How many miles can you get out of a Hyundai Elantra

My 2007 Hyundai Elantra transmission may be shot at 70,000 miles. The garage man that I went to said that you can expect to get about 5 years from a Hyundai (60,000). What have others found? I’m wondering if my car will steadily decline and want to plan for the eventuality of having to buy another car because costs outweigh benefits. I’m not there yet but I’m very disappointed to be having such problems at 70,000 miles. Unfortunately, I’m not the original owner and I’m out of warranty for something that would otherwise be under warranty for 100,000 miles/10 years.

A friend of mine has an older Elantra which is basically perfect and with more miles than yours. Your car was either mistreated or not maintained well by its previous owner. Elantras, if properly cared for, will go 200,000 miles or more before engine or transmission fails.

The “garage man” is shooting from the hip which is typical of those who are either ignorant or too lazy to find out the current facts. His “opinion” was true of earlier Hyundais, such as the Pony form the mid 80s. He’s about 20 out of date.

Please take your car to a reputable INDEPENDENT transmission shop (not a Chain like AAMCO) to get a full report. If it is “shot” it will be worth fixing if the rest of the car is OK.

Good Luck1

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My sister-in-laws both had 2000 Elantras. Neither car was particularly well-maintained and both were city driven. One lasted 8 years and the other for 11 years and it was replaced with a 2011 Elantra.

One note, at 70000 miles it may be getting getting close to a timing belt replacement.

Good luck,

Ed B.

+1 to the previous comments.
All too often, people buy a used car that did not come with maintenance records, and wind up buying a vehicle that has seen little or no maintenance. Or, some folks might buy a new car and then proceed to ignore vital maintenance. The end result is the same in both cases, namely a drastically-shortened life span and/or high repair costs for the vehicle. And then, to make matters worse, many of these negligent people automatically assume that the problem lies with the automotive manufacturer, rather than with themselves!

Think of it like human longevity. As the availability of vaccines, life-saving medicines, and advanced surgical techniques have improved, so has the average life span. However, if someone smokes, is a couch potato, and fails to seek medical treatment, he may wind up living only as long as folks from earlier in the century.

Ergo–with your car, and with your own body, it is necessary to periodically take steps to ensure long-term well-being. This particular Elantra has not been maintained properly, and the OP is now paying the price (literally) for that lax maintenance.

Your car should be good for many more miles and years if it wasn’t abused. Of course, this one might have been. Do you happen to have the service history on this car, especially on the transmission?

There was no service on the transmission prior to when I bought it (at 25,000 miles). The tires were a bit worn at 25,000 miles and I wonder if the previous owner really beat the car up somehow.

I had my car taken to an INDEPENDENT transmission shop that was recommended by a garage that is listed on this site. Good mention about the timing belt. I wondered if it was the thing that went but I didn’t lose power. That’s next on the list.

The maintenance records show routine maintenance–like oil changes. I had managed to call the previous owner (after finding his # on maintenance records) to ask how he liked the car. He said he liked it but traded up to a Sonata. But none of this means that the guy didn’t abuse it.

Several thousand miles ago, my husband was accidentally in an alternate gear (accross from ‘3’ on the highway that seemed to be stressing the engine. I thought the car felt rough and an hour into our trip I noticed that he had the selector in the wrong place. Could that have compromised the transmission early on?

My sisters Elantra has 170k+ miles on it and still going strong! About 90% are in town miles too.

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My car is at an independent transmission shop. No service history on the transmission–I bought the car at 25K miles.

Pretty much every car these days can easily reach 150k miles.

250k and above - While all cars can reach that…some require more repairs then others.

I think 70k is way too low for a vehicle to be having problems. Either it was abused or it wasn’t maintained properly…or both.

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I don’t know what “alternate gear across from ‘3’” means. The car hasn’t had a transmission fluid exchange - usually owners who keep current about maintenance do it at around 30k, so you bought it with too few miles on it for the previous owners to have done it, and since you say you don’t know the transmission service history, I take it that means you haven’t done it either. Driving a car with 70,000 mile old transmission fluid is a good way to make the transmission misbehave. Get the fluid exchanged (not flushed - exchanged. There is an important difference) and see if that makes it better.

Also, you haven’t ever told us what exactly it is doing that has it in the shop for the transmission in the first place. . .

Shadow, I wonder if she doesn’t mean the “+ and -” gears some of the Hyundais had?

Yes, Dfrom. It’s the + gear. I was told that the fluid doesn’t have to be changed that often and changed it at 60000 miles. Thay may be the problem. I don’t think that the previous owner changed the fluid. On the other hand, if the transmission was faulty, there would been no way of knowing it until the gears began to slip–right? Or the fluid could have been low. I didn’t suspect that since I had the fluid changed (not flushed) in the summer. I had my oil changed after that and the change does include a look at the fluid levels.

I have to have a new–used transmission put in and am uneasy about how that’s going to go over. I have heard of people having their transmissions replaced (by the dealer under warranty) and having problems afterward.

Hyundais will run for a long time if maintanence on them is kept up regularly. Most people assume that when a manufacturer offers 100K bumper to bumper warranties on them, it will cover everything! Including lack of service and misuse of the vehicle issues. That’s not the case. I’m not much of mechanic but I’ve spend years in customer service and sales related jobs and I’ve discovered that manuracturers will back up their warranties if the product is used for what it was intended to be used for and on cars that would include servicing it in accordance to the manufacturers recomendations.

My 2002 Sienna has 183,000 miles on it, and so far (knock on wood) the automatic runs out really well. It has a transmission drain plug and every so often, when I feel like it, maybe every 20-30,000 miles, I drain three quarts and add three quarts, an idea I got from the Cartalk brothers in their column. The fluid is fresh and clean. Some time ago, I changed to synthetic fluid. Make sure you get the correct type for your car.I have never replaced the filter. Toyota has claimed it has no filter, only a screen, though on Sienna chat, some have said when they took down the pan, they found a filter, sigh.

Your “garage man” must have had some trouble with a troubled Hyundai to make a statement like that. I’ve actually been very satisfied with mine. I have an 04 Elantra with 166k miles & it’s still going strong. Replaced the clutch around 100k I think, and just recently replaced the alternator & both front CV axles. These are things you have to expect though, but a tranny should be good for a lot more miles than that. I’ve heard many people say these are very well built Korean cars for the money. My next vehicle is going to be a new Hyundai also, Lord willing. Good luck!

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Even if your cars transmission was well maintained, you might have just had bad luck. That doesn’t mean that all Hyundai’s die at 70K miles. Friend got rid of his Sonata with 185K Miles pretty much because he was tired of it (needed a sensor, I told him I will fix it for him for free but he passed).

Having a manual transmission doesn’t align with the OP’s automatic transmission failure, the alternator and axle failures do not impress.

It seems the consensus is that Hyundais are high maintenance, other vehicles with modern transmission fluid will last 150,000 plus without transmission maintenance.

Another 5 YO thread drug up from the grave

The impression I get from posters here is that Hyundais are quite competitive for reliability for the first 10 years of their life, but after that Toyotas and Hondas tend to do a little better.