all the way around the country and it worked wonders (and even off road more than I probably should)!

Hettie H on April 10, 2021

Dependable and everyday driver's car.

The Hyundai sonata is reliable. The plastics are a bit cheap; our dashboard is showing cracks. The trunk floor is flimsy. The electrical steering makes is difficult to drive in a straight line because of a 'stiff spot' in the center of the steering wheel rotation. The rest of the car is behaving impeccably. The known engine failure has not hit us yet and the knock sensor upgrade has been done. Overall, we like the car.

Brandon F on April 10, 2021

Good value for your money.

First of all the feel of the car is great. I am fairly tall so a roomy interior with enough space for me to not feel cramped or boxed in was a must. The sonata delivers on that and the interior looks pleasing to the eye as well. Gas mileage, which was another major concern of mine is also great. The warranty has even saved me the few times things went wrong with the car.

Daryl R on April 7, 2021

I would not purchase again.

I have had the motor replaced, the cruise control quit working, and the paint peeled all before the warranty expired. However it does get good fuel mileage. It was a good thing that it came with a ten year one hundred thousand mile warranty. I still would not recommend purchasing a Hyundai sonata.

Ash B on April 1, 2021

Sleek 2012 Hyundai Sonata

I have had my 2012 Hyundai sonata for about five years. It has been very reliable and efficient. I have only had to change the starter and the coupler. My Hyundai Sonata is very good on gas and rides smoothly. The only thing I wish it had is back vents for the air conditioning for the people in the back. I love that it has cloth seats and the black and peanut butter interior. This car is perfect for traveling. Also the trunk is very spacious.

Benjamin B on March 31, 2021

My vehicle is a red 2012 Hyundai sonata with a smooth ride.

The ride is very smooth as is the transition. It rides well and requires very little extra care beyond the standard maintenance. Also, I understand the Hyundai cars have very long lives. Not to mention, it looks great on the road! I am very satisfied with the performance of my vehicle.

dana F on March 29, 2021

Decent quality for low price

I like that it's fuel efficient, inexpensive to maintain and that it looks good and never has problems

Dustin S on March 29, 2021

Hyundai sonata. Good car for road trips.

I love the control of the vehicle. Its fast and handles really well. It has great gas mileage as long as you keep the maintenance up on it. I usually can go 400 to 425 miles on a full tank. Things I don't like include; parking is a bit of a paIn due to how the hood is shaped makes it harder to see over the hood and see how close you are as you are parking. Maintenance is a bit pricey being a foreign car.

Reagan M on March 28, 2021

Hyundai sonata. High performance, low gas construction and no mechanical problems.

Its highly reliable, high performance, low gas consumption vehicle. I have had for over a year now and so far I haven't had any mechanical issues yet I bought it second hand. I highly recommend it. I do oil change myself and it is easier to do it and at a lesser price plus gaining some knowledge on car fixing.

Erin C on March 24, 2021

The car has great gas mileage.

It is extremely comfortable and reliable, the gas mileage is fantastic, although sometimes it has a hard time speeding up or going up hills and the alloy tires need to be filled at least once every two weeks when he feels excessive. But overall it is a great car.

Diane F on March 24, 2021

Hyundai Sonata: the height of comfort.

The Hyundai Sonata is an attractive, sporty vehicle that rides smoothly. It has an eco feature that when activated saves gas mileage. It includes a stereo system with a CD player and Bluetooth. It has a spacious back seat and trunk. The headlights are the only problem that I have had with the car. The work, however it is hard to get the lights adjusted to beam in the correct direction. They are currently out of position in my car and I have had difficulty finding someone who is able to fix them.

Amanda W on March 23, 2021

Would definitely buy again.

My Hyundai is very reliable, very few performance issues, factory recalls were handled with ease, I definitely plan on keeping my car as long as possible. Love the keyless entry. My daughter absolutely loves the seat warmers in the wintertime. I drive this car a minimum of 50 miles daily.

Andrew K on March 20, 2021

The sunroof is definitely a plus.

Engine gave out but Hyundai gave me a full new engine. Mi love my sunroof and I wasn't looking to sunroof. The inside centerfold could be more elegant. The power of the b vehicle is nice. I really like the mix of cloth and leather. Will definitely look at newer models when I am looking to buy.

Mike M on March 18, 2021

Good on gas and looks good.

It's an ordinary sedan. Good on gas, but not fun to drive.

Ale P on March 18, 2021

Best car: except the radio.

We’ve had the car for 6 years now. It works really well. The only problem I have with it is that radio/Bluetooth. When I turn on my Bluetooth to listen to music, it is goes up like 10 octaves and slowly goes down. It is gets really annoying. It cannot be fixed.

Amber W on March 15, 2021

Nice, runs good, like the looks inside and out.

I really enjoy my vehicle. I haven't had any major problems with it and I have had it for over 5 years. It drives well. The only downside is that it does have road noise. Sometimes going down the road it's hard to hear. I do live near rough type roads.

Debra W on March 15, 2021

NOTHING, IT'S JUST A HYUNDAI..BUT IT'S A GOOD CAR

I have no complaints with the Hyundai,- gets good gas mileage, comfortable, and FREE!!!!

april m on March 14, 2021

It has great gas mileage and I love how it feels when driving it and the look of the car.

So far I have really loved my car. The gas mileage is awesome.

Quajhonita M on March 13, 2021

Awesome car nice size with speed and power behind it.

I love my sedan the sonata year 2012 it's a very reliable car. Compact nice size not too big but very spacious and roomy. I have driven to Galveston beach a few times I love the way it drives smooth sailing. Stay on top of the oil changes tire rotations etc...

Ashley C on March 13, 2021

2012 Hyundai sonata paint issues.

My car has been great! My only complaint is the paint above the windshield and on the hood is chipped and continues to get worse. The only thing we have had to have done other than regular maintenance is the motor was replaced (at no cost to us) due to a recall.

Melanie B on March 12, 2021

A wise decision results in a touch of luxury with my Hyundai sonata.

This is a solid vehicle with a lot of get up and go. It has a smooth ride like an expensive luxury car. This car will take a beating and still deliver performance. The infinity stereo is factory. It has pros and cons. If you listen to the stereo with the car turned off you will drain your battery. The sound coming from the stereo though, is high definition crisp and satisfying. The leather interior will hold up even through hauling some big items. The leg room in the front is sufficient but the back is not so comfortable. The lumbar support on the driver seat is a life saver. The panoramic sunroof is awesome day it is night! The trunk will hold to full size suitcases with room left. The car handles like a dream. The price is easy on the pocket book.

Gigi S on March 11, 2021

The little car that could.

The Hyundai is great, gets great gas mileage, is very affordable, and is spacious for it being a car. Wish it had a few more safety features like auto stop and the backup camera but that is on us for not getting a better model. Overall it is a great car and I highly recommend it for anyone looking for a dependable and affordable car!

Travell C on March 10, 2021

Hyundai is reliable vehicle.

This car has been really reliable. But there was an issue with the engine. However it was covered by warranty and fully replaced. I was even provided with a rental vehicle while repairs were done. The blue link features are great as well and allow remote, start, lock and unlock. I will definitely consider a newer model as my next vehicle.

Alex Showalter

Alex is an automotive enthusiast with over 15 years of experience in the used car market. He brings a wealth of knowledge to Vehicle History as our Staff Writer and has written hundreds of used car reviews helping buyers make informed purchasing decisions. He is a member of the Automotive Press Association, and keeps up-to-date on the latest changes in the industry. Over the years, he has driven hundreds of cars, working on many of them. His mechanical experience evolved from modifying off-road trucks as a teen to focusing on automotive electrical systems as he got older. He now specializes in reviewing used cars as an automotive journalist. Some of his favorite brands are Toyota and BMW. The Toyota Land Cruiser is one of his favorite vehicles of all time since they’re built to last forever and can go anywhere. One of his current cars is a Lexus LX570, built on the same platform as the 200-series Land Cruiser, but it’s a better value in the used market.

    2012 Hyundai Sonata Review, Problems, Reliability, Value, Life Expectancy, MPG (2024)
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