Safety: Both come with standard driver and passenger frontal airbags, front side-impact airbags, head airbags, front seatbelt pretensioners, adjustable front shoulder belts, front wheel drive height, four wheel antilock brakes and traction control. Both also have electronic stability systems that are designed to prevent the vehicle from skidding. One feature that really impressed us is the Camry XLE’s optional blind spot warning system. The Sonata doesn’t offer this feature.
Warranty: Toyota Care pays for scheduled maintenance on any Toyota for 2 years and 25000 miles. Hyundai doesn’t offer to cover scheduled maintenance for the Sonata.
Environmental Friendliness: In its Green Vehicle Guide, the U.S. EPA rated the Camry higher (6 to 9.5 out of 10 depending on the model) than the Sonata (5 to 6 out of 10 depending on the model). This means the Camry makes about 19.8 pounds less smog-producing pollutants than the Sonata for every 15,000 miles they drive.
Fuel Economy: On the EPA test cycle the Camry Hybrid was shown to have better fuel mileage than the Sonata Hybrid (43 city/39 hwy vs. 35 city/40 hwy). The EPA test cycle the Camry 4 cylinder version gets better fuel mileage than the Sonata GLS/Limited 4 cyl. (clocking in at 25 city/35 hwy vs. 24 city/35 hwy).
Pricing: While the 2012 Camry with standard automatic transmission starts at an MSRP of $21,955 and the 2012 Sonata starts at $19,695, to get an automatic transmission, you will have to spend $23,095.
Verdict: The 2012 Sonata is a great vehicle; however it was not able to defeat the 2012 Camry in this edition. The Camry’s better safety, entertainment and internal features pull it ahead of the 2012 Sonata. Toyota’s care package and its maintenance reminder system will help save the driver a pretty penny too. For the year 2012 we chose the Camry as the winner of this edition of car battles.