Review: 2012 Hyundai Accent GLS Sedan

Posted on 08. Jun, 2011 by in Auto News

The Hyundai Accent has never been a "Gotta Have It" kind of car. Instead it was a "What's the cheapest thing you have?" Type of car. The 2011 started at just $ 9,985 (plus shipping). This is "started", as in the past tense, because the 2011 is history. The 2012 coming, now at dealerships, starts at $ 12,445 plus $ 760 for destination. Add an automatic transmission, A / C, the $ 1,300 Premium Package (fog lights, cruise, remote keyless, Bluetooth upgraded interior trim, 16 "alloy wheels in place of 14" Steelies) and floor mats, and you're looking a $ 17,350 sticker. Clearly Hyundai thinks they've developed a much more desirable car. Did they?

Hyundai was not a new accent to me before an upcoming holiday and reviews on press cars based vesting 22nd June independently, so in the interest of reporting on the car early, I dropped by the dealer. Initially seemed to have not a 2012 Accent. Then I noticed that the fog lights on one of the Elantras not quite like the others-because there was no Elantra. From the front, the cars are not easy to tell apart. From the side, the Accent sedan has the same form as the Elantra highly decorated with swept back headlights, a strong character line rises through the door handles, and a dome roof line that ends on another, even larger black plastic triangle. But this form is compressed to a 172-inch length, a half feet below the Elantra. Just as the previous-generation Elantra, the new Accent sedan will appear through the thick midsection. As with the Ford Fiesta, the new hatchback (that's not the dealers) is much more attractive.

Inside the new Accent, Hyundai designers were not allowed to get as much as they were indulging with the Elantra. So there is no wavy curves, just a clean, straightforward design with easy to use controls, including three separate knobs for the HVAC. The surfaces are mainly hard plastic, but they are attractively textured and feel solid. The premium package is piano black trim adds an upscale touch, the silver trim that remains on the doors so much. Some piano black would be welcome as well. Since this is a GLS sedan with the premium package, aiming to see the tan cloth and feel luxurious. I personally prefer a heftier, sporting fabric, but perhaps as equipped with the SE tailgate. In terms of materials, you might be able to do a little better in this segment, you can certainly be much worse.

There are advantages for the Accent burly length: the windshield will not be laid as far back as the instrument panel is not as deep and the driving position is much better than the Elantra. Forward visibility is very open, inspiring confidence. Unfortunately, the standard manual tilt front seat adjustment has gone in the last accents, as it is of most cars these days. The steering wheel tilts but does not telescope.

The accent of the front seats are comfortably shaped, moderately resistant and provide a decent amount of lateral support. Those of you who always ask if fit a large person (you know who you are) might actually be able to fit-the driver's seat has to travel quite a bit. If the passenger seat for the average adult male is positioned, there is enough room in the back for another as male and far more than the Mazda2 or the Fiesta. The Elantra has a few inches more legroom than the new Accent, but its rear seat is low (and even then not allow quite as much headroom) is positioned so I think actually the accent rear seat comfort. Trunk volume of 13.7 cubic feet is only a single cube shy of the Elantra, and pretty good for such a small car.

The Accent GLS automatic weighs 2,463 pounds, so about 100 pounds heavier than a Mazda2 or Toyota Yaris, but nearly 200 lighter than a Chevrolet Sonic and Ford Fiesta, and almost 300 lighter than the larger Elantra. Despite this relatively low weight, the car feels more stable than most in the class and also the Elantra. Factor in a direct-injection 1.6-liter engine, which checks with 138 peak horsepower, in just ten short of the conventionally injected 1.8 (and is far above all others in the segment, the Fiesta 120 next best) in the Elantra , and even with the six-speed automatic the Accent never feels slow. With the manual transmission, it might even feel that fast. Even a strong 1.6 has a relatively light car work pretty hard, so it's a good thing that this engine rev happy and sounds good (if not quiet), let them spend it. The transmission can be shifted manually, but usually chooses the appropriate gear when left to itself and allows the engine to do what they do, with shifts in the low 3000s needs in casual driving. In normal mode (there is also an "Eco" mode) the transmission is not lugging the engine, the possibilities it sometimes does in the Elantra, Sonata and Tucson.

Perhaps because the transmission is not designed to be a spoilsport, the EPA ratings are nearly identical to that of the heavier, port-injected Elantra, 30/40 instead of 29/40. Not quite the reason to celebrate those numbers would have been even a year ago, but who does about "only" 30/40 to complain about? Especially if the car is much roomier than the competition, the roles are not better (and often worse) on the route between EPA.

So here's the part where I tell you that the car is working well, but it's no fun to drive. Except it actually is. The said seat position certainly contributes. The electric motor power steering feels artificial, even a little jelly to the center, but a satisfactory strength and loads progressively up when switched on. Understeer and body lean are minimal, and the chassis will remain thoroughly predictable and to the ends of the front tires. The suspension is tuned much better than that in the Elantra (whose ride continually irritated me). Thanks firmer damping body movements can be controlled better than road bumps. Some people might find the ride a little too hard, but. For anyone who cares about driving, it's about as good as it gets with a 101-inch wheelbase A Ford Fiesta feels cushier, but also feels soggier if exercised. A Mazda2 feels lighter and more agile, and more fun to drive as a winding road, but also looks and feels much cheaper. As in Ford, wind and road noise is surprisingly low, even at highway speeds as opposed to the small cars of the past years, the Accent is a car that could comfortably be driven for long distances.

I have not yet entered prices for the 2012 Accent in True Delta car price comparison tool, but it should. Before the end of the month For now, a less accurate comparison will have to do. You can not load up an accent to the way you can a Ford Fiesta. Features such as leather interior, heated seats, sunroof, keyless ignition and simply not available. A leather-wrapped steering wheel only in the Accent SE hatchback (: MSRP $ 17,555 with automatic) are found. So the midlevel Fiesta SE sedan seems correspond most closely with the $ 17,350 car I drove. Similarly, one equipped lists for $ 17,060, so a few hundred dollars less. Likewise outfit a Nissan Versa and Toyota Yaris, and to list them, for $ 18,180 and $ 18,630, or well above the Ford and Hyundai. So while the Accent is certainly not in the bargain basement prices, it comes to check-in at the lower end of the price range segment. A similarly equipped Hyundai Elantra: $ 18,445, just over $ 1,000 more than the Accent.

The 2012 Hyundai Accent has a surprisingly large number of strengths, including the best combination of performance, fuel economy, handling, ride, room, driving position, interior materials, and overall refinement, see the segment. Some competitors are present in one or two of these areas, but not much, and then severely lagging in others. In hatchback form the new Accent is more attractive (and the sedan is not bad). This combination of properties is so convincing that it is not only easy to see why many people the Accent more than other B-segment cars want. Many also feel that it is a better car than the Hyundai Elantra. The only significant advantage of the larger, more expensive car: you can do it with heated leather seats, sunroof and nav. I do not want this? Then the better driving Accent is the way to go, even if you do not get a giant for close to ten can do more.

Glassman Hyundai in Southfield, MI presented, by car. She can be reached